The first generation Mini Cooper Hatch—produced between 2001 and 2006—is one of the most distinctive cars on the road today. Originally a collaboration between BMW and the Rover Group, the Mini Cooper’s more sporty look is due to BMW’s complete takeover of the project in the late 90’s. Some owners report problems with the car’s engine cooling systems, specifically the fan.
As you may know, your car has thousands of moving, metal parts that work themselves up to incredible temperatures during the normal operation of the vehicle. In order to prevent the car from completely overheating and the engine seizing, there are various cooling methods that kick in at various points. The fan is one of these methods. It has two modes (low and high) that will kick in when the car engine gets hot, pulling in cooler outside air and expelling the hot air from the engine block. The most common problems reported by owners are, the fan’s “low” setting doesn’t engage and the fan fails completely.
There are two usual reasons for the fan’s malfunction. First, there is what is known as the dropper resistor. The resistor makes sure that the first fan engages, and only allows the second, more intense, fan to kick in during emergencies. When the resistor fails, the first fan will not come on at all. The other possible explanation is that the thermostat in the engine is incorrectly recording the temperature. This would mean that your car believes the temperature is cooler/higher than it actually is, thus resulting in an erratic fan.
Without proper cooling procedures, your Mini Cooper is at risk of overheating, which would leave you with a high-cost repair on your hands. We highly recommend that you avoid this scenario by taking your car to a nearby German import maintenance garage where the various cooling systems will be examined and a solution found.
Search for a local, independent Mini Cooper repair shop with Mini Cooper mechanics that have dealer-level expertise at a fraction of the expense.