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Nissan Altima Maintenance and Repair



  • The most likely suspect is the wheel bearing. Jack up the car so the wheel is off the ground, then see if you can wiggle the wheel, see if it has any play or looseness in it, compare it to the wheel on the other side. If it has any looseness, the wheel bearing has to be replaced. I worked on a 2.5S, but I would suppose that the 3.5 is the same or similar. On the 2.5S Altima that I worked on, it is a large double ball bearing, cost is about $35, but you will usually have to replace the Wheel Hub also, about $153, as the Wheel Hub is pressed into the bearing and the bearing is pressed into the steering knuckle. You usually can't press the old bearing race off the old wheel hub as they are usually froze together. The Hub and Bearing cost just over $200, but the labor is high unless you do it yourself like I did, but you need to have a 20 Ton Hydraulic Shop Press to press it apart and to press it back together. To do this, you must remove the wheel and remove the steering Knuckle from the car. You could also take the steering Knuckle down to a Machine shop, they can press out and replace the bearing for about $40, but they won't have the wheel hub in stock, so you should call the dealer first to be sure one is available in case you should need one. You might get lucky and not need to replace the wheel hub, but most of the time it needs to be replaced.

    If the noise is not from the wheel bearing and the wheel bearing is not loose, then check the drive axles for loosness.

    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • shekharshekhar Posts: 23
    My Altima (94' 160K miles) smelled of gas! One to two minutes of driving would fill the cabin with strong gas fumes. I had to roll down the windows, to stay alive.
    Took it to my trusted mechanic (30 min drive), but he could not pin point from where the gas smell was coming. There was no dripping from any of the lines etc. His recommendation : wait some more for the condition to become worse! (fire in the cabin?).
    Next day morning I opened the hood to find the fuel filter hose was wet with gas! All I had to do was to tighten the hose connector. Problem solved.
    The gas leak was very small. When the engine was hot, it was evaporating very quickly, and therefore remained undetected. Cold engine conditions allowed the wet end of the hose remain and appear wet ;)
  • dbranchdbranch Posts: 3
    My 2007 Altmia 2.5S (about 3800 miles) has had a weird noise coming from under the hood the past 3 weeks. It sounds like something vibrating against a pan...maybe the engine or the fan. The sound only occurs from a cold start and only in reserve and drive. Atfer driving for about 5 minutes the noise goes away. I took it to one dealership last week and left it overnight, they couldn't hear the noise and didn't find anything wrong with the engine and exhaust system when they looked it over. When I got my oil changed today at a different dealership, I mentioned the noise and had them take a look it, and they couldn't find anything wrong either. Has anybody had this problem? If so, what was it and how did you get it solved?

    Misc stuff:

    squeaky brake pedal.

    audio system not picking up much of the signal from my MP3 player when using the AUX IN port.

    rattling coming from the center console storage in front of the gear shift.

    Any solutions to these problems would be apperciated also.
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    if you live in california, it may be this

    link title

    just print that out, and take it to the stealership with you. they just have to make a change to the ecm. shouldn't take more than 15 minutes
  • mm99mm99 Posts: 25
    An update on the "driving through wind gusts" feeling on a 07 Altima 3.5SL at high speeds. The mechanic did not find any fault with the car's suspension, alignment or steering (they also did not see what I'm complaining about when they tried the car on a highway, but that was expected). So I've replaced the stock tires with V-rated Michelin Exhaltos (same size). They are much better in every other respect - stiffer, better cornering, wet road feel, high speed feel - but the "wind gusts" problem did not go away, although it did become tolerable. I cannot decide though if it got better because of the new tires or because of the summer, it seemed like it was more pronounced in cold air - will see in winter.

    I wouldn't buy this car again if I knew of this problem. (Should have test-driven it at higher speeds, too bad the dealerships are not open at night :( Also, should have test-driven an SL that I ended up with, not an SE that they had on the lot, but didn't think that there is a significant handling difference.

    Will get rid of this car as soon as something else as attractive and with better handling comes out.
  • I also had O2sensor and catalytic converter problem w/ my 2000 Altima GXE. Good luck trying to get Nissan to cover problems post-warranty. O2 sensor went 2,000 mi. before warranty expired, and I was told it was not a covered part under warranty by dealership. I paid for it, and was told that my cat. was fine. Two weeks later my check engine light came back on, and they reset it, and ran a diagnositc test. They said it was fine, and sometimes it comes on for small reasons, like gas cap not being on properly. (Which is in the Owners Manual.) It came back on a few weeks later, and I went back to dealership again, who said it was the Cat converter, which would NOT be covered, because I was now 10 miles past warranty. When I complained, and explained to Nissan what had happened, they WOULD NOT cover the repair, and stated that the Cat was fine only one month prior. I WILL not buy a Nissan again (including an Infiniti)because of this. Let me know if the class action comes to fruition.
  • Has anyone else gone through a lot of front pads and rotors on their Altima? I drive often, but I am replacing pads approximately every 13,000 miles? I have tried many different types, and I have had to replace rotors twice due to cracks, and bluing. (Not the technical term, I know.)
  • Search the internet for Carbon Metallic Brake Pads. That is what you want to buy for your car. They will last a very long time, are good enough for racing and they aren't too expensive, maybe $45 to $50 an axle set plus shipping, a very good deal. Google Carbon Metallic Brake Pads. I get all mine mail order. Be sure the rotors are good, replace any cracked or worn ones with new stock rotors. You don't need fancy expensive rotors like drilled or slotted rotors. Save your money and buy good stock rotors and Carbon Metallic Brake Shoes, and you won't be sorry. The CM's will actually make the rotors last longer. My CM's last 65,000 miles on my Explorer, and the rotors are still in good shape. I put CM's on the front of my daughters 2002 Altima at 65,000 miles, it's now at 95,000 miles, the pad linings wore from 11/32" thick to 7/32" thick, which is 7,500 miles of wear for each 1/32" of lining. The usable amount of lining is on new pads are at least 8/32". That means the the calculated and expected life of the linings should be 8 x 7,500 miles = 60,000 miles!
    Try those pads on for size.
    Good Luck,
    E.D. ISF
  • mdjmdj Posts: 1
    Need info, anyone?
  • autojavaautojava Posts: 3
    HI, Guys:
    My car is 1997 Nissan Altima. Does any one know how to disconnect the lever that connect throttle body and accelerator cable brace? This lever has two ball-shaped staff at both ends. I can not figure out how to disconnect it. Since the throttle body gasket has a little leak, it needs to disconnect this lever. Thanks.
  • aniusiekaniusiek Posts: 1
    ok this started not that long ago, I know i have to change my cv joint on the left axle, because it's almost broken into half...but the car was doing fine for a week than it started to squeak, but only when i turn the car on, for few minutes it does it than it stops..whats wrong ???? maybe its the breaks, but they look good ??? PLease help !!!
  • ldoggvtldoggvt Posts: 1
    I am in the process of changing the brake pads on my 2005 Altima, although I have never changed pads before. It appears the calipers can be removed with two bolts and the brakes can be removed with a flat-head. Is this correct? Has anyone had trouble replacing pads on an Altima?
  • taiyutaiyu Posts: 3
    Hi all, i recently just bought a 2003 Nissan Altima and i have noticed that there is some noise from the tire, so i took it back to the dealership, they told me that the tires are actully making the noise and nothing is wrong. then i took it to some mechanical shop, they also couldnt find the problem, they said everything is fine, the bearing is fine and the brake is good. so i am wondering if anyone had experiences like this , thanks
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    it could just be what kind of tires are on the car.. some are deffinitly louder than others. I don't think its a cheap/expensive thing, more with the handling ability. If its just noise (no vibration or pull or anything) then its probaly just the tires that are one it. not that their defective or anything, some tires just make more road noise than others.
  • taiyutaiyu Posts: 3
    Thanks for the advise, the other thing that i noticed that when i go harder on the brake, the steering tend to turn right or left at once position, i am wondering if it has anything to do with the tires noise?
  • tcrawley1tcrawley1 Posts: 18
    I have owned quite a few cars and this one takes the cake for being noisy. The clutch pedal for one has a squeak to it that sounds like a grind, took to the dealership they said it just needs lubrication. The lubrication didn't help so the second time they replaced a spring and lubricated still noise not gone, will keep you posted on what happens this time. The other thing is brakes that are brand new and at 3200mi started sounding like I need to replace them so again back to the dealership, they told me this common on the 2007 Altima and will soon go away it hasn't and now the vehicle has 4500mi. I don't like the fact I have a new car that makes more noise than old cars when coming to a stop. The last problem is one more common the radio reception is fuzzy plus the aux input puts out a weak sound. This is my first and last Nissan I don't like going to the dealership every week to get warranty work done. Anyone else going through this?
  • jd10013jd10013 Posts: 779
    Anyone else going through this?

    nope. my altima has been absolutely flawless. an Ipod on the aux port actually sounds better than the the radio/cd.
  • bill135bill135 Posts: 1
    Is the 95 nissan altima an OBDII or OBDI? Mine has 2 O2 sensors I have read that OBDI uses 1 sensor and OBDII uses 2,But when you look the scan tool in the store or on line it says for 1996 and up. My car was made 11/94.

    Thank you
  • griffe24griffe24 Posts: 1
    As I'm driving, the engine will shut off. If you try to start it up right away, it will turn over, but it wont fire. After a couple attempts, the engine will start, but I have to give it gas in order for it to idle. Then I can drive like there is no problem. Engine light is on though. Once it sits for a while, it will start up again as normal, until the engine dies again. This has happened about 3 times. Does anyone know what would cause this?
  • jack_suvjack_suv Posts: 9
    Hi all,

    Solved the problem. Seems like it was a electronic component thermal regulator or thermo gauge ( a small piece of electronics) which measures temperature to turn the AC on or off. The dealer had the part in his warehouse so seems to be happening quite often. No problems so far after getting fixed.

    good luck to all.
  • latashalatasha Posts: 2
    There are numberous owners of 2002-2003 Altima owners that are having problems with oil consumption. The Sentra that uses the same 2.5 litter engine is also experiencing problems.

    We are trying to get a list of people willing to complain to Nissan about the problem. And yes, the dealerships and the corporate office are aware of the problem.

    Here is an email address if you are interested:
  • jsalz638jsalz638 Posts: 3
    I've been having those exact problems can you tell me if you were able to get them fixed? Specifically the "vibrating against the pan" noise. Thanks.
  • alekpalekp Posts: 1
    It only happens when my fan is on. It may last a split second or 2-3 seconds. The longer duration noises happen on hot and humid day, psssssssst. The sorter on a dryer, cooler day, its more like pss. A noise happens always when starting to move, after the car stood off for a few hours. It always happens when I either press gas pedal or release it. When car is standing no noise is happening. Does anyone have an idea why it's happening?
  • dbranchdbranch Posts: 3
    I've been to two dealerships and they can't "duplicate" the noise. They check everything out and say it looks fine. I'm going to another on Friday, I'll keep you posted.
  • skinsfan3skinsfan3 Posts: 78
    Boy, does all this about nissan make me worried. I had an MR2 which went about 1/4 million miles and hated to get rid of it.(Body rust) I now own a 2003 Altima. I am pleased, so far. I discovered, just like the old days, going to the dealer is generally a waste of time. I recently had a starting problem and my own diagnosis was a faulty generator. 3 different dealers "could not find anything", except when I told them. I was right. One of the dealers, in New Jersey, even told me I needed a new radiator (ye Gods, a potential miracle) and he replaced it under the Nissan warranty, hence he beat them out of money. For your problem, the only random thought I have is to check out your floor mat and make sure that it isn't the culprit sat the pedal. And then, there is always good old WD-40.
  • jsalz638jsalz638 Posts: 3
    Thanks dbranch, I will have my dealership also check it out and keep you posted as well.


    Is the engine suppose to MOVE when you change from Park to Drive or park to Reverse?

    This weekend when I was trying to find that noise and I had someone drive it slowly with the hood opened while I tried to locate the noise because the grinding noise tends to happen at around 1-1.5 RMPs. What I noticed what that the whole engine moves when you change what gear it's in. Is this normal?
  • I found your reply when looking for anyone with this problem and was wondering if you had any other advice since I have checked the switch and have disconnected it and the lights are still staying on. The only thing I can do to keep it from killing the battery right now is to keep it disconnected when it is parked. Any advise or do you think I am going to have to bite the bullet and go to a dealer? I have always done most of my own car work but this is beyond me... oh it is an altima gxe 97 with 102K
    any input would be greatly appreciated
  • Here is one for the books. When the back door behind the driver's side is open for a few minutes, all the doors lock.
    Meaning I had better not forget to take my keys out of the car. Dealer advice, replace an actuator in the door. But, since my car looks showroom clean, I am not letting nyone remove door panels. When that happens, things usually don't fit back together without problems.
  • mz6greyghostmz6greyghost Posts: 1,230
    Door panels are not a big issue if removed and replaced. Dashboards OTOH...

    I'd get it fixed.
  • thanks. I am not drunk enough to try to replace a dashboard.
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