Sorry for late response, I've been busy changing oil and filters. Nice to get a response.
Here's the story of an simple oil change. As none of you know me I'm a really grumpy 68 year old who moved to France on retiring, But still owning half the business, the other half owned is owned and run by my son. We've been here 8 and a 1/2 years now. We were both born in London in the late 40's, moved to Sheffield in 1990 and here in 2005.
So, here's the story - so far...
(this is posted on the Westfield forum so no prizes here for guessing the price.
All went well this morning, got to the dealer as they opened, was on my way in 15 minutes. Then went to get the oil but even though I'd looked on the map I couldn't find the place. I asked a few people but no one seemed to know where it was. After 1/2 hour search I decided to give up and go to another in Chateaubriant. So I went down the road towards the next junction on the d/c and, yes, you've guessed it, Norauto in a retail park by the road to the d/c. I'd identified the wrong exit and was one down, in both senses.
Then, bank, post office, chemist, ride-on puncture repaired, put a notice in Super U, fill up and home by 1130. Phew. Oh, and I picked up a hitchhiker as I left Norauto. Well he had a sign saying Pouance and that's exactly were I was going....
I get home, open the garage and refit the ride-on wheel so I can take it out the garage. Wheel on (circlip) and start it, in reverse - nothing. Soon realise that the tyre fitter has dropped the woodruff key out of the wheel. Push it out and get the Mini in.
Get it jacked up, one side first and axle stand under wishbone then the other side. Get an old coat to lay on and plan is to let hot oil drain whilst I have lunch.
The sump plug has been rounded off! I try mole grips and a pipe wrench - no luck they just turn. I then try and hammer on a 12mm socket. Again no luck it just turns and twists off. I'm getting wragged by now.
I give up for a minute and go in and get changed into working clothes.
Try filing some flats but everything I use just wears the plug down as it twists off.
I then file a bit more and hammer on a torx socket. It's not slipping but is tight, very tight. Eventually it comes undone with a 2 ft bar on the socket.
Plug comes out with no further drama and, this makes a change, the oil drains directly into the drain tank.
OK, leave the warmish (it was hot when I stared 3/4 hour ago) draining and have some lunch.
After lunch I start getting the filter off. It's located at the right hand rear of the engine by the side of the exhaust. It is not a spin on canister but an old fashioned filter in a screw on case. It has a 36mm nut on it. No problem I have a set of large sockets. 36mm on a ratchet... Problem 2, the depth of the socket and ratchet is causing the end to hit the bulkhead panel. I try and try and try (OK, you all know I'm very trying). One problem is I've only one leadlight working at the moment and it's just like a chocolate fireguard. If the light isn't blinding me then it's facing the wrong way. When I did get it set to shine down the back at the filter I covered the beam when I put my hands on the filter/bar. I ask my everloving to help by holding the lamp. Eventually I realised that the panel is plastic so force the socket on with a crow bar. I have a plain Tee Bar on the socket but no matter how hard I push it will not come undone. I reckon that car designers should be made to work on the cars they design. That way they may not have the sharp edge of the welded flitch panel directly where you have to lean over the engine to reach down for the filter. To add to this the bl**dy lead lamp wire is constantly getting caught under my boots., worse is that the wire is getting pressed into the tread on the boot and won't come out easily. My temper is rising by the second, can nothing go right with this simple job.
OK, time for the big guns, or better still the jack handle. With a 3ft jack handle over the Tee Bar handle and a strong push it comes undone.
Before I take it off I move the oil tank under the filter. Filter screwed of and oil runs into drain tank. The filter is clearly marked 18 lb/ft, should be just nipped up then!
Clean the canister and fit the filter into it. Then clean out the residual oil in the lower half of the canister. Another poor design in my mind. If the filter had been mounted the other way up it would be easy to get a socket on it from underneath and all the oil in the filter would drain out.
OK, time to refit the filter. Now, I have the car jacked up high enough to deal with the errant sump plug. This is causing a problem insomuch that I'm not able to reach the filter easily. And that panel is cutting into me, I look like I've been run over by a small tank.
Time to put the sump plug back on and lower the car a bit. Move the drain tank to one side in order to refit the plug. I've dressed the new Torx splines on the plug and the socket is a good fit.
Executive board meeting with myself sees me putting 1/2 litre of fresh, expensive Castrol Edge through to flush out the last drops in the sump.
Only problem is I moved the drain tank so the oil is now running out the sump plug and all over the floor. Heap of old cloths thrown on the oil. temper gauge rises a notch.
Start refitting the filter. I've put the new seal on the canister so smear a dab of oil on it to stop it getting torn when done up. I can now reach over so start to do up the filter. It seems to need a hard push in to start the thread. I push and turn for about ten minutes but it seems to be cross threaded every time. At this point I try and turn it with an old shifting spanner. No, it's not cross threaded but is fairly tight. OK, all done up.
Sump plug back on and 5 litres of Mobil something or other (don't they have fancy names these days) 5W-30. I then pull all the plug leads out of the coil and turn the engine over so the filter is refilled before starting.
I reckon this job would be less than an hours work. I started at 1130. It's now 1730 and I had 3/4 hour break for lunch. (not the two hours the French take!). Luckily I'm not paying BMW rates for 5.25 hours. That would see me explode!
The oil on the dipstick (the one in the engine, not the plonker doing the work) is so clean it's hard to see.
I now may have another problem... hang on Problem 3. The oil warning light isn't working! Never noticed before as the myriad of warning lights all go out when the car is started I assumed the oil light also went out. But it doesn't come on. I probably wont be able to do much tomorrow as I'm due to have a tooth out in the morning, but on Wednesday I'll check the wires on the oil pressure switch and if they're OK I'll test the switch. Main fear is that it's been disconnected to hide the fact that it flickers at tick over (many reports on the Mini forum!).
I've also got to change the air con filter which is located under the glove box so that's a best boots and gaiters on the parade ground job. Not working in my dirty clothes on the inside of the car.
I'm waiting for BMW Mini in the UK to answer a query about the Ipod connection, I thought it came with the 6 cd changer but I've just found a post on the Mini forum which says you cannot have the Ipod connection if you have the 6 cd and/or the sat nav as they use the aux port. I have both cd changer and sat nav. Never mind, I'll manage with 7 cd's.
Oh, and finally, just to see if you read this short story, I asked how much a spare key would cost. I only have the one and always like a spare, just in case I do lose the keys (never done so yet but....).
First person who can guess the price can have 10% off a gite, this year or next. So could be worth a few bob for a good guess. Price is in Euros by the way.
An update on the oil warning light. This morning the light came on when I switched on (but not started) and then went out. I tried it again and it came on again and stayed on. I then started and it didn't go out. I then heard what sounded like a relay clicking and all the warning lights that were on flickered. This then happened again and then the engine cut out. It started OK and was fine after that, but no oil warning light.
I really must start getting rid of some cars. We currently have 7! Yes, two old folk with 7 cars!
Caterham 7 with 220 bhp Cosworth BDR engine
MG Midget, a 1973 RWA 1275 cc model 99% original
Honda Civic Type R - currently for sale (on French plates)
Honda Jazz Auto - HM's car, I need a permit just to look at it.
A Fiat Marea Weekend (estate) used 4 times a year to take to rubbish to the tip.
An inherited SAAB 900 from about 1986. Tailgate removed it made a great wheelbarrow to remove 200 tons of granite cobble stones from a 100 foot barn. It runs so why scrap it.
The Mini Cooper S.
Anyway, I'll take the Mini to te BMW dealer in Angers on Friday (tomorrow the 8th May is a public holiday here - WWII victory day.