The Mercedes S-Class utilizes a unique suspension system known as AIRMATIC. It is a highly-responsive system that replaces the traditional steel-spring design with adjustable air springs. This suspension set-up can self adjust based on driving habits, road conditions, and handling requirements.
Common Suspension Issues in the S-Class
While this unique air suspension system provides numerous benefits, it can fall victim to the occasional defect or malfunction. There are several reasons for such a failure. These include:
The compressor is a crucial part of the system. Simply put, it pumps up the suspension bags with air. It can experience problems when it suffers from airflow blockages or a loss in pressure. This can lead to a total compressor failure.
The AIRMATIC struts may have air leaks. These leaks will result in improper pressure levels. Leaks can develop at connection points, in defective seals, or joints of the shock.
AIRMATIC defect or malfunction
The actual AIRMATIC shocks may malfunction or be defective as soon as they are installed. This could be due to incorrect installation or a defective part from the factory. Over time, normal wear and tear may also be rough on the shocks and cause a breakdown.
Problems with the relay
Your relay is a switch which opens and closes the circuits in your compressor. Sometimes, it may fail due to extensive periods of interaction with the compressor. When the relay malfunctions, the proper signals will not be sent to the suspension system.
Signs of Suspension Failure in Mercedes S-Class
There are a few signs or red flags that can alert you to a potential suspension failure in your Mercedes.
Rear suspension feels spongy or loose
If the air suspension system is suffering from a leak or defective compressor, it will affect the overall feel of your vehicle as your drive. As you drive over a speed bump, a series of ridges, or on a curvy road, the rear of your car may feel like its loose or spongy.
Vehicle sags or is lower on one side
Airbags located in the system keep the suspension and your vehicle level. When there is a problem, your automobile may sag on one side or seem higher in the front than the back.
Air compressor never shuts off
The compressor maintains the air pressure in the suspension air bags. If there is a leak in the bag, the compressor will continuously run in order to keep the proper amount of air pressure. You may still hear the compressor even after you turn off the engine.
Rough riding vehicle
Your suspension is designed to provide ultimate comfort while driving and riding in your Mercedes. If your ride suddenly becomes bumpy, rough, or oddly uncomfortable, it can be a sign that your suspension is failing.
Car pulls to one side
As you are driving, you may notice the vehicle pulling to one side or the other. This is commonly a sign of a low tire, but it can also be the result of a failing suspension.
If the AIRMATIC suspension system is malfunctioning, it may become increasingly hard to steer your vehicle. It may feel as though you are “fighting” the wheel to keep the car straight. This is another sign of a potentially serious problem.
Let the Pros Diagnose Suspension Failures
Germany’s Best, Inc. has been servicing drivers in the Berkeley, Emeryville, Piedmont, and Oakland, CA communities for over 25 years. We understand the complexity of the service plans for German makes and models, including Mercedes. Our ASE certified master technicians use only factory-grade materials for all repairs and services. Our state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment allows us to inspect and properly diagnose any suspension problems you may be having in a timely manner the first time you visit our shop.
Our commitment is to you, our valued customer. We provide dealership-quality services at a much lower cost. Suspension problems can be a serious safety concern as you continue to drive your Mercedes. If you suspect an issue, you should have it addressed as soon as possible. Visit the professionals at Germany’s Best, Inc. for experience, expertise, and trustworthy service every time. Call us today.
* Mercedes S-Class image credit goes to: bodrumsurf.