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Mini Cooper engine warning light

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    Hi everybody, haven't posted on TSR in ages but I have a question about my Mini - recently the "check engine" warning light came on (in yellow). The handbook says to have the engine checked, so I took it to a local garage (it was due its service anyway) and they said they couldn't find anything the matter. They reset the system and for a couple of days it was fine, then the light came back on.

    I had cleaned out my bank account paying for the service and previous check so I just carried on, and after about a week it went off again. Then two days later it came back on. The car is running fine to all intents and purposes, the only thing I can say I've noticed is a difference in how well the car pulls away when I accelerate - sometimes this is very marked but at other times it runs totally normally. Oil and coolant levels are fine.

    I'm just wondering if anybody else has experienced this and whether it's worth getting it checked again before any long drives - I'm planning a trip from London up to the Scottish Highlands in June so would rather it didn't explode in a ball of flames halfway up the A1

    Any comments or suggestions gratefully received!
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    Engine management lights don't turn on for no reason. You've been ripped off if you've paid someone to turn the light off for you. Try going to a BMW/Mini dealer or specialist instead.
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    In my experience it's the BMW dealers that do the ripping off. I didn't say I paid them to turn it off for me - the car had its service and that's what I paid for.
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    Regardless, it's bad practice to just ignore the warning light.

    Try a local Mini specialist instead. They will use genuine parts etc so that might be pricey, as BMW parts always are, but they'll be fairer on labour and are more flexible with their pricing.
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    "Bad practice"?! Really?! Do you have any idea what could be wrong with the car? I was really hoping for some mechanics to answer, not just other drivers.
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    Ah well, in that case, I'll leave you in peace. I'd be wasting your time if I told you to take it to a Mini specialist a third time. Engine management light can literally be anything but if there are any psychic specialist Mini mechanics on here, I have a few questions of my own, so look forward to hearing from them.
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    The light means the engine computer has detected a fault which causes the emissions to be worse than normal - it's a legal requirement for car manufacturers to detect engine faults that worsen emissions, otherwise people could be driving around with severely increased emissions without realising.

    Loads of things could cause the light to come on, some more serious than others - personally I wouldn't use the car more than you need to until you have at least found out what the fault is then decide how serious it is. If the light is on then the engine controller will definitely have logged details of the fault that triggered it, a garage with decent diagnostic equipment should be able to read out the data.

    If it is an intermittent fault the light may turn itself off if the car has done several journeys without seeing the fault again, although the fault information will still be stored even though the light has gone off.


    (Original post by Jennybean)
    Hi everybody, haven't posted on TSR in ages but I have a question about my Mini - recently the "check engine" warning light came on (in yellow). The handbook says to have the engine checked, so I took it to a local garage (it was due its service anyway) and they said they couldn't find anything the matter. They reset the system and for a couple of days it was fine, then the light came back on.

    I had cleaned out my bank account paying for the service and previous check so I just carried on, and after about a week it went off again. Then two days later it came back on. The car is running fine to all intents and purposes, the only thing I can say I've noticed is a difference in how well the car pulls away when I accelerate - sometimes this is very marked but at other times it runs totally normally. Oil and coolant levels are fine.

    I'm just wondering if anybody else has experienced this and whether it's worth getting it checked again before any long drives - I'm planning a trip from London up to the Scottish Highlands in June so would rather it didn't explode in a ball of flames halfway up the A1

    Any comments or suggestions gratefully received!
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    Have you got an android phone?

    If you do, you are in luck, because you can buy an app called Torque Pro for £3 I think and then buy one of these:-

    http://www.ebay.co.uk/itm/HHOBD-Torq...#ht_3023wt_986

    And for £25 you can read the faults of the car yourself. Just google where you can find the OBDII port in your car, but it is probably under the drivers wheel.
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    Could be almost anything. My Dad's old ford had the check engine light come on when the brake pedal switch failed, for example. An OBDII reader (you can get stand alone and laptop based units as well as the phone based ones Graham mentioned) but they won't give you all the information the system contains - some will only be available to someone with the BMW software. Unfortunately there isn't really any way to tell what it might be or how serious it is without more info, especially if you don't really notice anything wrong.
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    (Original post by Jennybean)
    Hi everybody, haven't posted on TSR in ages but I have a question about my Mini - recently the "check engine" warning light came on (in yellow). The handbook says to have the engine checked, so I took it to a local garage (it was due its service anyway) and they said they couldn't find anything the matter. They reset the system and for a couple of days it was fine, then the light came back on.

    I had cleaned out my bank account paying for the service and previous check so I just carried on, and after about a week it went off again. Then two days later it came back on. The car is running fine to all intents and purposes, the only thing I can say I've noticed is a difference in how well the car pulls away when I accelerate - sometimes this is very marked but at other times it runs totally normally. Oil and coolant levels are fine.

    I'm just wondering if anybody else has experienced this and whether it's worth getting it checked again before any long drives - I'm planning a trip from London up to the Scottish Highlands in June so would rather it didn't explode in a ball of flames halfway up the A1

    Any comments or suggestions gratefully received!

    How old is your car? , Has it been ragged a lot?
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    That sounds very cool. Actually I do have access to an android phone so maybe I will look into that app. Doesn't look like anybody has had a similar experience so think it will probably come down to biting the bullet and getting somebody to check it, though I may use a different garage this time! The car is about 4 years old and has been treated with a reasonable amount of respect.
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    (Original post by Jennybean)
    That sounds very cool. Actually I do have access to an android phone so maybe I will look into that app. Doesn't look like anybody has had a similar experience so think it will probably come down to biting the bullet and getting somebody to check it, though I may use a different garage this time! The car is about 4 years old and has been treated with a reasonable amount of respect.
    There is no chance that a MINI's CEL would come on for no reason at all.

    If you had brought it to a proper mechanic or a BMW dealer they would have done an air-fuel mixture reading and could have diagnosed the issue for you in 5 minutes.

    There are several possibilities on why the CEL would come on without logging a fault code.

    Could be from anything from a loose hose, your fuel filler cap isn't closing properly, the catalytic converter not at it's optimum. You could usually tell by the exhaust temperature,, air-fuel-mixture and whether the exhaust is full of black soot or not.

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