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Hello all,

I'm not one for lurking, so please don't slam me with "do a search, newbie" responses that I see all too often on other (non benz related) forums I follow.

I'm about to pick up a 1997 C230 from a family member and just wanted to know what the usual suspects are for things that may be quirky or need attention. I already know of a relay that needs to be replaced so the rear defroster will work, and I plan on putting it in the auto body shop right away to take care of a minor rust bubble that is developing under the drivers side door accent. Any other "heads up" points of interest would be great!

Previously I owned a 1991 VW Corrado G60...quite fun really, and if it wasn't for www.vwvortex.com (looks similar to this site, but for VW's) I wouldn't have kept it running strong as long as I did. I finally sold it about a year ago and got a 2004 Forester...my wife and I have a baby due in about 4 weeks and since we work together, we only needed one car. But now that has ended as a baby...and the Benz, have walked into my life!

I'm looking forward to this car (I should have keys in hand within a few weeks) and getting to know you all on this forum.

Thanks,

Eric
 

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There's nothing really that out of the ordinary with your C230. They're pretty basic still in those years. As long as you make sure all the maintenance is kept up to date, they're pretty reliable. Your plugs should be changed every 30K, brake fluid every 2 years, coolant every 3. Trans service isn't required as you have the 722.6 auto trans that is supposedly a sealed unit, but a flush and filter change can't hurt (I put a new trans in my old '97 C 230 after 50,000 miles). This will be expensive as MB uses a synthetic trans fluid that is quite pricey, but you will destroy the trans if you use anything else. Belts should be done when they look like they need it. A basic inspection for leaks and play in the suspension should give you a good idea where the vehicle stands. It's really common for that trans to leak fluid from the electrical connector on the FR of the trans. No big deal, two seals and 15 minutes later you're leak free. The diff will undoubtedly seep oil (as they all do), but until it drips, I wouldn't worry. That's all I can think of right now, although I'm sure more will come to me.
 
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