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  #1 (permalink)  
Old Jul 14th, 2014, 11:32 PM
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Radiator fan question

Newbie here with a basic question. Running my used but new to me 2010 Mini for the firs time in the summer in Montreal. After the car has been shut down for several minutes the radiator fan come on for about 3 to 4 minutes. The question is this normal? I suspect it is but would like to have some one confirm it. This the first car I have had that does this and I have had a few cars in my day. Another question is there a way to check the engine temperature from the computer? Some of the tags I have read suggest there is. Any answers will be appreciated. Thanks. Dave
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Old Jul 14th, 2014, 11:49 PM
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Don't know for sure but I can confirm that my 2010 Rad Fan has never come on after ignition
has been switched off...even on the hottest days. (in Ontario)
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 02:30 AM
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It's normal, unless the fan doesn't shut off !!

2012 white over red Cooper Hatchback
LA, SoCal, USA
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 04:26 AM
Not Normal.
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It is not normal

I had the same problem as you (Cooper 2010).
The radiator fan was on a few minutes after I turned off the car. I took to the official service. Apparently it is a MINI "known issue" and I was not charged the repair. I do not remember that part changed maybe something related with the thermostat.
The fan should go off when you turn off the engine if all is OK.

Good luck!
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 11:50 AM
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Not normal IMO. This post from robbo mcs was posted on NAM and explains all:

To understand what is going on here, you have to understand that there is a temperature sensor that tells the ecu what the temperature is, and a mechanical thermostat that opens at a certain temperature and regulates water flow and therefore the temperature.

What is supposed to happen is that the mechanical thermostat is set to 105C (221). When the car is moving with good radiator flow the temp should stay at roughly 105. Once the temperature goes > 106 (223) the electric fan cuts in. This usually because the car is stationary, with no airflow.

The problem is that the mechanical thermostats seems to be a little inaccurate and out of sync. There are a whole lot of thermostats that seem to run at 107-108C (224-227F). What happens in this instance is the thermostat doesn't open water flow properly until it reaches its temp, so driving around the temp will be 107-108C. This confuses the ecu, as the temperature sensor reads >106, so it activates the fan.

It is also possible to have the reverse problem, ie an accurate thermostat but a miscallibrated temperature sensor which reads the water temp higher than it actually is, which can produce exactly the same problem.

If this is happening, the fan is not just running when you stop the car, but nearly all the time, even driving around. When you stop it will run until the temp drops to the 106C number.

So if you are lucky and have a "normal" thermostat that runs around 104-105C you won't get the fan operating when you stop very often. If you have one of the thermostats that runs at 106-108C you will get it a lot.

Does this matter? Not really from an engine point of view. However, it must be increasing the risk of fan failure in the long run.

Also, just out of interest, there are actually 2 thermostats operating in 2 stages. The main one runs as described above. There is a second one set to 85C (185F). When the ecu detects high turbo load from aggressive driving etc it opens the second stage, and the temps drop down significantly.

Robbo


ps: I've got a feeling the non-turbo Cooper has a single-stage fan but the principle's the same. And miniuy's dealer fix was probably to resite a new thermostat in a coolant hose nearer the rad. I've had this done under warranty too...
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Old Jul 15th, 2014, 04:46 PM
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Fan follow up

Thanks all for the information, great explanation cjm, I did find a service bulletin for Mini's that basically tells me this is normal. I will assume it is as everything else seems to run fine. I do notice the fan runs quite a bit compared to other cars I have owned. It would be nice to have a temperature gage.
My radiator fluid level seems to be ok but have to say I did add a liter of fluid at the beginning of summer. Again thanks to all for there comments. Dave
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Old Jul 16th, 2014, 12:49 AM
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Quote: Originally Posted by Dorcutt (original)
....It would be nice to have a temperature gage.
My radiator fluid level seems to be ok but have to say I did add a liter of fluid at the beginning of summer. Dave...

Scangauge II or similar devices can give you a plug and play temp gauge.

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Old Jul 16th, 2014, 05:01 AM
Not Normal.
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Quote: Originally Posted by Dorcutt (original)
Thanks all for the information, great explanation cjm, I did find a service bulletin for Mini's that basically tells me this is normal. I will assume it is as everything else seems to run fine. I do notice the fan runs quite a bit compared to other cars I have owned. It would be nice to have a temperature gage.
My radiator fluid level seems to be ok but have to say I did add a liter of fluid at the beginning of summer. Again thanks to all for there comments. Dave

My strategy was to drive to the dealer, enter the car to the service garage, stop the engine (the fan will stay on at least 5 minutes or more) and check it with the tech on that moment ("Why the fan is still running, my friend??"). The "MINI thermostat know issue" mention, could open the dealer eyes. Please, don't believe it is a normal behavior, it can crash your engine fan (overload) and it is not cheap to replace (nor cover under MINI know issues warranty)
CJM comments is what you need to solve your problem.

Let us know your experience.
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Old Jul 16th, 2014, 12:26 PM
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Radiator

Just for clarity here. When I shut down the mini the fan is not running and then several minutes later with the key out of the car it will go on automatically and shut down on its own after Apr. 3 or4 minutes of running . Normal or not normal? That is the question.......thanks
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Old Jul 16th, 2014, 01:19 PM
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Hi Dorcutt from across the pond in sunny UK.

IMO I think your MINI is overheating cos it's not getting an air-flow after switch off and the computer remains alive long enough for the sensor to 'start shouting', finally switching off when the computer shuts down after about 5-6mins. I'm not a MINI technician but I'd plump for 'not normal' :-

My R56 N18 MCS fan ran constantly when the engine was warmed up around 2 years ago. This loud second stage fan continued when the engine was switched off. MINI techs kept telling me 'they all run hot' / feature of the model etc.

Unconvinced, I bought an (ELM327 clone) obd2 cable from ebay and EasyOBD2 software to monitor the temps on my laptop + kept taking it back. They bled it several times and finally changed the thermostat sensor, then replaced the thermostat and renewed the sensor again before it finally ran without the loud fan noise and switched off 'properly'

Later, when the 'thermostat sensor fix' became known in the UK I took it back to have a new sensor resited in a new coolant cable and a new resited electrical wiring harness/connection. This is the fix I think miniuy refers to.

Since then I've replaced the ELM327 obd2 cable with a wireless ELM327 clone from ebay (~12) and downloaded the Torque app onto my android phone (~2) Now Torque gives me a real time display of coolant temp as well as input air temp and turbo boost levels at the same time on my phone. There are other options (but not MINI oil pressure)

IMO it's a good idea to monitor coolant temp on Gen1 and Gen2 models and my 'stuff' enables me to do it for ~$20. Good value-for-money, I think...
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