In this article, I will explain the B8 service, what it includes, its average cost, and provide a helpful checklist for your Mercedes. Let’s get into it!
What is a Mercedes B8 Service?
The B8 service is part of Mercedes’ Flexible Service System (FSS) maintenance schedule. It’s one of the major services recommended approximately every 100,000-160,000 miles, depending on a few factors discussed below.
Here’s a quick overview of what’s included:
|Automatic Transmission Service
|Clean and lubricate guide rails
|Standard B Service Items
|Oil and filter change
Cabin air filter replacement
Check brake components
Top off fluids
Check tire pressure
The transmission service is really the focal point of the B8 service.
When to Schedule B8 Service
Mercedes has taken the guesswork out of maintenance with their FSS system. Your car’s computer tracks mileage and time intervals to calculate optimal service schedules tailored to your driving habits.
Once you’ve reached the parameters for a B8 service, a reminder will populate right on your dash. This notification typically appears around 160,000 miles.
If you stay current with services, you likely won’t see the B8 reminder for 8-10 years. But rest assured, Mercedes has you covered with those handy service interval notifications.
B8 Service Checklist
To give you a handy reference, if you are looking to perform the service yourself. Here’s an overview of everything that needs to be done.
|Automatic Transmission Fluid
|Drain and refill
|Sunroof Guide Rails
|Clean and lubricate
|Drain and refill with synthetic blend
|Cabin Air Filter
|Check and top off
|Adjust to door placard specs
|Inspect for wear
What Does the B8 Service Include in More Detail
Now, let’s explore why each of these service items matters to keep your Mercedes running smoothly.
Transmission Fluid and Filter Replacement
The automatic transmission fluid and filter replacement performed during a Mercedes B8 service is crucial to transmission longevity because over time, transmission fluid breaks down from heat and contamination while the filter collects debris.
Old, dirty fluid loses its lubricating properties, accelerating wear on internal components. And a clogged filter restricts flow, causing overheating.
Together, these neglected maintenance items lead to transmission damage through increased friction and inadequate cooling.
Fresh fluid and a clean filter protect your transmission from premature failure.
Oil and Filter Change
During the B8 service, your Mercedes tech will drain the old motor oil and swap in fresh synthetic blend better suited for your engine.
The oil filter will also get replaced to trap any grit and metal shavings. This keeps your engine properly lubricated and protected from excess wear.
Think of oil changes as giving your engine a bath to wash away any contaminants from normal driving. Skipping changes allows gunk to build up, acting like an abrasive that slowly damages components.
Cabin Air Filter Replacement
Like your home AC filter, the cabin air filter traps dust and pollen to improve interior air quality.
A restricted filter can limit airflow, so replacing this inexpensive part maintains cooling efficiency and prevents musty smells.
Fluid Level Checks
One overlook area is checking and topping off vital fluid levels.
Your tech will examine the brake, transmission, coolant, power steering, and washer fluid reservoirs during the B8 service.
Proper fill levels help each system work correctly to maximize performance and component life.
Tire Pressure Adjustment
Proper inflation promotes even treadwear and improves fuel economy and handling. Over or under-inflated tires wear out faster, costing you money over time.
Consistently maintaining inflation to door placard specs through routine checks helps you get the most out of your tires.
Brake system components like pads, rotors, and calipers will be thoroughly examined for wear during the B8 service.
Catching any issues early on means you can address them promptly before they turn into larger problems down the road.
Service Indicator Reset
Once all tasks are complete, the technician will reset the Flexible Service System indicator.
This erases the current service reminder and resets the countdown timer based on your driving habits.
This built-in monitoring system takes out all guesswork about when your Mercedes will need maintenance next. Just watch for the next reminder and continue staying current.
B8 Service Costs at Mercedes
Dealership Like many luxury dealership services, B8 maintenance does come at a premium cost.
Here’s a realistic breakdown of average costs:
|Parts (transmission fluid, filters, components, etc)
|Labor (2-3 hours)
*Note: Prices will vary by region, vehicle model, and additional repairs needed. Your total may be towards the higher end for an AMG variant.
As you can see, it’s a significant investment. However, given the complexity and importance of the transmission service, most Mercedes owners view it as money well spent to protect such a major component. But if cost is a concern, read on for some potential savings tactics.
How Long Does Mercedes B8 Service Take?
In terms of pure service time, you can expect your Mercedes dealership to require 2-3 labor hours to complete the full B8 checklist items.
For perspective on what that entails, here’s a realistic timeline:
|Evaluate Service History
|Lift on Rack/Prepare Service Area
|Drain Fluids (oil, transmission)
|Replace Filters and Parts
|Reset Service Indicator
|Total Service Time
|180 minutes (3 hours)
However, there are a few variables that can extend your total visit duration beyond just the service itself:
- Wait for Open Service Bay: Shops max out capacity during peak seasons, so you may wait a bit for the next available tech.
- Appointment Backups Earlier in Day: If earlier services ran long, it can push back the whole schedule.
- Multi-Point Inspection Findings: If they uncover other worn parts needing replacement, this adds time to make those repairs.
- Vehicle Model Variances: More complex engine configurations on AMG or diesel models sometimes require additional diagnosis procedures.
Build in a time buffer for potential delays when scheduling. While the B8 itself may only require 2-3 workshop hours, occasional supplementary factors can stretch the total visit to 4+ hours at busy shops.
Is DIY Service B8 Realistic?
If you fancy yourself fairly handy and have tackled prior maintenance successfully on your Mercedes Benz, it’s natural to wonder whether DIY-ing the B8 service is feasible.
Here’s an honest assessment: For most mainstream Mercedes models, an advanced home mechanic equipped with vehicle-specific repair manuals, a lift or jack stands, and OBD2 scanner could theoretically perform portions of the B8 service independently.
However, there are a few serious caveats to attempting this:
- Specialized Tools: Certain components like transmission fluid lines demand niche proprietary tools the average owner won’t have.
- Precise Procedures: Complex steps for testing transmission operation, adaptations, and relearns require exact adherence to factory repair methods for proper functionality.
- Liability Risks: DIY mistakes that end up causing subsequent transmission failure won’t be covered under warranty due to lack of qualified service records from techs.
Unless you happen to be a former Mercedes master technician, it is NOT recommended owners attempt to DIY the B8 given its technical demands.
Resetting B8 Notification After Service
Once your B8 service is wrapped up, you’ll notice that pesky “Service B8” reminder persists on your Mercedes’ dash for days afterwards.
Here’s the scoop on erasing it: That message is tied to an internal counter tracking mileage intervals between major services.
To reset it, the shop needs to access a hidden diagnostics menu and send a manual reset command.
But many owners understandably don’t want to return just for a reset.
Fortunately, with most Mercedes Benz, you can perform a simple button procedure right from the driver’s seat to clear it yourself afterwards:
- Turn ignition fully on (don’t start engine)
- Use the steering wheel buttons to scroll through your dash menu to the service indicator screen
- Press and hold the 0-set button on the speedometer for 10+ seconds
- The spanner wrench light will flash and then disappear
- Cycle ignition off and back on to confirm it reset successfully
Following those steps whenever a confusing service reminder appears should banish it for good until your next scheduled interval!