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I just received an email from NHTSA regarding a potential fuel line leak for 2017-->2022 Metris vans:

 

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I just received an email from NHTSA regarding a potential fuel line leak for 2017-->2022 Metris vans:

Poop. Now we have the brake master cylinder issue and fuel lines. There goes another 1/2 day or so at the dealr.
 
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I just received an email from NHTSA regarding a potential fuel line leak for 2017-->2022 Metris vans:

Based on the NHSTA notification and the Mercedes Bulletin (doc = RCMN-22V134-3306.pdf from link above), no dealer can sell, lease, or rent any new Metris van. This is being enforced at dealerships as I know someone who was about to purchase a new Metris and the dealer said they could not sell it due to the fuel line recall and lack of parts for the fix (looks like the part is a hose clamp). Estimated delivery of the parts is Q3! Hopefully they resolve this or no new Metris can be sold.

Anyone able to confirm this?
 

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Based on the NHSTA notification and the Mercedes Bulletin (doc = RCMN-22V134-3306.pdf from link above), no dealer can sell, lease, or rent any new Metris van. This is being enforced at dealerships as I know someone who was about to purchase a new Metris and the dealer said they could not sell it due to the fuel line recall and lack of parts for the fix (looks like the part is a hose clamp). Estimated delivery of the parts is Q3! Hopefully they resolve this or no new Metris can be sold.

Anyone able to confirm this?
It appears that the only thing a dealership would have to do is have its service department inspect the fuel lines:

"An authorized Mercedes-Benz Metris dealer will check the correct mounting of the upper and lower fuel hose connections and replace the clamps and the fuel hose if necessary. Owners who have had this remedy performed at their own expense prior to the recall notification may be eligible for reimbursement according to MBUSA’s reimbursement plan.​
"There are no differences between the remedy components and the recalled components. Specifically, the clamp/hose installation on the upper and lower connections to the respective fuel lines will be checked, and corrected if necessary."​
The clamp appears to be available and the other part is a length of fuel hose.
 

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It appears that the only thing a dealership would have to do is have its service department inspect the fuel lines:

"An authorized Mercedes-Benz Metris dealer will check the correct mounting of the upper and lower fuel hose connections and replace the clamps and the fuel hose if necessary. Owners who have had this remedy performed at their own expense prior to the recall notification may be eligible for reimbursement according to MBUSA’s reimbursement plan.​
"There are no differences between the remedy components and the recalled components. Specifically, the clamp/hose installation on the upper and lower connections to the respective fuel lines will be checked, and corrected if necessary."​
The clamp appears to be available and the other part is a length of fuel hose.
So the issue is that the clamps may not be installed correctly?
 

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So the issue is that the clamps may not be installed correctly?
That's what the recall documents say. I don't know if that means loose, or missing, or what, but the service department is supposed to inspect and replace if necessary.

Mercedes claims to have taken action to prevent the problem on new vans:

"In October 2021, a new process was implemented in the MB Vans’ Charleston production plant to verify proper attachment of the upper and lower fuel hose connections and secure installation of the clamps. In November 2021, this production process change was also implemented in the Vitoria production plant."​
 

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Maybe there is (has been) a push to halt sales and other activities: to prevent critical issues from causing damage, injury, death ... as we sometimes hear in the news, when dealers and sales lots ignore recalls for perhaps things brake lines, faulty airbags, etc. Then there's an accident, or a vehicle catches fire ... hey it had an open recall for that but no notification was received or nobody ran the vin, but the vehicle was just sold! Maybe?
 

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Thanks for the info! Not sure why the dealer does not want to sell? Could it be that the van in question has this issue and the parts are backordered? Any guidance is appreciated.
I don't think the dealer's computer will allow them to sell the van. As per the dealer notice:
"All affected VINs will be flagged as “PENDING” in VMI and cannot be sold."​
"Parts are not yet available"​


NHTSA lists the current status of the recall 22V134 as "remedy not yet available."

Maybe these seemingly common parts are unavailable through the dealer parts chain, or maybe one of the "parts" necessary is an inspection instruction sheet for the dealer techs.
 

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I don't think the dealer's computer will allow them to sell the van. As per the dealer notice:
"All affected VINs will be flagged as “PENDING” in VMI and cannot be sold."​
"Parts are not yet available"​


NHTSA lists the current status of the recall 22V134 as "remedy not yet available."

Maybe these seemingly common parts are unavailable through the dealer parts chain, or maybe one of the "parts" necessary is an inspection instruction sheet for the dealer techs.
Checked with the salesman and he is going to ping the service department about doing an inspection to determine if there is a problem. From your research about the implementation of a fix at the factory in October 2021 timeframe, perhaps all Metris (VS20, Platform 447) prior to that implementation are assumed to have the problem and must be fixed with new clamps - clamps that are not available? Since they are actively making Metris vans right now, it's not clear why an improved clamp would not be available for the 187 affected fleet vehicles at dealerships. If it is just the need for a TB, that should be resolved quickly I would think given that they have already implemented a fix at the factory.
 

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I assume this issue is different from the fuel smell problem folks reported a few years ago? BTW, the pdf from Gottlieb's link suggests there are only 187 Metris in dealer inventory -- can't be?

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I assume this issue is different from the fuel smell problem folks reported a few years ago? BTW, the pdf from Gottlieb's link suggests there are only 187 Metris in dealer inventory -- can't be?

View attachment 20953
I think they are the same issue, going back to 2016 vans. There is some dialog in the linked Chronology .pdf in the NHTSA Notification that describes the evolution of the issue and the basis for the recall including customer reports of "fuel odor".


Not sure about the actual inventory numbers, but as I started looking for Metris vans a couple of weeks ago I found what seemed to be a wide selection, including quite a few (~20+) Getaways.
 

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I think they are the same issue, going back to 2016 vans. There is some dialog in the linked Chronology .pdf in the NHTSA Notification that describes the evolution of the issue and the basis for the recall including customer reports of "fuel odor".


Not sure about the actual inventory numbers, but as I started looking for Metris vans a couple of weeks ago I found what seemed to be a wide selection, including quite a few (~20+) Getaways.
Very revealing document -- you'd think they'd at least remove the attorney confidential privilege header before disclosing the document to NHTSA! I don't know how MB (even their lawyers) could straight-facedly say there was NO "evidence of a specific risk of fire or vehicle disablement related to the fuel line." I mean, how does leaking gasoline NOT create a fire risk? Thankfully it appears no one has been injured so far. I think this recall is saying, "We (MB) have been lucky as heck to have gotten away with this for years, but on balance we better spend the money to cover our you-know-what's."

It's also interesting that the problem is not one systemic failure, but 4 -- which is even harder to understand -- so much for assembly workers being involved in management systems review processes, meaning this kind of persistent multi-pronged fail doesn't happen unless the "team" is not communicating:

"At the time when MB Vans implemented these quality check measures, a field analysis team identified four potential production process errors during the fuel line assembly in Vitoria or Charleston: (1) fuel hose not fully advanced over the upper or lower fuel line connection; (2) fuel hose clamp not positioned correctly over the fuel hose connection; (3) fuel hose clamp not closed correctly; or (4) wrong fuel hose clamp mounted. MB Vans believed that the in-line inspection and quality check, as well as the employee refresher training, addressed any production process errors."

Last notable item is that the failure was happening in both Vitoria and Ladson, SC. Although MB attempts to partially foist the problem off on employee "refresher" training, I suspect it was the training getting refreshed, not the employees. Again, that points responsibility at management, rather than American or Spanish workers.
 

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Very revealing document -- you'd think they'd at least remove the attorney confidential privilege header before disclosing the document to NHTSA! I don't know how MB (even their lawyers) could straight-facedly say there was NO "evidence of a specific risk of fire or vehicle disablement related to the fuel line." I mean, how does leaking gasoline NOT create a fire risk? Thankfully it appears no one has been injured so far. I think this recall is saying, "We (MB) have been lucky as heck to have gotten away with this for years, but on balance we better spend the money to cover our you-know-what's."

It's also interesting that the problem is not one systemic failure, but 4 -- which is even harder to understand -- so much for assembly workers being involved in management systems review processes, meaning this kind of persistent multi-pronged fail doesn't happen unless the "team" is not communicating:

"At the time when MB Vans implemented these quality check measures, a field analysis team identified four potential production process errors during the fuel line assembly in Vitoria or Charleston: (1) fuel hose not fully advanced over the upper or lower fuel line connection; (2) fuel hose clamp not positioned correctly over the fuel hose connection; (3) fuel hose clamp not closed correctly; or (4) wrong fuel hose clamp mounted. MB Vans believed that the in-line inspection and quality check, as well as the employee refresher training, addressed any production process errors."

Last notable item is that the failure was happening in both Vitoria and Ladson, SC. Although MB attempts to partially foist the problem off on employee "refresher" training, I suspect it was the training getting refreshed, not the employees. Again, that points responsibility at management, rather than American or Spanish workers.
Yes, very concerning. Hopefully they get it right this time and, for my sake, work expeditiously toward resolving the issue on existing inventory. It sounds like the fuel line assembly process includes significant physical constraint that makes it difficult for the technician to properly assemble the fuel lines in that area. This is usually handled by off-vehicle pre-assembly - something that is not desirable in current assembly line process technology. But who knows?
 

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Might also relate to the chicken tax situation where things get built and tested overseas, then disassembled there, shipped and reassembled here. How are the engines shipped? With what fluids and hoses? What exactly has to happen here with what? ...

I just had flashbacks to temp jobs as a young lad, where with basically next to no training you went on a production line, no big deal when they're doing a test run at 1/4 or 1/2 speed and you have a supervisor next to you at every turn; systems running at full whack ... as a newbie ... with supplies barely keeping up, overlooked logistics, or whatever; it was very easy to not be able to keep up due to lack of finesse, experience, make a mistake, ... even for seasoned workers. Due to lack of procedure, instruction and wanting to run at 110% instead of 90% ... with as few staff as possible.
 

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Might also relate to the chicken tax situation where things get built and tested overseas, then disassembled there, shipped and reassembled here. How are the engines shipped? With what fluids and hoses? What exactly has to happen here with what? ...

I just had flashbacks to temp jobs as a young lad, where with basically next to no training you went on a production line, no big deal when they're doing a test run at 1/4 or 1/2 speed and you have a supervisor next to you at every turn; systems running at full whack ... as a newbie ... with supplies barely keeping up, overlooked logistics, or whatever; it was very easy to not be able to keep up due to lack of finesse, experience, make a mistake, ... even for seasoned workers. Due to lack of procedure, instruction and wanting to run at 110% instead of 90% ... with as few staff as possible.
As I understand it, the notice is an "Initial Recall Campaign Notification" and there is no currently open recall until the letters go out sometime in April (this month). As a result, it appears that the service centers at the dealers do not have an official recall in place or the documentation they need to conduct the inspection and do any needed repair. So, our van sits on the dealer lot until such time as MB gets the official recall notice and associated documentation to the service centers... supposed to happen this month. We'll see.
 

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Thanks for this!
Looks like the notices are out and received by at least some owners. The dealers should have gotten their notices on or before 4 April 2022 according to the NHTSA docs. However, the notice states: "Unfortunately, the parts to remedy this issue currently not yet available". Given that the problem is described as "sporadic" and "infrequent" by MB, the overwhelming majority of vans will pass the inspection and no clamps or fuel hoses will be needed. I'm trying to convince the dealer to inspect our van to determine if it has this issue. If it doesn't it should be cleared and they can sell it to us.
 
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