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Pelican Technical Article:

Cooling Fan Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

3 hours3 hrs

Tab:

$400

Talent:

***

Tools:

T25 Torx driver, flathead screwdriver

Applicable Models:

R56 MINI Cooper Hatchback (2007-13)
R56 MINI Cooper JCW Hatchback (2009-13)
R56 MINI Cooper S Hatchback (2007-13)

Parts Required:

Engine cooling fan

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Proper engine cooling

Complementary Modification:

Inspect radiator and coolant hoses

The cooling fan on MINI R56 models is electronic and controlled depending on engine temperature and a/c operation. The main job of the cooling fan is to draw ambient air across the cooling fins of the radiator to lower engine coolant temperatures. Usually the fan will only run when the vehicle is stationary or at low speeds, when airflow across the radiator needs to be increased.

MINI R56 models utilize an electronic cooling fan integrated into the cooling fan shroud. When repairing, the cooling fan and shroud are replaced as a unit. The cooling fan is responsible for maintaining proper engine coolant temperature and A/C cooling. When a MINI R56 cooling fan fails, the fan will not activate or only activate at high speed. You can check cooling fan operation by turning on your air-conditioning and listening for the fan to activate.

When replacing your electronic cooling fan, you will want to work with the engine cold and disconnect the battery's negative cable. Disconnecting the negative battery cable will prevent the electric cooling fan from starting while being serviced. The fan could start at any time, and personal injury can occur. Don't skip this step.

For a quick test of the fan, turn on your A/C. The fan should come on. If it does not, it may be faulty. You can also try unplugging your coolant temperature sensor. The fan should run on HIGH. Keep in mind with this technique, a fault code will be set and have to be cleared. Or you will be stuck with a check engine light for a few days until it automatically clears.

After the engine is shut off, the electric cooling fan may continue to run after the engine is shut off in two different scenarios. The system is operating as designed.

1. When the engine coolant temperature reaches 108 degrees Celsius (due to heat soak), the cooling fan will activate until the coolant temperature drops below 105 degrees Celsius. During this period, the fan has a maximum run time of 900 seconds (15 minutes) due to power management. Ambient or oil temperature has no effect on this run time.

2. On Cooper S vehicles with the N14 engine, the fan will run to assist the auxiliary water pump, which is used to cool the turbocharger after engine shut down. The maximum run time in this situation is 300 seconds (5 minutes).

Remember that your car may have been serviced before and had parts 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. Never work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Our vehicle may vary slightly from yours as models do change and evolve, as they grow older. 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.

Working in the trunk, disconnect the battery negative cable and cover the battery terminal so the cable does not accidentally come in contact with the terminal. See our tech article on battery replacing for notes on disconnecting and reconnecting the battery.

MINI R56 models utilize an electronic cooling fan integrated into the cooling fan shroud located at the center of the radiator support (red arrow).
Figure 1

MINI R56 models utilize an electronic cooling fan integrated into the cooling fan shroud located at the center of the radiator support (red arrow). On normally aspirated models you can replace it without placing the radiator support into service mode. On turbocharged models there is not enough clearance to access the top fastener. The radiator support has to be put into service mode. See our tech article on radiator support service mode.

Start by removing the coolant expansion tank 7mm fastener (green arrow).
Figure 2

Start by removing the coolant expansion tank 7mm fastener (green arrow).

Detach the expansion tank from the radiator support by lifting the rear up then removing it from the radiator support.
Figure 3

Detach the expansion tank from the radiator support by lifting the rear up then removing it from the radiator support. Place the expansion tank aside. Leave the hoses connected.

Working at the left side of the cooling fan, detach the electrical connector by sliding it up (green arrow).
Figure 4

Working at the left side of the cooling fan, detach the electrical connector by sliding it up (green arrow). Then disconnect the cooling fan electrical connector by pressing the release tab and pulling it apart (inset).

Working at the top of the cooling fan, remove the T25 Torx fastener (green arrow).
Figure 5

Working at the top of the cooling fan, remove the T25 Torx fastener (green arrow).

Raise and support your vehicle.
Figure 6

Raise and support your vehicle. Working at the bottom of the cooling fan, remove the T25 Torx fastener (red arrow).

Rotate the cooling fan counterclockwise about 25mm (red arrow).
Figure 7

Rotate the cooling fan counterclockwise about 25mm (red arrow). Note the distance from the mounting hole to the fan-mounting tab (green arrows). This shows the distance of rotation.

Then pull the cooling fan out of the radiator and feed it down to remove (green arrow) it.
Figure 8

Then pull the cooling fan out of the radiator and feed it down to remove (green arrow) it. Reverse these steps to install the new fan. Reroute the wiring harness and connect it. Check the cooling fan operation. You can check operation by running the engine and turning on the A/C. The cooling fan will run when the A/C is switched ON.



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Comments and Suggestions:
clueless Comments: This will probably sound quite dumb, but my cooling fan harness is unplugged, and I haven't been able to locate it. where would I begin to look to plug it in once again. I have been frustrated for a few hours and really don't want to put the car in the service position.
July 14, 2016
  Followup from the Pelican Staff: It should be attached to the left side of the radiator support. - Nick at Pelican Parts  

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