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Nissan Quest/Mercury Villager problems



  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    in the main Nissan Quest discussion, and thought it would also be appreciated here:

    These are problems I've experienced so far with my 99 SE Quest:

    -Noisy brake booster replaced twice: 12k, 25k. Noticed the creaking earlier on. Dealer claims noise is normal, but replaced it with my persuasion. Noise improved on second repair. Despite noise, brakes have always worked fine.
    -Vibration/rattles under the dash fixed at 29k. Was there for quite a while, but waited till it was more obvious.
    -Middle row window latch replaced because of clicking noise. There is a tsb out on this.
    -Noisy Blower Motor replaced at 33k. Dealer said they could not hear noise, but went ahead and replaced it.
    -Power door switch replaced at 33k. Door was periodically locking itself. There is also a tsb on this.
    -Knock sensor replaced at 33k. Btw, this malfunction will only be noticed via the computer consult. It will not trigger the check engine light. Not a bad idea to check this out before the 36k/36m warranty expires.

    Persisting problems at 33.6k: occasional vibration heard from right dash or door. Occasional rough idle. Hope this is helpful. I'll keep you posted on anything else that occurs.

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  • I recently purchased a '93 Quest. It is very clean inside and out. However, I am having problems with the A/T shifting late. When it does shift it shifts harder than normal. Has anyone had similar experience with same year? Any ideas on what the problem is? I have had it checked by three different sources and they don't seem to agree on what the problem is?
  • First thing I'd do is service the tranny... a fluid & filter change can go a long way to curing problems such as that... unless you know it's been less than 30k miles since it was last done, it would be worth the 60 or so bucks, IMO.

  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    It is possible your problem is due to a bad throttle position sensor.

    You might want to take a look through the archives of the VillagerQuest mailing list. I have seen similar problems addressed there.

    As Paul mentions, it's not a bad idea to have your transmission fluid & filter changed anyway, as preventative mainenance.


  • I have a '94 Quest which exhibited the same problem (very hard shifts from 1st to 2nd), before it decided a few weeks later to just leave it in 1st at any speed. The problem was a faulty Transmission Control Unit (TCU) - a burnt connector wire was the obvious symptom.

    After replacing the TCU, it ran another few weeks before the same wire burnt in the replacement unit. Clearly, there's something awry in the Electrical system, but I don't know what.
  • rickrozrickroz Posts: 26
    I make sure I get mine changed every 20-25k miles. The first time I had this service done at the dealer, the service rep said it was a good idea to do this because the transmission in the Quest has no filter. Has anyone heard this??
  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    2k1 VillSport. Per the service manual, "The transaxle does not does not contain a conventional fluid filter. The filter cannot be changed without removing the valve body. Changing of the filter is not a regular maintenance item."
    So I am about to have a "factory" mechanic dismantle a normally functioning tranny just to change the filter. And with just a fluid change, I'm doing that myself.
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    You know, this is something I've been wondering about myself. In my 99 Quest owners' manual, it doesn't really state when to replace, accept for in "note 1" where it says: "if you're towing, using a car-top carrier, or driving on rough or muddy roads, change (not just inspect) fluid at every 30,000 miles or 24 months.

    Otherwise it just says "i" inspect... all the way through.... I asked a mechanic I know, and he suggested I have this done at 60k since I don't tow anything. I've seen other suggestions online to have this changed as high as 100k. Seem a little high to me.

    Now my own Nissan service advisor suggests every 30k, but then they are in the businesss of earning your hard earned dollars. Not to mention he does state that a 30k tranny change is NOT required for fulfilling any lease requirements. If I decide to purchase my lease, I'll probably changed the tranny fluid shortly there after... or no later than 45k just to be safe. ;-)

    Anyway, my 2 cents.

    Hatchbacks / Station Wagons / Women's Auto Center Boards
  • gasguzzgasguzz Posts: 214
    "So I am about to have a "factory" mechanic dismantle a normally functioning tranny just to change the filter."
    Correction: I am NOT about to... (above).
    It still is a mechanical tranny and fluid is cheap at 30k intervals, so I will be doing that maint (especially since I own the van - cheap insurance).
  • dsittler -- Some of the '93s (like mine that has the trailer towing package) came with dual mode (economy/power) tranmission programming. Might check the obvious and make sure the tranmission is not set in 'power' mode. It does delay the shifts and make the shifts feel more abrupt. The switch is in the pod to the right of the steering wheel.

    I change the transmission fluid/filter every 30k, manual or automatic transmission (and I don't do trailer towing). Just noticed a few months ago, after paying for it all these years, that the transmission pan has a drain plug on the bottom. Never had a car with a drain plug before; always paid to have it changed because I didn't want to be cleaning tranny oil off my driveway...
  • Hi Folks,
    We recently purchased a 96 Quest GXE with 54,000 miles on it. We've been pretty happy with it so far (just over a month) though we've had some relatively minor electrical bugs. The rear audio controls work sporadicly at best and I was considering pulling them out and replacing them with the cupholder that sits in the same cut out. (don't really need the kids messing with the volume anyway!) I'm wondering if I can just disconnect the controls or if there may need to be some additional re-wiring would be required to take those controls out of the loop. Thanks to all who keep the posts coming. Very helpful to a new owner like myself. Tim
  • Hi all,
    I thought maybe someone out there has had some experience with this one: Is it normal to get some tap-tap-tap-tap (kind of like lifter noise) for a few seconds during extremely cold mornings. Our 96 has 54,000 miles on it and I use 10-30 oil. I get the same sound on my Pathfinder but it has 187,000 miles so it doesn't surprise me there. Any input would be appreciated. Thanks! Tim
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Hi etudes - it's rather quiet around here on the weekend. Maybe when folks get back to "work" on Monday you'll get some responses.

    Mjeong, the Synthetic motor oil discussion may have some answers for you.

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • revkarevka Posts: 1,750
    I started using Castrol Syntec, available through my Nissan dealer, when my van got to 3k miles. Recently I switched to Mobile One. I've heard it's better than Castrol, plus I'm able to purchase it at Costco for $21 per box (6 quarts). Of course you only need 4 1/2 quarts per oil change.

    I still have my dealer put it in. I purchase an Nissan Oil filter from him for around 9 bucks then pay him and additional 5 dollars to change the oil/filter for me. So with oil included, my total costs come to around $33.

    Btw, if you're going to use an aftermarket oil filter, I've been told to make sure it's not a cheap one. I was told that the Nissan oil filters have this special valve in them to prevents all the oil from draining out of the engine overnight. (I'm sure this is also available in other brands as well.) This supposedly helps prevent a cold start up in the morning... therefore reducing engine wear.

    My 99 SE Quest has only 34k miles on it, so I honestly can't account for the difference. However, it does give me a little peace of mind. Also, some people feel more comfortable extending the oil changes to 7.5k, as opposed to 3.7k, when using synthetic. Hope this is helpful. ;-)

    Hatchbacks / Station Wagons / Women's Auto Center Boards
  • cnackcnack Posts: 7
    I just bought a 2001 Quest SE from Carmax last month with 12,000 miles on it. (Black/silver two-tone, tinted window and the alloy wheels make it the coolest van in town!) A few days after bringing it home, my wife and I noticed a "rickety" sound in the cabin while driving it. It almost sounds like the sliding door insulation sticking and unsticking as the doors vibrate in the door frames. We are first time minivan owners and not sure if it should ride like this. Has anybody heard this in their Quest? Is this normal?
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    Sounds like a tough one and rattling doors doesn't ring a bell for me. Some have experienced problems with the rear windows popping open or a faulty latch, so check them closely. Anyone else?

    SUVs, Vans and Aftermarket & Accessories Message Boards
  • I hate to keep beating this subject, but after reading about all of the problems Villager owners have had with their exhaust studs breaking, I chickened out and had mine done on my 1993 Villager with 77K miles on it. We plan to keep the van for several more years. As far as I know, none of the studs were broken, but it was cheaper to have it done now than fixing broken studs later. I had to buy the studs, locking nuts and gaskets at the Nissan dealer since my Mercury dealer would have had to order the parts. Two of the studs broke off when my mechanic tried to get them out and he drilled and tapped them. On the other 10 studs, he had to weld the old nut to the stud so he'd have something to get a socket on.
  • Cnack - I own a 2001 Quest SE that has developed a very similar rattle. This is the only problem the vehicle has developed in 13,500 miles.

    I'm taking it in tomorrow for its scheduled servicing and will have the mechanic take a look at the passenger side sliding door. As was mentioned by our host, I think the rear window latches are loose.
  • cnackcnack Posts: 7
    Thanks for the good word fellas. I don't think it is the rear window latches, but I'll check them anyway to be sure. Again, it sounds like the door and door frame insulation sticking and unsticking driving across blacktop on a hot sunny day and you can hear your tires sticking to the surface. We have to turn the radio up a bit to drown it out. I'm concerned that the doors may not be shutting tight enough or not sitting in the door frames snugly. I may bring it up next time I have it at the Nissan dealer for service.
  • cnack - I'm familiar with the noise you referenced. I believe that noise is what many of us call Quest/Villager "character". These vehicles have always had their share of creaks and rattles, which are sometimes annoying, but never detract from the Villager/Quest's overall durability.

    I think you are correct. Here is my theory. The sound you are hearing is coming from the front doors and is a result of minor body flex. A more modern design would likely not suffer from these somewhat annoying squeaks and rattles. But who are we to complain - these vans are durable and offer the most bang-for-the-buck in the minivan market (will, they did until the Sedona came along).
  • cnackcnack Posts: 7
    Thanks corsicachevy for putting words to my thoughts. Minor body flex is probably what is causing this phenomena...I guess what I wondering is whether anybody else has this rickety sound and whether they were able to do anything about it. From the tone of your last message and Steve's thoughts, it sounds like this is just part of owning a Quest. You're right, the Quest is the most bang-for-the-buck with features. I suppose that is what keeps me from being more upset about the cabin noise.
  • steverstever Posts: 52,572
    My '99 has a few occasional rattles, but I attribute them to the empty Diet Coke cans rolling around and the spinner tire iron bungied to one side of the van.

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  • I solved this annoying noise by spraying the rubber moldings with "Wurth's" Rubber care. Do not use silocone sprays. My son is a paint and body man at one of our car dealerships and this is what he uses for that problem. It sure worked on our "99" Villager.
  • cookie22, could you please explain how did you remove the rubber molding. I have the same kind of noise in my SE '01.
  • the rubber moldings. I just held the can close to the moldings and sprayed them.
  • I am considering a purchase of a 1995 Quest with 50,000 miles. the cost is 7900. I have read with interest the manifold bolt issues, and the fuel pump and related problems. Is there a way to see if the bolts will be an issue on the particular car? What other considerations should I have. For owners of the 1995 Quest, would you do it again and why or why not Thanks very much.
  • I started using Valvoline synthetic 5-30 oil in my 1999 Quest when it had about 5000 miles on it. Its at 52,000 now. I change the oil between 4 & 5k miles. I don't notice any difference between syn and regular oil, the price difference is not too bad. Napa sells it for $4.19/qt, I buy 5 qts. every 4th oil change and use a of quarter of the 5th bottle to fill the filter before I screw it on, then just put in the 4 qts.
    I have been using the Napa gold and silver filters, I have heard they are pretty good.
  • sopmansopman Posts: 46
    I have a '99 Quest with 40,000 and use castrol oil 5w-30 and fram filters. I change the oil every 4500 to 5500 miles. Did the same with my corolla and got 180,000 miles out it. If you change it that often, it probably doesn't matter what you use.
  • Craicoit,
    I own a 1995 Nissan Quest XE and love it. I have 102000 miles on it. It still drives like it did when I first purchased it. I haven't experienced any major mechanical problems since day one. This week, I will be putting it in the shop to have some deserved maintenance completed: CV Boot replacement, new fan belts, timing belt, tranny flush, and possible water pump if necessary. All of this is to be completed by a trusted Nissan Dealership who has completed all the maintenance on the Quest. I have been quoted a price of $850 for parts and labor.

    If you decide to purchase one, have it inspected. You will be pleased with your decision.
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