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Nissan Altima Brake Questions

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  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    The problem:
    Nissan Altima 2008 Sedan brake problems noise.
    Squeal/Squeak noise from brakes:
    • While moving forward
    • With very light brake application (light pedal pressure)
    • When the brakes are either hot (after 10 or more minutes of driving) or cold (after
    vehicle has not been driven for 2 or more hours)
    • At speeds less than 10MPH

    I purchase a new 2008 Nissan Alima sedan in March 2008. It now has 12,000 miles. At around 11,000 miles I had brake noise. I kept thinking it would just go away because it is a new car. It was not very loud, but would squeal/squeak when braking, at low speeds. Annoying to say the least.

    I took it to the dealer and they first told me it was normal for the Altima to have brake noise. I complained and said that a new car should not have brakes noise. They changed the rear brake pads. The noise problem persisted. I took the car back the next weekend. This time they said they could not duplicate the problem, but that the rotors had glazing (whatever that is) How is it that in one week the rotors have glazing??? They polished the rotors. That was this weekend. Now, my brakes are not as sensitive as they were. I have to brake harder and longer to get the same effect like two inches more. Now my car brakes like an older car.

    I did some internet searching and found that in April 2008 there was a Service Bulletin posted on this exact problem. (will post bulletin below) I found that many people are having the same problem, because it is an inherent problem for 2007-2008 models.

    My friend purchased the exact same car at around the same time I did and she is also having the same problem. She took her car for service and they did not want to change the brakes, said it was normal wear and tear. I told her to take it to the dealer I went to, although that obviously is not going to help in the long run.

    Will this keeping happening every 10,000 miles? Because that seems to be the case in what is being said in the forums. The dealer tried to make it sound like they were doing me a favor that the brake and rotors are wear and tear items not under warranty. A friend who worked for Nissan said the only reason they would fix or repair the brakes is because they know it is an on going problem. What is going to happen when I am out of warranty???? Will this happen every 10,000 miles?????

    My cousins husband who is an adjuster for a popular automobile insurance company said the car is to new for brake and rotor problems. He said it is likely that the car will always have this problem. Just wondering if anyone has had similar problems. My brakes are not the same as before the repair, and now frankly I am pissed. :mad:

    Please post if you have had similar problems and what if any have been your resolutions.

    This is the service bulletin:
    2007-2008 NISSAN ALTIMA SEDAN, ALTIMA COUPE, ALTIMA HYBRID; REAR BRAKE NOISE AT SLOW SPEEDS
    Squeal/Squeak noise from rear brakes:
    • While moving forward
    • With very light brake application (light pedal pressure)
    • When the brakes are either hot (after 10 or more minutes of driving) or cold (after
    vehicle has not been driven for 2 or more hours)
    • At speeds less than 10MPH
    • While traveling straight
  • I am having the same problem now with my 2008 Altima 2.5S. At 13030 miles, I took it to the dealer for a grinding noise coming from the passenger side only. The noise occurred whether or not I was using the brakes, but it was intermittent. I had noticed the noise about a week earlier.

    The dealer told me that the front brake pads were worn down almost to the metal and they were NOT COVERED BY WARRANTY because they considered this "normal" wear and tear!!!! I asked how brakes could wear out in only 13K miles. I've owned many cars over the years and have never had to replace front pads until 30-40k miles.

    The dealer will speak to Nissan next week to see what they can do, but if I have to pay to have brakes replaced every 13k miles, I'm seriously considering selling the car and NEVER buying another Nissan again. There is no excuse for this.

    Ironically, I bought a Nissan because I was fed up with the poor reliability of the American cars that I've owned. The Hondas that I have owned have lasted forever.
  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    It is not normal wear and tear call the 1-866 number that is in the Nissan owners manual in the glove compartment. You have to start a case with them. You do not need to go through the dealer. You are still under warranty YOU HAVE to call Nissan yourself and start a case. The dealer does not have your best interest at heart. My exhusband worked for Nissan for a short time and I asked him what I needed to do, he told me to deal with Nissan directly after I started having problems with the car. He said that is the only way to get resolution. The dealer won't do anything for you he and was is right.

    When you call the Nissan number they will take you information and ask what the problem is. They will give you a case number and assign a representative to you. The rep. will call you in a day or two. When they call you, you have to sound really upset. Tell them you purchased a new car because you did not want the headaches. You could have purchased an older car and been better off (something to that affect). About the brakes you have to tell them that you have visited several ASI certified mechanics and they all state that 13,000 miles is not normal wear and tear for any vehicle (normal wear and tear is like 40,000 - 50,000 miles) Let the rep. know that you are aware that there is a service bulletin out for Nissan Altima's for brakes noise problems. That you are also aware that there are OTHER Altima owners experiencing the same problem. Do not accept them telling you that it is normal wear and tear. Tell them that you will file a case with the BBB autoline and will seek to file under lemon law. At this point they should offer to change the brakes for free. Finally tell them that you believe this is going to keep happening every 10,000 miles or so and that you want an extended warrarnty with a clause for the brakes. Threaten to get an attorney.

    I looked up lemon law in my state and the car must have the same problem 3X within 24 months to qualify. Of course there is lots more and many things you must do for that. Look up lemon law in your state.

    I did all of the above. Nissan changed my brakes at about 10,500 miles (free). A week later the noise started again. Then, they resurfaced the rotors. The noise went away for a while but then it came back. Nissan just changed my brakes last week for the second time. I am now at 14,500 miles. They had a Nissan engineer fly in from Georgia to Florida to check for the brake noise. It was slight but I made a big fuss, because I don't want them to keep telling me it is normal wear and tear. I gave the engineer the whole speech about why I bought a Nissan and I put my hard earned money into this vehicle, they should back it up. They gave me a rental for two days and changed the brakes to high performance brakes and new rotors. They can only resurface them once and they had already done that. It's only been a week.

    I save all my dealer visit paperwork and am following up with a letter. All of this was dealing directly with Nissan not the dealer. I am still trying to get an extended warranty with some clause in there for the brakes. They do not want to give it to me. They did offer me 2 years of free service (oil changes and tire rotation) but that is not what I want. I want the warranty.

    I know this is long, It took me making a lot of noise to get anything done. My friend also has the same problem. She did the same as I did but she is more passive and did not get the same results. Don't take no for an answer keep insisting. I know, what a hassle. I wish I would have bought a Honda or a Toyota.
  • chibbychibby Posts: 1
    After hitting 20000 miles and my brakes being so squeaky I couldn't stand it anymore (it started squeaking at 5000 and they told me it was just dirt)....went to the dealership and told them I called nissan and was told about the TSB's...without even question...they fixed the problem..using 2 of the TSBs...no more squeaking...and no charge at all! IAlso changed the back brakes and I wasn't even complaining about those. If you're at San Diego...just go to Mossy Nissan National City...
  • victor2k6victor2k6 Posts: 6
    i been doing lately to stop the noise is taking my car to the caR WASH EVERY TO 2 WEEK TO POWER WASH THE WHEELS AND ROTOR THE CLEAN THE DUST IS ANOYING BUT IS WORKING IAM SO CLOSE TO TRADE MY CAR
  • I've been having having the same problem. I bought a new 08 Altima and within 5 months i started to hear this squealing sound. Since it was a brand new car and I was under warranty I took it in and they said it was normal-brake dust. Stupid me, I believed them of course. I had a new brake kit put on anyway and within another 3.5 months the same problem persisted.

    I've been fighting back and forth with the dealer and service people who were far from inclined to helping. My car has less than 15,000 miles and I just had my brakes changed again by another mechanic. Im going into the second month and of course the squealing is back. It sounds like Im driving a bus!!!

    I dont know what else to do!!! :mad:

    Brooklyn, NY
  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    Follow the steps in my previous posts. Forget about the dealer. Get your Nissan manual and call the Nissan's 1800 number directly. You will get no resolution from the dealer. The dealer only does what Nissan tells them to do. I posted more specific directions on how to get resolution on a previous post. I had high performance brakes installed by Nissan and they seem to be working fine now.
  • Thank you, very much appreciated! I will keep you posted-thanks again!
  • ctblubirdctblubird Posts: 1
    I just wanted to add my name to the list. My brakes started squealing within a few months of owning the car. I purchased it in July of 2008. I , too, thought it was something that would just go away after the car was broken in. But it's gotten louder and more annoying and I need to call the toll free number. I just turned 10K miles and this started long ago.
    I also get a "thud" noise when the car stops. I'll stop for a light, stop sign, or for good and within a few seconds, I get a 'thud' from the back of the car. ??? Have no clue what that noise is.
    I loved my first altima, and I like this altima. But the noise is driving me nuts.
  • pam821pam821 Posts: 1
    I am having the same problem with my '07 Altima S. I have asked the service dept, about them on several visits. The service dept. manager stated that the noise is due to the materials that the brakes are made of. He also commented about dirt and debris causing noise in the brakes. His solution was to ride through puddles and/or spray the brake area with a water hose to clean out any debris. This works for a while and the squealing returns. :confuse:
  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    That's nuts! Read through the thread I posted a lengthy reply as to what I did. Forget about the service dept. Go straight to Nissan call the 1-866 number in your owners manual and file a case. Keep complaining as that is not normal.
  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    I just want to give an update. After having horrible brake noise and no resolution from dealer I went straight to Nissan. They first changed by brakes and that lasted a week. I called Nissan and they sent a tech from another state who had the dealer change my brakes for high powered brakes. It has been almost the months and the brakes are working great. No noise and you feel the brakes have much better traction when braking. My only fear will be the cost to replace the brakes once I need to have them replaced. Cross that bridge when I get to it. Nissan also compensated me with 2 year service plan for my troubles. You must call and complain Nissan not dealer to get resolution.
  • I really believe the brakes are bad b/c they kept telling me this and I already had my brakes changed 2x just because I didnt have the time or energy to wast on them. I was told by a BMW mechanic to print these threads and show take it to the dealership and if they dont help call the 1800 number on the manual and they should take care of everything free of charge.
  • altgirlaltgirl Posts: 10
    Nissan knows there is a problem. They will change your brakes because they know that the problem exists. That is why they issued a service bulletin. You should call the 800 number not the dealer. You will get faster resolution. The dealer does not have you best interest at heart. They are just making cheap repairs until you are out of warranty.
  • I just purchased an 08 Altima with 11,000 miles and it took four days before the sqeeking began. Same as all of you with light pressure at a low speed. I am not to concerned with the safety factor but you loose cool points driving around town squeeking away. I agree with many of you who think the brake pads are cheap and need to be replaced with high performance pads. I have researched online and dont think it is to bad to spend 125-150 a set for these pads vice going the Nissan route. Has anyone tried this yet? I am pretty good under the hood but dont plan on doing it for another month. I will let you all know how it goes.
  • smarty666smarty666 Posts: 1,503
    Does anyone have or know if this brake problem still occurs with the 2009 altimas? I might be getting one and so far everyone has stated that they had either a 07 or 08 altima with this problem; I was hoping maybe cause of the service bulletin and so many people complaining and opening up a case with Nissan directly that they might have corrected the problem for the 2009 models; any info would be appreciated!!!
  • I went back to the seven pages and did not find the bulletin about this known problem. Would someone kindly paste the link, or email it to me please? We have the same problem described in this thread.

    Thanks George

    george.eberle at hotmail dot com
  • WOW! YES YES YES! i have been trying to have anyone thats in my car hear the "thump" noise..no one understands. Did you figure out what that is? is it stiill a problem after they serviced your car? Also, my breaks have been squeaky after a few months of having the 09 Altima. i am almost a year into having car...still squeaks and i should not have this issue..agreed?!?
    what is the Nissan ph# you contacted? Corporate offices? Did they mail you a voucher or what? i am EXTREMLY annoyed by the squeak and thump! Other than that i love the car.
  • :mad: i think the best u can do is to go with after market brakes cuz the dealer brake wont help u if u go to the dealer the only thing they can do is clean your brakes that will help u for couples day only i trade my 2007 nissan altima S b/c the brake noise WONT STOP i have 09 altima SL MODEL NOW 3 MONTH NO NOISE SO FAR
  • smarty666smarty666 Posts: 1,503
    this is unbelievable that even the 09 models are still having brake/rotor issues; based on what I've heard on hear and from what I've read on other websites I know the 07 and 08 models had major problems in this area but you would think by the third model year nissan would have addressed these issues

    while I don't have a altima, but I was thinking of getting a 09, I had similar problems with my 2005 FX35; almost every 10k miles the brakes were so bad that the pads were completely gone and would warp the rotors causing terrible grinding and shimmering in the steering wheel whenever I applied the brake; suffice it to say the sounds and vibrations were so bad I knew just based on the steering wheel shimmering when I needed to bring the vehicle in and have the rotors resurfaced and the brake pads replaced

    and this started within the first 10k miles of the vehicle which is totally unacceptable; luckily for me, infiniti covered it all under warranty or it would have been over $300 dollars every time I had to take it in and have the work done- one time when I was at the infiniti dealer having the rotors resurfaced a guy with a G35 was there and his rotors were so warped that he had to have them completely replaced- in about the 3 and a half years I leased the vehicle I had the rotors resurfaced and brake pads replaced about 5 times- suffice it to say this was the main reason why I didn't buy the FX at the end of the lease because I didn't want to put out of pocket 300-400 dollars every year for resurfaced rotors and new brake pads

    these brake and severely warped rotors are a major problem with the majority of nissan and infiniti vehicles- I was told by a mechanic at goodyear one time that unless you get after market brakes and cross-drilled rotors put on the vehicle you'll continue to have pre-mature warping and terribly worn brake pads

    nissan and infiniti better get their act together on this problem becasue too many car companies including nissan and others are becoming to complacent and act like these worn pads and warped rotors under 10k and 15k miles are normal wear and tear on the car but they are not and once the 3yr nissan or 4yr infiniti warranty expires you'll be paying out of pocket to have the problems readdressed since they put on the new brakes/rotors that are no different from the originals and then just wear out again
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