Certain models of Mercedes-Benz can sometimes face serious mechanical troubles. A particularly common challenge with the Mercedes brand is gear selector issues, where the vehicle’s gear selector grinds, jerks, or even refuses to shift.
Below is important information about potential causes of gear selector failure, how you can find out if your Mercedes’ selector is failing, and what you should do if it is.
A variety of factors can cause problems with your Mercedes’ gear selector. The first and perhaps most common of these factors is natural wear and tear. Your car’s gear selector is part of its transmission, and as durable as your transmission may be, its gears and cables aren’t designed to last indefinitely.
Regular maintenance can help prevent your vehicle’s transmission from wearing out too quickly, but it will wear out eventually. This can cause huge issues with your gear selector, not to mention the rest of your vehicle, if not addressed in a timely manner.
Another potential cause of gear selector issues is valve body failure. In automatic transmissions, the valve body allows hydraulic transmission fluid to flow through the system, thus enabling easy gear shifting. If the valve body wears down or breaks, it can disrupt the flow of hydraulic transmission fluid, making gear shifting much more difficult. If this happens, the valve body will almost certainly need to be replaced.
Also, a broken or worn-down gear selector cable might cause issues with your vehicle’s gear selector. This cable (or cables, if your vehicle has manual transmission) connects your gear selector to the rest of its transmission, allowing the selector to change the gears. If the cable binds up, it will make it much more difficult for you to shift gears, and if the cable breaks, your vehicle will refuse to change gears entirely. Gear selector cable problems are more common in vehicles with manual transmissions, but can certainly happen with automatic transmissions as well.
A final common cause of gear selector problems in a Mercedes is manufacturing issues. Unfortunately, as sleek and well-made as Mercedes-Benz models typically are, they can still be susceptible to manufacturing errors, including a lack of transmission testing.
It is worth noting that transmission issues due to manufacturing errors are common enough in Mercedes-Benz models that some drivers have tried to sue the company over them. Therefore, if you have a Mercedes, you should pay close attention to the quality of your gear selector and your transmission overall.
There are several tried-and-true symptoms you can look for to determine if your Mercedes’ gear selector needs repairs.
Typically, the first signs that your gear selector may be failing are grinding or clicking noises when you shift gears. In addition, the selector may jerk or struggle when changing gears or refuse to shift from “drive” into “reverse.”
Less common but still significant, symptoms of gear selector issues may include the transmission failing to engage when you shift gears or your vehicle’s gear indicator needle being misaligned.
If you notice the above symptoms but do not respond to them quickly enough, your vehicle may soon develop more severe problems than a grinding gear selector. Because a faulty gear selector often indicates larger transmission problems, failing to address the above symptoms can sometimes lead to significant transmission issues, such as slipping from one gear to another.
Ultimately, a damaged transmission can completely destroy your vehicle’s ability to function. Therefore, if you notice early warning signs that your vehicle’s gear selector is failing, you should address the problem right away to save you the headache as well as expense.
If you’re having problems with the gear selector in your Mercedes, your best course of action is taking your vehicle to a professional. Luckily, Euro Plus Automotive has plenty of experience handling gear selector issues in Mercedes-Benz models.
For over 30 years, customers in Canoga Park, Woodland Hills, San Fernando Valley, and Los Angeles County, CA have relied on us to keep their luxury vehicles in excellent shape. We know how to maintain, repair, and restore the German vehicles. We would love to help you keep your Mercedes running smoothly for all your future needs. Give our professional mechanics a call today and set up a convenient appointment.