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Nissan Pathfinder Maintenance and Repair



  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    I also have vibration problems. I have a 1995.5 Pathfinder LE and the vibration problem has been getting worse since day one. Now with 35,000 miles on the vehicle the problem is out of hand. I have brought the car in for alignment and wheel balancing twice but that has not done the trick. My problem happens at speeds of 55-70. Way above or below these speeds there is no vibration. However, in that speed range the vehicle shakes and the steering wheel feels like it is going to come undone. Has anyone found a dealer that has fixed their vibration problems???
  • meca2meca2 Posts: 284
    duper: Might be an idea to check the federal 5year/50mi. All vehicles must past federal exhaust emissions and several other safety areas (seat belts,ect). The loose manifold bolts might fall under exhaust emissions requirements. Just a thought.
  • dennis1950dennis1950 Posts: 33
    Most insurance companies will waive the deductible if you will agree to have the crack repaired rather than replaced. Epoxy is injected into the crack. If done properly, you might not notice the difference. Since the crack is in the bottom right corner, the repair would not affect visibility.

    Get it done asap as the crack will spread.
  • duperduper Posts: 127
    I heard that all new cars/trucks must still pass the smog check within the first 5 years. Is this the 5/50,000 federal safety regulation? How can I findout more about it.

  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    Do you have a '95.5 or a '99.5?

    Oops. Gotta run to a meeting. Let me know about the year and I'll type more later.
  • katstuff1katstuff1 Posts: 3
    Thanks danog and dennis1950 for reply to my post 117.

    Stupidly dropped my glass coverage a few months ago to shave a bit off my hefty premium increase in moving from a Honda to my beloved PF and adding on an old speeding ticket that finally made it through to USAA. Ouch!

    Can a crack appear in a 6 month old vehicle's windshield due to the mounting or am I grasping at straws? It does seem to start from the corner with no ding in the glass... About 1/2 inch from the mounting the split goes through the glass parallel to the surface, but most of the 4" length it goes through from inside to outside.

    Many posts about service reps BS keeps me looking here for info to be ready for whatever comes my way when I take it in (which I now realize should be soon). I greatly appreciate any info.
  • danogdanog Posts: 318
    The comprehensive part of your insurance should cover it if you have that. Many glass companies will waive the deductible if the glass is pretty expensive since they will get most from the insurance company. If the glass wasn't installed properly I don't believe there is a time frame for it to crack. Depends on temp and type of driving. Have a glass company look at it and give you their opinion but I think if there isn't a rock chip it should be replaced under warranty.

    Good luck!
  • pathstarpathstar Posts: 201
    I've been watching and waiting for someone to give this answer. Guess I'll have to mention it myself. From personal experience, the only way your symptoms can be "warrenty" is if the glass were touching the body. This will usually result in a broken windshield. Have someone good at it remove the trim to check. If it is/was touching (you will see slight marks on the body) it's Nissan's fault. If not it's your baby. Any other reason for the breakage would be almost impossible to prove to be Nissan's fault (strain in glass, body bending etc). Sorry for the potentially bad news.
  • loboyloboy Posts: 75
    Its been awhile since I've posted (been enjoying the PF too much I guess!). I had experienced a crack windshield a couple of months after my purchase (last January I think). I tried the warranty thing with the dealer but no go. The crack started on the driver's side and went horizontally about 6 inches. Reason was a very small ding (hardly noticeable). I didn't want to argue since I had no deductible. I just got it replaced. Make sure you insist on getting a genuine Nissan windshield which has the built-in diversity antenna.
  • meca2meca2 Posts: 284
    duper: depends what state the car is regerstered in on how long it must pass
    emissions. In Oregon from 1975 and newer the car must pass the test. Please look
    in your Warranty Information booklet that came with your PF. Look under Federal
    emission warrenty. There is federal emission defect and Fed. ems. long term defect.
    Depends what state and what year and miles is one your PF. Steve
  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    Sorry, I have a 1999.5 Pathfinder LE, not a '95

    Please let me know if you have a solution.
  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    Here is a post I've re-posted a couple of times about the shimmy. Good luck! Something to add to the seems that the only balance machine that is able to balance my tires is the Hunter 9000 or something like that.
    After 4 days and going through the TSBs on
    shimmies one by one, my '99.5 4x4 Pathfinder
    w/Bridgestones and 20,000 miles no longer has a
    shimmy at any speed!

    Recap (maybe it'll help?): I had a fairly nasty
    shimmy that would come and go. It would happen
    most of the time, but not all, between 65 and 75
    mph, sometimes between 60 and 65, and a few times
    between 50 and 60. I drive on the same 45 mile
    section of road everyday, so it definitely wasn't
    road related because it would happen at different
    spots on the road and at different speeds. Because of the intermittent nature and that fact that I have my tires balanced and rotated every 3,000 miles, I was 99% sure that it wasn't a balance problem.

    After balancing my tires twice, recalibrating the
    balance machine and balancing my tires, and then
    using a special attachement and balancing my tires, the service shop could still feel the shimmy. They sent it to another shop to do a "radial velocity" (or something like that) test on the tires and wheels per one of the Nissan Service Bulletins. The place they sent it to indexed (match balanced) the tires, a process that has been mentioned on the board before. They match the heaviest part of the wheel with the lightest part of the tire so that less weight has to be used for the balance. This fixed it! I have driven about 400 miles since I got the Pathy back and I haven't felt the shimmy once!

    My Pathy is once again a pleasure to drive on the
    highway. Also, if you need service in the Madison, WI, area, Linda at Lancaster Nissan was a pleasure to work with. She actually was looking out for me instead of trying to get out of warranty work. Sorry for the long post. I hope it helps.

    I just got the Nissan Service Bulletin I had
    mentioned. It's 11 pages and includes and lot of
    stuff, so I won't attempt to reproduce it on this
    page. I will say that on the flow chart, the first question is, "Is this vehicle equipped with Nissan OEM wheels and tires?" If the answer is no, such as if you have already replaced the tires, the flow chart states, "This Technical Service Bulletin and Nissan Warranty Coverage do not address vibration that can be caused by after market products or modifications." Even though you've replaced your tires already, you might ask your tech to print you off a copy of this NTB.

    I remember some folks talking about having their
    wheels chromed. The next question in the flow
    chart is, "Are the Nissan OEM wheels aftermarket
    chrome plated?" If the answer to this question is
    yes, you get the same response as the guy that has
    already replaced his tires.

    Nissan Service Bulletin

    Classification: ST99-001
    Reference: NTB00-061
    Date: July 18, 2000

    1999.5-2001 Pathfinder steering and/or body

    Applied Vehicles: 1999.5-2001 Pathfinder (R50)

    Service Information
    If a 1999.5-2001 Pathfinder exhibits steering
    and/or body vibration while driven (without
    braking) at speeds between 60 and 70 MPH, the
    cause(s) may be:
    - Road input (road surface imperfections)
    - Out-of-balance front or rear tires/wheels
    - Insufficient steering rack sliding force
    - Tire flat spotting
    - Excessive tire Radial Force Variations (RFV)

    The last part (RFV) is where they look to index or
    match balance your tires and if that still doesn't
    work, they replace your tires.

    Hope this helps.
  • Duper, I would have refused to pay the repair bill on your exhaust manifold problem. In my opinion this is clearly a warrantee item. After all we are not dealing with a luxury S.U.V. A well worded letter to the service manager explaining your concerns and a copy to Nissan is in order and perhaps you will get a refund. Good Luck!
  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    Should I expect to pay for this work? Or will the dealer take care of this since it seems to be a common problem?
  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    The dealer paid for my work. But, I was under the 36,000 miles and I still had the original tires and wheels. I don't know if this will be covered under the 5yr/60,000mi drivetrain warranty (it would only make sense, wouldn't it?). I'd call the service at the dealer and mention the bulletin number to him. I'd also ask about the 36,000 mi issue.
  • naxmannaxman Posts: 1
    My '95 Pathfinder SEV6 developed a problem at around 50,000 miles -- a progressively worsening intermittent tendency to unpredictably slide out of gear from 3rd or automatic overdrive and "free wheel" in neutral. Downshifting (the automatic) to 2nd gear would engage 2nd gear, but then would stick in 2nd gear and would not shift into 3rd --or it might slide into neutral again. The problem seemed to mystify a trani specialist who rebuilt the transmission after much head scratching and electronic and road testing. He said when he tore down the transmission, he found metal shavings indicating evidence of some abnormal wear. The fix worked for a short time but the problem is now reoccurring. The problem seems to sometimes be triggered after the sudden automatic downshifting that may occur during an ascent on an incline (rather underpowered powertrain!) but can occur spontaneously otherwise just on a whim. At present, the problem hasn't progressed yet to the point it had reached before and I can still sometimes recapture 3rd gear after the transmission slides into neutral if I downshift to 2nd gear and shift quickly into drive again from an over-revved point above the normal shift point from 2nd to 3rd -- but this is not good! I can feel the shift point occasionally migrate now and the engine may over-rev before shifting a bit clumsily from 2nd to 3rd gear. So what is happening? Electronics? And what is the best way to diagnose it? I don't relish another expensive transmission teardown, but ...
    Nissan's response so far is that there have been no recalls for such problems, nor is there a familiar dossier. Anyone recognize this problem?
  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    Where did you get that Nissan Service Bulletin Message? I brought it to my dealer and he said that was not issued from Nissan and he was not sure where it came from?
  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    You gave your Nissan service manager the info below and he/she said that this wasn't issued by Nissan? OK. That kind of stuff really hacks me off. E-mail me at and I'll send you something else that might help.

    Nissan Service Bulletin

    Classification: ST99-001
    Reference: NTB00-061
    Date: July 18, 2000

    1999.5-2001 Pathfinder steering and/or body

    Applied Vehicles: 1999.5-2001 Pathfinder (R50)
  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    My e-mail to you got rejected? Try e-mailing me at

  • smithmdsmithmd Posts: 167
    I just realized that I never actually answered your question from #139. Sorry about that.

    The service manager that I deal with at the Nissan dealership mailed a copy of it to me. She got it from Nissan. It was the document she worked off of to get my vibration fixed under warranty.
  • nchelonchelo Posts: 8
    My e-mail to you got rejected? Try e-mailing me at

  • x2guyx2guy Posts: 2
    I've seen numerous posts on this topic. It looks like if you really take the issue to the mat it can be resolved with special balancing. My problem is even though the service techs at the local Nissan dealership (Beaverton, Oregon) acknowledge there is a problem, they say it's not their's and I should pursue this thru the local Dunlop dealer (that's what my Pathfinder came with). The vibration occurs between 20 - 25 MPH and again between 40 - 45 MPH. It's pretty subtle and you have to be driving on smooth pavement to notice it over the vibration from the road surface. There is also a very low frequency hum that comes and goes as the vibration peaks when accelerating or declerating thru the two problem speeds.
    The service manager basically told they were not going to fix this and to go away. His comment was that it's within factory tolerence and no worse than any other Pathfinders on the lot. This may all be true, but this does not fix the problem. My take is Nissan knows about this and does not want to absorb the cost of doing the special balancing. It's on a lease, so I guess I'll just learn to live with it, and then dump the vehicle. This was my first and last Nissan. Too bad such a minor problem could not be remedied, but I just don't have the time and patience to deal with it.
  • meca2meca2 Posts: 284
    Hi x2guy from Beaverton, OR I'm Steve from Sherwood,OR. My 2001F has
    a slight vibration from the rear diff sounds about like your vib. I changed the
    rear and front diffs to syntitic gear lube (amsoil) and most of the vib went away.
  • I am having trouble aligning the low beams on my '01 LE. The lights are too low and even the dealer can't seem to correct the problem. I have on numerous occasions "run out of light" while driving on hilly,twisty country roads on low beam. Has any one else expirienced this problem?
  • x2guyx2guy Posts: 2
    But this is likely wheel balancing. Both the service techs agreed, and we were able to minimize it a bit with tire pressure, but not much. I'm thinking of having the local Les Schwab balance the tires. I figure they probably have better equipment . . .
  • kmrqkmrq Posts: 50
    Hey how is your low-beam lights are low?? is the headlight bolted on differently?? I'm trying to lower my low-beam lights to install HID retrofit, so it won't cause glare to on-coming traffic.
  • Obviously the beam from the headlights can be varied by altering the angle of the vehicle to the road (ie. hitch weight pushing the back of the vehicle down and front up). However, I seldom drive with a load in the back and find the beams too low in normal driving. I think also that the design of the PF headlights has a lot to do with the problem. Any ideas?
  • jecklesjeckles Posts: 87
    How is your conversion working? Someone said the conversion was only about $600, which I think is dirt cheap!

    Can you provide more details and possibly a parts list. I'm hoping to upgrade mine in the near future.

  • meca2meca2 Posts: 284
    Nissan just updated the outside temp sensor. The new sensor has a bracket that must install on the stud next to the pillar where they were orignaly attached. This stud is about 4 inches from the pillar on the drivers side. The new P/N is 27710-31U00 sensor assy and is the same p/n for both auto heat and outside air temp display.
  • plwilliamsplwilliams Posts: 96
    Thank you for the heads up. Do you know if this is the result of our complaints to Nissan? Also do you know if a TSB has been issued?
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