Question about 1998 Mercedes-Benz SL-Class

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Ticking sound No dash lights. Ticking is worse in cold weather

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I have a 300SL and I encountered a similar problem. My dash lights were not coming on, the car was not starting and there was a ticking noise coming from the passenger side(near airbag) when I was trying to start the engine. I noticed that my ignition switch was slightly getting loose. There is an adjustable cover around the ignition key ( like one inch wide) that can be easily tighten by hand. The purpose of this cover is to hold the ignition in the proper place for the electrical contact. It also has a few marks on it which show you if it is properly aligned. By adjusting it to the proper spot, I was able to fix the problem and the car starts just fine right now. Sometime (once in 6 months) it gets loose again and I have to re-tighten it, but it only takes 5 seconds to do so. It seems like the ignition switch is very sensitive on these cars and the smallest misalignment of the switch can make the car not start.
I hope this helps.

Posted on Apr 20, 2014


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