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Peach
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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello Everyone!
This is my first time posting in here so thank you in anticipation for your help. I’ve always found your forum a very helpful resource.

I have a 6 year old spice orange mini one with 52K on the clock, which I’ve owned for 2 years. I love it and want to keep it. However, it’s got a suspension rattle that is proving difficult to diagnose and is driving me nuts. I’m 90% sure it’s coming from the front passenger side and I will attempt to attach a recording from the front passenger footwell. The noise is loudest going over speed bumps, but also occurs on uneven roads and small potholes. The mini garage changed the rear ARB bushes, which didn’t help. I took it to an independent mini specialist and they thought it was the front passenger drop link which unfortunately hasn’t helped. Any ideas on where we should be looking next? I know there are other bushes at the front. Suspension strut? Control arm? Front ARB bushes? (ps my knowledge is self taught and I ain’t no mechanic so apologies for any errors)

Thank you for any help!

I've posted a 13s clip of the rattle on you tube under 'Mini R56 Suspension Rattle Dr Peach' Don't seem to be able to post an URL on here.
 

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Hello Everyone!
This is my first time posting in here so thank you in anticipation for your help. I’ve always found your forum a very helpful resource.

I have a 6 year old spice orange mini one with 52K on the clock, which I’ve owned for 2 years. I love it and want to keep it. However, it’s got a suspension rattle that is proving difficult to diagnose and is driving me nuts. I’m 90% sure it’s coming from the front passenger side and I will attempt to attach a recording from the front passenger footwell. The noise is loudest going over speed bumps, but also occurs on uneven roads and small potholes. The mini garage changed the rear ARB bushes, which didn’t help. I took it to an independent mini specialist and they thought it was the front passenger drop link which unfortunately hasn’t helped. Any ideas on where we should be looking next? I know there are other bushes at the front. Suspension strut? Control arm? Front ARB bushes? (ps my knowledge is self taught and I ain’t no mechanic so apologies for any errors)

Thank you for any help!

I've posted a 13s clip of the rattle on you tube under 'Mini R56 Suspension Rattle Dr Peach' Don't seem to be able to post an URL on here.
common is top spring mounts
https://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/NORDIC-FRONT-TOP-SHOCK-ABSORBER-STRUT-MOUNTING-KIT-OE-QUALITY-REPLACE-NTM302240/122157785625?epid=2074190266&hash=item1c712be219:g:eAkAAOSw~y9ZCTE1
way to tell jack car off ground and grab top of spring and pull and push it as hard as can if the problem it will knock and have movement on the top of road spring...
also the gearbox mount or engine mount will give same sort of sounds.. also anti roll bar bushes,,
 

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Peach
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Thanks Mike for your reply.
I tried testing the top spring mounts as you described, however I only have the jack that comes with the car which didn't feel stable enough to put too much force pulling and pushing the strut. So I'm not sure I've excluded a problem here. I did hit a pot hole with the same wheel/corner last year which damaged the alloy beyond repair. I suspect this would easily damage the spring mount?

Garages so far have said everything looks stable with the suspension. I'll try the independent garage again next week and see if they find anything else.
kind regards
 

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Thanks Mike for your reply.
I tried testing the top spring mounts as you described, however I only have the jack that comes with the car which didn't feel stable enough to put too much force pulling and pushing the strut. So I'm not sure I've excluded a problem here. I did hit a pot hole with the same wheel/corner last year which damaged the alloy beyond repair. I suspect this would easily damage the spring mount?

Garages so far have said everything looks stable with the suspension. I'll try the independent garage again next week and see if they find anything else.
kind regards
need to use a trolley jack and axle stand to be safe doing what i said as need to give it a fair bit of force to be sure, or can use a lever bar which is how i check all bushes and ball joints for unwanted wear,, if damaged wheel chances are spring might be broken on the botton if so hard to tell with out measuring the springs on both sides,, also shock might be damaged maybe leaking
 

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Hi Peach

I believe I have the same issue, coming from the same corner. About to start a new thread with my findings, but quickly here:

Like you, I have been informed of a number of fairly obvious things, and have tried:
Rear ARB bushes
Front ARB bushes
Front top mounts (have gone to solid/pillowball camber plates)
Tighten everything up

WHile the noises have certainly dimmed, they are still there, and I believe it is essentially all parts of the suspension all rattling together., I don't notice it at higher speeds or on motorway, but it's definitely there over rough roads in town, turning corners over manhole covers/potholes, and any gravel or non-level road. I don't believe it to be the ARB, as the noises do not get generated any more or less depending on how much the inner or outer wheels are loaded relative to each other, so I have come to the conclusion that it is the front wishbone/control arm bushings and ball joints, and possibly my shocks.

New front control arm isn't that expensive, and can be bought with new bushes already installed for approx £60 each side, but fitting them is much harder, and you're looking at £400 plus in labour for someone to take it apart and put back together.

See my other thread for my plans, tools, and how i anticipate taking on this job,.

Cheers,
Craig
 

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Peach
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Sorted!! For the first time in over a year I have a quiet car.
Took ages to find the source of the rattle.
I bought a cheap dictaphone and attached a small mic on a long wire to various parts of the suspension.
Replaced drop link and detached ARB to test ARB bushes.
Checked for rattles from inner and outer ball joints and control arm bush.
Bought a second hand suspension strut and mount-replaced this but rattle didn't go.
And eventually I found the problem.......and it wasn't coming from the suspension.
It was the gearbox mount, which sits in the front left of the engine bay. The noise was being amplified down the car frame into the left footwell. Bought a Lemforder replacement off ebay for £50 and did the job myself in an hour. Bit fiddly to get the ECU out of the way and needed a jack to take the weight off the transmission. Old mount didn't look shot, just a bit wobbly.
The woodpecker sound going over uneven roads and speedbumps has gone. Two garages couldn't find the problem and I was beginning to think it was in my head. It's like having a new car! Just wonderful.
Thanks for your help guys. I can keep my mini now!
 

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was this a manual trans or automatic? i’m having the same problem on a 2013 automatic trans and it’s driving me NUTS. it sounds like the car is falling apart. would both models have the same mounts?
 

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Peach - I'd be curious to know what year, make and model is your car and what type of transmission you have.
I have a new (to me) 2011 Mini and I am too searching for a solution from harsh rattles in the front suspension.
Also, if you have the part number for the transmission mount, that would be great.

Thanks in advance.
 

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Peach
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5 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
Hi Superfly. It wasn't my suspension in the end, but the engine bay gearbox mount. My mini is a 2011, Mini One, manual. As it approaches it's 8th birthday I'm still very happy with it. Definitely worth persevering getting any annoying rattles sorted.
 

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Peach
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Discussion Starter #10
Sorry I don't have any knowledge of the automatic. I'm not a mechanic so only have experience with my car.
 

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need to use a trolley jack and axle stand to be safe doing what i said as need to give it a fair bit of force to be sure, or can use a lever bar which is how i check all bushes and ball joints for unwanted wear,, i Dafont Showbox Adam4adam f damaged wheel chances are spring might be broken on the botton if so hard to tell with out measuring the springs on both sides,, also shock might be damaged maybe leaking
thought it was the front passenger drop link which unfortunately hasn’t helped. Any ideas on where we should be looking next? I know there are other bushes at the front. Suspension strut? Control arm? Front ARB bushes? (ps my knowledge is self taught and I ain’t no mechanic so apologies for any errors)
 
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