R50 Cooper - Starting to notice issues! - MINI Cooper Forum

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post #1 of 3 (permalink) Old Jun 8th, 2014, 08:43 PM Thread Starter
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Scotland R50 Cooper - Starting to notice issues!

Okay, so I've had my 2003 R50 Cooper with 76,000 miles for just over a year and it's been nothing but fantastic, until recently.

Firstly, my gearbox. Yes, it's the rubbish gearbox. I'm presuming it needs replaced but worth mentioning on here first.. I have no reverse gear.

I do have a reverse gear but it crunches, grinds, bangs, and then gets stuck in reverse. (Curing this at first took a while but if you turn off the car and restart whilst still in gear it frees it and you can take it back out again, I know. It isn't good for it but it's only been done twice!)

Secondly, I've noticed now that my sister has bought a Mini One that my steering is a lot heavier. Wasn't sure if this was just down to the different models, but hers feels a lot more natural. I did have wide wheels on at first but they've been changed back to standard and still no luck. It's not unbearable, gives it quite a nice feel on a twisty road. Living in the city centre, it isn't ideal though!

And last but by no means the least of my problems, it's overheating, but only when it wants to. I'll top it up with water and it'll be fine, but after about 30-45 mins of running I'll hear a knocking noise behind the dash on the passenger side. (Sounds as if it's coming from the bottom of the footwell) and I initially thought I had mice in the car the first time it happened. But, no. Because as soon as it stops making the noise, the temperature gauge shoots up and starts flashing. But, sometimes it isn't actually overheating. The fans come on as they should etc, but half the time the bonnet is still cool to touch and sometimes the car has literally just started when it happens.

Overall, she's quite the troublemaker! And she's parked in my dad's driveway until I get the issues sorted, and I'm left to run around in a 700 Focus Zetec.

So, I'm asking the experts. I've been putting it down to my car being jealous of the new addition to the Mini family in the household, but I doubt that's the issue. I should also add that the car hasn't been thrashed. It's been left lying a lot though, for 3-4 week periods whilst I'm offshore.
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post #2 of 3 (permalink) Old Jun 8th, 2014, 10:02 PM
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Hi Shaun, I have read though ur problem, first of all with the gearbox fault going into rev gear, at that mileage it could possible be the gearbox but I would recommend removing the air filter housing and battery box and using a silicone spray or light spary gease on both of the gear linkage and there mountings, and have somebody work though all gears. I say this as if there linkage is getting old and past it, when you put it into gear it may not be right in and this would explain and crunching and noise when going into gear. This can be common in these earlier years.

Second fault, what year is the mini one, on gen one mini"s the power steering was hydraulic using fluid to run the pump, were later models such as r56 use the newer style electric power steering racks which will give a total different feeling.

With the noise and overheating problem is rather unusual for a noise on n/s and the coolant to shoot up together, mainly cause on that side all there is the thoremostat or in the centre of the dash at the bulkhead is the heater matrix , I would let it run and when you hear the noise look under the bonnet at the coolant pipes going into the car. Also inspect the thermostat housing for signs of coolant leaks as they are a very common failure. If you could attach a video of the fault this would help greatly.

Hope I can help.
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post #3 of 3 (permalink) Old Jun 9th, 2014, 11:31 AM
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2003 is getting on a bit now, maybe its time to bite the bullet and get a brand new one and then your sister can see how bad hers is? instead of the other way around :-)
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