Mercedes-Benz Parts News: Brake Switch; Control Units; Gaskets; Classic Manuals

by | Sep 2003 | 0 comments

Brake Switch

At one time, a brake switch only served to turn on the brake lights when the driver pressed the stop pedal. Since the car’s electronics are now all one system, the brake switch has a much more complex role to play and more detailed ways of playing it. With traction controls, the system needs accurate information about whether the pedal is pressed or not, so current brake switches include several switches in the same unit. Some of them are normally open; some are normally closed. The reason for this is because a problem with the switch – typically a short or an open – is unlikely to affect both circuits in the complementary ways that would be necessary to provide false information. If the control unit gets contradictory information, it will set a code for the switch.

Control Units

Control Units seldom fail because of the numerous protection measures to insulate them from overvoltage, water and impact damage. Most of them, in addition, are located in some of the safest places on the car, less likely than any vehicle contents but the passengers to encounter trouble. Nonetheless, some people manage to drive into lakes or otherwise zap the microprocessor boxes. It’s always a hard decision to replace a control unit except in those rare instances when there is visible external physical damage to the device, because nobody wants to recommend an expensive part that sometimes proves not to be the cure for the problem. The last thing you want, though, is a replacement part that doesn’t work, itself, and the best way to be confident of this is to get a Genuine Mercedes-Benz Part. If you haven’t checked lately, you might be surprised to find the lower prices for control units,  resulting in part from manufacturing economies.


Gaskets aren’t very sexy parts. They’re not electronic or digital or computerized. Not sexy, that is, until you consider the consequences when one fails. The difference in a Genuine Mercedes-Benz gasket is that it fits exactly and is of just the right material and dimensions to do the job as the engineers originally intended. The carmaker also has the advantage of more experience with the vehicles than any other source can claim. That means there can be a continuous program of improvement for all parts, even such ‘ordinary’ ones as gaskets of all sorts.

Classic Manuals

You may have customers with classic Mercedes-Benz vehicles or your shop may do restoration work or keep a classic or two just as demonstration vehicles. There are about 400,000 classic Mercedes-Benz cars still in use. The German-American carmaker has reprinted many classic manuals for about 70 percent of the classic cars built between 1946 and 1985. Service manuals, spare parts lists, illustrated parts catalogs, owner’s manuals, maintenance booklets, and technical data books are available. These publications are reprinted just as originally, in the same paper, in the same colors. The books are also available wholesale to independent shops specializing in Mercedes-Benz vehicles.


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