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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys,

I just brought my car into a 30k service and noticed the loaner car (C250) I was given was pretty easy to steer. My 2009 C350 seems to be a bit stiffer. Anyone know what may be the issue?

I know the power steering flush was not done at 20k and the balance and alignment hasn't been done yet on tires that are almost 10k. The engine coolant flush hasn't been done yet either, everything else is as per the maintenance schedule.

Thank you in advance! :)
 

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Wheel alignment is very important on these cars and should be done if any unusual tyre wear is seen. Also make sure the fault codes are read out as there may be a problem with the power steering valve.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
I just got my wheel alignment done a few minutes ago but the car didn't feel any different. I know it had new tires put on it like 9k miles ago but haven't done anything with the tires since other than just putting air in when needed. There aren't any fault codes or anything.

It's at 30k miles, are the power steering flush and engine coolant replacement necessary?
 

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Coolant is only changed if the specific gravity is low but most coolants will last 10 years or more and has nothing to do with the steering. Steering fluid will depend on how contaminated it is, if at all. We rarely change this fluid and I do not think it will help with the stiff steering unless it has the wrong fluid in there.

Best to get a Benz Tech to road test the car and give you his assessment of this situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks! I wonder why they recommend replacing engine coolant every 3yrs or 30k and the power steering flush every 2yrs or 20k then?
 

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Because the like making money, your money.
Haha thanks!! I think you were right about the wheel alignment. Driving again last night I noticed it feeling better. Not sure why I didn't notice right after getting the car back in the afternoon.
 

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Are there any tell tale signs of when I would need the PS flush and to replace the engine coolant before it gets serious? I'm not a car tech by any means so all I could know is by reading the instruments off my dash.
 

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The cache 22 then is if I take it anywhere they will more than likely say I need to change it and want me to pay them to change it even if there isn't anything wrong. Hmm...
 

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I would say it's simply different b/c it's a diff car. If the suspension and power steering are identical, as is the weight on the front, then my #1 suspect would be tires. Nice new, especially thin tires with long tread life are easier to turn than fat tires with less tread. Tire pressure too. Some people put the max psi in the tires as it says on the side (pet peeve since I was a kid), but it does help mpg, tire life and makes steering much easier. You sacrifice traction and a smooth ride tho...
Then there's caster, the more caster the more it fights you when turning, and the more you turn the more it fights. Caster is what makes the wheels straighten out on their own after a turn, and allows "Look Ma, no hands." So caster is a balance between how much you want it to self straighten and not fight you when going straight, vs its resistance to turning. It's minor w/ power steering but it's something to consider. Like you could take a wee bit of caster out if you wanted, or ask the alignment shop how far they can push it, but I think cars struts are very limited in caster adjustment. Just mentioning fyi, but I'm going with car probably having better/newer power steering, less weight on the tires, and mostly the tires themselves.
 
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