What are "ACCUMULATORS" for 1994 Mercedes-Benz E-320 Wagon suspension systems?


#1

After stupidly leaving a very heavy load on my '94 E-320 Wagon, my MB sits lower and driving bumpy roads feels like I have no shocks. I depressed them for so long that they are no longer absorbing bumps as they should – or so I thought.! I was simply going to get 4 new shocks since the coil springs are O.K. My MB mechanics say my shocks are O.K., and all I need are a set of “ACCUMULATORS” for a mere $700 +. I do not know what they are yet, but I am confused now. Can anyone educate me about what they are talking about? Thank you very much, CARL ERLENDSON ---------


#2

Good price, you have air suspension and the accumulator holds the immediate supply of pressure to make it operate better. You can’t just rely on the pump alone for pressure.


#3

Good price, you have air suspension and the accumulator holds the immediate supply of pressure to make it operate better. You can’t just rely on the pump alone for pressure.


#4

Carl, You do not have air suspension, you have conventional coil springs with rear leveling control shocks.

The rear shocks are attached to a high pressure air-over-hydraulic-fluid device called an accumulator. This is an assist spring used to help carry heavy loads at the rear. When you have a heavy load, it sinks the rear suspension down. When the leveling control system “sees” this it pumps extra hydraulic fluid into the accumulator to compress the air in the accumulator. This causes the shock to push against the wheels and raise the rear to the proper height.If the accumulators have lost their air, the system will not raise the rear nor will it ride very well since the added spring portion of the accumulator will not be able to compress.

This system is more complicated and expensive than a typical American car’s air shocks and air compressor system. Many an owner of a Mercedes or BMW has converted their car over to regular springs and shocks at the rear to avoid the very high cost of replacement parts.


#5

I’ll go against the grain here . . .

I say spend the $700 and replace the accumulators

After all, they lasted 20 years

Probably won’t hang onto the car long enough to do this job again

While you’re at it, have the mechanic inspect the front struts also . . . I would expect they’re well past their prime at this point. If in doubt, replace them and have somebody do a 4-wheel alignment

On these wagons, the rear shocks tend to last quite awhile. But the front struts wear out, just like any other car

By the way, have the mechanic also carefully check the front strut mounts.