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Pete, Technician
Category: Australia Car
Satisfied Customers: 28297
Experience:  Over 17 years diagnosing and repairing various model vehicles with some certifications and training.
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I have a 1999, S430. There are three things currently wrong

Customer Question

Hi, I have a 1999, S430. There are three things currently wrong with my car. Instrument cluster won't light up except for the SRS light in the left corner. This is a working secondhand instrument cluster that I bought because my other one was shot. Second problem is on the dashboard where the hazard light button is, there are buttons either side of this (suspension, eps, etc), those buttons do not light up anymore. And third problem, the front right airmatic suspension has gone right down (I had a new one installed about a year ago), I haven't driven the car for about a week and noticed it yesterday. I can't hear the compressor trying to go on as it usually does.
JA: Has the light been on for some time?
Customer: Its not usually on when I'm driving. About a year ago my dashboard started to flicker, so I modified the cluster circuit board with the new transistors (MOSFETS), this is a kit you can buy. When I reinstalled it , the cluster didn't light up, only the SRS light came on. So I decided to buy a working secondhand instrument cluster. Same problem though, cluster is completely dead, no power or lights, just the SRS light.
JA: Are you fixing your S430 yourself? What have you tried so far?
Customer: I am handy with electronics. I can attempt to fix things but I don't have a proper workshop.
JA: Anything else you want the mechanic to know before I connect you?
Customer: I think that is about is Pearl Thanks
Submitted: 10 months ago.
Category: Australia Car
Expert:  Pete replied 10 months ago.

My name is ***** ***** I am a professional here at Just Answer. I noticed that your question had not received a response and thought I would see if you still need help with this.I apologize for the delay and I hope I can still assist you with this here.

What needs to be done from here is to have the fault codes read out with a fully compatible scan tool/computer that can plug into your model and communicate with all computers.Once this has been done any codes set will need to be diagnosed to locate and correct this fault here.

I have seen issues with the cluster not being programmed after replacement that can cause this fault as well as the suspension codes needing cleared out with a compatible scan tool/computer to correct the suspension issues after the repair was done.I have also seen faulty suspension level sensors cause faults like this needing replaced.You will need to have the fault codes checked/read out to help in locating and repairing this issue here.

If more help is needed, use the reply tab to continue our conversation. If no further assistance is needed, kindly rate my service,your 5 star rating is appreciated.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 10 months ago.
Hi Pete,Thanks for that information. Please don't take my response as highly critical but the information you provided is basically telling me to take it to a service centre that can test the fault codes. The reason I came to this website is so I don't have to do that, I am looking for expert / specific information, not generic information on where or how to get a car serviced. I am already very literate with this side of things. Please don't take that the wrong way, your information is sound, but I think it is fair to say that any adult knows to take the vehicle to a service centre as the normal thing to do, people like me are on this website to try and avoid that cost (otherwise why come to this website in the first place).What I am hoping for here is to find a Mercedes Benz service guru that knows all the tricks, and can give me advice like "swap relay A with relay B and see if the cluster comes on". I'm looking for tricks of the trade so to speak, certainly not expecting to pay someone to tell me to take it to a service centre (this is what users on this website are trying to avoid).The example I gave you above are examples shown on the JustAnswer website of the type of advice we can expect. Are you able to offer this type of advice please? Another literal example I can give you is my drivers side right airmatic suspension went down about a year ago and I jacked the car up, turned the key on the the airmatic suspension inflated and this fixed the problem (I since purchased a new air strut). You haven't given me any advice like this and one of the ailments I've listed is the exact same symptom with probably a different cause). There are numerous Mercedes online forums as well that I usually use with all this type of advice on but I came here hoping to find a guru that could help me cut through the online searching.RegardsRay
Expert:  Pete replied 10 months ago.

Unfortunately I dont have all of this info you are looking for here myself but someone else here may have this info.

I will open your question up for others here to see if someone else can assist further on this as there may be others here that may have more info on what to check or do with this issue.I hope you can get this resolved with ease.No need to reply to my last post here unless it is a last resort as it will keep your question locked to me and others will not be able to view it.If you feel you want to continue to work with me on this feel free to reply at any time but keep in mind in some cases it can be difficult to fully diagnose or help repair this without seeing your vehicle.

Thanks Pete

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