The Fine Art of Owning: A Rover 25 - MG-Rover.org Forums
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post #1 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 15:57 Thread Starter
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The Fine Art of Owning: A Rover 25

This is day 7 of Rover 25 ownership for me. For the past 6 days, I've been going over the car with a fine tooth come, looking for all of those little faults that shouldn't really be there. I've found a fair few!

There are days when I wake up and say to myself: Some people shouldn't be allowed to own cars. Just how can someone allow a vehicle to deteriorate in such a fashion? The faults I found aren't major. Hell. The Rover would still pass an MOT. It's those little details that let the car down. They also annoy the hell out of me!

The head gasket had been changed, along with the water pump and the cam belt. I didn't mind the old cam belt being left in it's box in the boot, but they never filled the cooling system with antifreeze. They just used water. I've got several litres of 'dirty dishwater' cooling the engine. That'll have to go.

The 4 pin Trafficmaster clock had missing segments. OK, the Trafficmaster system has been switched off, but that's no excuse for not replacing the clock with an ordinary 4 pin (Job completed).

The car had a cheap and nasty CD player in it. ISO connectors everywhere! I thought the head unit was a 2 speaker only job. I replaced the CD player with an original fitment cassette player (CD autochanger to follow). It turns out that both front speakers were dead (Now replaced)! The wiring is a lot neater as well now.

The light in the glove box didn't work. It only needed a new bulb (Job done). What's wrong with people? I can understand not replacing the broken bulbs in the switches and behind the heater panel (On my to do list) as they're awkward to do.

Considering that I bought my 25 via Ebay. I'm surprised that other broken parts haven't been replaced. The centre dashboard air vents were broken. 10 from Ebay. Job done! Then there the stupid plastic fuel filler cap that I found on the washer bottle! GRRRRRR! I'm on the case with a replacement!

The air conditioning doesn't work! 'Well, the light comes on' Said the previous owner. 'The revs don't drop when you switch it on though' I reply. 'Oh, I didn't know that' He says. RAAAANNNTTT!!! That's another thing I'll have to get fixed.

There are things where I can't point a finger at previous owners. I can't even write a letter to Rover for the things that annoy me.

I don't like the really tacky printed wood effect on the heater controls. That's being replaced with the plastic moulding from an earlier model (I'll replace the broken bulbs while I'm at it).

When I fitted the front fog lights. I found that the screw retaining clips were present. What's the point of fitting the retaining clips, if you're not going to fit the lamps? OK, there is an explanation here. The clips were fitted before the front bumper was sprayed up.

Another thing that puzzles me is: Why is a complete cigarette lighter cheaper from Rimmer Bros than just the element itself? Suffice to say. I bought a complete lighter.

I'm slowly getting the 25 back up to spec. There's still a lot of work to do.
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post #2 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 17:42
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I suppose previous owner did lot care at all about that lovely R25. He just wanted get rid of. That is the reason why he did lot bother when things got broken. At least I think so.

Nevertheless take your time and put TLC as needed. You will not get anywhere with being angry when you find new little things needs replacing. Be lucky that these are little things as you will get it to your pride soon. Just look for the enjoying side and life will be much easier.

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post #3 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 18:17 Thread Starter
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I can't really blame the person that I bought the Rover from. He had it for such a short time (He bought it for his wife, who didn't want it). At least he did get the head gasket fixed.

I'm pretty old school. With every 'new' car I buy, I give it a good going over. All of my previous cars only needed a service. Thus far, the 25 has had faults that would've been fixed during normal ownership. Just how hard is it to replace a bulb?

In truth, the days of the attentive owner are long gone (Unless you have vintage car). People are happy to live with a few faults. When those faults impact the School run or the shopping trip, it's time to get another car. People aren't mechanically minded any more. Thank God for this Forum. I've found more useful stuff here than I can in a Haynes Manual (They've gone down the tubes).

The Rover is getting all of the TLC that I can give it. I'm still looking for a Rover 75 'Connie' though.
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post #4 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 18:48
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Well you can say I am also "old school" guy. I am not buying car for short period of time. I am buying car for keeping.

I can understand todays people, or generaly all people to whoom car is just transportation from A to B and nothing else.

I am not that kind of person. I buy cars that I like for keeping and I will provide all the TLC I can.

In the same time I will try to get knowilg all I can get on my cars.

I am glad there are still such people around and on this forum as well.
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post #5 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 19:30
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The list when I bought mine:

Clock replaced

Head unit replaced & steering wheel control which wasn't working wired up.

Rubber gaiter round washer pipe to the boot was missing where someone had changed the pipe so that was replaced, fixing the leak into the boot.

Rear passenger door made water tight

At that point I only intended to keep it a few months but I just couldn't leave things broken. You're right though, most people just ignore little faults.

And of course several hours of clay bar, polish etc
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post #6 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 20:57 Thread Starter
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I haven't got as far as the clay bar and polish yet. That's way down the list. I've yet to figure out how to get the rear window washer working again.
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post #7 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 22:39
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If you can hear the motor it's usually a broken pipe where it goes through to the boot lid. There's a good thread on here somewhere that shows where the pipes run.
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post #8 of 437 (permalink) Old 07-05-2016, 23:36
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The Fine Art of Owning: A Rover 25

I know what you mean, why do people let things like bulbs just go untouched? It's a two second job.

My 25 didn't even have a bulb in the boot light. I've got spares of these things in my garage. Literally two seconds and it was working again.

I've replaced all of the faded centre caps on the wheels. New Union Jacks on the rear quarters, new '25' door strip decals, new wiper blades, a couple of new bolts. It soon transforms an ordinary car into a really tidy car!

My front passenger door card appears to be rattling, tonight I've noticed one of the clips is missing, I have a stock of those too so that'll be an easy fix.

It can take a little time to get a used car up to scratch, I still need to strip my arches out and properly clean it out under there. A full clay, polish and wax etc for the paintwork. Just got to be patient and do bits as you can.

We are in the minority buying old cars with the intentions of keeping them for a long time and taking some pride in them. Most people with these cars now just run them until they break then get rid.
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Last edited by Mean & Green; 07-05-2016 at 23:56.
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post #9 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 06:16 Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Chris1255 View Post
If you can hear the motor it's usually a broken pipe where it goes through to the boot lid. There's a good thread on here somewhere that shows where the pipes run.
The motor works just fine. I am assuming that the water comes from the bottle that's under the bonnet (I've had other cars where there was another bottle in the boot). If it was a broken pipe, wouldn't there be a pool of water somewhere? As of yet, I haven't found one. At this time, I'm thinking that the nozzles are blocked. I have one blocked nozzle on the front jets, so I'm swopping them out for a pair of jets from a Citroen Xsara. The rear jet appears to be moulded into some sort of cover. How that comes apart, I've no idea.

It's strange really. As the years have rolled by. Cars have become more complex and owner input has declined. Owner input has declined simply because the cars have become more complex. The easiest car to work on I've ever had, was a Triumph Herald. I even managed to change the pistons without taking the block out of the car, or removing the cylinder head (Sump plate off, unbolt, swing crank aside and pull on the con rod). Everything was in plain sight and easy to get at. Today, it's pipes and plastic bits everywhere! Electronic gizmos don't help either. I went looking for the distributor, only to find I didn't have one! Is it any wonder then that owner input has declined? Having said that. The life span of modern cars has been extended for a considerable amount of time.

In days of yore. People who bought a 2nd car looked at the mileage first. Back then. A car that could go 'around the clock' was almost unheard of. Now it's an every day occurrence. My 25 has done 94000. It's solid enough to do that again. If I compared the Rover to a car that was built in the 1970's. The condition would suggest that it was about 5 years old. Not the 13 years it actually is. Such is the improvement in materials and build quality. But that's the rub isn't it? It's almost as if the owners input has been designed out of the equation. Once the little faults begin to stack up. The car gets sold off. Sad really. These little faults are so easy to fix.

I only bought the 25 as a stop gap until the right 75 'Connie' comes along. Having said that. the 25 isn't going anywhere until it's right!
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post #10 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 09:28
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..If it was a broken pipe, wouldn't there be a pool of water somewhere? As of yet, I haven't found one. At this time, I'm thinking that the nozzles are blocked. I have one blocked nozzle on the front jets, so I'm swopping them out for a pair of jets from a Citroen Xsara. The rear jet appears to be moulded into some sort of cover. How that comes apart, I've no idea.
Yes, rear washer nozzles are moulded into cover over the motor spindle to which wiper arm is attached. Through the center of the spindle you have metal pipe for water passing. Pipe ends with mushroom like ring extensionn. Cover has plastic ring which fixes cover over the extension of metal pipe. This cover rotate on the right hand side toward wiper arm when you want to remove it. It is firm fit, so you need some force to take it out, but not too much force.

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It's strange really. As the years have rolled by. Cars have become more complex and owner input has declined. Owner input has declined simply because the cars have become more complex. The easiest car to work on I've ever had, was a Triumph Herald. I even managed to change the pistons without taking the block out of the car, or removing the cylinder head (Sump plate off, unbolt, swing crank aside and pull on the con rod). Everything was in plain sight and easy to get at. Today, it's pipes and plastic bits everywhere! Electronic gizmos don't help either. I went looking for the distributor, only to find I didn't have one! Is it any wonder then that owner input has declined? Having said that. The life span of modern cars has been extended for a considerable amount of time.
Todays cars have much more electrics and usualy this electrics can be PITA as when it breaks it is more and čore difficult to slove the problem. By that you depend on garages with diagnostic equipment to service your car and invoige you for high amounts.
In the same time I find that todays cars parts have something like defined period of usage, which is much shorter than it was before. Modern cars are request2d to come to service much often then before. All in favor to car industry and spare parts production. Nothing to be surprised though.

From perspective of moder cars today, I am very reluctant to buy new car, as I will have to pay substantial amount of money for it, and I can expect my first visit in near garage in less then month. Something will broke. I am not fond of this kind of game.

I find that cars from, let's say second half of '80 until first half of '00 are much better built then todays car. Some Mercedes from '80 can last for 1 mil miles, while for todays Mercs you wluld not expect to last even third that amount of miles. They need to sell new models.

I find MG Rovers with very reasonable mix of electric gizmos and mechanical 'old school' stuff for me. Just as I like it. That might be one of the main reasons why I love these cars.

In your R25 dou have wasted spark, that is the reason why you do not have distributor. In both my Rovers 200 and 600 I still have distributor. I love them for that.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Spudgun! View Post
In days of yore. People who bought a 2nd car looked at the mileage first. Back then. A car that could go 'around the clock' was almost unheard of. Now it's an every day occurrence. My 25 has done 94000. It's solid enough to do that again. If I compared the Rover to a car that was built in the 1970's. The condition would suggest that it was about 5 years old. Not the 13 years it actually is. Such is the improvement in materials and build quality. But that's the rub isn't it? It's almost as if the owners input has been designed out of the equation. Once the little faults begin to stack up. The car gets sold off. Sad really. These little faults are so easy to fix.

I only bought the 25 as a stop gap until the right 75 'Connie' comes along. Having said that. the 25 isn't going anywhere until it's right!
Nice from you that you will take care of lovely R25 to its glory which she deserves.
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post #11 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 09:46
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One more thing I wanted to add: DESIGN.

I find MG Rovers with timeless design. Just few days back I had one guy admiring how good design of my R600 is.

From my point of view R200/25 MG ZR has so well targeted design that these cars are so beautiful today as they were when they are first produced.
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post #12 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 10:06 Thread Starter
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One more thing I wanted to add: DESIGN.
There's one big thing I like about Rovers. They have a proper radiator grille! The cars are instantly recognisable as being a Rover. For me. That says everything about them. Yes, the radiator grille hails back to the days when all car makers had them. The radiator grille was the cars crowning glory. My old Rover was nothing more than a re-upholstered Honda Civic. However, would I buy one? Nope. It doesn't have that distinctive grille! Moving swiftly along......

Changed the 3 wiper blades and the air filter this morning. Not that they needed doing. I do it so I know that they're done. Whilst poking about under the bonnet, I dealt with the aftermath of the head gasket change. Nothing serious. Just clipping assorted hoses back into place. Then I noticed a bracket with a bolt hole in it, by the exhaust manifold. I'm sure something is missing. Is there supposed to be some sort of heat shield there?
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post #13 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 10:14
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I got my car from a owners club forum member, the 2 previous owners to him had also been (all 3 still are) members of the same forum yet I the same niggles and more to sort.
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post #14 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 10:21
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There should be heat shield over the exhaust manifold. You have any picture?

EDIT: This one: http://www.rimmerbros.co.uk/Item--i-ZNX000030

Last edited by Roverlike; 08-05-2016 at 10:40.
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post #15 of 437 (permalink) Old 08-05-2016, 11:28 Thread Starter
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There should be heat shield over the exhaust manifold. You have any picture?

EDIT: This one: Heatshield - Exhaust Manifold - Genuine MG Rover at www.rimmerbros.co.uk
Thank for that. The heatshield is now on my Rimmer Bros shopping list. While I was poking about there. I found the rear wiper washer nozzle part. That's going on my shopping list as well.
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post #16 of 437 (permalink) Old 09-05-2016, 19:04 Thread Starter
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The new V5c arrived today. I'm the 4th owner of the Rover. The previous owner only had the car for less than 10 weeks.

I've done some digging for the MOT history for the 25. Due to the age of the car. I've got a complete MOT history. It makes for some interesting reading.

It failed its first MOT for having bald front tyres (18506 miles).

It failed its third MOT for having bald front tyres again! Also the rear exhaust was shot (31667 miles)

Things went well until MOT No8. Then it failed for having a knackered velocity joint gaiter (76154 miles).

MOT No10 it all went pear shaped again. It failed on the other velocity joint gaiter (83557 miles)

It failed again on MOT No11. The first velocity joint gaiter packed up again (91151 miles).

That brings us up to the present day.

I've had a quick look at the washer nozzles on the rear wiper arm. They're not blocked. I even pulled off the cover and tried the pump. Nothing. I now suspect a knackered one way valve.
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post #17 of 437 (permalink) Old 09-05-2016, 20:46
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My rear window washer gets blocked regularly (I don't use it much) - it is almost always blocked in the elbow where the flexible tube fits to the pipe on the washer motor (in the tailgate). The blockage is never visible, but much broggling about with a length of stiffish wire seems to get things going again.

I would have thought wearing out a set of factory fit front tyres in under 19 thousand miles, was quite an achievement ?
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post #18 of 437 (permalink) Old 11-05-2016, 19:54 Thread Starter
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Well. It looks like you were right about the blockage at the elbow. I had a quick poke with a bit of wire and there is now some sort of flow. I'll have to do some more poking though. There's only a small dribble from the nozzles.
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post #19 of 437 (permalink) Old 12-05-2016, 18:05 Thread Starter
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I've done some more poking about as regards the rear washer. It looks like I've got a broken pipe. I gave the rear washer a good burst. As I walked around the car. I saw a puddle under the passenger side door. I gave the washer pump anther good go. The water appears to be coming out from between the vent holes at the bottom of the sill.

Does anyone know exactly where the pipe runs and how to get to it?
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post #20 of 437 (permalink) Old 12-05-2016, 18:33 Thread Starter
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Flap on, flap off folks. I've found it.

The pipe was indeed broken. It had broken inside the rubber pipe that's connects to the tailgate to the body. Happily, it had broken at the connector. As a test I cut of the piece of broken pip and connected everything together. Full function was restored!

I will be effecting a proper repair. I have a piece of fresh pipe that'll sit inside that rubber thingy (The old pipe had gotten hard). Then I'll use another connector to splice the other end of the new pipe.

Ta-dah!
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