Why Does Your Mini Need Supercharger Oil?
Minis are small cars with big reputations. Pop culture icons since the swinging 60’s, Mini revolutionized the motoring industry, offering affordable, practical, yet stylish cars to the masses.
Nowadays Minis come in more forms and colors, and have much more of a luxury feel while still offering the same practicality wrapped up in stylish design that has drivers returning to Mini models time and time again. One of Mini’s most recent innovations is the supercharger. The supercharger allows these small cars to pack the same punch as a sports car, meaning that owning a Mini has never been more fun!
With this in mind, in this article we’ll be looking at why your supercharged Mini needs supercharger oil.
Aren’t Motor Oil and Supercharger Oil the Same Thing?
Not at all! This is actually quite a common misconception that drivers have when they (rightly so) keep their motor oil topped up as part of their ongoing maintenance, thinking that this will ensure the supercharger is properly lubricated as well. Your Mini actually has a separate supercharger oil reservoir and will need to be kept topped up with specified supercharger oil.
How to Care for your Supercharger
As we’ve mentioned, the best way to look after your Mini’s supercharger is ensuring that all the parts of the supercharger system remain well lubricated with suitable oil. Oil is needed in the supercharger system to keep moving parts operating smoothly, sliding against one another instead of grinding against one another potentially causing damage. The oil in the system also serves a second purpose as it helps reduce temperatures within the system, preventing an excessive buildup of heat, preventing overheating problems and damage.
The correct levels of lubrication therefore are essential especially when you consider that the supercharger system is expensive to repair and replace! Should the supercharger system fail, unless you can afford the repairs needed, your sporty, supercharged driving experience will come to an end, and you’ll be left driving a vehicle with reduced performance.
Signs and Symptoms of Expired Supercharger Oil
Like your motor oil, you Mini’s supercharger oil will need to be changed as part of regular servicing. If your Mini is running on old or low oil levels it will definitely let you know, but ideally you should not be delaying long enough for this to occur, as the oil should have been changed at servicing.
However, if it has been a while since your last oil change, you should be on the lookout for the following symptoms or signs:
Having Driven over 50,000 Miles Without an Oil Change
Expert mechanics recommend that to maintain peak performance and prevent damage, you should change your Mini’s supercharger oil at least every 50,000 miles. If you can’t remember the last time your supercharger oil was changed, then it’s probably best you seek servicing as soon as possible.
Hearing Grinding Noises
Hearing grinding noises from under the hood of your car can signal many issues, but can also be a sign your supercharger oil is either old or running low. The grinding is caused by under-lubricated parts rubbing against each other, and should not be ignored, as over time this constant grinding will result in parts damage.
Can I Change my Mini’s Supercharger Oil at Home?
Yes and no! If you have the skills, knowledge, or experience, then you might be able to change out the old oil yourself, for Mini enthusiasts or experienced DIY’ers for example, this can be a great option to save money. However, changing the supercharger oil is actually a far more complicated task than a standard motor oil change, and can take some time, usually needing an entire afternoon of work. The supercharger system is expensive to fix, so if you don’t know what you’re doing it’s probably best to leave it to the professionals to avoid actually causing more harm than good.
Service your Supercharger with the Best!
Perfectly situated for Mini drivers living in or around College Station, TX, AutoWerks is a family-owned repair shop that has been on hand to help since 1975. Experts in imported European cars, our team at AutoWerks have a true passion for cars and will ensure your Mini remains in perfect running order for years to come!
* Mini Cooper Car image credit goes to: bruev.