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Throttle Housing Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Throttle Housing Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$600

Talent:

****

Tools:

T30 Torx, flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

R56 MINI Cooper Hatchback (2007-11)

Parts Required:

Throttle housing, sealing O-ring

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Remedy fault codes and restore engine performance

Complementary Modification:

Replace air filter

The digital motor electronics (DME) engine management system in MINI R56 vehicles with the 4-cylinder engine is designed with a drive-by-wire throttle. There is no throttle cable connecting the accelerator pedal to the throttle housing. Instead, potentiometers in the accelerator pedal module (PWG) communicate pedal position directly to the engine control module (ECM). Two separate signals, one signaling pedal position and the other indicating rate of pedal movement, communicate driver demand on the system.

On N12, N16 and N18 engines, while the engine is running, the throttle is kept partially open; actual intake air volume is controlled using the Valvetronic system, which varies valve lift. However, a faulty throttle body can cause a number of problems, from a check engine light to a rough or surging idle. If you have a fault code for throttle housing potentiometer or motor drive, check the electrical connections and system data via a scan tool. Before you condemn your throttle housing, be sure to inspect all the intake air ducts. They should be well-sealed and free from cracks or tears. Check the function of your crankcase breather system and inspect all breather hoses. If a breather hose cracks or fails, the air leak can cause a rough idle or engine stalling. You may have to remove the throttle housing when servicing other components, if you do, be sure to replace the sealing O-ring.

Be careful when working with r56 throttle housings. R56 models have moved to plastic throttle housings. Any excessive pressure in the wrong spot can break them. If you have a rough idle issue, try cleaning the throttle plate with soap and water.

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with replacing the throttle body on MINI r56 models with a normally aspirated 4-cylinder engine. Be sure to work with a cool engine.

Keep in mind that when your car was serviced before, parts may have been replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have, so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Do not work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Vehicle models change and evolve, as they grow older, so the vehicle shown in our illustrations may vary slightly from yours. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

The throttle body (red arrow) is located at the bottom right of the intake manifold (green arrow).
Figure 1

The throttle body (red arrow) is located at the bottom right of the intake manifold (green arrow).

The intake duct removal steps in this article apply to normally-aspirated models only.
Figure 2

The intake duct removal steps in this article apply to normally-aspirated models only. For duct removal on turbocharged engines, see our tech article on charge air ducts removing. Working at the mass airflow sensor duct, using a flathead screwdriver loosen the duct clamp (red arrow).

Pull the duct (red arrow) off the mass airflow sensor.
Figure 3

Pull the duct (red arrow) off the mass airflow sensor. Then working at the lower part of the duct, near the throttle housing, loosen the lower duct clamp (green arrows). Use a stubby flathead screwdriver. Access is tight.

Pull the duct off the throttle housing and remove it.
Figure 4

Pull the duct off the throttle housing and remove it. Be careful and don't lever on the throttle housing. R56 models have moved to plastic throttle housings. Any excessive pressure in the wrong spot can break them.

You now have access to the throttle housing (red arrow).
Figure 5

You now have access to the throttle housing (red arrow).

Remove the three T30 Torx throttle body fasteners (red arrows).
Figure 6

Remove the three T30 Torx throttle body fasteners (red arrows).

Pull the throttle housing off the intake manifold enough to access the electrical connector.
Figure 7

Pull the throttle housing off the intake manifold enough to access the electrical connector. Working at the throttle body, disconnect the electrical connector by releasing the plastic release tab (red arrow) and pulling it off (green arrow).

Once you have removed the throttle body fasteners and electrical connector, remove the throttle body from the engine.
Figure 8

Once you have removed the throttle body fasteners and electrical connector, remove the throttle body from the engine.

Once you have removed the throttle body, check for oil or dirt build up (red arrow) on the throttle plate.
Figure 9

Once you have removed the throttle body, check for oil or dirt build up (red arrow) on the throttle plate. If dirty and you have a rough idle issue, try cleaning the throttle plate with soap and water. This could also be a sign of a faulty crankcase breather system.

Be sure to replace the throttle body sealing O-ring (red arrow).
Figure 10

Be sure to replace the throttle body sealing O-ring (red arrow).

Install the throttle housing in the reverse order of its removal.
Figure 11

Install the throttle housing in the reverse order of its removal. Line up the post on the intake manifold (red arrow) with the slot in the throttle housing (green arrow). Be sure that the electrical connector is properly engaged. Listen for an audible click when reconnecting.


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