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Old 03-21-2015, 11:30 PM   #11
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Dear Arlo and Biker Bill:

Thank you for your detailed posts concerning your problems with DEF. My wife and I did our own MB Sprinter Class B conversion (2013) and used it a few dozen times on short trips. We just retired and took an extended trip to the Keys from NC as a shake down cruise. We had a previous problem with a stuck EGR valve at 700 miles that took 4 trips to 4 different MB dealers before 1 actually troubleshot it and fixed it. 2 reset the computer and 1 replaced something totally unrelated.

Anyhow, we just departed for our retirement dream trip to the West spread out over 3 months. We made it 200 miles from home when the CEL came on, followed by the Check DEF (I just filled it before we left town so I knew it wasn't low). And then.....10 starts until you die.

Fortunately, a MB dealer along our route agreed to see us. Took us right in and came out an hour later. We fixed your problem!, she said. Trust me, I am very cautious about MB dealers. I've been to 6 of them now and only 1 fixed it right the first time. So what did you do, I inquired? We reset the computer for you. When it gets low, it sometimes doesn't reset when you fill it, she said. I said that there is something else very wrong, I am heading to Ca and 10 starts won't make it. She said that 90% of the time, this fixes it. I know that this is BS; but, it is Friday at 4 PM and they did take me right away, so I can't complain. I also reminded them that it never got low enough to turn on the alarm. She said, "Oh".

Needless to say, we made it 50 miles before the sequence repeated itself. My wife and I are now at our first stop with ten starts left. I have another appointment at another MB dealer on Monday which is 100 miles in the wrong direction; but, they are working me in to their busy schedule. I'm thankful for that. Our next campground gave us a full refund.

The detailed info that you provided gives us HOPE that this can be fixed. The info also steers us to what can be wrong and I won't settle for anything less than at least 2 NOx sensors and a def pump check, regardless of what the computer says.

I called another MB dealer that is along our way and he said that it would take at least a week and he has two in the shop that he is currently trying to figure out with the same problem. I'm avoiding that one.

I am also giving them the number for Ft. Washington, if they need a consult. Thanks for that as well.

Tomorrow we are using 2 of our starts to sightsee....then there were 8!

Thanks again
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Old 03-22-2015, 01:27 PM   #12
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

This is indeed a painfully familiar experience, H Jim. To reinforce the hope-for-the-future factor, I've had 7000 trouble free miles since my NOx sensor adventure at the end of last summer. And, I made it from Oregon to Indiana on 5 starts by idling while refueling. Good luck, post an update to let us know how this plays out, and hang in there.
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Old 03-22-2015, 03:46 PM   #13
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerbill
The commentary from me regarding this problem and what I felt are fit-and-finish issues on the FB “RTking:TheGroup” is what got me “kicked off” of it and the “Roadtreking Forum,” both operated by Mike Wendland. Their loss, not mine. I can still read everything only I cannot help answer anyone’s questions.
That bothers me, especially since Wendland promotes his career as a journalist, which would seem to encourage telling both sides of a story. Happy that there are other sources of information out there. Hope your Sprinter behaves itself after the fixes.

Tom
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Old 03-22-2015, 03:56 PM   #14
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Quote:
Originally Posted by mutcth
Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerbill
The commentary from me regarding this problem and what I felt are fit-and-finish issues on the FB “RTking:TheGroup” is what got me “kicked off” of it and the “Roadtreking Forum,” both operated by Mike Wendland. Their loss, not mine. I can still read everything only I cannot help answer anyone’s questions.
That bothers me, especially since Wendland promotes his career as a journalist, which would seem to encourage telling both sides of a story. Happy that there are other sources of information out there. Hope your Sprinter behaves itself after the fixes.

Tom
I voluntarily quit both of Wendland's groups because of the one sided fluff that they promote. I just feel him and Campskunk are compensated misleading mouthpieces for the Roadtrek groupies
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:27 PM   #15
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

"Sponsored" sites (and that what they really are) are very tough to moderate, I would think, as any site can get very heavily into complaining and badmouthing only and implode. The other side of it there is natural tendency to shed a good light on the "sponsor" while minimizing any downside, and that is also not good. I, too, find the sites just too much of a "group hug for Roadtreks" to enjoy, but a lot of Facebook stuff is that way. The booting of mildly dissenting folks is also troubling to me.

Wendlund still puts on a face of impartial journalist for the most part, but Campskunk now refers to himself as a Roadtrek Technical Consultant, which I think is a good thing with his long history, and high knowledge level, on the various forums as a non affiliated poster. Yan Seiner has also clarified his status as being a Roadtrek Engineer, although I think it is as a contractor, not full time. He has been a long time poster on the Yahoo board. Transparency is always good, especially when there are folks getting information and are trying to make informed decisions when they don't know the advice or info is biased.

I like the nondenominational sites like the B Forum, where you get all the good, the bad, and the ugly for all brands.
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Old 03-22-2015, 04:59 PM   #16
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Quote:
Originally Posted by mutcth
Quote:
Originally Posted by bikerbill
The commentary from me regarding this problem and what I felt are fit-and-finish issues on the FB “RTking:TheGroup” is what got me “kicked off” of it and the “Roadtreking Forum,” both operated by Mike Wendland. Their loss, not mine. I can still read everything only I cannot help answer anyone’s questions.
That bothers me, especially since Wendland promotes his career as a journalist, which would seem to encourage telling both sides of a story. Happy that there are other sources of information out there. Hope your Sprinter behaves itself after the fixes.

Tom
I actually saw and read 'Bikerbills' post that got him kicked off. his ire had been building up over several issues with his new CSe-trek -however it was a 'major' super class 'rant'. you would have kicked him off also. The irony of it was he added to the rant the fully capped post that the mercedes sprinter dealer sent him with information that was subsequently proven wrong. sometimes when we are 'frustrated' we say thing that we can't take back.


Mike Wendland is a businessman. he has many revenue streams. His site is both his passion and a way of deducting 'business expenses' associated with his roadtrekking-i'd do it to if i had the werewithal.

as for campskunk- he usually denigrates my posts. Since every time he does that i use his real first name back to him-he stops for awhile
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:29 PM   #17
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Let's get this back on topic - 2015/14 Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes that happened to be a Roadtrek.

This gem of information from bikerbill -

Quote:
So on a whim the service manager used the diagnostic software for the 2013 Sprinters. Now they are getting different readings and they pointed to the NOX sensors. Both were ordered and replaced. Viola! Everything seems to be OK. Reassemble all the parts that were removed so they could properly road test it. Done and working. Wow.
is too valuable to get lost amongst other things.
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Old 03-22-2015, 05:37 PM   #18
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

Quote:
Originally Posted by markopolo
Let's get this back on topic - 2015/14 Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes that happened to be a Roadtrek.

This gem of information from bikerbill -

Quote:
So on a whim the service manager used the diagnostic software for the 2013 Sprinters. Now they are getting different readings and they pointed to the NOX sensors. Both were ordered and replaced. Viola! Everything seems to be OK. Reassemble all the parts that were removed so they could properly road test it. Done and working. Wow.
is too valuable to get lost amongst other things.
Mark- you are of course correct. However isn't kind of sad that Mercedes Benz can't figure out things themselves. It was the MB dealer telling William incorrect info(caused by diagnosing for the wrong year) that triggered his rant that got him bounced. I read a lot of Roadtrek posts. the greater percent of issues(and complaints) are the Sprinter part -not the roadtrek part.
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Old 03-23-2015, 12:06 AM   #19
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

OK so we're back from a 3100 mile trip for 3 weeks to FLA. No problems with the Mercedes systems other than they still have a wheel shimmy in the steering at 65+ mph. The did replace the front tires at MB in Jan due to flat spots they found since it sat at the RT factory for over 8 months last year. And we are still sure the speedometer is reading 5 mph lower than actual speed. We've checked with 2 GPS units and several highway radar speed signs confirm our suspicions. So I think the DEF and NOX is now OK. It only took a total of 6 weeks at MB shops. And Jim Hammil can say all he wants on Wendlends RT page about how he and RT will get involved if you have a problem with DEF or NOX.

And "gerry" yes my "rant" was in CAPS. I was in Branson MO with my iPhone, not my laptop, and I copied the exact message I got in an email from the first MB dealer we took it to. They were the ones who said, no can help. Problem with the up fitter installed things underneath. Someone has to remove them so we can work in it. remember, we were 1500 miles away from our new RT van (we were traveling by car). I fist called RT then sent an email. I needed answers and was not getting them. We had tickets to various shows at Branson and I was working between the shows to get answers. So yes I posted my "rant" on the Wendland FB page. And yes, Jim Hammil did not like it. He immediately stated that the RT office would be in touch with the MB dealer. 2 hours later they still had no phone call from RT. Then I took matters in my own hand from 1500 miles away and get it handled by another MB dealer in Ft Washington. Took them 4 weeks as I've posted earlier. Those problem seem to be in the past.

Now on this 3 week trip, we find we cannot dry camp on 12 volts and run the fridge. Once the battery "idiot" lights drop from 4 to 3, the fridge won't run. After several phone calls and emails with RT service, we determined that it "could be" as 12 v RT problem (but service didn't think so-ha ha) or more likely a fridge circuit board problem. So for the rest of the trip we ran a 5000 watt E-trek inverter to operate the fridge on 115 volts. Kinda like using a 3" fire hose to fill the 30 gallon water tank on the RT. Its going into the RT dealer this week.

And yes, I ranted about the Quality Control of RT. First time we went to use the instant hot water discovered the water valve was off. Turned it on and when the water pump was turned on we got a showed in the cabinet. Seems the one water line pulled out of its connection. So much for QC both at the factory and at the dealer.

Now we ordered it with the Webaston diesel heat/hot water system. Could not get hot water more than a cup full at a time. Once we came home and I put it up on ramps to crawl underneath, seems the winterization by-pass valve was open on the Webasto. HUMMMM. RT factory or dealer? Who knows.

And when I was under it looking the 3" return air line which brings the cabin air from up front back into the heater to be warmed and discharged into the read of the unit was almost completely crushed. It seems RT rand the 3" flex tubing over the top of the differential. So when you hit a large bump, which we did of course, when the rear axle flexed it crushed the 3" line. No wonder the air flow for heat in the cabin was not that great.

Went to use the outside 115 volt electric outlet. The GFCI would not operate and when you look at it there is rust showing on the front of the GFCI so its obviously inoperable. I could go on about many other small little issues of QC inside about the fit and fitment of the cabinetry but that would take too long and they could not fix it unless they removed and built new cabinets.

And RT wonders why I "talk and rant" about Quality Control---I don't think they know the meaning of QC. But you never hear Wendland or Campskunk or Yan Seiner discussing screw holes in cabinets that are not supposed to be there. Or misaligned doors, etc.
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Old 03-23-2015, 12:29 AM   #20
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Default Re: 2015/14 Roadtrek Sprinter DEF Adventures with Mercedes

What doesn't make a lot of sense to me is not that the Sprinters have some issues, as all vehicles have some gremlins and the Sprinters have a lot of things to go wrong in the engine control and driveability/suspension areas. Was does not make sense is that MB has a technically advanced vehicle, sells them at a premium, but don't have the dealers trained and equipped to properly service them. We hear about it here and on other boards pretty regularly. A problem that is not all that serious, nobody died or sat stalled in the desert, takes 3-10 trips to various MB dealers to get fixed. And the dealers aren't all that close together, so it can get to be an expensive and time consuming adventure.

I say Kudos to Bill for relating his story and passing on what the problem really was. I have read several other stories of the NOX sensor issue being misdiagnosed, also. It also points out that it pays to keep pushing for a solution if you aren't satisfied with the service and results. It would pay all the owners of B's to pay attention to what goes wrong with other folks vans of the same brand, so they will have an idea of what is up if they have the same thing. No guarantee that the diagnosis will be correct, so it pays to know. I put little notes in the service manual for the Chevy if someone has an odd issue, along with the fix.
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