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Nissan Maxima Maintenance and Repair

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  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Autozone and other parts stores sell a disc brake paste, which when smeared on the back of the pads, will effectively eliminate squealing. It is worth a try - it is only a few dollars and some work on your part. Unfortunately, to get effective results, you must unbolt the brake calipers, slide them off the rotors, remove the pads and apply the paste on the back of the pads.

    Your car is under warranty and this is a bad situation because Nissan can accuse you of "modifying" the brake system if something goes wrong, and void the warranty. The best bet would be to request that Nissan dealer apply an anti-squeal paste to your brake pads.

    One more comment. Nissan used to sell (until recently) two different brake pad types for Maxima. One set was the original replacement set, the other was an economy set, which cost roughly one half of the original replacement pads. When I bought replacement pads for my 98 Maxima recently, Nissan told me that they discontinued the "economy " version of the pads because they had all kinds of squealing and uneven wear problems with them. Just something to consider: could it be that Nissan used similar "economy pads" in the new 04 models? This is one question I would ask. The OEM pads on my 98 Maxima never squealed and the OEM ones I put on recently do not squeal either, and I did not use the anti-squeal paste on them. The OEM pads for the 98 model are a Hitachi brand made in Japan. Would you believe that Nissan actually eliminated a squealer (wear indicator) on one of the pads? So now you have only one squealer on one wheel. Just how much money can they save on one squealer? These pads go for about $ 60 a set. I bought some NAPA brake pads for $ 8 a set that have squealers on both sides. I installed these on my 95 Nissan 4X4 pickup, have about 30K miles on them and they have performed flawlessly so far - good braking and no squealing at all. Go figure.

    Maybe one solution to your problem is going to aftermarket brake pads. But there is this pesky warranty issue again. You can suggest this alternative to your Nissan dealer, who will most likly tell you that they cannot use anything but Nissan brake pads for warranty brake problems.
  • After taking a 6 year hiatus on DIY maintenance, I heretofore refuse to deal with incompetent dealers/service people (I know, their not all bad, just seems I have a knack for finding those who are)...I'm baaaack!

    My '93 Max needs some TLC. I believe I have broken some studs in the exhaust manifold... Should I tackle it myself, or is this going to require a torch and several 300 pound men?
    Can anyone suggest a good source of discount exhaust parts. I'm guessing when I pull it apart I'm gonna need everything from the manifold back (although the muffler is only 1 1/2 years old).
    dklanecky, you had a post mentioning the Nissan service manual (#1517), is this something a slightly above average DIYer could make good use of?

    And one last dumb question, my car runs like you-know-what (rough idol, no power, tranny hesitation...), but I can't ever recall the service light coming on. Would it still be worth taking to autozone to see if any codes are stored? It's a '93 so ignition coils can't be the culprit, but I don't know what it has for O2 sensors, MAF, etc.

    I don't normally do this sort of thing, but I just went through a lot of the old posts screening for those most relevent and just had to hollar out a general THANK YOU!
    And p100, man that tire balancing post was a cold splash of reality!
  • timadamstimadams Posts: 294
    I had the wind noise repair done to my back doors last month, and it does indeed make a noticeable improvement. Your service department should know about the TSB.
  • I have a 92 maxima gxe that just started having some electrical problem. All of the sudden, the radio and antennae stopped working, the keypad on the door for locking/unlocking the doors, opening trunk etc. stopped working, the anti-theft stopped working and the automatic seatbelt will not operate with the ignition off. I thought it was a fuse, but no fuses are bad. Then I thought it might be the anti-theft relay by the battery, but i replaced it and nothing changed. Is there some secret fuse that I am missing? Help? i am tired of having to open my door while the ignition is on to have the seatbelt go down.
  • has intermittent electrical problems like the ones you mentioned. Inability to use key less entry, seat belts don't retract, etc. Comes and goes.
    I haven't been able to isolate the problem though.
    I'm sure someone here will have had success fixing such...I hope.
  • Anyone know what the best rust penetrator is? I always used WD-40 in the past, but I assume there might be something better by now. I have to replace the exhaust system on my Max and those bolts are corroded pretty bad. Any fire safety issues I should be concerned with spraying a penetrator on my exhaust system, then driving?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    The best rust penetrator for an exhaust system is a TORCH ;-) You could try Liquid Wrench but it's about the same as WD40. Or 3M has a product too. Usually with exhaust the bolts get frozen in place from the heat and you end up torching. Not something I've done personally, just hearsay from reading lots on chat boards.
  • Yeah, I know the trusty torch does wonders.
    But its not the same working on these cramped engine compartments as it was in my '72 Dodge Dart with the infamous slant 6 (you could crawl inside and shut the hood!). I was trying to avoid the burnt arms, fingers, wiring, etc.
    But your probably right, a little burn salve is probably better than a broken exhaust manifold stud ;-)
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Some consider BP Blaster a good rust penetrant too. Personally, I had excellent experience with using an air impact wrench on loosening rusty nuts, such as ones on exhaust system clamps. Most of the time I could not even budge them with a hand wrench, but my 400 ft-lbs impact wrench spun them off instantly without breaking the clamp. A good air impact wrench is definitely a life saver for some jobs.
  • gymshoegymshoe Posts: 80
    Okay...so my 2000 Maxima SE suffered the Service Engine Soon syndrome accompanied with the engine shakes. Reading a bunch of the posts from 3 months ago, sounds like I have hit the bad coils...I fit right in. 2000 maxima, 51K miles. Bam! almost like clock work right fellas? So my question is..
    will I do further damage if i keep driving it? ...I mean ...like another day or two. Long enough to get me to work tomorrow and then to the mechanic?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    I've heard your "ok" to drive it if the SES light is on solid. If it starts blinking, then you're supposed to pull over immediately. Don't know about driving with bad coils. What I can give you is advice on how to go about fixing your problem. There's a guy that works for a Nissan parts dealer on another chat board that sells coils at a heavy discount because it's the biggest parts dealer in the nation and he sells LOTS of coils. You can buy the coils for MUCH cheaper than a normal dealer. Then you can either fix it yourself, which I've hear is super easy for front 3 and hard for rear 3 cylinders. Or pay a mechanic to just put in the coils that you already have in your possession. Another big recommendation I have is to change all 6 coils and also the spark plugs. I've heard MANY guys who are into Maximas big time say the plugs and coils need to go at 60K give or take. Big improvements in engine performance. These guys dyno their cars and everything. If you want to buy the coils, respond to this post and give me an email address and I'll give you the name of the website and guys name to look for. He's on their daily or even hourly.
    Seeya
  • gymshoegymshoe Posts: 80
    sure...send me the info...
    you can find me at gymshoe42@yahoo.com

    What's very interesting is...my problems happened last night. This morning, turned the car on and it's running smoothly. SES light is still on solid, but car runs fine now...no shaking. Drove to the gym then to work out ...still no shaking. What the heck is going on?! ..it's like it can't decide if it wants to break down.
  • wainwain Posts: 479
    Anyone know what antifreeze came in it?

    red?

    or green?
  • ccermakccermak Posts: 260
    Very good chance it was green. My 2000 has green. I think they all came with green. I don't think Nissan uses Dexcool in any of their vehicles. Then again I ain't no mechanic either, just a frequent flyer in Nissan chat boards.

    seeya
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    The 98 model came with the green stuff. The 99 model most liely came with the green too.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    I have been using Prestone in my 95 Nissan truck and 98 Maxima for years now with no adverse effects. Both radiators look absolutely clean. I believe the key here is to use a 50:50 mix of antifreeze and water (for most climates) and use ONLY DISTILLED water. Also, I replace coolant every 15K miles, which may be an overkill, but I do not drain the engine blocks. By draining the radiator only you drain about one half of the total coolant capacity. This is why I replace coolant every 15K miles.

    I believe that if you use tap water in your system, you will get a lot of mineral deposit buildup in time, no matter what kind of coolant you use.
  • lmp180psulmp180psu Posts: 393
    About using distilled and NOT tap water in the cooling system. I knew this is true of batteries, and I just found out about that recently. I will make sure to remember these points when I get my new car in March. Thanks.
  • wainwain Posts: 479
    On my 99 you have to re - select it every time you start the car. It does not say where you set it the last time.

    anyway to keep it on?
  • c1693c1693 Posts: 1
    I'm experiencing the exact same problem as the one described in post item #1691.
    I recently purchased a 2003 Maxima SE with 15,000 miles also and I noticed the same sort of "popping" noise when I go over bumps. I am having problems with a vibration around 60-65 mph which according to the NISSAN dealer is not related to bad tires, balancing or bad rims. Would it be possible that a defect in the CV joints or shafts are the cause of both problems (popping noise and vibration)?
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Bad outer CV joints will cause a clicking noise when you make a slow turn. Bad inner CV joints can cause a vibration problem, but it will be noticeable mainly upon hard acceleration and also be felt primarily in the vehicle floorboards and the seat(I had this problem with a 99 Mazda 626 and replacing the axles/joints cured the problem). Maximas have rather stout CV joints so I doubt that your vibration problems are related to defective CV joints (There is possibility that you could have a bent axle shaft but this can be easily checked by any competent mechanic). I bet that vibration is related to the tires if you still have the original Bridgestones. These tires are the reason why I did not buy a new 03 Maxima SE. It too had a vibration in the steering wheel around 60 MPH when I took it for a test drive. Solution: get yourself a good set of Michelin tires and find somebody who can properly balance them. As far as the popping noise goes, it could be caused by loose or defective suspension bushings or defective front struts. Check with your Nissan dealer if there is a service bulletin on this issue.
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