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Making it all better.
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Discussion Starter #1
Just recently my '02 MCS has started making a squealing noise when letting up the clutch and pulling away in 1st gear. Only happens as I gradually let up the clutch, and not when changing from 1st to 2nd and so on.

My best guess is that it is coming from the clutch. If so, should my clutch be failing in a 2-year-old car with only 22,000 miles on the clock? I didn't think I drove *that* badly....

Any ideas?
 

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My clutch was replaced at 28000 miles after 18 months of ownership. I understand your worries, since it is a major issue and would cost some significant $$$ (e.g., ~$3000) if not covered under warranty.
In my case, it started with a friction when depressing/releasing the clutch first, then came the squealing noise... Dealer was very helpful fixing it, but they needed to contact MINI engineers for directions and approval, since clutch is a wear/tear item. Upon their decision, first they replaced the slave clutch cylinder; it did not fix it. Second trip was for the master cylinder; still the same. During the third trip, entire clutch was replaced...
Good luck!
 

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I had exactly the same thing. I bet it happens more in cold/damp conditions?

I got the clutch on my old '03 MC done under warranty, but only after the dealer threatened to charge me £1000+ if they found no warranty issue when they took the clutch apart. Keep pushing them to get it done under warranty though coz I know a few people on here have had the same problem...something to do with a faulty throwout-bearing I recall :)
 

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Yes, each dealer takes a different approach, when it comes to working on clutch. Some -as in my case- are very helpful, while others tend to "blame" the customer first until proven otherwise. You may want to try different dealers if you face some of these issues, or try to get MINI customer service involved as well... I know one person here, who contacted MINI when he was told by the dealer that he must agree to pay the $3000 before they open and look at anything. MINI USA contacted the dealer and made them diagnose the problem first; it turned out to be a faulty throwout bearing and covered under warranty.
Good luck and keep us posted.
 

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Making it all better.
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Discussion Starter #5
tenderidol said:
Good luck and keep us posted.
Will do - need to try and book it in to the dealers when I'm free. I will see what they try to argue if it is in fact the clutch - I'm not to keen on forking out over £1000 for a new one in a car that has done less than 25K. My Dad is currently driving an Audi A4 that has done ~120,000 miles in 3 years since new with no mechanical problems whatsoever..
 

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I have had exactly the same problem, however, as it usually only occurs first thing in the morning, by the time the Dealer could look at it the noise could not be replicated.

What I want to avoid is for the clutch to fall apart out of the warranty period, but I can't really ask the Dealer to pull apart the clutch without them at least hearing the noise first.
 

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nickj77 said:
I have had exactly the same problem, however, as it usually only occurs first thing in the morning, by the time the Dealer could look at it the noise could not be replicated.

What I want to avoid is for the clutch to fall apart out of the warranty period, but I can't really ask the Dealer to pull apart the clutch without them at least hearing the noise first.

I had the same dilemma, but I left the car with the dealer overnight for them to replicate the sound 1st thing in the morning. They still warned me that I might have to pay once they'd taken the clutch apart and it turned out not to be a warranty issue. But I'd prepared myself for this by going armed with print-outs of the many threads on these boards describing exactly the same fault . It never came to that however :) Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #8
Car is booked in on the 8th December (the first time the dealer can pick it up from me). Hopefully they'll find the problem. Will keep you posted :D
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Grrrr. Now the airbag warning light is on. Better not crash until december....
 

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cozzers said:
I had the same dilemma, but I left the car with the dealer overnight for them to replicate the sound 1st thing in the morning. They still warned me that I might have to pay once they'd taken the clutch apart and it turned out not to be a warranty issue. But I'd prepared myself for this by going armed with print-outs of the many threads on these boards describing exactly the same fault . It never came to that however :) Good luck!
Cheers - used your approach and left the car at the Dealers on the weekend. I turned up on Monday to meet the Rep from MINI Australia carrying all the print-outs I could find, but he didn't ending up pushing it. So all booked in for replacement clutch parts (which parts I'm not sure yet) in Jan.
 

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Making it all better.
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Discussion Starter #11
Quick update on this - the car went to the dealers last week to try and source this problem (and fix the airbag light) but predictably it didn't make the noise despite the techhnician taking it out twice.

So...I took it to the dealer again today and dragged one of the service technicians out with me, and fortunately managed to make the squeal appear (In the dealer car-park :p ). Technician disappeared into the workshop for ten minutes with the car and returned saying they'd order a new clutch in and replace it for me in January. Covered under warranty. :D
 

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a.k.a Handsome Rob
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Mine is doing the same thing! Mine is an 04 with only 11,000 miles on her. The way these So Cal dealers work I wouldn't be surprised if I am going to have troubles. Mine is booked for the 11th of Jan to be looked at plus service and rear suspension squeaking.
Tavis1 :red:
 

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nickj77 said:
I have had exactly the same problem, however, as it usually only occurs first thing in the morning, by the time the Dealer could look at it the noise could not be replicated.
same here - but it only happened in cooler weather... I've not heard the noise for a few months now
 

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IML337 said:
same here - but it only happened in cooler weather... I've not heard the noise for a few months now
Mine went away for a time as well, but when it came back I decided to get it addressed by the Dealer once and for all. Entire clutch was replaced last Tuesday, and they've told me it wasn't the first they've done either.....
 

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a.k.a Handsome Rob
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nickj77 said:
Mine went away for a time as well, but when it came back I decided to get it addressed by the Dealer once and for all. Entire clutch was replaced last Tuesday, and they've told me it wasn't the first they've done either.....
Mine got finished today. They replaced the clutch disk, pressure plate, fly wheel, and throw out bearing.
Tavis1 :red:
 

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Making it all better.
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Discussion Starter #16
Just an update to this thread. Finally got my clutch replaced last week by Sytner - they told me that the clutch release bearing had started to break up. Done under warranty with no problems whatsoever. Whilst there the also found air in the hydraulics and had to replace a something-or-other as well - took and extra day.

Fortunately they'd given me a 1-series to play with as a courtesy car (118 diesel sport). First time I'd driven one - very well built and nicely handling car but soooooo underpowered. I kept planting my foot to the floor like I do in my MCS and expecting it to move - only to look down at the rev counter bouncing against the red line. No power surge at 3,000rpm like you get in the MINI. What glad to have my car back :D
 

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BlueMax
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Just found this thread with a search. My 04 MCS is starting to do it. Been quite wet and cool (unusually so for this time of year in SA). 30000 km. Is it necessary to replace the clutch or is it only the release bearing that needs replacing? Is it possible to replace the release bearing without taking the whole clutch apart? Not too impressed. I had a Jetta MK2 on which I only replaced the release bearing after 250 000km. Any advise, sharing of your experiences with this problem will be appreciated. Thanks
 

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It is one of those "you got it open, you might as well do it all" type things. Sure, you could just replace the bearing (if that is the issue) but the cost of doing just that is not worth it. So do it all at once and save on labor.
 
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