4 Things Every MINI Cooper Owner Must Know

If you own a MINI, you need to be aware of these!

The MINI Cooper is one of the more unique cars on the road right now, and being quite a bit different from other vehicles means their owners must be aware of some peculiar quirks and issues. It’s no secret that MINIs require more attention than most vehicles, so not giving this car proper servicing every now and then can be a recipe for disaster. Here are the top-four things that every MINI Cooper owner should know.

Engine Oil Level
One of the most common issues that automotive shops come across when servicing MINI Coopers is low or practically non-existent oil in the engine. The computer system in this BMW-manufactured vehicle is programmed by the factory to only come on once a year or every 15,000 miles (1st & 3rd generation MINI at 10,000 miles), which is way too long. To avoid this issue, take a look at the dipstick in your MINIs engine at least once a month and change it every 5,000 miles. If you find it needs to be changed, come on by the The Haus shop in Sherman Oaks and we will help you out!

Change Fluids
On all generations of MINI, the factory recommends change brake fluid every 2 years regardless of mileage. For the transmission fluid on 1st gen MINIs the interval was every 30,000 miles, and change the coolant every 4 years. On the 2nd gen MINIs and newer, **MINI states that the coolant and transmission fluid are “are lifetime fluids and are not required to ever be changed”. MINI also states that the power steering fluid is also a “lifetime fluid” and never needs to be changed on all models and generations.

** It is our opinion at The Haus that these fluids be replaced at some point, this is based solely on our opinion, and experience working on these vehicles. Please consult with your own mechanic for their opinion on “lifetime fluids”. We are of the belief that fluid is cheaper than replacing expensive parts like transmissions, power steering pumps, and radiators.

Mind the Timing Chain
If you hear rattling coming from the engine of your MINI, there is a good chance it is due to a faulty timing chain located on the front right side of the car. This rattling noise is especially noticeable when starting up the car and is a red flag to get your vehicle serviced immediately. Should the chain come loose, it will absolutely wreck the engine and end up being a very costly repair. Don’t let this issue linger, please call The Haus as soon as possible if you believe there is a timing chain problem in your car.

Carbon Build-Up Can Cause Problems
MINI Coopers S models use direct injection engines, which means that carbon tends to build up on the intake valves. When higher levels of carbon to accumulate on the valves it can cause problems. If you haven’t had your MINI serviced in a while and notice that it is suffering from hesitation or misfires this can be due to carbon build-up. The intake manifold needs to be removed so intake valves can be visually inspected for carbon build up. If there is carbon build then it needs to be cleaned by blasting valves with walnut shell dust. The walnut shells act like “sand blast” and remove the carbon. Walnuts are used because they are soft and will not damage the engine if some are left behind after carbon blasting has been performed.

              

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