Close

Mercedes-Benz E500 Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems with the Mercedes-Benz E500 based on complaints from actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

No car image 94a1663db56199c5353592009e34aaa51078a2469bed068bb8d6f0ba43accf97
Get a Repair Estimate
Guaranteed by certified locations nationwide. Learn more
RepairPal estimates are guaranteed at over 1,700 quality certified locations nationwide. Learn more
48
Known Problems

Rear air springs (bellows) may develop leaks, which causes the air pump to run more often to maintain ride height. Our technicians recommend that leaking air springs be replaced.

This vehicle has sensotronic brake control (SBC). If the SBC light on the dash illuminates, have the brakes checked. If the SBC is not working, limited brake pressure is delivered to the front brakes, increasing the distance it takes to stop. The SBC hydraulic unit has a specific service life programmed into the control module; follow the manufacturer's recommended service procedure for proper maintenance of the SBC.

A failed digital heater control valve can cause a lack of heat output from the climate control system.

The Mercedes Benz E500 may have engine oil seeping or leaking from the back of the cylinder heads. This is commonly misdiagnosed as leaking valve covers.

On the back of the cylinder heads there are three, in total, plastic expansion plugs that plug access ports to the camshafts. These plugs are well known for seeping oil, and leaking if left unattended. The oil will run down the back of the engine and eventually make it to the ground. 

Replacement of these three plastic plugs is extremely simple, and should be done as regular maintenance. The recommended interval for replacement is every 60,000 miles.

The cup holder in the center console may break.

Catalytic converter failure is common and may cause a Check Engine Light to illuminate.

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. Communicating these specific symptoms to your technician can save diagnostic time.

The early versions of the central gateway module (which allows different systems to communicate with each other) have software problems. 

The release tab for the center console can fall off unexpectedly.

Water can damage the weight sensor in the front, passenger seat, causing the SRS (airbag) light to illuminate. There is an electrical component in the seat cushion susceptible to fluid damage. Any spills should be dried up immediately in order to try and prevent damage to the sensor.

Failed spark plug wires and/or ignition coils can cause intermittent misfires (rough running); the Check Engine Light may also illuminate. Diagnoses of the ignition system will be necessary to determine which components are at fault.

The mass air flow sensor tends to fail causing poor fuel economy and Check Engine light illumination. The engine air filter should be replaced when the mass air flow sensor is replaced; a dirty filter can allow debris to damage the new sensor.

Ports in the cylinder head related to the emissions air injection and EGR systems can clog; the cylinder head should be removed and the ports cleaned.

A faulty mass air flow (MAF) sensor can cause erratic/rough engine operation and fuel economy issues. Since this sensor measures the actual amount of air entering the motor, when it fails, the engine control module (ECM) takes the wrong information and delivers incorrect volumes of fuel to the cylinders.

Due to exposure to the sun, lenses for head lights may become opaque (cloudy or hazy). This reduces the effectiveness of the lights. Our technicians tell us plastic polishes can improve the clarity of the lenses, but replacement of the lamp housings is the only way to regain the full intensity of the lights.