Question about Mini Cooper S

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My Mini Coppers steering wheel is hard to turn. What is going on?

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  • yadayada
    yadayada May 11, 2010

    There is a problem with the electric P/S

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  • 35 Answers

The problem is that your power steering pump is not working, You may need to get it serviced!!

Posted on Oct 01, 2008

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your steering wheel has tension on it - are your front wheels parked against a curb or were you turning your steering wheel while you shut off the car? Try pulling hard left and turning the key. If that doesn't work, pull hard right while turning the key. You may have to pull really hard if you are a smaller person.

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Power steering hard to turn


Engine running ask someone to turn steering wheel for you . Look for power steering hose move like there is pressure. and noise from power steering pump . if not change power steering pump
You don't really need power assistance when moving on the road ... where you need it more specially in parking or not really moving
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No controls work on my steering wheel of my 2002 mini cooper. the horn, cruise control, radio control, etc.. is all out and not working. i can understand if 1 or 2 were out but it seems unusual for all not...


Just answered your other similar problem. I'm not familiar with the mini but I've notice on other cars that because the steering wheel is a moving part then to connect devices they have to use a type of spring loaded strip of metal which is held in contact with the wheel but still lets it turn. You need to find out how the steering wheel mounted devices are connected to the steering column.

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Power steering issues


I'm going to agree with the rack conclusion. Keep in mind I can't see it for myself.
If you take the load off the front wheels, you should be able to turn the steering wheel without effort.
If the effort changes while turning the wheel, the only things affected would be the rack and the column.
If you notice it turns ok with the engine off but not with the engine running, it could be something with the pump or one of the lines, or still something with the rack.

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you may have worn front end parts , have frt end checked you dont want to loose your steering good luck.

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Very likely the steering thrust stored in the tires attempting to turn back is forcing excessive tension against the steering lock.

Try (very hard) to turn the steering wheel either direction while turning the key gently.

If that solves it you can avoid this by letting go of the steering after stopping to park, turn off the ignition slowly (engine off, pause, then key out). This will ensure that the steering wheel comes to rest prior to locking the column.

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Power steering stiff - is it the pump ? or the steering rack?


If the wheel binds up or you encounter harder steering in one direction but not the other, it's your rack. Check for leaks, is it from the connecting hose or the rack itself. Can't find it? It's usually on the bottom rear of your engine,a tie rod on either side will attach to your steering knuckle. If your steering is stiff while wheel is centered or at maximum lock it's your pump.

Never worked on a mini in particular. Doing a quick google search and pumps (minus labour) seem to be 350-450$ depending where you go, unless there's some crazy book time i'm unaware of, 1300$ seems pretty steep.

Is there a noise when you turn? If there is, jack up the front end and remove the cap off your power steering resevoir. Slowly turn the wheel from lock to lock, while the engine is running, to bleed any air out of the system
If you replace one or the other, don't forget to do the above step.

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1 Answer

Steering wheel hard to turn


Either the power steering pump is going bad, or the rack and pinion is going bad.

Mar 03, 2009 | 2003 BMW 325

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