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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys,
Do you have any recommendations for obtaining a refurbed unit? I'm 99% certain mine is on it's arse. I always thought the steering was heavy and I could hear grumbling from the steering which I assumed to be worn track rod end or ball joints. However, since I had the resonator fitted into the exhaust yesterday, I can now actually hear the engine and the mechanicals which I couldn't during the test drive and subsequent driving.
I've seen several at breakers but I assume that this is just throwing good money after bad?
From what I've researched, it's almost certain that the steering rack will need to replaced and that this is the souece of the steering clonks because (as seems so often the case on Minis), it's bee run on a shoe string by someone who would prefer to spend money on bling instead of attending to basic maintenance.

Any suggestions for sourcing a reasonably priced refurbed pump??
 

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I had one fitted at 1320. When mine went it was more the fact it wouldn't switch off. I had to disconnect the battery each time I parked up. It was more the electrics on the pump. That was 4 years ago. The new one has been good as gold.
 

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Discussion Starter #3
yeah ive read that the electrics get carboned up. I saw the insides of one on yotube. They have used the cheapest components imagineable...
The location of the pump is absurd...right in the path of all the crap and grime thrown up from the road...great bit of industrial design.
Famous last words, but I think I could change it myself on the driveway subject to my anger management.
Sadly the Mini seems to have combined the worst of Rover and BMW in one hit.
The fluid was just below the minimus so I topped it up with CHF11S. I haven't driven it yet but I'm pretty much resigned to the fact that the pump will be FUBAR.
 

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If fluid has dropped and there are no signs of leaks it could be the rack.

My steering was heavy and notchy, when I got the rear control arm bushes, ball joints, drop links and full track rods done the steering rack dust boots were filled with fluid so got the rack replaced.

Not sure on space but you may be able to unclip the boot on the end furthest from the rack and perhaps slide it to compress it and see if there are signs of fluid on the track rod.

 

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Discussion Starter #5
thanks for the advice Diz... I'll take a look when I get 5 minutes. I've got some front pads which I'm going to change when I get the car back from the bodyshop (it goes in on Monday) so I'll have a look then.

To be honest, I think the discs are borderline but the way its going, I think Im going to SORN the car at the end of the month and work my way through it until spring next year. ive got a feeling there is going to be a list of jobs that have been neglected.

Personally I would never drive around with known faults month in month out and thats what I suspect the owner has done. its always false economy, and I used to do it myself when I was on my arse.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
i topped up the res earlier and couldn't find any obvious leaks, but i will be keeping an eye on it. The steering felt heavy for the size of the car but nowhere near as heavy as it was. There are still graunching noises, particularly when pulling out of junctions when there is some steering angle on and the car is under power.. Sometimes it's a bit of juddering (seems more noticeable on the driver's side which could indicate the steering column or pinion maybe??), other times it sounds more like clonking or knocking almost like cracking knuckles. wheel bearings dont seem to have any play...Mad to think that this was inaudible when that stupid exhaust was deafening me.
 

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Unfortunately a lot of cars are in that boat, people buy them don't look after them then just sell them on when there’s too many issues.

Steering is heavy on them in general and unfortunately the s-lites that are on there are the heaviest OEM wheel. 11.4kg excl. tyre I believe Which makes things feel even heavier. The bullet style 5 spikes are a couple of kg lighter each.

The noises sound like something is amiss somewhere though.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Cheers for that link mate.
i took the car out for a few miles last night and although the steering was comparatively heavy for the size of the car, it felt much better. There was still the creaking noises when puling from junctions but nothing when on the move. topping up the fluid has made an improvement too as the level was very low, although i can't find evidence of leaks (doesn't mean it doesn't have any though).
It's a 'wait and see' thing.
My Subaru had heavy steering but was a larger car, although 100kg lighter and with 245 tyres.
Re: wheels...Yes I've heard that these things are like boat anchors. I do like the design of the stock but wouldn't mind fitting something like the Rover ZR wheels. I don't want to deviate too far from stock...more of an OEM+ look.
It would look awesome with wider wheels or 12mm spacers and 30mm lowering springs..i just have to be very careful because it's so easy to disappear down the rabbit hole.
First and foremost is to get the car healthy and chase down issues. Then, get to know it and see if I start to really bind with it, then go from there.
I won't be using it over winter, so will SORN it in a few weeks so that I don't have to worry about it (I have a LOT of other stuff on my plate at the moment and can't be bothered having it on my mind all the time).
Winter gives me chance to sort out problems and assemble parts ready for spring and hopefully meeting some of you guys at some car meets next year (?)
 

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2006 R53 Hyper Blue/White Cooper S
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It can be a few different things to be honest mate....most mentioned above.

As others have said the PS pump contains a brushed motor which over time deposit carbon particles everywhere....my understanding with what often causes them to fail entirely when this happens is the carbon cakes up the internal ECU which causes it to go on the Fritz. Also needless to say the S's have a supplementary PS fan and if this fails then the pump tends to overheat with the electronics killing the pump as a thermal failsafe to prevent killing it completely. As also mentioned the rack can fail (not that common but happens).....calls for a new rack.

I gather you can remove the pump, open it up and clean out the carbon build up which often rectifies the issue, sometimes permanently sometimes for a time. If the pump is staying on when the ignition is switched off intermittently or all the time (note sometimes it's possible to trick the pump into staying on if you quickly turn the ignition off then on again.....this isn't an issue rather just a foible of the the pump) I'd say maybe look to get it cleaned out first, otherwise get a recon unit fitted.

Clonks.....what happens often here is the various joints on the column itself start to dry up and simply start getting noisy. There is one particular link under the steering column cowl with bearings in it that benefits from a good spray of lithium grease. Easy to do only issue I found was getting the cowl back on as lining up the lower screw holes was a right nause :ROFLMAO: :ROFLMAO:

I suppose it's just to be expected with these things.....my cars one of the last made in the last few months of production and has just turned 14, the oldest cars are nearly 20 and getting very near that 25 year 'classic car' stage. The PS system in these is typical BMW, kinda clever but not very well conceived for longer term reliability and would have probably just been better with a traditional motor driven hydraulic arrangement rather than having its own independent pump motor but it is what it is 👍👍
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Yeah I think I'll try cleaning it first. It looks pretty straight forward but access is fiddly as I'll be doing crawling around on the drive way, I also think I will need a socket extension to reach the 2 bolts on the front side of the bracket.
Is it easier to remove the large, main electrical connector after the pump is unbolted or before as it looks like it could be very easy to damage? Also, another numpty question, but what size jubilee clip do I need to replace the one on the fluid hose?
Cheers gents.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
cheers bud, any idea about whether to remove the large connector prior to unbolting or after?
 

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2006 R53 Hyper Blue/White Cooper S
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I'm with Astrocooper.....defo try removing and cleaning out the carbon first it'll almost certainly sort it out medium to long term as long as the pump is in otherwise good nick.

Also definitely give the upper column bearing a good dose of grease, the clonking will almost certainly subside or disappear entirely if you do. I did also give the rotating joint right at the bottom of the column a good spray just near where it meets the rack. You can see it from under the bonnet looking down the gap at the rear left of the engine block. Will help with surface corrosion too. It's very exposed to the elements so a good precaution.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Yeah I've seen that video already that 's why I asked if it's easier to partially remove the pump first. This bloke does it in situ but it appears to be jump cut in the editing. When I've seen how fragile the retaining clip is on the pump housing that the male end of the connector fits into, it seems very, very easy to snap.
Will deffo spray the column joint when I get the back. I will also be spraying inside the rear tail light voids with lithium grease to help prevent a recurrance of future rust (not to mention inside the door rubbers and around the sills)
 
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