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Common Faults to Look for on Second-Hand Mercedes Benz

Purchasing a second-hand car can be a wise investment, particularly when it comes to high-quality vehicles like Mercedes Benz. These cars are renowned for their engineering, comfort, and longevity. However, even the most well-built vehicles can have issues, especially when they've been previously owned. This article will discuss some common faults to be aware of when buying a second-hand Mercedes Benz in the UK and the importance of regular servicing by a Mercedes specialist.


Rust can be a common problem in Mercedes Benz cars, especially older models. Check around the wheel arches, the bottom of the doors, and the boot lid for signs of rust. While some rust issues are merely cosmetic, more severe rust can affect the structural integrity of the car. Regular servicing can catch these issues early, keeping your vehicle safe and prolonging its lifespan.

Faulty Electronics

Mercedes Benz cars are filled with electronic features, which, while they add comfort and convenience, can sometimes fail. Issues can range from faulty window mechanisms and seat warmers to more critical components like the electronic stability program. Regular servicing includes checking these electronic systems to ensure they are working correctly.

Suspension Issues

Some Mercedes models, especially those equipped with air suspension, are known to suffer from suspension-related problems over time. These issues can lead to a rough ride and potential tyre wear. During a service, the mechanic will check the suspension components and can replace or repair any parts as needed.

Engine Mounts

Engine mounts on Mercedes Benz cars, particularly on models with larger engines, can wear over time. Worn engine mounts can cause the engine to sit lower than intended, potentially leading to other issues. This problem can be identified during a routine Mercedes service.

Timing Belt/Chain

Depending on the model, a Mercedes Benz car will have either a timing belt or a chain. These need to be replaced at certain intervals (generally between 40,000 to 100,000 miles, but this depends on the specific model). Failure to replace the timing belt or chain can lead to severe engine damage. Servicing your Mercedes regularly ensures this essential component is replaced when needed, preventing potential engine failure.

Oil Leaks

Mercedes Benz cars, especially older or high-mileage ones, can develop oil leaks. The source of these leaks can vary, but common areas include the head gasket, oil filter, and oil pan. Not only can oil leaks lead to engine damage, but they are also a fire risk. Regular servicing can help identify and fix oil leaks before they become a significant issue.

Worn Brake Components

The braking system is a critical safety feature of any car. Over time, components such as brake pads, discs, and calipers can wear down, reducing the efficiency of the braking system. Regular checks and replacing these parts as necessary, ensuring your car remains safe to drive.

Gearbox Issues

Mercedes automatic gearboxes are generally reliable, but some older models can suffer from delayed gear changes or even complete gearbox failure. A Mercedes garage can help detect early signs of gearbox issues, and preventative maintenance can often prevent more serious problems.

In conclusion, while Mercedes Benz cars are known for their quality and reliability, like any vehicle, they can develop issues over time. Regular servicing by a Mercedes expert is vital to maintaining the performance and safety of your second-hand Mercedes. By identifying and addressing problems early, servicing can extend the life of your car, saving you time, stress, and potentially significant repair costs in the future. Always ensure that any second-hand Mercedes you are considering has a comprehensive service history to give you peace of mind and a smooth driving experience.


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