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post #16 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 6th, 2018, 11:45 AM
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Originally Posted by Austin_CS View Post
Search for 'death rattle', or timing chain, or timing chain tensioner, or timing issues on this or any other MINI forum, and you'll see many multiple threads on the issues that several incarnations of the engine have.

Bottom line: Change your oil every 5-6k (miles) - ignore the manufacturer recommendation of 10-12k and use DECENT oil that surpasses LL04 standard (5w-30) - change the timing kit every 50k regardless of how you drive. If your model has done close to, or over, a 50k multiple and you can't see any service record that states the timing kit has been replaced - change the kit!

The chain stretches past the point where the tensioner can adjust it and the timing goes to hell in a handcart. The tensioner can break, or wear away, long before the stated interval. poor quality oil or excessive intervals between changes will exacerbate this wear.

Ignore the death rattle at the peril of destroying the engine.

Check the service history with care.....

Good Luck!

Thank you for your advice, is this something still prevalent on the newer' engine "N18" is it... 2012 models have?

I have a friend with a ramp and have always changed my oil twice a year. IS the timing chain kit replacement expensive? could it be done with basic tooling and a ramp?

thanks in advance


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post #17 of 17 (permalink) Old Apr 13th, 2018, 09:42 AM
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Timing chain kits can be found on eBay for around 200 in the UK. I can't speak to their quality as I am not a mechanic, a proper newbie on car DIY, and haven't changed mine yet, but reading (with some trepidation) the many responses on this, what I think I can state is that cheap tensioner kits will always let you down. Main Stealers will give you Bimmer parts for a King's ransom but adequate quality spares can be found cheaper on the W3.

As to the actual task itself - I would definitely look for Mike1967's many, many posts on here advising great care and attention (Quite a few other posters too, but from memory, Mike has responded most on this). From what Mike writes, you only get one chance to get the timing right without starting all over, and stability / immobility of the moving parts when setting the chain is absolutely critical. It is a fiddly job, I would get a trained Mini / Peugeot mechanic to do my 2010 MCS (Prince engine). And I'll probably look for recommendations on here first , as it seems to be a classical case of experience over training for these engines.

Tools - see the other posts on that, but I would want a torque wrench and the (good quality) special timing tool or I wouldn't dream of starting.

Later models - Anyone out there care to comment?

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