Angus’s 2005 Mini Cooper S

Vehicle Details

  • Make – Mini
  • Model – Cooper
  • Model Year – 2005
  • Trim – S
  • Options – Premium Package (Multifunction Steering Wheel, Dual Pane Panoramic Sunroof, Automatic A/C, Computer) & Sport Package (DSC, Fog Lamps, 17″ Alloys, Bonnet Stripes, Xenon Headlights)
  • Engine – 1.6 liter Supercharged (168 bhp)
  • VIN – WMWRE33425TD96656 (VIN Decoder here)
  • Purchase Date – (2nd owner) April 12, 2014
  • Purchase Mileage – (2nd owner) 116,481 miles
  • License Plate – 5LTU036 (California) (SMOG Lookup here)
  • Color – British Racing Green

Additional Specs online here and on Wikipedia here.

MyCarFax Records here (logged in as Stefano)

Angus with his first car April 13, 2014

Service History

Date: January 12, 2023
Mileage: 163,440
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Stefano dealing with the rear speaker issues:

  • Ordered a pair of Polk 692 (6″x9″) speakers and wiring harness adapters from Crutchfield.
  • Installed new speakers by partially removing rear side panels. Went fine. Had to replace a few of the panel push on snap clips that were squashed.
  • Tested audio again. Right Rear speaker (new one) still does NOT work (same issue as the old one). The LR works great, sounds even better with new. So, three of four speakers are working great. RR speaker must be a wiring issue that will need to be chased down. Best guess is the issue is behind the JVC aftermarket head unit. I think there was a make yourself wiring loom adapter kit that came with the Crutchfield kit, and I’m going to guess that the wire to the RR speaker isn’t connected. Could be the head unit, or something in the car’s wiring loom, but best to start in the most obvious spot.
  • Relating to the oil leak solved Jan 4th, noted a single drop in shop on floor. This could be residual from the mess, but it should be visually inspected one more time to confirm no continuing leak.
  • When the car cold starts and initially fast idles, there is a rattling noise coming from the powertrain. Haven’t spent a ton of time chasing this, but it does clear up once the car is warm. Previously while it was on a lift during the oil leak fix, I thought I heard it coming from inside the primary CAT. Could have just been something else, but I wonder if the CAT is failing and rattling until it gets hot. This is already a replacement CAT from about 5 years ago where the old exhaust split at the CAT welds and replaced with a used part that came of an R53 with 60K miles. Need to monitor.
  • Old car issues creeping in….

Date: January 4, 2023
Mileage: 163,394
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Stefano dealing with a few issues:

  • Replaced the oil pressure sending unit. This was the source of the oil leak. Replaced with Mini OEM part ordered from Amazon. Was tricky to install due to the location. Cleaned off oil residue of surrounding area afterwards. Ran on lift for 10 mins and no leak visible.
  • Checked oil level afterwards. Still good.
  • Stefano linked his phone to the Bluetooth JVC stereo in the car. Adjusted the EQ setting to Jazz seems to make the in car audio at its best. Still needs the rear speakers replaced.

Date: December 22, 2022
Mileage: 163,385
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Stefano dealing with a few issues:

  • Now that it was colder out, Stefano noticed that there was little to no heat in the car. Researched and learned that the heater cores are prone to clogging. Did the test (drive with HVAC off for 10 mins, then run on manual at high and should find heat comes for about 30 seconds then cools off again) and this was the case.
    • Picked up replacement aftermarket heater core kit from O’Reilly’s auto parts.
    • Drained coolant (saved to reuse)
    • Swapped heater core. Reused seals and one clamp. Used one new clamp. Was a battle – don’t ask.
    • Refilled coolant using Vacuum lift. Ran and burped. Topped with fresh Mini OEM coolant.
    • Tested. LOADs of heat now. Fixed.
  • Headlight Aim was wonky. Right main beam was high and right. Setup proper aiming in the shop, set for about 3″ of fall over 25 feet. Centered both beams.
  • Started to troubleshoot the oil leak. Its in the vicinity of the oil filter housing, oil pressure sender, oil cooler. Was a mess, blow back all over block, suspension, wiring. Used parts clean to spray off buildups. Ran for 10 mins on ramp and couldn’t see a source. Took for a test drive, will inspect further.
  • Discovered that the RF speaker was crackling. While testing that discovered that the LF speaker was barely making any sound.
    • Ordered a pair of Polk Audio DB 652 6.5″ speakers, brackets and wiring harness from Crutchfield
    • Removed door cards, old speakers. Drilled hole for mounting bracket, installed, tested. Working great.
    • Took the time to go through settings in head unit and set balace, EQ, date, time, etc.
    • While doing all that, also discovered the RR speaker is fully dead. All the car had working before was one LR and crackling RF. Going to review how hard rear speaker changes would be before ordering replacements.
  • Need to order about 5 door card plastic mounting dodads. Found that 3 were crushed on the R and 1 on the left

Date: December ??, 2022
Mileage: 163,???
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Stefano dealing with a few issues today:

  • Drivers window won’t move much, up or down. Tries, moves fractionally, but that’s it. Even when you pull or push on the glass at the same time, won’t move. About 6 years ago replaced the window track only with an aftermarket kit and guessing its crapped out or the motor has gone this time around.
    • Ordered an aftermarket Window Track and Power Window Motor assembly from Amazon.
    • Replaced window track and windows motor
    • Adjusted glass fit in the door opening
    • Tested – all good
  • Set tire pressures to spec since it was winter temps now and they were all down a bit.
  • Noticing oil spots when parked. Appears to be coming from the oil filter/oil cooler area. Will need to clean the area and inspect further.
  • Deep cleaned the interior. It was a mess after camping and years without detailed attention
    • Vacuumed all the nooks and crannies.
    • Cleaned the all the interior plastic panels with 409 and leather cleaner brush, then microfiber wipe. Worked great.
    • Cleaned the leather seats, door panel leather bits and steering wheel with Chemical Guys leather cleaner and leather cleaner brush. Then conditioned the leather with Chemical Guys leather conditioner. Worked great.
    • 409 washed the weather tech floor mats.
    • Cleaned the interior glass
  • Exterior Detailed with snow foam wash and scrub.
    • Looking better now, but starting to show her age and miles in the California sun. Clear coat failures is happening more now. Hood is a mess, and tops curved edge of the rear quarters now too. Gutter rail black paint flaking. Front bumper crazed and rear bumper was tapped by someone. Roof has indents where the roof rack pads have been. She’s needing a full repair and minor repairs now I’m afraid.

Date: September 8, 2022
Mileage: 161,327
Performed by: Angus and Stefano

Replaced the cabin air filter with a Fram Fresh Breeze Cabin Filter sourced from Amazon.

Connected Autel MD803 OBDII code reader and reviewed any active codes. Nothing significant. Cleared DTCs and rescanned – no persistent codes. Even though the ‘Service Due’ indicator wasn’t showing, I wanted to reset to start the counter from now since I’ve just completed a full service round in the last couple of weeks (see notes below). Used the Autel’s Oil Service Reset function. Not really sure its reset how the counter works, but the next service wouldn’t be due until September 2023 or 166K miles (whichever comes first).

Date: September 4, 2022
Mileage: 161,324
Performed by: Angus and Stefano

Services Performed: Interior Detailing today:

  • Deep vacuum of vents, seats and carpets
  • Remove and pressure wash the WeatherTech floor mats
  • Washed the door cards and dash surfaces with toothbrush and 409. Wet microfiber and dried after.
  • Detailed the door cards, center console, steering wheel, pedal assembly and dash. Toothbrush, 409, wet microfiber, vacuum, whatever it took to bring back to excellent condition.
  • Cleaned the windows inside and out

Looking as nice inside now as the outside.

Noted the stitching is separated on drivers seat bolster (common issue due to location and sun). Leather could probably do with a proper leather cleaner and treatment (for modern cars).

Date: September 3, 2022
Mileage: 161,321
Performed by: Angus and Stefano

Services Performed: Exterior detail and cleanup today. Started with snow foam, hand and pressure washed. Wheel arches, inner door sills and rear hatch opening given a solid cleanup. Observed that the clear coat on the hood and front bumper are starting to blister and peel from the harsh California sun. Racing stripes on the hood are also cracking from the sun (these were already replaced once when the car was new to Angus – BMW’s design isn’t great for the sun). New rims seem to be a perfect color match for the original rims.

Observed that the drivers door window regulator is acting all sorts of funny. Seems to be slipping, etc. The motor seems to run strong, but wondering if this component is failing again. Replaced once already about 6 years ago. Will investigate further.

Replaced the tow truck damaged parts on the front bumper – the front bumper lower center plastic spoiler and the center structure right behind it (two pieces total). Removed the entire front bumper, removed the ripped up damaged bits, fitted them, and refitted the entire bumper again (F’ing tow truck driver – argh). Cleaned the new lower plastic with Alcohol solution, then ceramic coated them with same Armor Ceramic solution used when the whole car was done in June 2020 (keeps the plastic looking nice and black). Back to looking great again!

After Exterior Detail at 161k miles

Date: September 1, 2022
Mileage: 161,318
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Replaced the two scuffed and potentially pot hole damaged original Mini-lite rims with two newly refurbished identical rims (purchased from eBay). Purchased a new pair of Michelin Pilot Super Sport tires from to match the damaged ones (that were fitted back in June 2020. Had the local Les Schwab tire center mount and balance the tires and rims. Installed the new rims/tires to the front. Moved the undamaged original left side rims and tires to be the back set. Storing the removed original rims for posterity. Set the front and rear tire pressures to 38 p.s.i. Reset the TPMS sensing system to be calibrated with the new tires and rims. Looking great again with four perfect rims and tires.

New rims and tires fitted to the front

Date: August 28, 2022
Mileage: 161,315
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Performed an annual service. This included:

  • Changing the engine oil. Replaced with Castrol Edge 5W-30 Synthetic.
  • Changed the engine oil filter. Replaced with Mini OEM filter purchased from Mini Mania.
  • Replaced the oil drain plug with new Mini OEM drain plug purchased from Mini Mania.
  • Removed, cleaned, dried and re-oiled the K&N Engine Air Filter
  • Inspected and topped off the Brake Fluid with Motul RBF600.
  • Inspected and topped off the engine coolant with BMW OEM Coolant.
  • Inspected and topped off the washer fluid with plain water
  • Inspected the front and rear suspension.
  • Inspected the engine for leaks. Noted a wet area below the engine oil cooler (half shaft and surrounding area), and could see a drip ready to fall off the fins of the oil cooler. Since the gasket was already changed back when the engine was out in July 2018, I think the issue is with the cooler itself and may need replaced. Will monitor. Cleaned the oil from the half shaft and surrounding area.
  • Inspected the exhaust system – all good.
  • Inspected the brake system. No leaks. Plenty of meat left on the front and rear pads. Rotor wear is normal.
  • Pressure washed the engine compartment to get rid of all the dust accumulated from the camp roads in the Sierras. Protected the ECU and Fuse Box while doing this.
  • Vacuumed the back trunk/boot area.
  • Cleaned the left and right door sill areas.

Date: August 27, 2022
Mileage: 161,312
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Repaired the suspension damage from the pot hole incident. Including:

  • Replaced the RF Strut assembly with new identical unit sourced from Mini Mania
  • Replaced the RF Strut top bearing assembly with MINI OEM item sourced from Neillo Mini in Sacramento.
  • Installed a Craven Speed Strut Top Mount strengthening plate kit sourced from Mini Mania.
  • Road tested (still on damaged rims and tires). Drives straight again, no noises, handles well. I think we got lucky and that is the extent of the suspension damage.
Replaced RF Strut and Top Bearing

Date: August 17, 2022
Mileage: 161,309
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Performed a careful inspection of the pot-hole impact damage. More damage was found:

  • Right Front wheel was clearly cambered in at the top. Something was broken.
  • Discovered the RF strut tube was physically bent at where it is clamped into the wheel hub assembly.
  • Inspected the upper strut tower for mushrooming. None found.
  • Removed the damaged strut and top bearing assembly. The bearing top plate was bowed.
  • The inner face of the new RF tire was chaffed from rubbing against the strut tower (due to the camber it was in contact). Rubber debris can be seen stuck to the inner fender liner.
  • The RF rim was severly road rashed. Not sure if this was pre-existing or from the pot hole impact.
  • Front bumper assembly damage caused by the tow truck was found to be more extensive.
    • Front spoiler mounts had been pulled apart from the sub structure. Should be able to be remounted.
    • Front spoiler sub structure was damaged where clips had pulled through.
    • Front spoiler uprights pulled apart from the center section and mounts.
    • Wheel arch liners pulled away from where they meet the front bumper.
    • Recommend purchasing new front spoiler center section, sub structure and mounting hardware. Then removed front bumper assembly entirely, replace parts, and then refit all the pieces together again to make it well again.

Recommend purchasing a new Bosch RF Strut and top bearing assembly. Also replace the two right side rims and Velozza tires. Also consider adding aftermarket upper strut tower strengthening plates. After all refitted recommend a four wheel alignment.

Date: August 15, 2022
Mileage: 161,113
Performed by: Les Schwab Tire Service in Los Banos, California

Services Performed: Tough day for the Mini today. Owner states hit a massive pot hole on secondary road West of Fresno, CA, and blew out the right from tire and damaged the right rear tire. Stranded roadside. AAA flat decked the car 45 mins to Les Schwab tire service in Los Banos, CA. Replaced the damaged right side tires only at Stefano’s request with the least expensive options in stock so Owner can limp the car home. They fitted house brand Velozza ZXV4 205/45R-17XL 88W tires to replace the damaged Michelin Pilot Super Sports. Once back to Stefano’s we’ll replace these with new Michelin’s and inspect the rims and suspension, etc. Stefano will fix. The AAA tow truck drive also damaged the front under tray wind deflector tearing a portion of it. Here are pictures of the various bits of damage from the scene.

Date: 2021
Performed by: Marco Polo BMW Service in La Jolla, California (San Diego area)

Services Performed: Annual Oil Change/Mini Service. Covid times, hardly any miles on the vehicle since last service. Marco Polo BMW performed:

  • A basic oil/filter change service.
  • Flushed the brake fluid
  • Replaced an O2 sensor they said was triggering a code. I don’t know if this was the upstream or the downstream. The downstream had already been replaced by Stefano in the July 2018 major service.

Date: December 14, 2020
Performed by: AAA Mobile Battery Service

Services Performed: The Battery has given up. Isn’t lasting 2 weeks without getting boosted to start the car. Left Angus stranded today, and a boost wasn’t enough. Voltage measured as 1V, must be failed internally. AAA mobile battery service came to Angus’s apartment in San Diego and swapped the battery in the field. All good to go now with a 6 year AAA replacement warranty.

Date: September 8, 2020
Mileage: 158,479
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Right rear brake light out, replaced bulb. Checked tire pressures (38/38 F/R). Cleaned windows. Topped fluids (washer, oil). Vacuumed interior. Note: A small amount of ‘whining/whirring’ can be heard from the interior blower fan on lower speeds. More than when the car was younger. Replacing the blower motor on an R53 mini is insanely difficult, requires entire dash system as a whole to be removed (not just some panels).

Looking good for 15 years old and 158K miles!

Date: July 29, 2020
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Front End Accident Repair. Involved in freeway stop & roll accident, tagged the back of a Porsche 911 (the Mini won). Damaged license plate frame, cracked paint on bumper cover, bent impact beam which slightly bent A/C radiator (still works) and pushed it into main radiator (still works). Cracked plastic frame that holds radiator to car (servicable). Purchased a used bumper beam from auto recycler (Volvo, Saab, BMW, Mini Recycling in Rancho Cordova). Purchased new license plate mount. Reassembled. All the shunt lines are still good as new. Beam did its job. Only residual sign of damage is the cracked paint on bumper cover (minor) and bends in radiators. All fine for now.

Date: June 13, 2020
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Annual Service which included:

  • Oil and Filter Service (Castrol Edge 5W-30)
  • Front Brakes nearly worn out – replaced w/Wagner Thermoquiet
  • Running light out – replaced
  • RF headlight out – replaced both Headlight bulbs with Philips Crystal Vision H7 Halogen
  • Screw in sidewall of RR tire plus they were 25% life left – replaced all four tires (Tire Rack 205/45ZR-17 MICHELIN PILOT SUPER SPORT XL). Mount and balanced (Les Schwab). Super cleaned rims inside and out (Stefano). Set tire pressures to 38 psi all around.
  • Boot lid gas struts unable to keep hatch up properly – replaced with OEM new (ECS Tuning)
  • Interior clean. Vacuum, wipe down, windows.
  • Snow foamed, washed, Clay barred and polished finish. Ceramic coated paint and plastics
Looking good after Ceramic coating

Date: December 1, 2019
Mileage: 150,972
Performed by: Horizon Smog

Services Performed: Star Smog Test performed. Passed.

Date: July 26, 2019
Performed by: Award Interiors

Services Performed: Sagging interior headliner replaced.

Date: July 19, 2019
Mileage: 148,476
Performed by: Neillo Mini

Services Performed: Four wheel alignment performed. Rear suspension bolts upgraded to allow for adjustment (later model upgrade).

Date: July 16, 2019
Mileage: 148,529
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Annual Service Performed including:

  • Oil and Filter Service (5W-30 Castrol Edge and OEM filter)
  • Replaced Left Front Marker Bulb.
  • Replaced Left and Right Engine Mounts.
  • Right Rear jacking point block missing. Replaced with OEM (Mini Mania)
  • Rear brake pads down to wear marker. Replaced (OEM – Mini Mania) including rear wear sensor and cable.
  • Reverse lights both not working. Diagnosed as failed reverse light switch on transmission. Replaced with OEM (Mini Mania).
  • Rear bumper clear coat failing. Removed bumper and had repaired and repainted at Natomas Auto Body.
  • Front Super Charger Inlet clear coat failing. Removed and had repainted at Natomas Auto Body.
  • Waxed new painted parts.
  • Added Paint Protection Film (PPF) to rear bumper hatch opening (3M from
Visiting Stefano’s for Annual Service
Looking Good After Service

Date: January 23, 2019
Performed by: Angus

Services Performed: Both Front Wiper Blades failing. Replaced with OEM (Mini Mania).

Date: December 7, 2018
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Removed OEM floor mats and replaced with WeatherTech floor mats for Front and Rear seats.

Date: November 23, 2018
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: New JVC Stereo Head Unit install to add streaming, AUX in, Bluetooth and hands free (Kit from Crutchfield). Kept old head unit.

Date: August 8, 2018
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Restored Headlights using Chemical Guys sanding and polishing system. Amazing result!

Date: July 4, 2018
Mileage: 139,000
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Major service. Inspired by Ant Anstead on Wheeler Dealers episode doing the 100K mile major service. Inquired for full service records from Original Owners who got a complete set from his dealer (thanks Ken!). The 100K was never done. Decided to go full monty, pull the engine and trans completely and do it all up right.

Major Service Included:

  • Brake fluid flush with 1 litre of Motul RBF600
    • Bled the Clutch
    • Bled all four brakes
  • Replaced coolant with 50/50 mix of official BMW/Mini Coolant
  • Upgraded super charger pulley to 15% smaller Craven speed
  • Changed accessory drive belt to new size to match pulley change (Gates Micro-V K060535)
    • Tensioner not changed since changed previously at ~110K miles
  • Changed Super charger oil in front and rear chambers with correct GM oil
  • Changed Super Charger inlet and outlet gaskets
  • Changed Intercooler inlet and outlet flex pipes
  • Changed Intercooler to inlet manifold gasket
  • Changed Throttle Body to Super Charger Inlet O-Ring/gasket
  • Cleaned Throttle Body butterfly
  • Changed small hard plastic vacuum line
  • Cleaned and re-oiled the existing K&N Air Filter
  • Changed Water pump (OEM)
  • Changed Thermostat (OEM)
  • Changed Oil Filter
  • Changed Fuel Filter
  • Changed Oil with Mobil 1 5W-30 synthetic
  • Changed Oil Drain Plug
  • Changed Manual Transmission fluid
  • Changed Oil Filter Housing Gasket
  • Changed Oil Pan Gasket
  • Changed Crank Position Sensor O-Ring
  • Changed Rear main crank seal
  • Changed Clutch, Flywheel, and Throw out bearing with Valeo clutch kit
  • Changed Exhaust Manifold Gasket
  • Changed Exhaust Manifold Bolts
  • Changed Post Cat O2 Sensor
  • Changed Battery
  • Changed Ignition Coil with MSD aftermarket
  • Changed Spark Plug Wires with MSD aftermarket
  • Changed Spark Plugs with 1 step cooler NGK plugs to match supercharger upgrade
  • Changed Left Front Sway Bar Drop Link
  • Changed Left and Right front suspension Inner Ball joints
  • Changed Left and Right front suspension control arm bushings with new aftermarket Polyurethane bushes
  • Changed Left and Right Front drive axles and CV joints (complete assemblies)
  • Changed Left and Right side mirror mounting gaskets
  • Changed Cabin Air Filter with aftermarket Activated Carbon version
  • Degreased Engine, Engine Bay and Subframe
  • Dealer performed computer wheel alignment after work was complete
  • Replaced “McEvoy” Driver Decal

Performed by:

Services Performed:

Date: August 20, 2016
Performed by: Stefano

Services Performed: Airbox to Supercharger piping split. Right hand hydraulic engine mount failed. Replaced both.

Date: June 12, 2015
Performed by:

Services Performed: Harmonic Balancer Separated and engine stopped working close to home with Mom at the wheel. AAA towed home, and then to shop for replacement.

Date: August 25, 2014
Performed by:

Services Performed: Sister was driving the Mini to School and accidentally nailed a bollard while on-ramping to I80 in a construction zone. Dented in the bonnet. Hired paintless dent removal expert to work the dent out since it wasn’t creased. Perfect repair.

Performed by:

Services Performed: