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Possible electrical problem with air suspension

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CL-Class (W215) 2000-2006: CL 500, CL 600

Possible electrical problem with air suspension

 
Old 02-18-2019, 01:54 PM
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Unhappy Possible electrical problem with hydropneumatic ABC (Active Body Control) suspension

I just got this car(2002 cl500) and I noticed the suspension was a little off, the front two are even then the rear are a but lower(not sure if itís supposed to be like that) and the rear passenger side is about an inch lower than the rear drivers side. After turning the car on and raising it up, it only went up a little but itís been over 10 hours since and it hasnít lowered at all so I think itís safe to say thereís no leak. So at this point I feel like it might just be some sensor that might be at fault.
Previous owner information:He said he had just got a new key, he had changed out a dead battery with a new one.





Last edited by Yuki18; 02-19-2019 at 12:35 AM.
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Old 02-18-2019, 10:15 PM
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2001 Mercedes CL500
Congratulations on your purchase of the CL500. The suspension is not an air suspension, but the hydropneumatic ABC (Active Body Control) suspension system.
Unfortunately it is known for its many problems. There are many write-ups at the Benzworld forum about problems and fixes.
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Old 02-19-2019, 12:17 AM
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Originally Posted by calgary View Post
Congratulations on your purchase of the CL500. The suspension is not an air suspension, but the hydropneumatic ABC (Active Body Control) suspension system.
Unfortunately it is known for its many problems. There are many write-ups at the Benzworld forum about problems and fixes.
Yeah thatís right thanks, itís just a little hard to remember that one, do you think you can direct me to that part or maybe leave a link for me to look through? Thanks again!
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Old 02-19-2019, 02:50 PM
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2002 CL500 to CL55 conversion
I suggest riding it hard until ABC breaks and then go for a coilover conversion. Unless these systems are meticulously maintained from the beginning, they have too many problems
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Old 02-20-2019, 09:30 AM
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Originally Posted by ctravis595 View Post
I suggest riding it hard until ABC breaks and then go for a coilover conversion. Unless these systems are meticulously maintained from the beginning, they have too many problems
yeah I hear a lot of people doing this but as I said Iím only 18 so my pockets arenít very deep, Iíll consider it once I get a job and find a good amount of info on this. Thanks again 👋
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Old 02-21-2019, 10:00 AM
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Originally Posted by Yuki18 View Post

yeah I hear a lot of people doing this but as I said Iím only 18 so my pockets arenít very deep, Iíll consider it once I get a job and find a good amount of info on this. Thanks again 👋
If you want to drive it like it is and there are no immediate problems with the suspension then you can get lowering links on EBay for $100 for all 4 wheels. All are adjustable so you can independently adjust each wheel to the height you want. That would allow you to make everything even.

Also, I lowered my whole CL 1.5 inches with the lowering links. This has no negative impact on the ABC system but makes it handle far better in the corners because you have a lower center of gravity. So it will make the car more fun to drive.

My first car (when i was 16) was a Plymouth Belvedere with torsion bar suspension. I had a blast lowering it to the ground practically.
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Old 02-21-2019, 10:49 AM
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Originally Posted by RonCL55 View Post


If you want to drive it like it is and there are no immediate problems with the suspension then you can get lowering links on EBay for $100 for all 4 wheels. All are adjustable so you can independently adjust each wheel to the height you want. That would allow you to make everything even.

Also, I lowered my whole CL 1.5 inches with the lowering links. This has no negative impact on the ABC system but makes it handle far better in the corners because you have a lower center of gravity. So it will make the car more fun to drive.

My first car (when i was 16) was a Plymouth Belvedere with torsion bar suspension. I had a blast lowering it to the ground practically.
Oh I havenít heard that of that one before, Iíll check them out and thanks a lot
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Old 02-21-2019, 11:03 AM
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Here is the link for a CL55. I am sure you will be able to find one for your car using the compatibility guide.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2000-06-MER...frcectupt=true

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Old 02-21-2019, 11:13 AM
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Originally Posted by RonCL55 View Post
Here is the link for a CL55. I am sure you will be able to find one for your car using the compatibility guide.

https://www.ebay.com/itm/2000-06-MER...frcectupt=true

Thanks again, Iíll check them out👍
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Old 02-22-2019, 11:10 AM
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Or make them for $25 (see last post) CL lowering links for $70 or less
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Old 02-22-2019, 12:01 PM
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Smartadze. Nice reference thread and good discussion. I put 20K on my lowering links and no issues at all. Works perfectly with the ABC system because you can raise the car with the push of a button as needed.
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Old 02-22-2019, 12:53 PM
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Hmm I think we are getting ahead of ourselves with this problem.. lowering links because the abc wonít self-level?

Iím not sure about your level of mechanic ability but you should be able to do two things at the least-
1. Jack up your car
2. Remove tire/change spare

i think first we need to visually inspect your height sensors, with almost 300k miles they are very likely damaged or coming loose. the fronts are fairly easy to inspect, they are connected to whatís called your upper control arm. Itís shaped sorta like wishbone


rear ride height sensors are harder to find but easier to diagnose in my opinion. Remove the rear wheels, and INSIDE front your Lower control arm in the rear you will see a small arm that connects to a sensor on one side and Connects to your rear control arm on the other side

these sensors in the rear are particularly prone to damage in my experience, especially if someone inexperienced had worked on the rear suspension and didnít support the control arm while dropping the rear wheel hub/arms

lastly Iím not sure I recommend lowering links at all, I believe the lowering links, paired with not changing abc fluid every 15k miles, severely stressed my abc system until struts and pumps started failing. The system is already tricky , and while the lowered look is nice I donít see the logic in trying to manipulate a system with a bad reputation for failure. My car came with lowering links already installed when I bought it
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Old 02-23-2019, 06:48 PM
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Originally Posted by ctravis595 View Post
Hmm I think we are getting ahead of ourselves with this problem.. lowering links because the abc wonít self-level?

Iím not sure about your level of mechanic ability but you should be able to do two things at the least-
1. Jack up your car
2. Remove tire/change spare

i think first we need to visually inspect your height sensors, with almost 300k miles they are very likely damaged or coming loose. the fronts are fairly easy to inspect, they are connected to whatís called your upper control arm. Itís shaped sorta like wishbone


rear ride height sensors are harder to find but easier to diagnose in my opinion. Remove the rear wheels, and INSIDE front your Lower control arm in the rear you will see a small arm that connects to a sensor on one side and Connects to your rear control arm on the other side

these sensors in the rear are particularly prone to damage in my experience, especially if someone inexperienced had worked on the rear suspension and didnít support the control arm while dropping the rear wheel hub/arms

lastly Iím not sure I recommend lowering links at all, I believe the lowering links, paired with not changing abc fluid every 15k miles, severely stressed my abc system until struts and pumps started failing. The system is already tricky , and while the lowered look is nice I donít see the logic in trying to manipulate a system with a bad reputation for failure. My car came with lowering links already installed when I bought it
I have a decent amount of experience with cars, enough to be able to do my own maintenance and a little more. I thought it might be those so Iíll check them out and see if they need replacing since thatís all I can check at the moment
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