Report: Tie Rod Ends, Drag Link, and Idler Arm May Wear Out
Mercedes-Benz E320 Problem
One or more of the following steering linkage components may wear prematurely; tie rod ends, drag link, or idler arm. Our technicians remind us the wheel alignment should be checked and adjusted if any of these items are replaced.
Visitor, 1995 Mercedes-Benz E320, 127,000 mi
Center link (straight bar between tie rod ends) broke in two as I was turning into a parking space. It turned out the idler arm bracket (right side, welded to frame) had rusted completely through underneath the clamp holding the shield that protects the exhaust from spray from the right-front tire. After it broke free, it was the extra prssure that broke the center link. Part with idler arm bracket was $236.00 and would have to be shipped from Germany. Had a local guy fabricate and weld a new piece for half the cost and bought an after-market center link for 2/3 the dealer cost. An occasional look-see under that clamp would prevent this time-consuming repair.