2003 Mercedes-Benz S430 Problems
RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the 2003 Mercedes-Benz S430 as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.Refine by vehicle
The crankshaft position sensor may fail. Symptoms of this are: The engine will crank—but not start—especially when the engine is warm. The car may start again if it is left to cool off, but it may run roughly or have poor performance.
The relay which turns the airmatic suspension pump on may fail causing the pump to run continuously. This can result in failure of the pump motor or a dead battery as the pump motor will continue to run after the car is turned off. Also, Worn airmatic pump mount bushings can causes noises in the front axle while driving on bumpy roads or a buzzing noise while the pump is running.
CD changers, command units, voice control units, PSE units, and Tele Aid units are prone to failure, especially in early models.
A vibration felt through the center floor of the vehicle can be caused by cracked and/or shredded driveshaft flex discs, resulting in excessive driveshaft movement. If not repaired, damage to the driveshaft center support bearing, transmission, or differential can occur.
A door control module/actuator may fail. Our technicians recommend finding an expert to repair them. Taking the door trim panels off requires expert knowledge because they can break and the pieces are very expensive.
Front thrust arm and control arm bushings can crack and sometimes tear completely. If this is not repaired quickly, damage to the front subframe unit will occur, which is very expensive to repair. Updated control arms (that prevent damage to the subframe when the bushings wear out) are available.
An engine Oil leak may develop from the PCV vent housing on the valve cover and/or the inspection plate on the front of the engine.
Leaks may develop from the differential cover and/or seals on high mileage or older vehicles. Our technicians recommend a complete reseal of the differential unit if these leaks are addressed.
Due to the size and material used on the brakes of these vehicles, the brakes may start to squeak around the 50 percent wear point. The brake rotor surfaces become uneven, causing a lip to form at the outer edge of the rotor. Because of this, the rotors are usually replaced when the pads are worn (pad life varies depending on driving style and terrain).
The center console armrest can break. Replacement is commonly the recommended repair.
Analog Tele Aid units are no longer supported and must be updated to digital, preferably at a dealership or a well-equipped independent shop. The update and all related factors should be completed at the same time.
The rubber bond in the harmonic balancer can decay, which causes the balancer to move and work its way toward the timing cover. If the balancer comes into contact with the timing cover while the engine is running, it will fracture and damage the cover and potentially other surrounding parts. The harmonic balancer should be inspected at every service.