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Nissan Quest/Mercury Villager problems



  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    Life is good right now, but I'm ready for spring. I haven't had time to X-C ski since we started having kids, so I haven't really enjoyed all the snow we had this year. I'm just waiting for the ice to break up so I can get the canoe out. :-) If I can find a partner (my wife was smart enough to decline) I'm going to try to get a Paddle & Portage t-shirt this year.

    Now for something on-topic - I wish I would have bought those heavy-duty rubber floor mats this winter. Last weekend I vaccumed the Quest out, and I practicaly had to shovel all the salt and sand out on the driver's side.

  • steverstever Posts: 52,683
    Hi Dave, I took up downhill again this year after a 25 year hiatus. Remember my $10 metal "canted" mudflaps? Two of them have now ripped off:-). The $40 rubber molded ones would have been a much wiser investment. Eat some fish for me tonight!

    Vans, SUVs, and Aft
  • suginamisuginami Posts: 2
    I have a 93 GXE that I purchased in 1997 with about 58,000 miles on it. It now has 131,000. I purchased it from the original owner who is an acquaintance of mine and he maintained it meticulously as have I. I have had some problems with it, some of which are normal wear and tear, some of which I never expected:
    1. The studs on the exhaust manifold busted at about 95,000 miles, which cost me about $400.00 to replace the studs and the bolts. The leak was still apparent, and after checking, the manifold itself was cracked, which cost about $300.00 to replace.
    2. At 115,000 miles, I noticed a vibration through the pedals and floor board. The motor mounts were worn out and replaced.
    3. At 116,000 miles, the rear wheel brake cylinders were leaking and replaced. I also fixed the driver side door lock which failed and caused the door to be permenantly stuck.
    4. At 117,000 miles the front struts were worn out and I replaced them with a high end KYB strut which really improved the overall ride.
    5. At 125,000 miles one of the front headlights burned out. The plastic lenses had really yellowed, so I replace them with the newer version that came out in 97-98? The computer at the parts counter showed they used the same wiring harness plug-in, but when I installed them they didn't work. I took it to an electrician who charged me $40.00 to rewire them. It seems the ground wire was in a different position. I love the new headlights, though. They have the "cut diamond" look and give off superior white light.
    4. At 120,000 miles, many of the positions on the intermittent wiper knob failed to work. Also, the end of the stalk that you push in failed to operate the wiper washer fluid spray. I had the whole lane change / wiper stalk replaced at $125.00.
    5. About 6 weeks ago, my fuel vent hose was leaking fuel in my garage. I had it replace. About 2 weeks ago, I got the recall notice. Luckily, they are reimbursing me.
    6. Passenger side power door lock doesn't operate occasionally. I will probably have to replace the switch eventually, but am waiting for it to go out.
    7. My gas mileage is average about 20.5 mpg. My best tank ever was 25.3 mpg which I got on the way back from Las Vegas to Los Angeles, all freeway driving.

    I don't mind most of the expenses, but I am pretty unhappy that I had to throw money at the exhaust manifold and studs, which I never expected. Also, the few electrical problems are a minor irritation.

    Even with the manifold being replaced and the studs, etc. I still hear a very minor exhaust leak. Any ideas?
  • sopmansopman Posts: 46
    I have a 99 Quest with 27,000 miles. On a snowy road when I hit the brakes and the front tires lock up there is a grinding noise coming from the right front wheel. Really loud. But on dry pavement there is no noise and I've hit the brakes hard. The pads are OK. Could it be the anti-lock brake mechanism?? As anyone else ever have this problem??
  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    Sounds like the ABS to me. Though, if your front wheels are really locking up there might be a problem. The ABS should prevent this.

    If it's the ABS you should also get a vibration back through the brake pedal when it's working.

  • grammy1grammy1 Posts: 6
    Has anyone had trouble with their headlights on 99 Quest Van? We have had to have ours replaced 2 times now. Yesterday the mechanic said the sockets showed signs of "melting". Said he had one other van a couple of months ago with same problem and replaced the bulb sockets and that seemed to solve the problem. Just curious if anyone else has had to have their light sockets replaced and if that solved the problem.
  • Yes, i had a transmission go on my '94 Quest. Luckily (i guess), it had only 50K miles on it, and was still under the 5yr/60K powertrain warranty. The dealer paid for the whole thing, more or less graciously. He also denied there was a general problem with Quest transmissions, saying he had only seen "one or two." I now have 118K on the Quest and it is holding up. I replaced the radiator last month after i noticed it was losing fluid. Mechanic found a hole in the bottom. Little else has gone wrong. I did have the throttle body cleaned a couple of years ago... Supposedly, a guy at work had a transmission go out on his Quest; he sold it. But i did not speak to him about it, so that is just hearsay.
  • ricobeachricobeach Posts: 29
    For the many of you who have had your exhaust manifold bolts break, has anyone had luck with getting Nissan to agree fix the problem for free or at a reduced cost? Mine just broke on my 94 Quest at 70000mi and so far Nissan has not done anything other than to say that they are investigating my complaint. I am also filing a complaint with NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Admin) to see if they would investigate whether this is a safety problem (possibility of exhaust getting into passenger cabin). If so, they have the ability to force Nissan to do a recall. I would strongly encourage others to complain at their website ( if they feel this problem is a defect and could be a safety problem (ie. carbon monoxide in the vehicle).

    For those who have paid to have the bolts fixed, what types of auto shops can do this work? My dealer wants $1500. I definitely plan on shopping around for other prices, but don't know where to start. Any suggestions would be appreciated. I am in the D.C. area so labor rates are higher than other parts of the U.S.


  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    Ask around to find a good independent mechanic. That's the best way to find someone good.

    I'll bet there are a couple of good independent shops in the DC area that specialize in imports. They may even have done exhaust stud work before on Nissans.

    I'd be curious to know what is all included in the dealer's quote. Is this to replace all of the studs, or just the broken ones? The labor must really be a crap shoot, because how long it will take really depends... The studs may have broken off flush with the block and need to be drilled out, others that are OK may break off when they try to take them out, and if they break off an EZ out in one of the studs, all bets are off. I bet they quoted it high because they don't really want to do it.

    Anyway, try to find a good independent shop and you should be good. You might want to search for the Car Talk web site. They used to have a database of "recommended" mechanics for different areas all over the country.

  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    I would delve into the emissions performance warranty (which I think is 8/80k for my 01). A broken bolt would cause a manifold leak, violating Fed emission standards. The manufacturer should be then obliged to correct this. Take this argument to the dealer.
    Good luck.
  • ricobeachricobeach Posts: 29
    Dhoff, thanks for the mechanic advice (will look at cartalk website). I did finally get a response from Nissan yesterday. They have agreed to pay for half of the repair at the dealer. The dealer also came down a bit. Now I am looking at about $600 for the repair (my cost). This will include replacement of all 12 studs (drilled out if necessary) and new manifolds. This doesn't seem too bad especially after reading that other people had only a few bolts replaced and paid almost as much. This dealer did plead my case to Nissan and I think that they were the reason that the company agreed to help out. I still think that bolts are a design and safety defect that should be recalled, but I could have been in a worse position had Nissan said no to partial payment.

    As for GASGUZZ's statement about the emission's warranty, I did look in my manual last week for any chance that it would be covered. If I remember correctly, the emission warranty only lasted through the 50K or 60K mark. My van just broke the 70K barrier. Glad to hear that the newer models have longer emission warranties. I wish the American makers (like my Chevy truck) would lengthen their warranties to compete with the imports. I've already had my Chevy in for more warranty work in the first year than I have had on the Quest in it's entire lifetime. I am starting to worry about the 3yr/36K warranty expiration on the Chevy.

    Thanks for both of your responses,

  • melissamelissa Posts: 27
    To all,

    I'm the Director of Town Hall at ABC is interested in doing a story about "secret
    warranties," where automakers notify dealers but not customers about quality issues. ABC news would like to speak with consumers who have experienced the above scenario. It sounds like many of you have! I particular would like to find some people in the Southern California area. If you are interested, please email me. You can find my email address in my profile. Thanks ahead of time.
  • jrosalesjrosales Posts: 5
    I just bought this van used, with 43,000 miles on it. I love it so far, the only thing is that the rear windshield wiper doesn't work, nor does the cleaner come out for the rear windshield. The defroster does work. Any ideas?
  • orcinusorcinus Posts: 2
    Help! I have a 97 Villager with 46K on it. Its been trouble free and I've enjoyed it, but I'm selling
    because I need an all wheel drive vehicle.

    Out of the blue, the van has started to vibrate very heavily. This happens only at freeway speeds, and the vibration is so severe it feels as if the entire vehicle is falling apart.

    This happened on the way to a prospective buyer's house yesterday. It occurred again on out "test drive" (great timing!!!), but it did not occur on the way home. On the way home I went in and out of overdrive, put the pedal to the metal and generally tried to provoke the vibration. I got nothing. This vehicle has been well maintained and had its 45K service. Its been driven mostly on the freeway - the only unusual use is that I have driven it with tire chains on - always for relatively short distances and at speeds under 35 mph.

    I understand there've been problems with engine bolt mounts and exhaust manifolds...what are the symptoms in those cases?

    I'm also aware that there's a TSB from June 99 titled "Noise, Vibration, Harshness - TSB special"

    This vibration is incredibly severe....I've never experienced anything like it. I'm taking it in to the dealer tomorrow (God help me!!!), but if anyone has any thoughts about what this might be, I'd love to have them


  • chkmaqchkmaq Posts: 2
    The 94 original SONY CD player of my 95 Mercury Villager isn't working anymore. The
    connector and the connection between the following Printed Circuit Boards is out of order:
    SONY 1645 730 13 and ALPS 56AAA1605A. I'm looking for a cheap solution to replace it (i.e finding a used one or parts from a used one).If you have any tips or proposal please contact me.
    Thanks for your help
  • orcinusorcinus Posts: 2
    Actually, I did have the tires balanced the next day....I guess I'm wondering whether a tire or multiple tire imbalance would result in such severe vibration that disappeared when the car was driving an hour later....

    I know rough terrain and/or tire chains can knock those little balancing weights right off, so I'm hoping that's what it is. The axles are going to be checked tomorrow....
  • drew_drew_ Posts: 3,382
    You may want to try reposting your message in the Audio system upgrades discussion topic in the Aftermarket & Accessories message board. Someone may be able to help you there.

    Good luck!

    Vans, SUVs, and Aftermarket and Accessories message boards
  • garya1garya1 Posts: 1
    I experienced the same thing with my 95 Quest. friend suggested the tire might have a broken internal steel belt. Sure enough I changed the tires (it was time anyway) and the problem went away immediately.

    Whoulda thunkit?
  • bigleaf1bigleaf1 Posts: 2
    Hello to all! I just purchased a 1997 Quest GXE after a whirlwind of auto mistakes over the last 4 months... 2000 Toyota Sienna (re-purchased under lemon law) 1999 Dodge Durango (sold after going bankrupt paying for gasoline) and now this. I really like this van. It does have 80K on it already, but it seems to have been maintained quite nicely by the original owner. Here are my issues and hopefully you folks can assist me with the same good advice I see others getting. The rear A/C blows ice cold and hard like it should.. but the front A/C just blows hard... not really all that cold, regardless of setting. The only other problem that I have is, I guess, a front suspension issue. Before the vehicle gets truly "warmed up" it sounds like the front struts (or something in that area)really struggle to provide any cushion... imagine a go-cart hitting a pot hole. Again, after it's warm -it really isn't an issue. Can this be the struts or something else? I'm terrified of dealers and have been for years (which is why I buy all my vehicles from a wholesale friend of mine). Again, thanks to any and all who will respond. Oh yes, one other thing: is it worth my time to re-lubricate the sliding door and the sun-roof? they sound a little gritty (but not bad). I look forward to hearing from you.
  • sopmansopman Posts: 46
    I have a '99 Quest. Can someone recommend an oil filter brand?? I've been using Fram. Don't think I'll use them anymore from what I've been reading.
  • h20guyh20guy Posts: 64
    lose your wholesale friend.
  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    01 Merc-VillSport...
    Purolator Premium L14612. I don't like this as the can is short. I've talked to Purolator and the replacement for the 2001 catalog is L14610. Accordingly, it is in production and warehoused but not stocked (yet?) by the parts dealers. I will be checking if I can order it from Advance Auto (where I shop). If this is not available at the time I do an oil change (It's only got 1900 mi.), I will use the AC-Delco PF-2057 Duraguard.
    There is no PureOne version from Purolator.
    I don't know who makes the Nissan filter. You can use the Linc-Merc Motorcraft filter.
    Or, the Mobil-1 M-110 can be had for some $10.
  • nickjdnickjd Posts: 1
    I have a a 1993 Nissan quest van ( 234,000 kms now ) that has an intermittent problem when I am driving along the highway .
    At aprox 110 -120 KPH and the revs are aprox 2400 ram I push down on the gas pedal slowly , nothing happens and suddenly
    the revs jump up to over 3000 ram and the van accelerates Also if the revs are about 2700 you suddenly feel
    the van loose power till about 2400 ram and it jumps up to about 2700 ram( gas pedal held at the same postion ) .
    It doesn't happen all the time . The gas line filter has been changed but did not resolve the problem . The idle is ok .
    Any suggestions would be appreciated .
  • equimanequiman Posts: 12
    My 95 Villager emits a strange noise when applying the brakes while in reverse. It is most notable when cold-starting the vehicle and backing out of my slightly inclined driveway. When the brakes are applied it makes a strange noise that appears to be coming from the rear with an accompanying shuddering sensation. It only happens when in reverse and thus is not a real problem. I am just concerned that it may be the beginning of a bigger problem. I had the brakes worked on but the problem still exists.
    Anyone out there have the same problem or know what this might be?

    All in all, my Villager has been great. I bought it used with about 40,000 miles and have put on an additional 50,000 miles in three years without any major problems. Although it is slightly on the small side for a mini-van, it has been an excellent vehicle and I will definitely consider another Villager/Quest.
  • cdmac36cdmac36 Posts: 5
    We have a 2001 QUEST DE with 7200 miles and just noticed the 2nd row passenger seat belt has partially ripped. This just happens to be the seat that my son's car seat is buckled into. Has anyone else had a problem with their seat belts? Any info would be appreciative. Thanks!
  • shantonshanton Posts: 5
    I'd love to talk about secret warranties. That's how I got Nissan to pay for half my manifold repairs, though I had to argue with them for a while and they never really admitted to anything. I'm still waiting for a recall eventually. I did complain to NHTSA.
  • chkmaqchkmaq Posts: 2
    The original CD player of my 95 Mercury Villager is out of order. The Repair shop wants $358 for a new one. Does anybody have a cheaper solution to propose? Thanks
  • wg45678wg45678 Posts: 55

    New to the forum, own 2k Maxima and 93 Quest. Nissan's finally owned up to the fuel vent hose splitting problem and issued a recall. I've spend about $300 having the problem repaired twice in the last 3 years ($220 at the dealer and $70 at my neighborhood mechanic who figured out how to replace the hose without dropping the fuel tank).

    Wondered if anyone had been successful getting Nissan to pick up some of the cost for prior repairs now that they've issued the recall.
  • pdigpdig Posts: 2
    I am interested in buying a 1999 Nissan Quest SE,
    but have heard mixed reviews on their reliability
    and many problems that some owners have had. I would like to hear from current/past owners,
    their opinions on the cars and whether they would
    buy another? Your help in this matter is greatly
This discussion has been closed.