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48 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Being an industrous sad engineer geek type person, and not
trusting anybody apart from me to work on my car, I decided
to investigate the source of my squeeky drivers sports seat.
I don't know if the pasenger seat squeaks yet, but as I said
I am an engineer type geek and therefore it follows I have
no friends......

Anyway, in my case I found two sources of squeaking.

1) cable ties that tie the lead for the seat pre-tensioner
to the tensioner itself

I cut off the ties with side cutters and fitted new ones (much tigher)

2) At least one of the main support spindles/axles of the
seat frame.

I discovered 2) after a close inspection of all the moving
joints in the metal frame and discovered several had a fine
metal powder around them --- the joints are tight and
so without lubrication metal filings are produced etc

I basically went around the seat frame with spray grease.
You can do all of this with the seat in the car, but I took
it out to avoid making a mess on the carpet. Also
to get at the main spindles/mechanism for the seat back, you
will need to remove the plastic seat back panel.

If you are reasonably practical, can spare an hour of your time and don't want to mess with taking yor car to a dealer, then here's how.

Tools needed

1) Can of spray grease (from halfords)
2) TORX (or "star drive") socket set


1) Make sure ignition is off
2) Dis-connct side airbag and pre-tensioner connectors
from under seat, noting how the cable is routed.

- each connecter has a tang you press to enable it to be unplugged, and they are colour coded, so you can't get them mixed up.

3) Un-do 4 TORX bolts holding the seat to the floor.
There is one at each end of the seat rails

4) cover the between seat console and the door sill with
old towels/cloth so avoid any possibility of damage when removing seat.

5) remove head rest (press button on headrest mounting bosses and pull out)

6) remove seat, take it in to your living room and wait for
an ear full from her indoors

7) (optional) Remove seat back panel
a) use a small protected screwdriver to remove the
centre logo boss from the "get in the back of the
car" adjuster. then remove the adjuster mounting torx
bolt and remove the adjuster. Do the same for the
other side

b) pull the part of the back panel on each side thats
behind the adjuster until the tape its stuck on with
comes undone (i'll call them side wings)

c) pull the panel at the top until the clips pop out
- there is one on each side.

d) pull the side wings out past the adjuster spindles
, then pull the whole panel down and whole thing
should come off after uncliping the elastic straps
holding the felt bit on at the bottom

- you now have more mechanism exposed to grease up.

You will see also the side airbag unit and the mechanism
for the lumber supprt,

8) Go around a liberally grease everything. Let it dry, then
clean up all the excess with cloths. You should
aim to make all the parts of the frame you can normally see
nice and clean and shiney. Of course be careful and keep the grease off the seat covers. It can be got off
the leather if you have it with a strong washing up liquid solution, or better still saddle soap.

9) Fix up those cable ties

10) And as they say, re-assembly is the reverse procedure
with these points to watch for

- the back panel needs to be slid UP into place and
the poppers pushed back in - thats because
there no popper at the bottom, but a lip on the frame
sliding behind a corresponding lip in the panel.
You might also need new double sided tape for the
side wings.

-IMPORTANT - make sure the air bag cables are back
together properly before you put the key in the ignition and turn ot to position 1, otherwise the airbag warning light will come on
and that has to be reset by the dealer.

My seat has now become totally sqeak free.


95 Posts

I have a 300Km Cooper S and the drivers seat skweaked like hell! Good I found this thread thanks!

I oiled the side of the seat where the hinge are ( near the lever or wings) I used INOX a sort of penetrating oil that is a thiker than WD40 and stays longer!

Well Ive yet to see if it will last.

Did your solution work up to now???

95 Posts
You can try it but I used something thicker than penetrating oil. Better get something like Dura Lube spray . Mine is fine up to now :D

BTW the best is Lithuim Grease in a spray can

MINI2 prodigal son
2,686 Posts
Pebble said:
My dealer lubed my seats up for me but that only lasted about 5 days. I'll take a look myself.
My squeak returned 5 days after dealer "fixed" it too. I let them have a second go at the squeak, and it's been silent ever since :) I wonder if the new seats in 2003 model are squeak free?

48 Posts
Being a new owner of a MCS, it took me only a week to join the squeaky seat club and so encouraged by the numerous reports in this thread, I decided to have a go myself - with so far, very good results.

Noting that the drivers seat squeaked and not the passenger, this pointed to something to do with the height adjustment mechanism since the passenger seat isn't height adjustable, and doesn't squeak.

I purchased a can of spray grease - white lithuium spray grease, guaranteed not to come off, or so the can says. Careful listening to the squeak while operating the height adjustment up and down lead me to the inside rear pivot of the seat frame. The driver's seat is mounted on a frame with essentially 4 pivot points per side of the seat, a bit like a parallelogram on each side of the seat, with what looks like a gas strut to assist in the height adjustment process. In my case, the upper joint at the rear of the seat closest to the seatbelt was the source of the squeak.

It is hard to get to and it is best to lever off a bit of plastic trim (first removing the Christmas tree fastener) trim so as to expose the pivot as much as possible. You have to use a long plastic tube on the spray can to get close to the joint. I sprayed in a little grease on both sides of the pivot point, then, worked the height adjuster up and down a couple of times, and the squeak disappeared and hasn't yet returned (2 weeks later).

Cautiously satisfied that the squeak has gone, I am now considering what to do with my brown coolant and leaky coolant bottle, not to mention the rattles from the rear quarter panel interior trim. At least I don't yet have a cracked windscreen....

MINI2 prodigal son
2,686 Posts
Chips said:
Cautiously satisfied that the squeak has gone, I am now considering what to do with my brown coolant and leaky coolant bottle, not to mention the rattles from the rear quarter panel interior trim. At least I don't yet have a cracked windscreen....
Well done curing your squeaky seat. Both my seats have the height adjusters, but only my drivers seat squeaked. To be fair, the passenger seat is little used anyway.

A bit of carefully applied sticky backed felt should help with any rattly panels, and maybe coolant flush and refill will help permanently restore your coolant to it's original day-glo green colour? If it was to turn brown again, I suppose that might be an indicator there's something wrong, but I don't know what?

48 Posts
Still squeak free

Glad to hear things have worked out Rolandh, my seats are still squeak free after 3 months after first application. I only wish I had those new seat back levers. Altenately, I am considering posting written instructions on the seat next to the air bag tags.
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