Mercedes Benz ESL fault

Mercedes Benz ESL fault

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Mercedes Benz ESL fault

Posted by N Dwyer on 5 March 2019

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Mercedes Benz W204 Electronic Steering Lock (ESL) fault 


The Mercedes Benz W204, C207, A207 and W212, 2007 –  C Class & E Class onward

A broad range of Mercedes Benz vehicles are fitted with electronic steering locks (ESL).  These parts have become a very common fault for owners and repairers. This unit often the source of common faults, and when it fails you can be left with big repair bills and a stranded customer.

If you are experiencing faults with the ESL or you notice that your customers ESL is noisy or slow to operate you should have the unit repaired immediately before you are left with an inoperable vehicle.

Common faults include:

  • Vehicle won’t start and steering doesn’t unlock
  • Noisy steering lock
  • Key will turn in Electronic Ignition Switch (EIS / EZL) but will not start
  • No dash lights when turning key in EIS (Electronic Ignition Switch)
  • Electronic steering lock (ESL / EVL) cannot be heard when key is inserted into EIS lock.
  • Steering wheel cannot be turned, even with key inserted into EIS.
  • Fault code 9003, N26/5 ESL / ELV control unit.  No feedback during unlocking.  The steering is under stress.
  • Fault code 9005, N26/5 ESL / ELV control unit. Communication fault.


Injectronics provide a prompt test and remanufacturing service for your electronic steering lock.  The ESL will be completely tested and remanufactured.  Having your ESL remanufactured rather than purchasing an expensive new unit means there is no need for further dealer security programming or coding to be done once the unit is returned to you.  You simply reinstall all parts and the vehicle will start and run. 


To remove the steering lock the steering column needs to be removed, the retaining nut removed and then the stud pushed in.  If the operation of the lock is intermittent, then insert the key and tap the ESL until the ESL unlocks.  As soon as the ESL has unlocked, then disconnect connection plugs and remove ignition key.  You can now remove steering column, remove nut and push in the stud to remove the ESL.  For an ESL unit that will not unlock, you will be required to cut the stud, and Injectronics will install a new stud. 

For instructional videos on removing and refitting your ESL as well as how to cut the stud visit


  • To test or remanufacture your ESL, please supply the key, electronic ignition switch (EIS) and electronic steering lock (ESL). 
  • Your remanufactured unit is supplied in the unlocked (lock pin retracted) position for ease of installation.
  • It is also returned with an instructional sheet on the installation of the ESL to the vehicle.