So I went to the mall with my g/f yesterday. When I started my MINI back up to leave, the battery light was on. I checked the voltage on my ScanGauge and it was showing 11.3 constant (normally it was around 13.5-14.2) and I started driving and the power steering wasn't working at all. I went to Autozone and they tested the battery. They said the battery was good, but needed a charge. I'm thinking that alternator isn't charging the battery fully. Would a low voltage from the alternator cause the power steering to shut off though? Any help would be appreciated.
Sounds like a bad alternator is a strong possibility. The electric power steering pump will shut down when the system voltage drops too low. The same exact symptoms happened to a friend at MOTD this year, a new alternator was the fix.
yeah i figure it's the alternator going out. i put 2 and 2 together. i have aftermarket headlight assemblies and the caps for where the headlight washers (are suppose to be on stock MINI's with HID's) are missing. that's sitting right on top the alternator. water comes in and will run right down on top of the alternator. it didn't even occur to me about them causing an issue with them not being there. guess i'm gonna have to get them as well.