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Pete, Mercedes Mechanic
Category: Mercedes
Satisfied Customers: 27159
Experience:  Over 15 years experience as a Mercedes dealer technician
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I have a wheel alignment problem. My car: 2003 Mercedes e500

Customer Question

I have a wheel alignment problem.My car: 2003 Mercedes e500 with airsuspension
I have previously asked questions about suspension and other. Don't know who will answer and wether question / answer history is accessible. I dealt with Marty and Lou P. before.
So my car was bottomed and didn't raise since I bought
it with damage from an accident (front left) it turned out to be a bad front right shock/strut. After change it raised rightaways.So I brought my car to a local shop for inspection and then changed front lower ball joints, rotors, left rear shock and I had to tighten the front outer cone bearings. Also the car was dropping on the left front and left rear more than normal and more than the passenger side. Appearently ok now after I found a leaky airline port at valve block andssealed it.Problem :
When the shop was doing wheel alignment - every run out gave different results.
So I went to a different place and asked up front if they previously did wheel alignment on mercedes cars with airsuspension and wether they had any problems. But he said they did it before and never had problems.
But when the second shop did the alignment it turned out to be the same. I asked him if the car was dropping but he said laser showed no drop.
For example left rear first time was 0 degree but second time negative 1. 4 degreesWhat can be the Problem? Is there something different/(normal) when doing alignment on e500 with airsuspension or is there a problem with my car?
If it would be just one wheel, I would think maybe a bad axle spindle or so but all wheels?
The guy said he can fax results if needed.Please help!!!
Thanks, Ben
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Mercedes
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

Hi my name is ***** ***** I will be happy to assist with this today.In some cases I may need more info to assist better.I apologize for any delay.

If the vehicle height hasnt been calibrated after the air shocks were replaced this can cause an issue in some cases.This needs to be done with either a scan tool that can do this procedure or dealers sds machine plugged into your vehicle.After this is done the vehicle level needs checked with the electronic inclination meter as seen here

Once this is done if there is any issues with height then the fault needs corrected.Bushings or spring wear can cause faults here.The alignment is best done by a dealer with the correct tools.Below is the procedure that is used to check and perform an alignment on this model here.

If more help is needed, use the reply tab to continue our conversation. If no further assistance is needed, kindly rate my service.You can rate at any time and we can continue to work on your question as this will not close out your question.Keep in mind in some cases it can be difficult to fully diagnose or help repair your vehicle without seeing it and I work on delivering the best possible answer from what I see to work with.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Pete,
The guy said height is ok - not dropping or so
I think he said the height was 70cm (27.559")to wheel well or so.
The problem is different wheel alignment results from one runout to the other
for example left rear 0 degree first time and negative 1.4 degrees second Time.
what would cause that while having the same vehicle height? Because if it is out it should be out and the same degree each time.
also he said tires don't show uneven wear
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

If the engine cradle mounts have not been checked to see if the bolts are loose this can cause this here.I have seen this before with the cradle mounts being loose causing a different reading each time.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I had problems to get back to my question over my phone, so I am doing it over my computer now.My local mechanic did not give me accurate information he said it would be the same problem like at the place I first went.
but now it seems like it is not the problem of changing results when doing the wheel alignment, but changing results at different suspension height settings.-which suspension height setting is to be used to do wheel alignment - normal /comfort (no lights on on button)?
-he said tires dont show uneven wear but system shows out of alignment- for example left rear negative 1.4 degrees and he says it could be like he will adjust it to be within specs but will wear my tires uneven.
-what are the specs for my 2003 e500? how much can they be out but still pass?
Or is it normal to be out like it is with my car (since even wear)?please help
thanks, Ben
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

I apologize for the delay.

Did you get the info on my two links I posted above on height calibration settings?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Pete,
Yes, I did receive.
But I don't think I need the height calibration, because height didn't change when I changed the rear shock or all corners lifted to the same height when I put the front right air strut first time. It would only pump up right/ evenly and drop after a while on the left side. But I found a leaking airline port at valve block.
The 2. mechanic said dropping wasn't a problem/ didn't occur.- About Alignment:
Is there only a certain suspension height setting to be used for alignment? ( comfort = normal > no red light on) or sport.
Or is it right that the alignment height is 70cm to wheelwell?If the Info I have is right, there is an adjustment range - not point. What would it be? For example: camber +/- 1.4 degrees??, toes =??.. .Thanks, Ben
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

I will have to open your question up for others here to see if anyone else can assist further as someone else may have more info on the alignment procedure.I hope you can get this resolved with ease.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Hi Pete,
I wanted to let you know, that the mechanic was able to make it work and that is why I do not need ana answer any more.
Thanks for your efforts.
regards, Ben
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

O.k.,that is great to hear.If you need anything else in the future let me know.

Thanks Pete

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
Expert:  Pete replied 1 year ago.

Your welcome