Mercedes-Benz vehicles are known for their reliability, but like any other car, they sometimes run into problems. One of the more common issues Mercedes-Benz owners deal with is the gear selector wearing down. Read on to learn about what the gear selector does, the symptoms to look out for that will tell you something’s wrong, and how to deal with the problem if it arises.
The Purpose of the Gear Selector
As you might expect from the name, a gear selector is what allows you to shift gears. In automatic cars, it detects things like your speed and what position the gearshift is in to tell the transmission what gear the car needs to be running in.
As you can see, the gear selector plays a crucial role, and if it’s not working properly, you could find yourself suddenly going backward when you want to move forward, or shifting to a lower gear when you want to speed up. You could also encounter several other problems, all of which are potentially dangerous to both the health of you and your passengers and your transmission’s health.
Luckily, however, chances are that you will notice the symptoms of a potential gear selector failure pretty quickly, so you can get it fixed as soon as possible and avoid damaging the transmission any further or, even worse, endangering the lives of the people who ride in your car.
Warning Signs of Gear Selector Problems
The tricky thing about gear selector issues is that the symptoms look very similar to other transmission problems, so you won’t be able to immediately tell that the gear selector is what’s acting up just by observing the symptoms.
However, any problem with a transmission is serious, so no matter what, if you notice one of the things I mention below, you should take your car in for repair. A professional mechanic will have the diagnostic tools necessary to determine exactly what the problem is and fix it much faster than you could.
With that being said, here are some common signs of gear selector failure:
- Grinding or clicking noises, particularly if they happen while you are shifting gears. In any vehicle, but especially luxury ones like Mercedes-Benz, shifting between gears should be a seamless process.
- Rough shifting. This can include sudden jerks while the car attempts to change gears, vibrations, or delays between shifting.
- Difficulties moving between drive, reverse, and neutral. Your vehicle should change immediately between these when you tell it to. If instead, you notice that it’s hesitating, or you continue to move forward for a little bit even though you changed the gearshift into the reverse position, that’s a sign that the transmission is having trouble.
- Gear slipping. This is a common symptom of transmission problems where the car will suddenly slip into a lower (or higher) gear even though you have not changed your speed. It can also happen when you’re accelerating, and the car unexpectedly shifts to a lower gear when it should be moving into higher ones as you speed up.
What to Do About Gear Selector Problems
Ideally, you want to avoid having any of these symptoms at all. The best way to do that is to keep up with the routine maintenance schedule suggested in your owner’s manual. Getting regular checkups and tune-ups allows mechanics to catch problems before they become problems and prevent them from turning into something much bigger (and more expensive).
If you are already experiencing one or more of the symptoms I mentioned, though, then you should schedule an appointment with your local Mercedes-Benz specialist as soon as you can before the issue gets even worse. Replacing a transmission can be a very expensive and stressful process, so it’s best to stop any potential hiccups before they get to that point.
If you live in the Los Angeles area and you’re looking for a great place to bring your Mercedes for maintenance or repair, look no further than Carotech Automotive and Tires. With expertise in a wide range of brands and highly trained technicians, you can trust that we’ll have the knowledge and tools necessary to get the job done efficiently.