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Nissan Altima Engine Failures



  • patpat Posts: 10,421
    Since this topic is specifically about engine failures, let's continue over here at this link: tabola, "Nissan Altima Maintenance and Repair" #2099, 12 Nov 2007 9:05 am.

    Welcome to CarSpace - hope we can help!
  • I recently had a dealership mechanic change the crankshaft sensor on my 2002 2.5L Nissan Altima, shortly after the check service engine light turned on and I took it back two days after he did the work and he said that after a few days the check engine light will turn off because the engine sensor has to reset itself.

    While I did not buy the answer, and since I know little about cars, I took his answer and waiting three days, the check engine light is still on and the car runs but it may not start or the engine cuts off.

    Is anybody familiar with problem? What can I have checked out beside the mechanic.

  • I can't believe the Dealership mechanic told you that it would "reset itself" ,especially after two days. The guy is just a buffoon! You can take that car anywhere and have the check engine light codes read with a scanner at any garage and most auto parts houses. I know autozone does it for free, because they will try to sell you parts. They can read the codes and then they will tell you what they think the problem is. The code does not usually tell you what part is bad, but what part of the electrical system the fault resides in. Some diagnosis is usually required along with the code read, unless it is a very simple problem.
  • I agree with you, the guy is a buffoon, I am taking the car back and asking that they have a more experience person look at the car and run the diagnostic, if not I will be calling my lawyer, since my car is worse now than it was before they did the work.

    Thanks for the suggestion.

  • tleytley Posts: 3
    The engine on my 2003 Nissan Altima 2.5S shakes very hard at RPM over 2,200.

    The check engin light is on. I do not think there is a broken motor mount. A broken motor mount would only make a clunk at first accerleation. This is a problem whereby the engine makes a clunking noise and shakes around at RMP over 2,200.

    Does anyone know what is happening here?
  • I just happened to run across the following CNBC Nissan recall report, hope it helps.....

    Nissan Recalls US Cars, Engine May Stop Running
    Japan's Nissan Motor said on Thursday it will recall 713,986 Altima and Sentra cars in North America, mostly in the United States, because their engines may suddenly stop running.
  • omeome Posts: 1
    I bought a used 2002 Altima from Nissan dealder with 82,000 miles. It was burning oil and the catalytic converter was replaced for $900. Was told this would solve the oil problem. Its still has the problem and dealer said it needs a new engine.

    Am not car saavy and dont know what to do. The car was $8000 and 10 months later they want me to spend $5000 on it! Could have bought a new Versa with that money.

    Please let me know if I should pay it or is there any other resolutions?
    Thanks in advance.
  • i had the same issue... i just bought a used engine for my altima... i don't think replacing the catalytic converter will resolve it.... :sick:
  • it wont start eating itself until ya hit around 60 to 80 thousand miles. when the pre cat goes bad and the engine eats the entrails of the pre cat [ the one closest to the engine] i bought a used one that the dealer said passed emissions test. no way, it could eating oil like it is. try toyota they take care of thier buyers. im considering parking mine in front of the dealer and sacraficing it to the god of fire.
  • Sorry to say that almost everyone seems to be getting burned by Nissan on these Altima Engine Failures. Please, when you go to buy a car, do lots of research to find out everything you can about the car you intend to buy, look at the specs and see what all the owners have to say.
    Please go back and read my post #75 in this Forum and also read #76 & #77, it will explain a lot. It's probably too late to help you now, once the engine is too far gone. My daughters 2002 2.5S, bought at end of 2003, the Altima did not show any problems until about 97,000 miles at around Sept 2007. I think it was because I have been taking good care of it since she had it. I do all the servicing myself and only use Synthetic Motor Oil and Synthetic Motor Oil Filters. When she bought this car in 2003 with 29,000 miles, there was no bad history on this vehicle, and no one saw these problems coming. Everyone thought they were great cars, until they got enough miles on them for the problems to start.
    So my daughters 2002 Altima 2.5L is burning some oil now, but I unplugged the REAR CAT a few months ago, when I clogged up completely. I took it off and made it into a hollow CAT, and I works fine now. But the engine also has a leaking head gasket, leaking coolant into one cylinder at times, and leaking combustion gas into the cooling system at times. I put some coolant sealer in the radiator and it has fixed it enough to drive for a couple of months until I can schedule to work on it.
    So the time is close now, I start work on it Sunday Dec 09, 2007, I am going to pull the head and send it out to be checked and reworked, replace the head gasket, Remove the PRECAT and unplug it and hollow it out, so that nothing can blow back up into the engine and destroy it. If I can't get away with a hollow PRECAT, I'll have to find another one somewhere. The Engine is luckily still in good enough shape, as the compression in all 4 cylinders was 190 pounds.I will find out more about the condition of the cylinder walls when I get the head off. I will also find out the condition of the valve guides and seals when the head is in the shop, I'm hoping new valve seals will stop the oil burning.
    I will post updates here to tell what I find and what I do about it. I am sure that when I am done with it, it will be a good engine for beyond 150,000 miles and she will have gotten rid of it by then. I told her no more Nissans, next car is going to be a Toyota or Honda. I am budgeting about $500-$600 to do this job, doing all the work myself, Head work $100-$300 depending on what needs to be done, $80 for new head bolts, $80 for new gaskets, and throw in another $100 for oil, antifreeze, hoses, and miscellaneous parts and materials.
    Good luck guys,
    E. D. in Sunny Florida
  • Don't forget to clean out the radiator!
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    Sorry to say that almost everyone seems to be getting burned by Nissan on these Altima Engine Failures.

    not really. Nissan has sold over a million altima's. The number that have this problem is very low. less than 5%.
  • Yes, the radiator and the entire cooling system will be flushed out and all new coolanr will be put in, as well as new synthetic motor oil and a new synthetic motor oil filter, plus new radiator and heater hoses, new thermostat, and anything else it needs.
  • Yes, there may be truth in that, but still too many of these failures, and especially when it happens to you, and you are the one stuck with the problem, the inconveniences and the financial loss. And when you are not a lone case, you hear of it happening to people all over the country, you know that you are not just an "isolated incident". That makes it a lot more personal.
  • Reffering to my Post #98 in this forum, 2002 Nissan Altima 2.5S, DOHC, 4 CLy, I began taking the engine apart and made a startling discovery. I removed the exhaust manifold and the precat (one assembly). I found the precat to be TOTALY HOLLOW. I was expecting to find some material inside, but it apparantly has all blown out. This has led me to some interesting conclusions. This material in the PreCat was held in place by a screen above and a screen below it. There is a ring that holds each screen in place. Evidently, the screens have given way and all the material and screens where blown out of the PreCat down the exhaust pipe, to the next part, which is the 2nd Cat, located under the car just before the muffler. This material went into the 2nd Cat and caused it to plug up closed. This is what happened back in september 2007 when my daughter said her car suddenly lost most of it's power, then a few weeks later I found out that the 2nd Cat was plugged up, took it out and unplugged it by hollowing it out (check previous posts). So this explains a lot of why the car acted the way it did. This happened in Sept when the car had about 97,000 miles on it.
    So here is a word of caution and advice to those of you who may be interested, If your engine seems to suddenly lose power, check your exaust pipes at the back of the car to see if the exhaust gas is still coming out freely. If no flow or low flow, you may have the same problem that I described with the plugged cat. If you do have the problem, it needs to be fixed ASAP before it causes damage to the engine.
    I am continuing to take the engine apart and will let you know what else I find. I can only work on it about 2 or 3 hours a night, since I work during the day. I expect I should have the head off in a couple more days.
    Good Luck,
    E.D. in Sunny Florida
  • when i come to a red light and sit for a minute my heat does not wrk, it gets cold, once i start moving again it gets warm again, is anyone else having this problem? :mad:
  • You might be very low on coolant. You should check the coolant level immediately.
  • A word of caution on checking the coolant, be sure the engine is cool before trying to remove the radiator cap! Check the coolant resivoir first, it it appears full enough, when cold, remove the radiator cap and check to be sure the radiator is full of coolant. It should be full to the top. Sometimes if the cap is malfunctioning or their is an air leak in the system, the coolant might not siphon from the resivoir back into the radiator as the the radiator cools.
  • ken75ken75 Posts: 52
    I have just plopped down 25K on a 2008 Altima 2.5 LS and upon reading all of the posts in this part of the forum, I start to get a strange feeling that a little re-assurance would go a long way to help. I put maybe 6000 miles a year on a car and baby the hell out of it. We purchased the 7 year warranty which should take care of most all problems but one never wants to go through the problems that could arise. Have the problems for the 4 cylinder engine used in the LS been identified by Nissan and fixed or do I have some surprises in store for me? I understand that the number of cars affected by these problems may be small and I would rather not be one of the statistics. Having said that, I may already have a problem at 275 miles. The motor at idle and operating temperature sounds like the lifters need adjustment (possible?). Is this normal or is it something I should run to Nissan with? I did not really notice anything like this being reported unless it could be construed as engine rattle, highly unlikely. I love the car but if I have to worry about an engine hatching, I may have to look elsewhere for a nice ride. I may be barking at the moon here but I have always been an old worry wart. Any help appreciated. Thank you.
  • Hello... I did receive a letter from Nissan stating that they have received a small, but significant, number of complaints on the Altimas 07 having a rattling noise in the exhaust and that they are working on finding out the reason and the problem.. Maybe this also affected the Atimas 08.. you might want to ask...
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