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Hello all - first off, thank you - this is my first time posting but you have helped many times in the past with little maintenance or repair efforts!

I have a 2008 S convertible with the JCW package. It has been awesome, but I recently was out of town for two weeks and on return, the car ran fine for 30min, but then threw an SES+EML and went into limp mode. After restarting, it ran really rough and could barely idle without dying. Again, went into limp. Since it was already warm, I revved it up to ~3500rpm, and it revved/ran perfectly, and when I reduced the throttle it was fine....for about 5mins...and then limp mode. I went through this cycle multiple times, but made it home to check codes

Codes are: "p1689 - Electronic Throttle Control Monitor level 2/3 torque calculation error" and "p0108 - Manifold Absolute Pressure/Barometric Pressure Circuit High Input". **Key note: the p1689 comes on consistently, but the p0108 only comes on when I do the high rev thing.

After a bit of research, with nothing really found, I went to just do some manual troubleshooting and found/did the following:
-- if left running rough for longer than a few minutes, then the exhaust line (pre cat, post manifold) gets GLOWING RED hot...didn't make that mistake twice
-- if I pull off the wire for cylinder 3, the engine runs identically as when it was connected - but I do have spark, both arc-ing to the distributor and when you pull the plug and ground it. If I pull any other wire, the car runs awful and dies.
-- I switched the plug and wires to rule them out - no change
-- I pulled and switched fuel injectors - no change
-- I manually adjusted the EGR, and separately pulled and cleaned it - no change
-- I replaced the TMAP sensor, as outlined in another MINI2 article fix for the P0108 - no change (if anything, it now has shorter "failure cycles" but that could just be from time)
-- I returned everything to original

Again, if I rev it up, it will rev just fine, and will often allow it to get "unstuck" for a short period of time, allowing completely normal operation of the car...until some amount of time later -sometimes 2mins, sometimes 10.

Thank you for any help, ideas, thoughts or recommendations!
 

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Hello all - first off, thank you - this is my first time posting but you have helped many times in the past with little maintenance or repair efforts!

I have a 2008 S convertible with the JCW package. It has been awesome, but I recently was out of town for two weeks and on return, the car ran fine for 30min, but then threw an SES+EML and went into limp mode. After restarting, it ran really rough and could barely idle without dying. Again, went into limp. Since it was already warm, I revved it up to ~3500rpm, and it revved/ran perfectly, and when I reduced the throttle it was fine....for about 5mins...and then limp mode. I went through this cycle multiple times, but made it home to check codes

Codes are: "p1689 - Electronic Throttle Control Monitor level 2/3 torque calculation error" and "p0108 - Manifold Absolute Pressure/Barometric Pressure Circuit High Input". **Key note: the p1689 comes on consistently, but the p0108 only comes on when I do the high rev thing.

After a bit of research, with nothing really found, I went to just do some manual troubleshooting and found/did the following:
-- if left running rough for longer than a few minutes, then the exhaust line (pre cat, post manifold) gets GLOWING RED hot...didn't make that mistake twice
-- if I pull off the wire for cylinder 3, the engine runs identically as when it was connected - but I do have spark, both arc-ing to the distributor and when you pull the plug and ground it. If I pull any other wire, the car runs awful and dies.
-- I switched the plug and wires to rule them out - no change
-- I pulled and switched fuel injectors - no change
-- I manually adjusted the EGR, and separately pulled and cleaned it - no change
-- I replaced the TMAP sensor, as outlined in another MINI2 article fix for the P0108 - no change (if anything, it now has shorter "failure cycles" but that could just be from time)
-- I returned everything to original

Again, if I rev it up, it will rev just fine, and will often allow it to get "unstuck" for a short period of time, allowing completely normal operation of the car...until some amount of time later -sometimes 2mins, sometimes 10.

Thank you for any help, ideas, thoughts or recommendations!
so cylinder number 3 is not producing power so car running on 3 cylinders or partially running on number 3, add the inlet pressure fault code would point me towards cracked inlet valve, causing lack of compression they the fuel air mix in that cylinder gets dumped out on to cat hence glowing manifold maybe, or sticking inlet valve due to carbon build up inside the inlet port holding valve off the seat,, compression test the engine would be next job,, could also remove inlet manifold enough to check ports could clean them out with seafoam and rag thats how i do them saves the £100 some people charge for blasting them,, thats where i think i would start with it,
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thank you - Sticking inlet makes sense - as it seems to "free up" if I do the high-rev thing at startup (before it goes into limp), allowing it to be driven normally (no further revving needed) for a period of time.

I will work on it this weekend and give an update!
 

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Thank you - Sticking inlet makes sense - as it seems to "free up" if I do the high-rev thing at startup (before it goes into limp), allowing it to be driven normally (no further revving needed) for a period of time.

I will work on it this weekend and give an update!
@DSpur What was the final fix? Having the exact symptoms now and haven't been able to solve yet.

Swapped throttle body, but INPA still showing no change in throttle opening position when modulating the accel pedal. Pedal signal is showing normal.

Would love to know how it ended for you.
 

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I spent a few more hours diagnosing today:

  • I read leaking/cracked valves have causes these conditions for several folks, so i inspected all valve springs, all OK with no excessive play or lack of resistance
  • Swapped to a spare distributor and all 4 spark plug wires, no change
  • Performed compression test on all cyl - all OK at ~150psi (+-1psi)
  • Swapped to a spare accelerator pedal assy. - no change
  • Checked injector seating - all OK
  • Cleaned TMAP sensor with MAF-specific cleaner
  • Checked as many vacuum lines as I could without pulling the modular front end away - no leaks found


After the above, I'm still reading 3 persistent errors on the EMS2K module in INPA:
  1. 5769Electronic throttle control monitor level 2/3 torque calculation error
    1. CALULATED LOAD VALUE 96.08%
    2. SIGNAL OUT OF RANGE
  2. 546Throttle/pedal position sensor /switch B circuit low input
    1. THROTTLE OPENING = 116.69 DEG. TPS
    2. DRIVER DEMAND = 0.00%
  3. 291Throttle/pedal position sensor/switch A high input
    1. THROTTLE OPENING = 119.50 DEG. TPS
    2. DIRVER DEMAND = 0.00%
 

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would suspect the throttle pedal or its wiring to be at fault ie ecu seeing wrong voltages and adding fuel to the mix thinking its got more air than what it really has and this unburnt or very rich burn fuel can make exhaust glow with heat ,, also if car has a misfire a dead cylinder when fuel gets dumped on to the cat etc, as it does it more when engine on idle would say its rich running where if done it on revs i would suspect lean running due to not enough fuel to air mix. live data on 02 sensors should tell you whats going on ie normal 0.7volts in closed loop middle voltage the upstream should jump around more that down stream,,,, little tip if they both jump at same voltages at same time then sign the cat is gone or hole in it,, if upstream is stuck on 1.5v then its a mixture issues most likely a reactive fault, if one or both show zero volts its dead sensor or wiring or ecu, all the above in when car is in closed loop running ie exhaust has reach over 600c ie 02 sensors create voltage on signal while at this temp when in closed loop running,, before exhaust gets to temp the 02 sensors have heaters in them that heat themselves until up to temp and ecu is in preset mode ie cold choke running as such,
 

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would suspect the throttle pedal or its wiring to be at fault ie ecu seeing wrong voltages and adding fuel to the mix thinking its got more air than what it really has and this unburnt or very rich burn fuel can make exhaust glow with heat...
Hey Mike, thanks for your thoughts - I completely agree with your assessment. Everything I've gathered has pointed me to throttle body or accelerator pedal issues, especially the live Driver Demand % vs. Throttle Opening Deg. data in INPA. They are not in sync the way they should be.

Only problem is, I've already swapped over spare throttle body and pedal from my other R53.
I cleaned both connectors with electronics cleaner, but I suppose it could be a wiring fault somewhere in the harness, to your point.

When the engine does idle (sometime it sputters and dies before it can idle at all) I can tell it's running extremely rich from the smell and heat. To confirm this, all 4 spark plugs showed dark carbon dusting when I pulled them for the compression test. I checked the plugs before my last autocross event 2 weeks ago and they looked normal, so the carbon / rich fueling has only started with the other current symptoms.

Thanks for validating my own thoughts on O2 sensors. I checked that yesterday in INPA, and heat-up time is normal, upstream was fluctuating normally between 0.2 and 0.8v after warmup. Downstream was constant (can't remember the voltage), but I think the pre-cat and cat are okay based on those readings.

Last note, I also re-flashed my tune and reset the adaptive throttle, idle, and O2 adaptations in the EMS2K module to try and clear out any software related causes. No dice.
 

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below is live data for r53 2003 ie all the same, it shows throttle motor and voltage's and when etc ,, could probe the motor back to ecu see what you get,, think control wires back are 7 strand so around 7ohms open circuit ie both plugs unplugged worth checking,
Screenshot (280).png
Screenshot (279).png

and one below is healthy scope
Screenshot (281).png

also check fuel temp sensor is that goes wonky can effect things is strange ways ,, had a transit in the other day that had been to a few other garages and they could not find the issue,, and to be honest it nearly beat me as well it put car in limp mode made its run rich as it thought the fuel temp was -40 so increased the choke running via the ecu as such,
 

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@mike1967 Thoroughly helpful! Thank you, I'll vet my ballpark voltages against your screenshots this weekend.

I took another pass at reassembling the induction tract, minus pulling the SC. The only issues I found was the E6000 adhesive sealing my methanol nozzle into the intake horn had disintegrated, likely from heat at redline during the current autocross season. So there was probably a small vacuum leak at the meth nozzle, but I doubt enough to cause such noticeable issues.
 

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Following up @mike1967 - I haven't been able to solve the issue, but I have more data now to inform the solution. I suppose it's progress at least.

Before I get to a summary of stuff I've done to dig deeper - My next steps, and where I could use advice, are to test the output signal from the DME at X6000 pins 63 & 64. These pins control signal going to the DC motor in the throttle control unit. I want to measure the voltage (signal) coming from the DME, but I've reached the limits of my electrical comfort. I suspect the DME is not outputting the correct signal to the throttle motor. So far I've only tested continuity of the wire itself, not the pin output. I have a good multimeter in hand, but cautious not to backflow any voltage into the DME. Again, advice here appreciated.

---

More info on what I've learned:

I've installed and taught myself the basics of ISTA+ over the past few days to get a different angle on the issues. Unfortunately ISTA didn't shed any light on a test plan for my P1689 (DME code 0001689), but it was very helpful in informing me of the way in which these throttle control units (abbr. EDR) work via a DC motor and a few potentiometers to provide feedback to the DME. Further reading on page 32 of this MINI Engine Management Overview was helpful too, in case anyone else reading wants to investigate the EDR components in context of the rest of the engine management systems.

Ultimately ISTA+ diagnosed the fault codes as a result of a broken connection to the throttle body, and said I should check the plug connection. Obviously I've already done that a million times.

All is to say I'm suspecting it's a DME issue, rather than a wiring issue. I don't have a guess as to a DME hardware or software though. I'm still hopeful a reprogramming of the DME module via WinKFP could solve this. I do have WinKFP installed on my machine, but I haven't had the time to learn how to accomplish this particular task just yet. It's a pretty consequential thing if I mess up. Anyway...


Here's a synopsis of new data captured since my last post:
  1. Confirmed continuity in the 6 wires between the throttle body connector and X6000 pin locations (which actually correspond to 8 pins total):
    1. EDR Potentiometer control pins
      • Pin 10 - Signal Throttle potentiometer 1
      • Pin 11 - Signal Throttle potentiometer 2
      • Pin 12 - Ground Throttle potentiometer
      • Pin 13 - Voltage supply Throttle potentiometer
    2. Throttle DC motor control pins
      • Pin 63 - Signal Throttle valve
      • Pin 64 - Signal Throttle valve (joined to same wire as pin 63)
      • Pin 65 - Signal Throttle valve
      • Pin 66 - Signal Throttle valve (joined to same wire as pin 65)

        I'm not positive on why pins 63/64 and 65/66 each connect to a single wire respectively, but I assume one pin from each is signal controlled by the accelerator pedal and the other is controlled by the cruise control system. Both of which can control the throttle position, of course.

  2. Captured live throttle control data of the symptoms in INPA
    During this clip, I'm pressing and releasing the accel. pedal which corresponds to the change in several "Driver demand" values.

    Notice the driver demand from the accel. pedal is recorded accurately (confirms it's not a pedal sensor issue), but throttle valve position remains unchanged, with a constant voltage of 8.3V coming from both potentiometers in the throttle control unit. Basically the DME understands what the pedal is doing, but is unable to control the throttle accordingly.


    Other things to note:
    Cold start
    Very rough idle
    Vac. reading only -6psi at idle (via boost gauge)


  3. Captured live throttle control data in ISTA+
    During this clip, I'm pressing and releasing the accel. pedal which corresponds to the change in "Pedal travel sensor angle". The live data here is similar to the INPA data with the addition of:
    1. Engine load signal" - which is pinned at 100% (???) This surprised me, and I'm still researching to understand if this could be a key to solution.
    2. "Throttle, specified value" - which I assume is the DME's calculation for what the physical throttle angle should be (but it isn't when compared to the Throttle angle data above it)
    3. "Limp-home throttle position" - which, interestingly, is the same angle as the reported physical throttle angle. Not sure what's cause and what's effect here though.


  4. Idle roughness - Took a quick vid of the exhaust during idle to illustrate the roughness and richness (look at that soot on my driveway!). When she does start up and idle, which isn't always, I don't let the engine run for long because of this. She's burning all kind of fuel. I'm sure I'll have to give the plugs a good torching to get the carbon off.



EDIT: I forgot to mention two important things:
  1. I confirmed the DME can read the correct values for the physical throttle angle. Pressing the throttle valve by hand does result in the throttle angle values changing, so I know it's not an error in the data coming from the potentiometers, or a problem with the potentiometers themselves.
  2. Performing a throttle actuator test via INPA or ISTA+ is successful 100% of the time, which tells me it's likely not a problem with the DC motor inside the EDR or a wiring issue going to the EDR. Unless it's something really weird like pin 63 does have a problem, but the actuator test is performed through pin 64, appearing as a false positive.

As always, any input is appreciated. The thoughts of calling up my local dealership are creeping into my head. I'd be curious to know if there is even a tech who knew these first Gen cars well enough to help. But I'm not throwing in the towel yet!
 

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would ensure the hard breather pipes down by the throttle body on r53 they have habit of breaking just wondering if throttle body does work but something else is causing the issue, what you wrote was info over load to me take me hours to pick at it, like said i have all kinds of test gear and would be stumped after knowing what the throttle body pins are doing below screen shots of these pins for r53 and what pins does what and when etc,

Screenshot (294).png
Screenshot (293).png
Screenshot (292).png
 

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Thanks Mike. Yeah sorry for the info overload. I needed to get it all down on paper so I wouldn’t forget half of it myself.

I picked up a smoke test kit and fixed another vac leak I found at the BPV duct. Two new worm clamps fixed it right up. I also disconnected and reseated all the hard line breather tubes going into that damn black intake pipe. I hate the design on that part in every way. At least I’m 100% certain it’s not a vac leak issue now.

I also replaced the battery with a brand new one, so I went from 99% sure it wasn’t a battery problem to 100% sure.

Still no change in the main symptoms.
My leading theory is still a DME program error, requiring a rewrite of the module firmware.
 

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@mike1967 last update here. Today I reprogrammed the DME with WinKFP, then reflashed my tune file via MPPS and she’s running normally again.

282026


Because my R53 was built in Nov 2006 it already had the latest firmware available. I don’t have an ICOM, and took my chances programming via K+DCAN, which worked fine. I also have a decent battery charger (not a voltage stabilizer) that can force a 25A charge. That kept the voltage steady around 14.15V for the duration of the programming. It only took around 3.5 minutes to rewrite the DME, but for anyone else reading, please know writing to modules without an ICOM and proper power supply is ill advised.

I don’t know what could have caused the DME program error in the first place, but I’m relieved my hunch was right. The next step was to start chopping up the wiring harness! Thanks again for the info above and helping me narrow down possibilities. Appreciate the voltage screenshots. 👍🏻
 

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dont take much to corrupt the inner program on ecu's just putting a battery cable on can cause a spike happy days at least sorted it
 
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