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Old 01-18-2020, 02:01 AM   #61
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There are some people that have had emission issues but our van has a 100,000 mile warranty for any emission problems and I doubt I will even keep the van longer than that. Our van has been perfect so far.
The 100K mile warranty is limited to 5 years, no?

The Sprinter engines are wonderful. Maintenance is easy and not terribly expensive (except at certain dealers). The emissions stuff, not so much.

My problem with the Sprinter emissions issues isn't the monetary cost of repair--they are sometimes expensive, but in the grand order of things, not that big a deal. Rather, it is the ruined vacations when you find yourself sitting by the side of the road with "n starts remaining" and you are hundreds of miles from the nearest Sprinter dealer, and when you call them they say the next slot is two weeks from now. I've had enough of that. My next van will be petrol.
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Old 01-18-2020, 10:12 PM   #62
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Rather, it is the ruined vacations when you find yourself sitting by the side of the road with "n starts remaining" and you are hundreds of miles from the nearest Sprinter dealer, and when you call them they say the next slot is two weeks from now.
There's a very handy little OBDII plug that fixes that problem. I haven't had to use it yet, but it's there when needed.
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Old 01-18-2020, 11:50 PM   #63
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There's a very handy little OBDII plug that fixes that problem. I haven't had to use it yet, but it's there when needed.
I am aware of that product. But, I have never seen a first-hand report that it actually works. (I am not saying that it doesn't work--but at the price I would like some evidence). When you finally have the pleasure of trying it out, please report your experience.

I have already invested in a laptop running the Star diagnostic system. Without SCN coding, it can't permanently clear a no-start condition (or, at least I don't know how to do it). But it is apparently capable of adding 5 starts, which is something at least. I haven't tried that yet, either--all of my recent spoiled vacations have been speed-sensor failures (which is a whole other story).
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Old 01-18-2020, 11:59 PM   #64
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I have already invested in a laptop running the Star diagnostic system. Without SCN coding, it can't permanently clear a no-start condition (or, at least I don't know how to do it). But it is apparently capable of adding 5 starts, which is something at least. I haven't tried that yet, either--all of my recent spoiled vacations have been speed-sensor failures (which is a whole other story).
I have the SD System myself; but from what I understand, that no start situation needs to be corrected with direct contact to the mother ship in Stuttgart. Hopefully this OBDII plug will do the job if it ever becomes necessary.

Carrying the OBDII plug is like carrying the SD unit, a first aid kit and a pistol. I hope that I never have to use any of them, but want them available if needed.

(And speaking of the SD System, I'm still trying to figure out the included Vediamo software to activate the cornering lights on my Sprinter.)
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Old 01-19-2020, 10:05 PM   #65
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.......................--all of my recent spoiled vacations have been speed-sensor failures (which is a whole other story).
Sorry you have so much trouble with your Sprinter. Is speed sensor failure setting off LHM or limited engine starts?
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Old 01-19-2020, 10:52 PM   #66
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Carrying the OBDII plug is like carrying the SD unit ... and a pistol.
That's an interesting approach. As a fellow Sprinter owner I'm curious, do you use it to threaten your Sprinter when it won't start? Or to put it out of its misery (or your misery)?
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Old 01-19-2020, 11:01 PM   #67
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Sorry you have so much trouble with your Sprinter. Is speed sensor failure setting off LHM or limited engine starts?
Not limited starts (as far as I know, that is DEF-related exclusively). Symptoms of the wheel-sensor failures have varied. You will always get a CEL plus the infamous "no cruise control", "no ABS", "no Stability Control" errors. On one of my failures, that was it. The other times have led to LHM as well. N.B. that by all accounts (and my personal experience) a rear speed sensor failure will VERY frequently be followed by a failure of the other rear sensor within a few hundred miles. I know at least one dealer who routinely "adjusts" the record on warranty repairs in order to get both sensors covered, because he knows that the other one is likely about to fail. If you are out of warranty, just have them both replaced. This appears to be an increasingly common failure mode as the fleet ages. Some folks over at Sprinter Source have taken to carrying spare sensors, since the actual replacement is not difficult. Unlike DEF repairs, any competent garage can do it.

Interestingly, one of my failures was at highway speed. The warning came on, but the LHM didn't happen until we got off the highway and came to a stop sign. This permitted us to locate and redirect to a dealer without stopping. Only had to limp for a couple of miles. This is worth remembering.
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Old 01-19-2020, 11:27 PM   #68
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Not limited starts (as far as I know, that is DEF-related exclusively). Symptoms of the wheel-sensor failures have varied. You will always get a CEL plus the infamous "no cruise control", "no ABS", "no Stability Control" errors. On one of my failures, that was it. The other times have led to LHM as well. N.B. that by all accounts (and my personal experience) a rear speed sensor failure will VERY frequently be followed by a failure of the other rear sensor within a few hundred miles. I know at least one dealer who routinely "adjusts" the record on warranty repairs in order to get both sensors covered, because he knows that the other one is likely about to fail. If you are out of warranty, just have them both replaced. This appears to be an increasingly common failure mode as the fleet ages. Some folks over at Sprinter Source have taken to carrying spare sensors, since the actual replacement is not difficult. Unlike DEF repairs, any competent garage can do it.

Interestingly, one of my failures was at highway speed. The warning came on, but the LHM didn't happen until we got off the highway and came to a stop sign. This permitted us to locate and redirect to a dealer without stopping. Only had to limp for a couple of miles. This is worth remembering.
SCR, DPF, DEF systems are complex so I can understand learning curve issues, but wheel speed sensors are way passed their infancy.
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Old 01-21-2020, 02:35 AM   #69
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Avanti - I can relate with the ruined vacations. After a year of emission problems I sold my custom converted 4x4 sprinter (at a big loss) bought a GAS Transit. Paid (again) to have it converted and never looked back. I can idle however long or drive short trips and never worry about anything clogging.
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Old 01-21-2020, 03:14 AM   #70
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Avanti - I can relate with the ruined vacations. After a year of emission problems I sold my custom converted 4x4 sprinter (at a big loss) bought a GAS Transit. Paid (again) to have it converted and never looked back. I can idle however long or drive short trips and never worry about anything clogging.
Yep. That is almost exactly our current plan.

It's really kind of sad. We LOVE our Sprinter, and will miss its refinement and overall quality. We will miss it a lot. Moreover, the basic powertrain is amazing (as I have said repeatedly) and mostly rock-solid and robust. The issues are, in the grand order of things, minor. But the three-way trap of (a) peripheral systems that are inadequately reliable; (b) an inadequate dealer network; and (c) ridiculously-designed fall-back behaviors when there are failures conspire to create an untenable situation. Any two of these, I could easily live with, but not all three.

The fundamental problem is that diesel is in its death-spiral. Lots of people don't want to believe this, but the OEMs understand it very clearly. And so, the relatively-modest R&D spending that it would take to genuinely fix these issues simply isn't forthcoming. No bucks, no buck-rogers. It is a shame.
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Old 01-21-2020, 03:57 AM   #71
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I bet we will often see a variant of these wise comments:

"The fundamental problem is that diesel is in its death-spiral. Lots of people don't want to believe this, but the OEMs understand it very clearly. And so, the relatively-modest R&D spending that it would take to genuinely fix these issues simply isn't forthcoming. No bucks, no buck-rogers. It is a shame"

about the ICE in a couple years (months?) as all the auto companies that want to remain in business focus on EV
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Old 01-21-2020, 04:16 AM   #72
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Having a dose of DEF issue, costing us 2 days in a beautiful city of Midland Texas, I should have been swayed away from diesels but I am there yet. My last litmus paper test for diesels in US will new small trucks including Jeep and GM van with diesels be successful. I am tempted to get a new Jeep Gladiator truck diesel.
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Old 01-21-2020, 04:41 AM   #73
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It's really kind of sad. We LOVE our Sprinter, and will miss its refinement and overall quality. We will miss it a lot.

You will get over it real fast, The Transit rides better, handles better, is quieter and has more power. The Sprinter cab is certainly roomier when passing to the back but it is not really an issue. I finally got to take a cross country trip without breaking down or fear of breaking down, It was great!
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Old 01-21-2020, 04:43 AM   #74
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It's really kind of sad. We LOVE our Sprinter, and will miss its refinement and overall quality. We will miss it a lot.



You will get over it real fast, The Transit rides better, handles better, is quieter and has more power. The Sprinter cab is certainly roomier when passing to the back but it is not really an issue. I finally got to take a cross country trip without breaking down or fear of breaking down, It was great!
I second that!
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Old 01-22-2020, 05:16 AM   #75
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The fundamental problem is that diesel is in its death-spiral. Lots of people don't want to believe this, but the OEMs understand it very clearly. And so, the relatively-modest R&D spending that it would take to genuinely fix these issues simply isn't forthcoming. No bucks, no buck-rogers. It is a shame.
Fuso (part of Daimler Truck) has switched from diesel to gasoline for their US cab forward truck and stopped offering a 4wd version of the truck. They are now using a Vortec V-8 with an Allison transmission. EarthCruiser used to use the Fuso 4wd diesel for their chassis and now they do a complete 4wd conversion on the new gasoline model. Completely new driveline after the transmission (new front and rear drive axles from Dynatrac) and completely new suspension. Customers want gasoline after years of diesel emission system issues with the Fuso diesels.
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Old 01-22-2020, 11:27 PM   #76
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This pretty much matches my experience:

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Our Sprinter Class B RV is our first diesel vehicle. It has been a good experience for us. In fact, there are many distinct advantages.

Diesel fuel is readily available at virtually every gas station. I change my own oil which takes me about 15 minutes. I buy the correct oil at my local auto parts store and stock up when it goes on sale. I use the local Freightliner dealer for other service work including occasional fuel filter replacements and their prices are reasonable. They are even open nights and weekends for the truckers.

We get much better mileage than we would with a gas van. We also have a diesel Espar furnace which runs off the van fuel tank so I haven't had to refill my LP tank for several years. The Sprinter is also set up for easy installation of a second alternator so I never have to deal with a loud and obnoxious generator to charge our battery bank.

There are some people that have had emission issues but our van has a 100,000 mile warranty for any emission problems and I doubt I will even keep the van longer than that. Our van has been perfect so far.

For us there, there were also really no other good options other than a MB Sprinter based Class B. I had no interest in a Promaster and there were very few Ford Transit options then. I still haven't seen a Ford that I would be interested in. I certainly wouldn't be frightened off by a diesel RV.
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