Power steering goes out?

I have a 2003 Mini Cooper and almost everyday now for the past couple weeks the power steering goes out after I have been driving for about 30 minutes. I pull off to the side of the road, turn the car off then turn it right back on and my power steering is back to normal.

I have plenty of power steering fluid and I am not leaking any of it. Could the problem be something electrical? Or a fan or something?


FYI: it has 64,000 miles and is no longer under warrenty.

6 Answers

  • 1 decade ago
    Favorite Answer

    The BMW Mini is notorious for power steering pump problems, many of them electrical in nature. Hope you have an extended warranty on that vehicle. Rather than pulling power from a belt as would be the case in a normal auto, these are electrically driven pumps. Some of the above answers are pretty far afield from reality...

    In rare cases, a disconnect/reconnect of the plug will solve the problem for a while. In other cases (most of them, it seems), the problems aren't solved so easily. Quite a few have been replaced around 50K miles. Some have shorted out causing fires under the hood. No few owners have wondered why this component was never subject to a recall.

    The fan (and the pump has its own!) has also been a source of grief, especially when it fails to turn off when the engine is shut down and drains the battery.

    You'll find a lot of sympathy from fellow Mini owners out there. Read down the page at the following link to the "Mini Cooper of Miniville NY (01/27/07)" entry (and others) for similar 2003 pump problems.


    You're going to need to have this inspected and the problem solved, or there's every chance things will go from bad to worse.

    One company sells a ducting unit that is intended to provide better air over the pump such that it's not going to be as prone to failure. The fact that a company can find a good market for this custom part says all that needs to be said about pump reliability on this vehicle. See link below:



  • 5 years ago

    That is not an expected behavior. The motor cuts out - it doesn't short, and power to the system that controls the steering motor ceases when you shut your car off. You can check the voltage draw at the fuse/relay if you suspect that somehow the power steering system is continuing to draw current. More than likely, you either have a bad alternator or battery - if your battery was from the factory, it is 7 years old. That's getting on in years. You should have the alternator output checked, as well as the capacity of the battery, and see if you need to replace anything.

  • 1 decade ago

    Could be fan belt ,check the tightness of it and the condition of the belt, it may need replacement or it could be the Power steering pump...

  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    Sounds like belt slipage but it could be in the drive by wire that BMW uses.

  • How do you think about the answers? You can sign in to vote the answer.
  • Anonymous
    1 decade ago

    take it straight to mini cooper dealer.no one else will fix that.

    is electric and lots to do with temperature.

    the relay warm up ,the fan motor does not work ,the clutch stop,

    is simple .but, You must know.

  • julien
    Lv 5
    1 decade ago

    Get the belts checked !! May have to be tighten. Please hurry and do this before you get stranded in the wrong place at the wrong time.

Still have questions? Get your answers by asking now.