Without the starter in your Mini Cooper, the car would just sit there. When you turn on the key, it sends an electrical impulse to the solenoid, which activates the starter. The starter then engages the flywheel to start the car. If you hear a rapid clicking sound when you turn the key, or it simply does nothing, you likely need to change the starter. Experienced home mechanics should be able to complete the job in about two hours. You can do it in your driveway or garage.
Disconnect the negative battery cable using a wrench to loosen the terminal nut.
Disconnect the exhaust system from the manifold by removing the nuts using a wrench. Remove the eight nuts holding the exhaust manifold to the engine using a wrench.
Remove the heat shield covering the starter, using a wrench to remove the nuts. Release the oxygen sensor from the wire clip.
Disconnect the wires to the alternator, using a wrench to remove the nuts.
Tag the electrical wires on the starter, noting their proper locations with the marker and masking tape. Disconnect the wires using a wrench to remove the nuts. Remove the starter mounting bolts using a socket and ratchet.
Install the new starter on the engine and tighten the bolts with the socket and ratchet. Connect the electrical wires to the starter according to the tags, then tighten the nuts with the wrench.
Connect the electrical wires to the alternator and tighten the nuts with the wrench. Hook the oxygen sensor back into the wire clip. Replace the heat shield on the starter and tighten the nuts with the wrench.
Attach the exhaust manifold to the engine and tighten the eight nuts with the wrench. Connect the exhaust system to the manifold and tighten the nuts with the wrench.
Connect the battery cable and tighten the terminal nut with a wrench. Start the car to test the new starter.
Do not attempt this procedure without disconnecting the battery as instructed. Failure to do so might result in electrical shock.