Sources of coolant leak - MINI Cooper Forum
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post #1 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 29th, 2019, 09:10 PM Thread Starter
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Question Sources of coolant leak

Hi fellow Mini enthusiasts! I recently picked up a 2012 Countryman Base, manual trans with 75k miles. The car has been great and a lot of fun to drive (even without the turbo). Over the past few days I have noticed a small stain where the car was parked. I put it up on ramps and can see there is a drip of coolant under the front/center of the engine next to where the exhaust/catalytic pipe are. The coolant recovery tank was low so I added a small amount of distilled water 5 days ago. The recovery tank level has been okay since then, so the volume of coolant leaking is small. Regardless, I want to get it fixed asap.
That said, are there common causes of a leak like this? The engine compartment is packed pretty tight, so I couldn't locate the leak source with a flashlight.
Any suggestions on finding the leak source are appreciated.

Thanks

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post #2 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2019, 03:54 AM
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The thermostat housing (there are now 3 different configurations requiring wiring adapters for sensors so do some research for what you need), the water pipe that goes from the water pump to the thermostat housing, and the water pump are all common sources.

I'll bet yours is the pipe. It's plastic and kind of a PITA to swap out, but doable in an hour.

https:// bimmercat.com/bmw/EN/search/selectCar/R60/CM/BMW+Cooper/ECE/11_4552

All 3 common parts to leak shown in that diagram (apparently I can't post links so copy that line and take the spaces out between // and bimmercat).

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post #3 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2019, 09:37 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks so much!
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post #4 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2019, 09:38 AM
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Originally Posted by CountryEd View Post
Hi fellow Mini enthusiasts! I recently picked up a 2012 Countryman Base, manual trans with 75k miles. The car has been great and a lot of fun to drive (even without the turbo). Over the past few days I have noticed a small stain where the car was parked. I put it up on ramps and can see there is a drip of coolant under the front/center of the engine next to where the exhaust/catalytic pipe are. The coolant recovery tank was low so I added a small amount of distilled water 5 days ago. The recovery tank level has been okay since then, so the volume of coolant leaking is small. Regardless, I want to get it fixed asap.
That said, are there common causes of a leak like this? The engine compartment is packed pretty tight, so I couldn't locate the leak source with a flashlight.
Any suggestions on finding the leak source are appreciated.

Thanks
thermostat housing there is a recall on all psa cars worth checking with mini if they also admit to it and might get it done for free, if not link below for new updated housing this seller sells bmw and saab parts so get good parts form them i have used them a lot,
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/Genuine-T...l/282811653986

the plastic link pipe as rear of engine is a proper pain in arse to replace water pump off and thermostat housing off, the thermostat housing and the link pipe is a do together job to be honest the plastics break down with age and heat and while your on there do both as will deffo not get another 80k on the link pipe before it leaks then you will be paying twice, worth doing water pump as well then the whole system is done once and forget about it, preventative repair is always the best way forward,, little tip most garages like customers to pay a few times so lean towards on replacing the broken item rather that looking at the whole system and protect it for future,, all these parts have a life 80k 8 years is where i believe most go to then its russian roulette to when they destroy the motor as most cars now dont have temp gauge just a light that tells you SORRY ITS TO LATE ENGINE IS COOKED 3K PLEASE there you the true meaning of that light . one of my pet hates with how these car makers steal off us all with silly designed that end badly for the owner and good for the dealers workshops maybe

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post #5 of 9 (permalink) Old Jun 30th, 2019, 10:25 AM Thread Starter
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Good advice to change the water pump while you have the thing taken apart. I checked for a recall, but it doesn't apply to my VIN.

Thanks!
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post #6 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 2019, 05:04 PM
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Just had the water pump replaced on my 2009 Mini Cooper S. Turned out the shaft seal had gone bad forcing a small amount of water past the seal every time the water got hot and expanded. New pump fixed the problem.
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post #7 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 2nd, 2019, 06:40 PM
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Just had the water pump replaced on my 2009 Mini Cooper S. Turned out the shaft seal had gone bad forcing a small amount of water past the seal every time the water got hot and expanded. New pump fixed the problem.
the trouble with these cars is there is no temp gauge just a warning light so when things like the water pump or more often the piloted thermostat housing breaks as so many do from 50k to 100k have seen a lot crack and alot go short circuit to positive and fail. trouble is by time the light comes on its already got so hot it can cause damages, preventive measures would always for me be change the housing at same time as water pump, on the cooper s they also have a aux water pump to pump water around after switching off to cool turbo mainly these also cause problems

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good tuner/ecu body control clones etc lancaster up north uk DALE PHONE NUMBER 07807 222262 top guy.
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post #8 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 11th, 2019, 11:58 PM Thread Starter
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Update - the source of the coolant leak is the oil cooler. My mechanic says this is 'next to impossible to get to'. He's quoting about 6 hours of labor and says the parts are usually less than $100. He says this is a common issue and he sees it several times a year. Has anyone else had this repair done? Is it really that much labor?
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post #9 of 9 (permalink) Old Jul 12th, 2019, 07:24 AM
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Update - the source of the coolant leak is the oil cooler. My mechanic says this is 'next to impossible to get to'. He's quoting about 6 hours of labor and says the parts are usually less than $100. He says this is a common issue and he sees it several times a year. Has anyone else had this repair done? Is it really that much labor?
yes very common bmw designed cooler block been failing for years, what i tend to do is steer people to a better way of cooling the oil by far ie remote upgraded cooler kit link below, remember oil does not just lubricate a engine it also cleans and adds to cooling the bearing areas so cooler the oil thicker the oil better it does the job,
https://www.ebay.co.uk/sch/i.html?_f...r+kit&_sacat=0

good tuners/repairs in southwest uk top guys 01579388980
good tuner/ecu body control clones etc lancaster up north uk DALE PHONE NUMBER 07807 222262 top guy.
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