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Nissan Sentra 2006 and earlier

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  • gserep1gserep1 Posts: 92
    Hello,
    In response to your question, the only thing that I would suggest is to check your tire pressures. Make sure that the pressure is the same on both front tires. Minor tire pressure differences between both front tires will cause the car to pull in the direction of the lowest tire. I am assuming that tire pressures were checked since the car was just aligned, but it never hurts to double check. I found the factory specs for tire pressure was too soft for my tastes, so I put 35 lbs in all 4 tires, and I have been happy. The Firestone Firehawk GTA's do not squeal under normal cornering, and they are really a joy to drive on despite all of the hype about Firestone quality recently.

    Adjust your tire pressure, and try to have your front wheels perfectly straight ahead before attempting max acceleration, and there should not be much pulling to the right.

    Good Luck,
    GSEREP1
  • katraakkatraak Posts: 33
    How is your SE doing now? You had problem with the leaking of refrigerant, right? Is it fixed. If so, what was the problem?

    IMHO the Firestone tires that came with the car do really good in dry conditions. But on wet roads they do not inspire a lot of confidence. We made a trip to Michigan in December. Believe me, they are the worst in snow. Once they wear out I am thinking of switching to Yokohoma.
  • wazappawazappa Posts: 32
    You might want to check the right front tire for and unsusal wearing pattern. Mostly likely on the outside edge of the tire. this may have been caused when the car was out of alignment. some times when cars are out of alignment it causes the steel belts in the tire to shift making the car still pull in that direction. Even though the dealership says that it is all to spec, the tire may be the problem now. So check it and see if there is an unusual wearing pattern. If there is, than switch the front wheel and tire for one of the back ones.

    That is what I did because I had the exact same problem as you. it was pulling, took it to the dealership, they said it was was out of alignment, they fixed it and said it was all to spec, it was still pulling when I drove it home, than I noticed an unusual wearing pattern on the tire, than I decided to swap the front for one of the back ones. It solved my problem. My car now tracks almost perfectly. So I strongly suggest that you check into that.
  • gserep1gserep1 Posts: 92
    Hello,
    And thank you for asking about that A/C problem. This still has not been resolved to my satisfaction. However, I will admit that it is working better than it was when they first fixed it last week. Something is sticking, and I am not sure WHAT!

    The car is scheduled to go in for repair on tomorrow (Friday, 6 July). My problem is an intermittent one. I always keep a thermometer in my cars as a habit. On the Sentra, it is in the center register just over the radio, and when I first got the car, the temperature displayed when the car was operated while driving would be close to freezing.. 36 to 37 degrees in "recirculate" position and just a bit higher when it was in "fresh"...(about 40). The unit still works great during early morning and late evening when there is no appreciable heat load. However when it is used in the heat of the day, the compressor constantly clicks on and off. It also drips water under the car during humid times, but occasionally, the temperature will not drop under 55 degrees no mater what I do. It is very aggravating. I suspect a evaporator temperature switch. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration has issued a bulletin on the 2000 and 2001 Sentras on this problem. Also, on every other car I have had in the past, the low pressure and high pressure switches were easily accessible from under the hood. Not so on this car. Only the high pressure switch is accessible, and it is on the driver's side near the front grille. Something is turning the compressor off too soon, and because it is SUPPOSED to have a full refrigerant charge and NO leaks (as verified by the last mechanic working on it), I can only assume that it is either the low PRESSURE switch that works on suction pressure, or the low TEMPERATURE switch which is controlled by evaporator temperature. It is supposed to allow the compressor to remain on until just before the evaporator freezes up (32 to 33 degrees), and then cut the compressor off. It was 6 tenths of a pound low when it went in for service, and the service manager states that this is a problem that has been seen often on the 2000 and 2001 Sentras ONLY. It only takes 1.1 pounds for a full charge, so it is hard to see the car getting cold at all on a half charge, but this is what I was told. Sometimes the low pressre line will "sweat" like it is supposed to, and then other times it will not..often within 5 minutes of each other.

    Time will tell...and I will keep you apprised of the developments as they occur. I simply cannot see how this unit will work satisfactorily in humid southern states like Lousisiana, Georgia, Texas, and Florida in its' current state of repair. My car would have me sweating in those places.

    Changing gears slightly, in regards to Firestone tires and their quality in the wet, I will have to reserve judgements until I have had these tires wet. I have never been much of a Firestone fan, but they seem okay for straight line dry driving. I did go to the Tire Rack website, and found that there is no other tire listed as a suitable replacement on this car. I wonder what that is all about. If you know of a Yokohama tire that would fit without modifications, let me know. I am a Michelin fan, and I was sure that they had something that would work, but have not been able to find anything yet.

    Thanks again,
    GSEREP1
  • telainetelaine Posts: 29
    Wanted to let you know that I've had a 1993 Sentra E automatic since 1993. I just recently bought another car, which isn't a Sentra. I wanted something bigger with a few more features than what Sentra currently has. But I still have the Sentra. I can tell you that my Sentra has been extremely reliable - all I did was the routine maintenance. It has been economical on gas, too. I hope that these new Sentras are even better, if so they should be great buy.
  • cyranno99cyranno99 Posts: 419
    we had a '94 Sentra GXE with over 80k before selling it to make room for a Maxima. The Sentra had no problems of any type..... ok, so it was a little underpowered with the automatic. Otherwise, great econocar.

    My bro's new Sentra SE - now that's a good performer.
  • katraakkatraak Posts: 33
    problem with the 2000 and 2001 Sentras. May be you can post your problem at http://www.b15sentra.net messageboards. May be somebody on that forum who've had a similar problem can help you out. I live in Alabama and even in peak summer, I didn't have any problem with the AC. BTW mine is a 2000 SE with 14000 miles. No problem whatsoever (touch wood), just a pesky rattle inside the drivers side door which needs to be fixed.


    You're right, the tires on the Sentra SE are of an odd size. If you have the PP then the size is 195/55/16 and only Firestone has replacements for that size. However, after the stock tires are worn out I am planning to plus size it (plus 0)and go with 205/55/16's or 205/60/16's. There is a lot of choice for 205/55/16's and high in my list are the Yokohoma Avid H4/T4, Toyo Proxes, Kumho and Bridgestone Potenza. Figured out I wont be needing tires for an year anyway. For Plus 0 you don't have to do any modifications. They will be right at home on your stock wheels.


    telaine, cyranno99

    It's good to know there are other satisfied Sentra owners out there. I had a 94 Sentra XE which had 115000 miles before I traded in for my current SE. All it needed was gas, a battery, a set of belts, new rotors and front brake pads.

    If you want to take a look at that car I have some pics at <http://www.auburn.edu/~katraak> God! I loved that car.

  • ums500ums500 Posts: 1
    Hello everyone. I, along with many before me, am a long time reader of this message board. I just bought a 2001 Sentra SE 5spd w/pp in radium with floormats for $15300, which is about 2% above invoice. With my recent graduate discount I got an additional $500 off, so I felt that I got a good deal overall. The dealer wouldn't go any lower than 2% above invoice probably because the car had been on the lot since Feb 2001 and I just bought it at the end of June 2001. Their holdback must've run out and they were losing money keeping the car on the lot.

    I spent about 3 months researching the Sentra and car buying tips, and it paid off. When I visited dealers I wrote down price quotes but additionally advertising fees and documentation fees because I didn't want them to somehow quote me a low price on the car and make a huge profit on the fees, which is what one dealer tried to do.

    This one dealer, which I found through autobytel, gave me a quote at invoice price but then I asked about the ad. fee and the doc. fee and they were $270 and $189 respectively. So ultimately their price was about 3% above invoice. This other dealership I went to wouldn't give me a quote because he said I would take that quote to another dealership to get a lower price. And plus he was giving me some sob story about how he works on commission and how he didn't want "to waste 1 hour of his time" if I didn't end up buying from him. Honestly, how he makes his living is none of my business, as a customer. I didn't want to deal with a discourteous salesperson so I just left. I ended up buying my Sentra from this last dealer I mentioned above. The salesperson was very friendly and did not pressure me. I felt better rewarding a kind salesperson with my business.

    Everything about the car is fine except that my cruise control doesn't work (the cruise control light doesn't even come on). I'm not sure if it's a blown fuse or what. And many people around me asked if I had turned on the cruise control button on the dash somewhere, but since the on/off button is on the steering wheel I know I tried to use it correctly. And one last thing, I've also noticed that the sentra rev's pretty high over 3000 rpms when going about 70mph. I was concerned about wasting too much gas or wearing out the engine. Geez, I wonder how high the engine would rev when going 85mph? Haven't gotten a chance to do it since I was breaking it in.

    I have to admit the sentra se/pp feels pretty luxurious for a $15000 car. It's a great value!
  • ns3ns3 Posts: 3
    Is 15,200 a good price for Nissan Sentra GXE with ABS& SRS, luxury package and convenience package?

    Is it smart to buy a car if you know it has a recall ( Sentra), or would it be better to buy something else?
  • katraakkatraak Posts: 33
    and I'm sure you'll love it. I'd say you got a pretty good deal. It's good to know that SE's w/PP are not in short supply in your area. When I bought mine in June 2000, they were very rare. I wanted one with ABS/side airbags but gave up on it because I couldn't find one and also I got stuck with the sunroof I didn't need. Now I am happy I got the sunroof though.
    Regarding your problem with the crusie control does the indicator, "CRUISE" in the dash light up when you push the cruise on? Also when you set cruise, the indicator "SET" should glow up. Also you cannot set cruise at speeds below 30 mph or so. If the lights doesn't glow up there is a high probability of a blown fuse. Ya, the older models had the cruise ON/OFF switch on the dash board but the new one has it on the steering wheel itself. It's convenient this way. Regarding the dealers you can never talk enough about them. They love to gouge unsuspecting customers. I figure out that since not many buy Nissan vehicles they try to rip off the few who buy. It's a shame that Nissan builds good cars but cannot rein its dealers and their unscrupulous practices. No wonder sales are off.
    A piece of advice that I can give you though is that the paint is prone to chipping easily. i went to MI in Dec. and came back with some chips because of the road salt and sand. Keep your car waxed in winter to minimize chipping damage. Also post your pics when you have them. My car revs exactly 3000rpm at 70 mph. Hope this helps.
  • wazappawazappa Posts: 32
    I was wondering if anyone has rewired their foglights into the parking lights so you can just turn on the foglights without the headlights. And help would be appreciated. Thanks.
  • katraakkatraak Posts: 33
    but the detailed procedure as to how to do it has been given with illustrations at http://www.b15sentra.net

    Click on tech articles on their homepage and you will find it under the Modifications column.

    Looks like its not awful hard to do it though. I'm not planning to touch my car until the warranty expires.
  • gserep1gserep1 Posts: 92
    Hello,
    Well The Nissan Dealership has finally claimed to have found the reasons why my A/C works intermittently.

    They claim to have traced it to a faulty orifice tube in the evaporator assembly, so it is being replaced once the part comes in from the warehouse. They will also replace the entire evaporator, the filter dryer assembly, AND the evaporator temperature switch. This will be their 3rd attempt at this so they know that HAVE to fix it this time, or replace the whole car under arbitration. This is not a profitable option for NISSAN, so they will do what they can to avoid replacing the car.

    I am happy that the parts will be replaced under warranty, but if I had to pay for all of these parts, I would be seriously questioning their diagnostic practices. As I said before, this car sat from the December 2000 build date, until I bought it at the end of the month of May 2001. I can understand the orifice tube, but all of that other stuff? That is really strange.

    The R-134A was removed from the car again to check for capacity. It was not leaking. But strangely enough, everytime they remove and replace the refrigerant, the unit seems to work better and better. The AC has the capacity to be VERY cold..that much is obvious. It is at 40 degrees during the cool part of the day, and it really cold then.

    I will keep everyone apprised of the success of this operation.

    Thanks,
    GSEREP1
  • mdrivermdriver Posts: 385
    I have looked at a number of large Nissan dealer lots to find no 5sp Sentra SEs. If you want an automatic, it seems there were hundreds to choose from, but no manuals. A sporty car like the SE and you can only get an automatic, while you can get the un-sporty Civic with 5spds available in abundance. Go figure!
  • mayankhpmayankhp Posts: 22
    Hello Everyone,
    Do I really need repairing on My Sentra SE (2000miles) ?

    I noticed that when engine is cool or restarts after 4/5 hours, it starts at high rpm(2000+) for several seconds, say five to seven. Then it goes down to 1100 and when I shifts to any gear or at stop sign /after heating up, it stays at 750rpm.

    Is it within spec or you guys suggest me to see dealer on this.

    I am sure GSEREP1 can throw some light on this issue.

    Thanks in advance.
  • gserep1gserep1 Posts: 92
    Hello There,
    I will try to help you on this one...(but only because I have had this experience, and NOT because I want to be a "know-it-all" (LOL). Here Goes.

    The increased engine speed at start-up when cold is a function of the emission control system, and is perfectly normal. Normally the computer goes through 2 operating modes...open loop, and then closed loop. Open loop is when the engine is cold and all sensors are not warmed up. The computer bypasses all settings found at all of the sensors, and instead runs on a preassigned program in the computer, until such time as the sensors warm up. At that time, the sensors will tell the computer what is really going on and will adjust the engine speed and fuel accordingly.

    Always start your engine with no accelerator pressure what-so-ever. Too much throttle will result in the engine not starting at all..just cranking. Starting with your foot to the floor (called Wide Open Throttle or WOT) is used to clear an engine that has been flooded with fuel. This is not usually possible with a fuel injected car, but has been designed into the program just in case it ever happens. If you apply the pedal to the floor and try to start the car, all fuel flow will be stopped until you release the pedal. Give it a try and you will see. It will cause no damage. You will get just spark, but no fuel from the injectors.

    On a normal cold start, the engine will run up to 2200 rpm or so and slowly start coming back down. The cold start switch (which is mounted on the intake manifold to measure coolant temperature will activate the cold start relay, which will cause the engine to receive extra fuel and air, hence the high engine speed. Once the coolant warms up past 120 degrees, it sends a signal to the computer to start cutting back on the fuel, and is the beginning of "closed loop". The catalytic converters will start to get hot by the exhaust and the electrically heated exhaust gas oxygen sensors...(O2 sensors). Once these sensors get hot, they send a signal to the computer that they are warm and need less fuel, so the computer cuts back on the fuel and the engine slows down. When the car is already hot or warm, it comes down to normal idle much sooner. When the idle is down to normal, the engine is said to be in "closed loop", and all sensors are activated. If any sensor is out of normal specification it will send a signal to the computer and then in turn illuminate the "check engine" or "service engine soon light". That will mean electronic diagnosis, because you do not know WHICH sensor caused the light to illuminate. By the way, our Sentras have 2 O2 sensors. One is on the exhaust manifold up front (easily visible once you raise the hood and and look straight down at the exhaust heat shield. The sensor has 3 little wires on it. Then there is another sensor like it on the exhaust pipe AFTER the catalytic converter. These sensors are VERY expensive (over 200 dollars EACH). They both work together to measure temperature AND exhaust flow. Changing exhaust systems sometimes causes the check engine light to come on, because different pipes may cause different flow characteristics other than those originally designed into the exhaust system. Be careful with aftermarket exhaust systems. These )2 sensors are under a special emissions warranty, but once that has expired, you are out of luck and will have to buy them yourself. I know because my sister has a 1995 Mazda Protege with 80,000 miles, and she needed BOTH sensors at the same time.

    This is getting WAY too complicated. I would rather talk about all that snow you have around your place in Alabama. That is also a NICE neighbothood you live in too. I would like it much better without the snow. You must have many stories of crazy drivers in the snow. Being a California driver, I surely would not want to drive in all of the slush that you encounter during the winter. I have no experience in that kind of stuff and would not want my car subjected to being hit by idiot drivers going too fast for conditions. Have you undercoated the car yet, or not? If I lived where you did, I probably would have done so by now I think. The only plans I have for my White Sentra is to get the windows tinted, and put in a K&N air filter when they become available out here. Once I am done, I will post a few pictures, but I like mine pretty much stock.

    I did not get the sunroof either. Other than that, our cars are identical. I want to chrome the wheels later. My 17 year old nephew wants me to lower it, and install a big muffler that I joking refer to as a "TRASH CAN". No such plans for my car. By the way, did you know that we have a 2 stage muffler on the SE's? There is a special baffle in there that causes the majority of the exhaust to come out of only one of the small pipes back there at slow speed. This gives it better backpressure during slow speeds. Then the other baffle opens up at around 4500 rpm, and flows through both pipes when you want and need extra performance. Sure sounds different when you are getting on it. I drove back from San Francisco yesterday (9/6/2001) and got 27 to 29 mpg at 80 plus miles per hour going south on Interstate 5. One day I will slow down and see what I can really get for maximum mileage. That will be as soon as I switch to synthetic oil and get the new K&N air filter and switch to synthetic transmission in the manual transaxle.

    All of my A/C parts should be in tomorrow (Tuesday and then I will get it repaired. Strangely enough, it has been working nearly normal since the system was vacuumed out and recharged with R-134 for the second time. The lines are sweating and everything Temperature is below 40 and ity is COLD...BRRR. I guess that I better get it fixed anyway, because as sure as I don't do it, the problem will return later on.

    Thanks, and take care...
    GSEREP1
  • mayankhpmayankhp Posts: 22
    Dear GSEREP1,

    Thank you very very much for educating me in detail as I am financially literate, and I needed someone who can guide me right the way you did technically. Your note ( I would like to take it as a small learing article on emission control how it works on modern car) is a full of knowledge which I would like to recommend everyone to read and understand every aspects of it on this forum.

    By the way I am also living in sourthern california - L A and not familiar with snow driving.

    Since you are here, let me ask you little more.

    I also noticed that my both cars Altima GLEand Sentra SE( Both are 2001) are slowly sliding towards right side after driving few seconds without holding sterring wheel. I do not feel any impression that my alingement is off while driving both the cars, as do not have to force to keep it straight up.

    Is this due to road conditions on CA ? or something goes with tyre pressure? or is there something technical which you would like to enlight me.

    Thanks once again,
  • gserep1gserep1 Posts: 92
    Hello,
    And thank you sir for those nice comments. I apppreciate them. California roads are slightly different than the roads back East, but you should not have a lot of drifting to the right. Since you have 2 newer cars, the first thing that I would do is to check front tire pressure. Just a difference of a few pounds up front will cause the car to drift. Hard acceleration will be "one sided" as well, with the car drifting to the side that has the lowest air pressure. If you like the factory recommended pressures of 33 for the front, and 30 for the rear for the Sentra, stick with it, but I find it soft for my tastes. I prefer 35 all around, which gives me the stiffness I look for in handling. The increased pressure is also good for mileage, as it decreases rolling resistance overall. The Firestone Firehawk GTA's are rated up to 44 pounds, but they would bounce like basketballs at that pressure. I drive nearly all freeway, so I keep the pressure up. Get a good tire pressure guage and keep it handy. Never trust the gas stations. Adjust your tire pressure a little higher than factory recommended for a little more road feel.

    The second thing I would look for is wear on your right front tire. If it has a "scalloped" look, or is wearing the slightest bit funny, rotate this tire with the one from the right rear. Usually this will cause the car to track straight again. I don't remember if you said that you already had an alignment done or not, but remember, you are entitled to a FREE alignment under the adjustment part of your 3 year 36,000 mile warranty. The adjustment phase is only good for 1 year/12,000 miles for any part of the car. I discourage owners from getting this right away unless it is obvious that the car is out of alignment. The reason I like to wait is the fact that during the first few thousand miles, the suspension is "adjusting" or taking a "set" to the car. The suspension is after all, a series of parts off of a shelf that are put together, (ie..shocks, or struts, springs, bushings, and bolts) and they need to adjust to working together on your specific frame. In time this will happen, and the whole car will work together as one. Once I allow the suspension to set (usually 5000 to 7500 miles, I look at the tires again, and then decide if it needs alignment. If all is well, (and it has been with my VW Beetle, AND this car so far), I leave it alone and just rotate the tires back to front. I drive a lot of miles so I pay close attention to the handling characteristics of car. I have nearly 6000 miles since Memorial Day weekend when I bought the car. I will now slow it down a bit since I will be out of the country on travel soon for about 1 month.

    Please get into the habit of inspecting your tires as you go to and fro. It only takes a second after you get out of the car, or before you get in to drive. Run your hands over the tread and feel for any imperfections. Otherwise, it should be fine. If changing the tires from front to back improves the handling, then you have found the problem.

    Personally, I like the original factory alignments so much better than those done after I have taken delivery. During my test drive, I notice how well the car tracks on the road, and if it is good from the start, I will consider that car to buy. If not, I drive another car of the same type until I find one I like.

    This is obviously taking into consideration that you have not been feeling for the curbs repeatedly with the tires when parking... (My mom does that), or have hit something real hard in the road. In those instances, you should get an alignment right away because the adjustment may have been knocked off.

    By the way, I apologize for assuming that you were from Alabama. I was looking at some pictures that someone posted, and I mistakenly put 2 and 2 together and came out with 5. So you are here in California with me...GREAT. I travel from San Diego to Vallejo every other weekend, which explains why I get so many miles. But dicounting my current A/C dilemma, I have not had ANY problems with this car, and I am still astounded at the 27 to 30 miles per gallon mileage I get per tank.

    What color Sentra SE did you get? Maybe one of these days our paths may cross. I would like to compare notes one day. You can e-mail me at gserep1@hotmail.com if you desire.
    Thanks again,
    GSEREP1
  • cyranno99cyranno99 Posts: 419
    your recent posts are informative and I agree with you about the aligment issue. Good luck with your A/C fixes.

    OT, my brother is eagerly awaiting the arrival of the Sentra SE-R even though he has the SE right now. He recently got 33mpg with an auto in a recent long distant escapade.
  • I recently bought a Sentra but without forethought attempted to remove the vehicle sticker from the window. Given the 90+ degree temperature here I not only have adhesive but remnants of the lettering stuck on my window as well. Anyone know the best way to get it out?
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