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HomeLink Module Cell Phone Microphone Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

HomeLink Module Cell Phone Microphone Replacement

Tom Morr

Time:

30 minutes30 mins

Tab:

$194 (HomeLink), $210 (Microphone)

Talent:

**

Tools:

Phillips screwdriver, T15 Torx bit, ratchet, plastic wedge or putty knife

Applicable Models:

Mercedes-Benz R170 (1998-04)

Parts Required:

New HomeLink unit and/or microphone

Hot Tip:

Remove the visors to allow the upper windshield panel to flex for more working space

Performance Gain:

Garage door opening and/or hands-free phone works again

Complementary Modification:

Replace dome light bulbs if necessary

Hands-free phone interfaces and HomeLink garage-door/gate openers are standard equipment on many newer cars, but these features were fairly forward-thinking items when the R170 SLK was manufactured.

Like many other M-B conveniences, these components aren't cheap to replace. However, the hands-on SLK owner should be able to perform the work of replacing these parts.

Should the upper windshield panel need to come out for any reason (please see that article for details), the microphone and HomeLink unplug as part of the process. They can then be detached from the panel.

Otherwise, the components can be removed and replaced with the windshield panel in the car. Their electrical connections can be reached by removing the dome light housing (please see that article for details). Pre-facelift R170 dome lights are clipped into the upper windshield panel and can be removed with a plastic putty knife or other non-scratching wedge.

To unclip the HomeLink module and its button housing from the windshield panel, make an L-shaped angular-plate tool. Using material that's 24mm wide and greater than 0.2mm thick, make the long side 57mm and the leg part of the L 12mm. This tool can then be slipped in between the HomeLink's button panel and the car's upper windshield panel at the windshield side to unclip the HomeLink unit from the windshield panel.

I had the car's windshield panel out anyway and noticed a way to remove the HomeLink without making the L-shaped tool. The HomeLink module is screwed to its button housing with a fastener having a T15 Torx head. This screw is on the windshield side of the assembly. Unscrewing the sun visors allows the upper windshield panel to be lowered enough to insert a ratchet between the windshield and upper panel. The T15 Torx bolt has to be found by Braille through the dome light housing. But once the screw is out, the HomeLink module and its control housing are free from the windshield panel.

The microphone is easier. It uses a single Phillips screw to hold the microphone's mounting plates to the upper windshield panel. Unplugging the mic's connector through the dome light hole is straightforward. That job could also likely be done at the windshield by removing the visors and reaching in above the upper windshield panel.

Part Numbers:

HomeLink Module - 170-828-01-10-MBZ

Hands-Free Microphone - 202-820-10-35-MBZ

Unscrewing the sun visors (two Phillips screws per
Figure 1

Unscrewing the sun visors (two Phillips screws per--arrows) allows the upper windshield panel to be moved slightly downward on its windshield side. This isn't mandatory but creates more room to work.

Removing the upper windshield panel isn't required (although a separate article details the process).
Figure 2

Removing the upper windshield panel isn't required (although a separate article details the process). The official Germanic process calls for making an L-shape tool to pry the clips (yellow arrows) away from the panel from behind the HomeLink's button housing. Instead, I chose to undo the screw (red arrow) that connects the module to the button housing.

A 1/4-inch-drive ratchet will fit between the windshield and panel once the visors are removed.
Figure 3

A 1/4-inch-drive ratchet will fit between the windshield and panel once the visors are removed. With the dome light housing out (please see that article for details), a hand can be inserted through the hole to help get the T15 Torx bit seated in the screw's head.

This view with the windshield panel removed shows the electrical connectors for the microphone (red arrow) and HomeLink (yellow arrow).
Figure 4

This view with the windshield panel removed shows the electrical connectors for the microphone (red arrow) and HomeLink (yellow arrow). The wiring can easily be reached through the dome light hole.

Pulling the microphone body down releases its hoop/look fabric fastening system.
Figure 5

Pulling the microphone body down releases its hoop/look fabric fastening system. Then its Phillips mounting screw (arrow) can be removed.

The screw (arrow) goes through a plastic plate, which secures the microphone's wire to the windshield panel.
Figure 6

The screw (arrow) goes through a plastic plate, which secures the microphone's wire to the windshield panel.

Once the screw and plastic retaining plate are out, the microphone can be removed by threading its plug through the hole in the windshield panel.
Figure 7

Once the screw and plastic retaining plate are out, the microphone can be removed by threading its plug through the hole in the windshield panel.

Here's the exploded parts view.
Figure 8

Here's the exploded parts view. The microphone uses plastic mounting plates on either side of the windshield panel. The HomeLink unit clips to the panel and uses a screw to hold its button housing flush to the panel, in front of the rearview mirror.

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Comments and Suggestions:
Jake Comments: Does garage door opener part number 170-828-01-10-MBZ have rolling codes? I have a 98 SLK230 but can not program to a new chamberlain door opener.
July 16, 2014
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: I am not sure. I would check with Mercedes or your owner's manual. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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