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I purchased a 2009 smart fortwo passion in July advertised with new tires. Most everything ran fine until November. On the same night my tire went flat, radiator fan died, and the radiator cracked. After having it towed to a Mercedes dealership for repair, they tell me that whoever installed the tires previously installed them incorrectly. The bigger and smaller tires are switched instead of being in the proper place. I don't know if this would have caused the flat, but from what I understand, driving like this can cause damage to my suspension and transmission. Does anyone know of anything else that needs to be checked due to this? I don't want to risk not checking for damages and messing up the vehicle.
 

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It wouldn’t hurt the suspension, at all. I ran the rear tire front and back. Same size. For 6 years. I bet the electric fan on your vehicle broke, cracked you radiator. A flat tire wouldn’t have cause that. Your car must have handled horrible running the backs tires, on the front. The fronts on the rear.

I bet that cost you a small fortune new electric fan, and radiator. Fixed at a MB dealership.
 

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The rear tires on a stock Smart are slightly wider the the front tires for handling purposes. Many Smart owners opt to buy 2 additional rear rims and run them on the front and the back. So I cannot see just switching the front rims for the rear causing a problem just because of the rim size. Maybe the tire shop thought that the Smart was front wheel drive and therefore put the larger rims on the pulling wheels which they thought to be on the front.

A split in the radiator could cause the damage to the fan. Did you happen to maybe hit a large pothole or something laying on the road the front undercarriage to bottom out? Maybe hitting a parking stop in a parking lot may have caused the damage to the frame around the radiator. I suspect that it was probably damaged before you got it and over time a stress crack can spread enough to cause a failure.

Just switching the tires from front to back in itself is not cause for a tire to go flat. Is the plastic belly pan under the front of the car damaged? It fastens to the undercarriage in several places with screws. Mine happened to be damaged when I purchased my Smart and I had to repair it right behind the front passenger wheel because someone had jacked the car up wrongly and damaged it.
Maybe the tire going flat was just a coincidence with the radiator failure but it is a mystery. DCO
 

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Hard to believe all that was caused by putting the tires on wrong,Larger tires on the front could cause the traction control to act up but you would have noticed that, as for the fan and the radiator, if the fan quits and the car overheats, it could damage the radiator, or something hitting the radiator could take out the fan, or.... a hundred different scenarios. But doubtful anything done in July would not cause a problem until November.
 

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Just wanted to provide all the details of one night weirdness. The car's under warranty so I only have to pay a deductible. Only thing I was worried about was that the tires were switched since Mercedes acted like it was a huge deal. :) Thanks for answering my question guys!

*edit*

They acted like it could seriously damage the vehicle doing it so I was concerned.
 

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I purchased a 2009 smart fortwo passion in July advertised with new tires. Most everything ran fine until November. On the same night my tire went flat, radiator fan died, and the radiator cracked. After having it towed to a Mercedes dealership for repair...
Welcome to SCoA!

Curious, purchased from an indie dealer or M-B/smart - towed to a smart Center?

The car's under warranty so I only have to pay a deductible. Only thing I was worried about was that the tires were switched since Mercedes acted like it was a huge deal.
If you have a warranty I'd focus on getting things fixed soon as "repairs" can be an expensive date!
 

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Welcome to SCoA!

Curious, purchased from an indie dealer or M-B/smart - towed to a smart Center?


If you have a warranty I'd focus on getting things fixed soon as "repairs" can be an expensive date!
Thank you!

I purchased it from a reputable dealer but they only offer 30 days of they'll fix anything. I also purchased an extended warranty to go with it. :) (don't want to drag names through the mud and all that)

But now that I have my invoice from Mercedes and have it mostly repaired my paperwork says:

47068 The right rear tire is flat. The valve stem is broken off. The wheels are not mounted in the correct locations (wheels have "Front" or "Rear case on the inside of the spokes. There are also tires mounted on the wrong wheels. -The guest does not wish to have repairs performed at this time.

47068 The coolant temp light warning came on. 510 I found that the coolant reservoir was empty. The engine cooling fan could not be activated via the SDS despite there being proper voltage supply. The incorrect clamps were installed on the radiator resulting in damage to the coolant fittings. I replaced the radiator and engine cooling fan as outlined in WIS. I filled and vented the cooling system of air.

Soooooo now the dealership that sold it to me takes care of it from here. I'm just hoping that there's nothing else wrong now!
 

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The coolant temp light warning came on. 510 I found that the coolant reservoir was empty. The engine cooling fan could not be activated via the SDS despite there being proper voltage supply. The incorrect clamps were installed on the radiator resulting in damage to the coolant fittings. I replaced the radiator and engine cooling fan as outlined in WIS. I filled and vented the cooling system of air.
Be very cautious toward the above comments as it doesn't take long to do critical damage to the head/valves??
 

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Unfortunately that can be the problem with a car that has 'special needs' seems anyone can call themselves a car dealer and sell a car without knowing how to fix them properly. in the end, the car gets blamed for a poor repair job by someone who doesn't know how to fix it properly. As for the tires, again someone who just fixes tires and doesn't know about correct tire sizing or even realizes that a smart uses different rims on front and back. Good thing you have the extended warranty. you may need it with the cooling issues. Make sure you keep a detailed list of what has been repaired and service records (receipts, etc) so if you have future issues, you are covered.
 
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