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MINI Cooper Care & Maintenance



  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    Thanks much for responding, but it sounds like our car has a different issue. Our outside handle DOES spring back normally...just as if the door was locked. The good news is that the door is working again because it warmed up to 20 degrees where we are today. But I really would like to figure out a permanent fix as not being able to count on a working passenger door in extreme cold is a real pain. Anybody else have any ideas?
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    In addition to my previous post on the passenger door not opening in extremely cold weather, when the temperature gets close to zero, both the windshield and headlight washers stop working (sounds like our car really hates cold weather, eh?). I always use washer fluid that is suppossed to work to 25 below, and don't have the same problem with our other vehicles. You can hear the electric pump(s) trying to pump the fluid, but no fluid comes out. When the weather warms up, the washers start working again. Anyone else have the same issue?
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    That might simply be due to the nozzle openings being clogged with ice, or other debris.
  • ltqltq Posts: 28
    You might ask, how can ice form (see bodble2 answer) when I'm using -25degF washer flui? Well, I have seen high-methanol content used in washer fluids to achieve that selling point. However, when the weather is "warmer", or just over a long period of time even in the bitter cold, the methanol portion evaporates leaving the washer fluid right at the sprayer nozzle outlet, with low methanol content - Presto! Frozen fluid.
    You need to get the glycol-based fluid like Prestone. Unlike methanol, ethylene glycol will evaporate slower than the water portion, and therefore retains the anti-freeze properties at the nozzle. For exactly the same reason, this type of washer fluid will not re-freeze on your windshield (while the methanol-based ones do that, once the methanol evaporates).
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    Thanks so much for your response, makes sense! Actually what happened was that the wiper washers started working again when the temperature went back over 20 degrees, but the headlight washers did not because one of the hoses on the underside of the hood blew off...I'm assuming from the pressure due to the headlight washer nozzles being blocked by ice.
  • Took my 2002 Mini in for an oil change at a garage that often services the car but has not done an oil change. 103,000 miles. Usual cost at BMW is $80, today it was $25. I asked if they had used snythetic oil and they said a 'semi synthetic'. Does that make sense? Then they said the wheel bearings on front driver's side are "very bad". $280.00 approx to replace. Does this all make sense? I've used this garage many times before for the Mini. Do garages usually check wheel bearings when they do an oil change?
  • I had about the same problem last week. Went to the dealer and they said the Intake Manifold had liquid in it. They cleared it and it runs fine now. I supposed extreme cold weather will make the water in the pipe to freeze.
  • joem5joem5 Posts: 201
    Semi sythetic is good :shades: ,believe in it.
  • ltqltq Posts: 28
    The MINI specifies FULL SYNTHETIC only. You should not be using anything else if you are depending on the CBS to tell you when to do an oil change. Period. If you change at 3K or 1.5K intervals regardless, then it would seem that semi-synthetic would do OK.
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    I would be very suspect of any garage that puts motor oil in your car that fails to meet the manufacturer's spec without discussing it with you first. While I would agree with the other person who responded that semi-synthetic probably won't hurt your engine if changed much more frequently, if it were my car I would not take the risk. Do you know why Mini specifies full synthetic oil? It's very possible it's merely to extend the change intervals, but there could be other reasons that you are not aware of. One other thing, you did not mention that you have an "S" model with the supercharged engine, so I assume you don't, but if you do I would immediately demand they put the right oil in as a supercharged engine runs at higher tempatures that a full synthetic oil will withstand far better. Garages don't normally check wheel bearings with an oil change, but if the wheel bearings were that bad it's possible they might have heard something while moving the car, but if they were THAT bad chances are you would have heard something too. More typically you would have to drive the car at 30 MPH or more to notice a bad wheel bearing. You did not mention which bearings they replaced, but assuming they were the rear bearings $280 sounds may be time to look for a new garage!
  • polly4polly4 Posts: 1
    Purchased Mini S - new from dealer - 2006 ( Now under 20,000 mi). No major problems and maintance done by dealer. Recently had freon leak repaired by dealer. After repair have had problems with heat/AC system. Heater too,, too hot. Set at 70 blasts you out of car even at lowest fan setting. Also air system is at best now feeble. Just had car at dealer and they could find NO PROBLEM. Yeah right! Told them to keep car and drive it 'til they could diagnois problem - now have a loaner. Any suggestions as to what the problem may be?

  • joem5joem5 Posts: 201
    OK, Iv'e always have steered away from buying a MIni because of the trans missions problems and the repacement cost.
    However, I have not seen many models from 2006 with problems.
    Now which trans mission wll hold up better a six pd or a CVT.(Mini S)
    What warranty can you buy to cover trans mision for 5 years,or 50K?
    Also, can you get the mini w/o runflats?Lastly how do the Minis built today compare to the ones built from 2003 to now? :shades:
  • hc519hc519 Posts: 1

    I know this question has been asked to death, but I don't know very much about cars and I'd really like answers geared towards my specific car/maintenance offer.

    I drive a 2006 cooper. Currently, I drive about 80 miles a day, but that will only be until march of 2010 (the job ends then), and then I will be taking the subway and not driving.
    I live in nyc so I won't be driving very much after march of 2010. The car currently has 54,000 miles on it. I am not an aggressive driver at all.
    Mini has offered a $2,000 extended maintenance for 50K miles or 3 years, whatever comes first.

    Is it worth it? Any thought are appreciated.
  • jenssp73jenssp73 Posts: 1
    Hello :)
    Could you tell me how much you paid for the freon leak repair?
    I am going to get mine repaired tomorrow and would love to know in advance how much this is going to cost me UGH
    Are you still having issues with your A/C?
  • astropupastropup Posts: 11
    I'm looking at a used 07 Cooper S with only 8000 miles at a non-Mini dealer. Are used cars still eligible for the maintenance program (was it even offered in 07) if they are still under warranty and within the mileage and year range? Thanks.
  • wilemakeitwilemakeit Posts: 17
    I bought my 06 S from a non dealer. The dealer has cover the work that was done.
    So yes you still get covered.
  • kragerkrager Posts: 8
    The black trim around the top of my new Cooper(less than 2 months old) is fading in areas. There is about a six inch strip on one side and almost that much on the other. The trim on my 2002 Honda looks better than the trim on the Mini. Is there anything to put on it as a treatment to protect and/or bring the color back. This is really disgusting considering the age of this car. Any suggestions would be appreciated.
  • pulax30pulax30 Posts: 2
    I'm looking at a 03 cooper S with 61,000 on it. What are some of the issues you guys have run across with the earlier models?
  • waschawascha Posts: 5
    I am new and would like to know if there is a response to re-setting the oil service on a mini s
  • mymemnimymemni Posts: 6
    I use One Grand E.R.V. (Exterior Rubber & Vinyl) dressing on my 03 Coop and the black trim looks like new. It restored from faded to black. after a few applications you can apply it less often. it will protect the trim from the white streaks you get when you wax your car and get some on the trim, I get it from Also use One Grand Blitz wax (pure hard carnuba with no abrasives or silicone) which keeps the finish looking like new and P21S body shampoo for washing and P21S gel wheel cleaner for that pesky brake dust.
    Carcare will tell you what you need and how to clean any thing on your vehicle, paint, rubber, vinyl, glass, upholstery etc.
  • rlmiller9rlmiller9 Posts: 48
    I would put away about 5k for the transmission when it goes.
    That might be lite.
  • wilemakeitwilemakeit Posts: 17
    I have a 06 with no realy big issues and a friend of mine has a 03 with 129k with very little issue
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    Anyone received a recall notice about defective a catalytic converter for 2007 - 08 Minis?
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    Do you mean an automatic transmission? Are you sure it was properly serviced and fluid changed? If it's the manual trans, should be no trouble at all. We have an '03 MCS with over 100k miles and a manual trans, no trans problems at all.
  • pulax30pulax30 Posts: 2
    what kind of problems have you had? I've been looking into getting a '02-'04 MCS. All the reviews for the are great, but I've heard the first gen have some reliability issues and are expensive to repair.
  • bodble2bodble2 Posts: 4,519
    The chrome-finish ring that goes around the circumference of the key fob on our '07 Mini just cracked and is falling off. Does anyone know if that thing has any functionality, or is it just ornamental, and I can just rip it off?
  • extech2extech2 Posts: 120
    I'd like to know if the run flat tires on the Cooper S can be changed to normal tires without buying four new wheels as well. Another thing, is there room for a spare in the back of the S model ? Otherwise I might just get the regular Cooper, sometimes next year, when my VW GTI lease is up. Thanks for any advice.
  • wongkidwongkid Posts: 23
    Yes. It is no problem at all. I do not carry a spare because I carry a can of that flat repair/inflator and/or rely on the Auto Club if I get a flat. Depending on waht you buy, you will get better performance at a lower cost with traditional tires.
  • wongkidwongkid Posts: 23
    BTW - Check my posts # 132, 127, 74 on this. Probably some redundancies, but it's everythign I've writen on this topic.
  • wongkidwongkid Posts: 23
    See my post #147.
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