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Nissan Pathfinder Maintenance and Repair



  • blawsonblawson Posts: 19
    I had this problem once in my 93 PF. There is a wire that runs under the seat, from one side to the other. It connects the seat adjustment lever to a locking clamp on the other side of the seat. If the wire comes loose, the locking clamp won't release and the seat won't move. Check to see if the wire has come loose. If so, it is an easy fix. Just put the wire back through the hole on the locking clamp. Hopefully, this is the same set up on earlier PF's.
  • nappinappi Posts: 1
    I recently traded-in my 2001 Pathfinder for a 2004 and the 2004 is much louder. It sounds like a boat motor when accelerating. I've taken in back to the dealer several times and they tell me it sounds normal, but to me it sounds like an exhaust leak. Has anyone else noticed that the 2004's are louder than 2001's and what the reason might be? They have the same engine!
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    Nappi, I've owned an '01 PF since it was new, and I've driven an '04. I thought the '04 was noticeably quieter as I get a lot of road noise on my '01 around the transfer case shifter. Since the '04's don't have a transfer case shift lever (they now have full time 4WD), there's no noise from that area. I can't think of any reason an '04 would be noisier as for the most part they are mechanically identical.
  • hawkiegirlhawkiegirl Posts: 2
    Hi, I'm new to this board. I'm currently living in Germany, my husband is in the Army and currently deployed (to the sandbox). We own a 2001 Nissan Pathfinder, SE 4WD with only 24k miles. When starting the car the other day, my Service Engine Soon lamp was illuminated and didn't go off. I read the manual to find that it could be a fuel cap problem or the engine misfiring. Panic set in immediately. I took the car to our garage on the installation and they got an error code that they didn't know how to fix. They contacted Nissan and they said that I should bring the car to a Nissan Dealer (of course). Being in Germany and the lack of speaking German - I'm at their mercy. I brought the car in and they told me that I had to bring it back because they didn't know what the problem was immediately. They would like more time (They are 49.95 EURO an hour for labor - the exchange rate right now is terrible - our dollar is only worth .82 cents to one EURO). I'm afraid that I will be taken advantage of. They do not take credit cards - only CASH. I've been reading most of the postings and I want to go in there on Monday with the most knowledge possible. Can someone help me?

    Military Spouse lost in Germany!
  • shark715shark715 Posts: 382
    Hawkiegirl, the Service Engine Soon Light, also known as a MIL (Malfunction Indicator Light), can be turned on by one or multiple conditions. As I recall on the '01 Pathfinder there are more than 100 conditons that can cause the light to turn on. Whatever condition turned the light on will be stored in your truck's OBD (On Board Diagnostic) computer. The dealer's first step would normally be to use a code reader to read the fault codes stored in your truck's computer. Most of the time the OBD system works as it should, and the fault code will quickly enable the technician to identify the problem. Unfortunately sometimes the computer is not able to correctly identify unforseen issues such as loose wires or the computer itself malfunctioning. If you are able to fix the problem yourself (such as in the case of a loose gas cap), the computer will eventually recognize that the problem no longer exists, and will turn the light off. Depending on the computer's program and the exact problem that could take several driving cycles (starting the engine, driving the car, and shutting the engine off.) The techician can also turn the light off by using the code reader to erase the stored codes, but if the problem is not fixed, the computer will turn the light back on. Once again, depending on the computer program and the exact problem, sometimes the computer will not turn the light on until it detects the same problem repeatedly. The most common reasons for the light to be turned on for a lower mileage '01 PF seem to be a loose gas cap, and problems with the oxygen sensors and catalytic converters. Is your truck, by chance, still under warranty? BTW, per federal law, the on board computer and the catalytic converters are warranteed for 8 years or 80K miles. I'm not certain how and if that applies outside the U.S.
  • hawkiegirlhawkiegirl Posts: 2
    Thanks for the note back Shark. I'm at the mercy of the Nissan Dealer here in Germany. They told me I had to leave my car all day, of course they charge 50 EURO an hour for labor. I have had the PF for 3 years already, only 24k miles, but I'm told I'm not covered under warranty when the truck is from the US and the service is done in Germany. I have no clue on how to fix the thing myself, so I guess I'll have to let the "experts" do the fixing. I told them that the code that I got from our on base gargage was P1140 and that they couldn't find anything wrong, which leads me to believe that it is gas related. They tried to reset the MIL and it came back on, so I'm thinking that the O2 sensor could be the problem. I appreciate your help and I'll let you know what the dealer says.

    Thanks again...
  • Karen_SKaren_S Posts: 5,095
    Starting here are a few posts concerning P1140 code:

    dieselone May 3, 2004 11:47am

    Hope it helps!

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  • laundryguylaundryguy Posts: 89
    Any brand suggestions for durable mufflers? The NAPA part put on was a piece of junk. Got 15,000 miles out of it. Was installed on 3/8/03, so just about 13 1/2 months on it.

    The pipes look good as I replaced everything from catalytic converter back on 3/8/03, just muffler portion went to h#$$.

    Nonetheless, disappointed with NAPA.
  • laundryguylaundryguy Posts: 89
    It was the Pathfinder's resonator that was shot, apparently it traps moisture and commonly will rot out. Even the 20 mile daily communte was not enough to heat it up sufficiently to get the moisture out. The part in question was manufactured by Walker. My service man, the best in the area, was kind enough to wave his normal part margins and give me a new one at cost, plus a very reasonable installation labor charge (1/2 hour at shop rate).

    Nonetheless anyone else out there eating resonators?
  • jdhiner1jdhiner1 Posts: 1
    I have a 2001 pathfinder that has been sitting in the nissan shop for 2 weeks waiting for the front thermostat. The rear one was changed but the front is supposedly on backorder. There must be a lot of probs with them for there to be a serious backorder problem.
  • mac1mac1 Posts: 2
    HELP! My check engine light came on and speedo quit working, dealer checked the fault code and found the instrument cluster to be bad and had it replaced. Year later, the light came on again and you guessed it... no speedo. Different dealer checked the fault code, found the speed sensor was not working. I replaced the sensor myself and had the OBD reset. Speedo still doesn't work. Anyone else encounter this problem or anyone able to offer assistance?? Thanks.. Mac
  • mac1mac1 Posts: 2
    Im new here and would like more info on the shimmy.. Is this concerning the back end "dancing" side to side while driving? If so, what is a good fix. I have a 96 with OEM rims and new tires. Any help appreciated. Thanks... Mac
  • laundryguylaundryguy Posts: 89
    I put new struts on a 1997 at 75,000 miles and the ride seemed to improve from front to back. Not cheap - $600 seems to ring a bell. Even though the improvement was on the front end, the back end seemed to sway less when I hit rough spots on the road, particularly towing a boat (3000 lbs).
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    The shimmy referred to on this forum is typically a shaking of the steering wheel at highway speeds (approx 50-70mph), usually due to improperly balanced tires. The dancing rear end you mentioned is not the shimmy, but is rather a condition caused by worn/rotted bushings in the rear suspension links, specifically the lower links (aka "control arms").

    Here's a pic of the culprit arm. (Ignore the extra piece welded to the tube; sorry for the large image size.) And here's photo showing the location of the control arm. It's the tube attaching the axle to the frame (to the right of the brake drum in the photo.)

    Find replacement bushings by searching google for "pathfinder poly bushings".
  • bpiazzabpiazza Posts: 5
    I have a 2001 Pathfinder and my dashboard lights went out (speedometer,gas guage, tach, etc) Cant see anything at night. Tried the inside dimmer switch to no avail. I see the fuse box but nothing is marked "dashboard" or "instrument panel" Can anyone tell me what to look for or what to do? Thanks in advance.Bob P
  • vsaxenavsaxena Posts: 203
    Our 99.5 LE Pearl White has had the service engine light problem from the beginning. During the warranty period, the O2 sensors were replaced twice. On some other occasions the light would come on and then go off in a few days. It happened again last month. We take care of our gas cap. I also know that things can really go wrong. Does anyone know why the light would come ON and then go OFF (apart from the gas cap). I have not had it checked since it came out of warranty.

    There are small (half an inch by one eight of an inch) rust marks on the hood and on the front door (passenger) side. I noticed them while at a car wash last week. I do not know a reason why these rust marks should develop on these surfaces. Are such rust marks covered under the Nissan's rust warranty? We will be celebrating our 5th year with the Pathy this July.
  • andymotmandymotm Posts: 4
    Hello Edmunds community!--i thought i'd ask a question to you guys bc as a whole i'm sure you know a lot more than the mechanics at the shops do about my 2000 pathfinder. I bought my pathfinder used about a year ago and haven't had any problems at all except one minor annoyance. When i come to a stop and the car takes its natural sway backwards, i hear a big "clunk" coming from the botton rear of the car. I've read before that Nissan screwed up on the design of my car by making the hatch and the exhaust too close together so they tend to hit and make noise. Anyway, i'm not sure if this is the case, but it's a pretty annoying sound and in my mind shouldn't exist. I have a 2 year nissan warranty on my car but already it seems as if the guys nissan don't want to deal with my "little" problems such as clunks, noise and window problems. Do you think they will fix this problem or can i fix it myself. Also for you pathfinder owners with the slow window problems in cold weather and rattling problems, are these problems not covered under my extended warranty? when i was in a few weeks ago they said window problems were "Adjustments" and not covered. But damn, they didn't mind charging me an 80 buck diagnostic fee for nothing (also, should i be charged diagnostic fees?) anyway, i enjoy my nissan, but they sell you these expensive warranties but HATE for you to get your money's worth out of them. I'd appreciate your advice and help!!

  • dmcgdmcg Posts: 2
    I have a 96 4x4 Pathfinder that sways from side to side when you lay off the pedal at 60-70 miles per hour. I know this sounds like a classic bushings problem, but I had both control arms replaced. I also had the wheels balanced and rotated. Any suggestions as to why this problem continues and how can I check to make sure that the bushings put in by the mechanic are good??

    Thanks for any suggestions.

  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    Both control arms? There are 4 in back: 2 lower control arms and 2 upper control arms. Why did you have the control arms replaced originally? Unfortunately, short of removing the lower control arms, there is no easy way to tell if the bushings were replaced. Do you know if you paid for new arms, or only for new bushings?

    If you're certain that the bushings on the rear lower control arms are in good shape, consider other suspension components such as the rear shocks, the rear lateral link (panhard rod) bushings, and the bushings on the front suspension A-arms.
  • dmcgdmcg Posts: 2
    Thanks for the response. According to several mechanics, Nissan does not sell only the bushings and you have to purchase the control arms to replace the bushings. I searched the internet and found that to be primarily true (one place had only the bushings). Due to time constraints, I went ahead and had the arms/bushings replaced.

    I will check back with the mechanic to make sure that they replaced both the upper and the lower control arms. That may still be the problem. Also, there are also new struts/shocks on the car (I forgot to mention that). I will also check out your other suggestions.

    Thanks again for your help.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    It is true that Nissan doesn't sell the bushings separately. I believe it's actually cheaper to buy the part with bushings pre-installed than to re-use the old part and pay for the labor to press in new bushings... that is, unless you want aftermarket polyurethane bushings, which are available from a Nissan 4x4 aftermarket specialist in Florida.
  • laundryguylaundryguy Posts: 89
    One of two parts - totally rotted out. Anybody have same problem? What did it cost to repair. I got 85k on the truck.
  • amysue2amysue2 Posts: 4
    Does anyone know what brand of windshield wiper refills fit the 1999.5 Pathfinder? I tried the Trico brand and only the front passenger side fit. I still need drivers side & rear.
    Thanks in advance if anyone knows.
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    Evaporator, as in A/C Evaporator, EVAP canister? Which part are you referring to, and where is it located on the truck?
  • xplorx4xplorx4 Posts: 621
    It's not the brand of wiper that's the issue, it's the length. The left-side, right-side, and rear wiper blades are all different lengths. All you need to know is the lengths of each to pick the correct refill.

    Use the online catalog at Trico's web site to find the correct Trico applications for your vehicle. Model year 1999.5 is the same as 2000.
  • marks1970marks1970 Posts: 25
    Within the last couple months, my 2000 Pathfinder has started smelling like propane on the inside of the vehicle. The smell is at its strongest when I'm cruising around town and changing gears (5-speed) and the windows are down. However, I'm pretty sure the smell is coming from the foot vents and most likely gets whipped around in the cabin when the windows are down.

    Any ideas as to what this could possibly be? I've brought it to my local Nissan dealership, and they have no clue whatsoever what is causing the smell.

  • tsheptshep Posts: 2
    I have an 02 Pathfinder, purchased new, and have been using synthetic oil since day one. I now have 39,000 miles on the engine and have noticed a major increase in oil consumption. There are no signs of oil leaks around the engine, under the truck, and I see no evidence of oil burning around the tail pipe.
    I have checked for recalls and service bulletins for this issue and have come up empty. Nissan mechancis would like to run a battery of test, but before I part with my money, I wanted to see if this board has had any experience with this.

  • only1pfonly1pf Posts: 1
    I recently bought a 95 Pathfinder with 94K miles. Lately, I've noticed it seems like there is no power when I accelerate. It feels like the engine is bogging down. I've already changed spark plugs, distributer, other maintenance parts, and had the exhaust system checked. Has anyone had this problem or have any idea what could cause the sudden loss of power?
  • lbinhlbinh Posts: 190
    Try your fuel filter and air filter. Did you change the plugs before the problem or after the problem?? If before, it maybe that you have the the incorrect spark plugs installed (wrong gap). It could be that you mixed up the ignition wire connections(that would cause a rumbling/stalling engine). Double check all connections to be sure they are seated and connected properly. Apply di-electric grease on wire connections and not near the spark plug gap itself.

    What led up to the problems. Try to back track.
    Good luck.
  • wbernie51wbernie51 Posts: 4
    I have a 2003 PF w/17K mi. and just found our I suffer from the warped rotor problem.

    Does anyone know if this is a repair under warranty?
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