Since 1926, Mercedes have been gracing our streets with sophisticated vehicles that are known for their longevity and style. While Mercedes is one of finest products that Germany has produced, it is not immune to automotive issues. Just like all motorized vehicles, a Mercedes has common issues, and one of them is the insulation that encases the harness wires in the engine. This is arguably the most common problem with a Mercedes Benz. Although it can be picked up by a speedy vehicle checkup, it can cause problems if left untreated.
Part of the reason that the harness wire insulation has become such an issue is that it is now made of biodegradable material. Although this is good for the environment, it is not as tough or durable as the insulation that once encased the harness wires. The most common reasons for this breakdown is engine overheating and damage from animals who gnaw on the soy-based insulation.
The purpose of your engine harness wires are twofold: to relay electrical power and also to relay important information throughout your engine. If these wires become damaged, it will mean a loss in power and also weak or no signal sent to the engine.
Reasons Your Insulation May be Falling Apart
There are two main reasons that your engine wire harness insulation may be failing. The first reason has to do with the heat and vibrations given off by the engine of your car. As your engine is operating, it will inevitably give off a great amount of heat. Over a span of several years, this heat eventually eats away at the insulation and causes damage to the wires underneath.
Vibrations will have the same effect. The more you drive your car, the more the insulation will become frayed and damaged. It’s an inevitability due to the soy-based insulation of the harness wires. The insulation simply isn’t durable enough to withstand the stress applied by heat and vibrations.
The second and less common reason for insulation damage is due to squirrels, mice, rats, and other vermin. Mice and rats are notorious scavengers that will chew through anything and everything in their path. The soy-based insulation is a very welcome meal to these creatures and is no match for their razor-sharp teeth. Mice and rats are also drawn to the heat given off by the engine of the Mercedes. It is a good idea to always get your wiring checked anytime you take your car in for regular maintenance.
Signs You Need to Get Your Insulation Checked
Luckily, there are several signs to look for when it comes to damaged harness wires. If you notice the below symptoms, have your car inspected right away:
- Trouble codes in your computer memory: This symptom will only be picked up by a professional mechanic at a repair shop. The mechanic will hook up a computer to your car OBD monitor, which will show all of the errors registered by your car. If you have damaged harness wires, this will show up in the computer to allow a mechanic to make a repair right away. Listen to your car for unusual noises and pay attention to the check engine light and the above major problems can be avoided.
- Stalled engine: This is probably the worst way to find out that your engine harness wires are damaged. If your car stalls and refuses to start up again, it’s likely that your harness wires have been completely severed. Unfortunately, this fix will require the services of a tow truck and an emergency visit to whatever mechanic happens to be nearby.
- Rough idle or driving noises: If your car seems extra shaky or loud while you are idling or speeding down the highway, there’s a chance that your harness wires have become compromised.
- Check engine light: There are many reasons that your check engine light may turn on, but one of these is that your engine harness wires are damaged. Anytime the check engine light in your Mercedes activates, seek help immediately. Don’t be the car stranded by the side of the highway when it can be avoided by simply listening to your car’s needs.
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