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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi - I've just found this forum, I'm an R53 owner from Leeds in the UK.

I have a stock Cooper S apart from the Milltek aftermarket exhaust. It's done just over the 100K and currently it's lost its sparkle because of a failed knock sensor.

Not looking forward to the job of stripping out the front to get to it, so it may be heading to my local mechanic..

I do love it though. It's the most fun I have ever had in a car.

It loves Alpine passes.
 

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Stripping the front end in to service mode is easier than you think as the car is designed specifically to do this. As ever it's worth doing a few jobs when you do so.

Take a look at videos ion YouTube for guidance. Mod Mini has one of the most useful. His guidance is good, to the point and easy to understand.
 

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Mini Cooper S R53 2004
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Hi, welcome.
As said above, taking the front off is easy, and you may find that some local mechanics don't really want the job because of the reputation Mini's have for being difficult.
As your R53 has gone over 100k, unless of course it has all been done by the previous owner, you might as well do a Supercharger oil change, serpentine belt, tensioner, idler, crank sensor O ring, big coolant hoses, water pump, thermostat and housing. It looks like a big list but its only taking the old one off and putting a new one back on. And, its really good fun!
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
There's a bit of an oil leak too, looks like main bearing oil seal, so I'm thinking new clutch, all the above. Not a job for the faint-hearted.
 

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There's a bit of an oil leak too, looks like main bearing oil seal, so I'm thinking new clutch, all the above. Not a job for the faint-hearted.
Before you go down the mail oil seal path check the rocker cover gasket. I thought the same on my R53, but the rear of the rocker cover gasket leaks a load and it spreads far more than you think it would while looking dry from the top. Fit some stainless bolts for this as well.
I‘ve not done a clutch on a Mini yet, mine is OK, i’ve it’s read engine out, whilst others do it with the front off, There are people on the forum who have much more experience in this area who can advise.

And to reiterate the advice already given, it you have the car on stands with the front off might as well drop the front subframe and renew the ball joints and poly bush the rear wishbone bushes and ARB bushes, at 100k if they have not been done recently, they will all be shot. Again, it’s one of the jobs with a fearful reputation, but the hardest part will most likely be getting the ball joints undone. My advice is drain and remove the power steering reservoir, I found it made the job easier and far less messy, and new fluid is never a bad thing.
 

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fwiw I don't support much of this chucking parts at the cars at all, so just saying as a repairer of them, no need to touch the frame for a clutch, if you have stuff to do that requires access just pull the motor and deal with it all as required in good space, hoses only need changing if chafed, so top hose normally, either section only if affected, and rear for the heat exchanger sometimes, leave the tensioner/idler alone unless you feel a problem, same with water pumps as someone will mention throwing one on soon enough, no leak trace and no bearing roughness or play, leave them.... in my opinion,

once you've had the front of your car off and replaced rotten OEM fixings while doing so, then subsequent removal with familiarity will be rather simple, of course not all wish to do it,

I also don't personally support the use of stainless fittings and random aftermarket ebay and amazon junk, just stick with OEM fasteners everywhere, they last donkeys years and would last longer if cars had the attention they deserved, again it's opinion, allen head bolts are a nightmare when they become tight, just avoid them imo,

it is worth doing the supercharger oils and cleaning it and the pump when doing the knock sensor, check PTO gears, probably the crank position sensor seal and wash off the front of the engine while access is good,

other than that take a look around, the belt will be off so feel the tensioners etc, check the tensioner damper is still damping one way and not leaking,

stick with OEM and trusted OEM quality, it typically uses the correct factory fastener sizes and simply tends to last better, especially ball joints but other stuff too....

only opinion, carry on ;O)
 
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