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Question DetailsAsked on 8/28/2017

My 2004 s430 mercedes is stuck in park. Do you know a mechanic to come out to my job to fix the shifter.

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The Search the List category is Auto Service - but that includes shop-based and mobile mechanics both, so you might have to google for mobile mechanics in your locale, then cross-check those names for any ratings/reviews on Angies List.

Sounds like a Park interlock not working right - designed to prevent you from starting the car without your foot being on the brake.

One other thing to check (most cars work this way - not certain for your exact model - may take 2 people to check, one fiddling with the shift lever and one down under the dash. Adjacent to the upper brake pedal arm, mounted on the underdash frame, there is commonly a small housing with small cable lead to it which has a spring-loaded central plunger which makes contact with the upper brake pedal arm - sensing if the brake pedal is pushed down or not. (This commonly also doubles as the brake light sensor - so if your brake lights are not going on when you depress the brake pedal with the key on this is almost certainly the problem).

If the central plunger sticks it will not move out when the pedal is depressed, so will not sense the brake pedal is depressed - hence it will not let you shift out of park. If you can find this plunger and it is not moving when the pedal is depressed, sometimes you can manually free it up, or get it to work with WD-40 sprayed on the shaft - but note this is NOT a permanent fix, and if you free it up I would not put the car back into Park until you are the repair shop because it may stick again.

Another thing that works in some cars - again, intermittently - is turn ignition to ON but not START, push brake pedal down, and try shifting out of park several times - sometimes that will free up a stuck shift indicator.

Another possibility - if the park pawl is jammed (usually only if parked on a hill), sometimes one or more people rocking the car back and forth front and back while the other tries shifting will release the shift pawl in the transmission.

In either case - immediately drive to repair shop to drop car, because next time you put it in park it may not release.

Other alternative - call towing service and tell them you need a deck truck (hauls on truck rather than towing on road) AND that it is stuck in gear - they can bring dollies to put under the wheels and roll it onto the truck. Should NOT just drag it up onto the truck with it stuck in park - good way to tear up the park pawl and gear in the transmission, which can cause several thousands $ damage. Some towers will tow with a conventional tow truck weith the rear wheels raised and front ones on a dolly or on the ground - used to be common way to tow car with drive train issues, but some will not tow that way because of the risk of the car swinging out of control. It should be towed with front wheels on the ground (turning) ONLY if this is a tw-wheel drive car, not 4-wheel drive.

Answered 3 years ago by LCD

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