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Nissan Frontier Maintenance and Repair

nofrillsnofrills Posts: 1
Just bought a 2006 frontier w/the 4.0 v6 and would love to change out the oil(after break in) to synthetic. What oil would be suitable and at what point should it be changed?


  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Owners manual says that Nissan "recommends mineral oil", so be aware if that matters to you. I've used good ol' mineral oil on our previous three vehicles and they've all exceeded 200,000 Miles without engine trouble or excessive oil consumption. I change every 3,750 Miles or so. Synthetic oil is probably fine, but for me, I can't see what it offers for the extra expense.
  • richbf2richbf2 Posts: 73

    where do you see in the manual say that Frontier recommend "mineral oil" I dont see it. What is mineral oil anyway? I been using 5w30. Is it ok? Please advise. thanks
    I hardly think you want to use mineral oil in your vehicle.
    This will void your warranty quicker than using synthetics.
    I've had car and truck engines go 100k + on regular motor oil.The important thing is to change it regular 3-5k miles and you'll be fine.
  • richbf2richbf2 Posts: 73
    Thank you frontier2k7! So 5w30 or 10w30 is fine. I change oil in my truck every 3k.
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    I think that meant "dinosaur oil" as opposed to actual mineral oil.

    kcram - Pickups Host
  • If the poster uses the two terms without forethought I'd not want him or her changing my oil.

    As you said though it could very well be a mix up.
    I was taken back by even the use of mineral oil in any auto application.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Sometimes the term 'mineral oil' is used to mean 'dinosaur oil'. I recall my Honda owner's manual from many years ago specified 'mineral oil' and I too was puzzled. The Honda guy said, "Oh, that's just normal motor oil. Mineral oil is oil from the ground." He was no petroleum engineer, but his explanation satisfied me.

    As far as synthetics, they're fine. However, I always get 200,000 Miles+ on our vehicles using only dino oil and oil burn has never been a problem, so I'll stick with the old stuff and save a buck. Dino works for me.
  • I cannot get the check engine light to turn off! I installed the k&n properly. I had a mechanic install the throttle body spacer. I took it to a nissan dealer and had the computer reset, drove around the corner and the light came on again. Drove back to the dealer, and was told that the spacer must be causing the problem. Could have choked the service writer on the spot. Can anyone help? 2004 desert runner, 3.3 auto, 46k
  • 2001 Nissan pick up running fine, no problem starting then suddenly in the middle of a short errand the needles on all of the gauges started jumping around. The needles shoot up then all the way down and back and forth. I think they are possessed! The gas gauge, speedometer, tachometer and temp gauge and the mileage counter is blinking. I have checked the fuses and cleaned the battery cable. I have also tried switching out the battery with a newer one. No change. It doesn't seem to make a difference if the truck is moving or not. The speed doesn't effect it. Radio, heater, lights etc still work perfect. - Just the gauges. Thanks for suggestions. SWF on a limited income!">
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    The computer must be throwing a code that can be read for a diagnosis. AutoZone and other auto parts stores will often read codes for free.
  • been there, done that. I bought a code reader myself. I really think the code (p505)
    is related to the engine idle speed, being either too high or too low. I have ordered a much more expensive diagnostic reader. In the manual for the truck it points to the idle adjustment screw on the drivers side of the engine below the egr valve. There is a black plastic screw next to another cavity that is covered with melted plastic covering on it. On my previous frontier (4 cyl) the adjustment screw was under the plastic covering. Could I be looking at the wrong screw?
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    I wish I could help, but I don't know anything about the location of the idle speed set screw. I'n my '92 Mitsu, it's on the throttle body and is covered by a rubber stopper.

    Aside from the set screw, idle speed is adjusted automatically on many vehicles by an _ Idle Speed Controller (ISC) when headlights or the A/C is turned on and engine load changes. ISCs often get dirtied up over the years and they fail to perform causing erratic idle. In the case of my Mitsu, it throws an ISC code. Not wanting to pay near $300 for a new one (when cleaning it failed), I just unplugged it when the idle speed was stable and I've been fine. Perhaps you could try the same and at least isolate the problem?
  • Well, I am now a genius. I went back to my old hot rodding days and stumbled on the cure. If this happens to anyone else, take a vacum guage and install it in-line with your emissions system. Remove the two connectors at the throttle position sensor. With the vehicle in neutral, all accessories off, adjust the idle screw until maximum vacum pressure is reached. Turn off the engine, reconnect the terminals to the tps, clear the check engine light with a code reader, drive the vehicle for a day, and there you go. Light has not come back on 500 miles later. It passed texas emissions testing today with no problem. I really think this is only a problem when you combine a cold air intake with a throttle body spacer. They say it can't be done, but let me tell you, My truck runs MUCH FASTER and gets the same or better gas mileage. The only problem is that you cannot keep your foot out of it. I have twice the acceleration with half the pedal now. The performance from 50 to 85 mph is stronger than a v-8 chevy pickup. (there have been several victims) So when k&n tells you that their intake will not work with a throttle body spacer, don't believe it! With the combination, you will be shocked. Plus the whistle from the intake makes people think it has a turbo charger under the hood.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    Great fix badfireguy! Very clever and successful as far as performance too. Happy Motoring!
  • I currently own a 1999 nissan frontier.. There barely any travel in the front suspension with out it bottoming out.. The rear of the truck sits much higher than the front.. 61/2 in from top of the wheel to the bottom of the wheel well.. compared to the 21/2 in in the front.. how is this fixed? Any suggestions would be helpful..

  • The first thing I would do is change the front shocks. My favorite is the Monroe Reflex. an excellent shock that sells for about $45.00 each. It should raise the front end and will last forever. I'm guessing that you do not carry any weight in the bed, because the frontier does not have much spring in the rear. Adding a little weight to the rear will not only lower the level more than you would think, but will actually make the truck handle a little better and give you much more traction.

    Good Luck!
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    My favorite is the Monroe Reflex.

    I second that. I put Monroe struts on my '92 Mitsu six months ago and the improvement in handling is phenominal. It's not a bad d-i-y job and I'm nothing more than an amateur weekend wrench. I "rented" spring compressors (for free) at Advance Auto. I also have the factory service manual and it was a help.

    I'm assuming that the springs are up to specification? They might be weak. I recall seeing an entire assembled strut/spring package ready for installation, perhaps made by Monroe. This'd make the job VERY easy and would give you new springs too.
  • asaasa Posts: 359
    If you have a 4x4, I should have suggested too that you check your torsion bars. If they're tired, your front will sag. These can also be cranked to elevate the front and /or change the spring rate. I've never had a 4x4 so can't give you more guidance on this.
  • Good point! It sounds like a 4cyl. 2wd truck. My last frontier (99 model)
    needed helwig springs and Rancho RS9000 shocks to fix the problem. So, Ryan what kind of truck to you have?
  • Instrument panel guages are not registering. Once in a while they will work correctly but it's just for a few minutes then the needles begin jumping around again. Everything else is working properly (i.e. lights, heater, radio, etc.)
    I would appreciate suggestions for troubleshooting or perhaps a wiring guide. Anything that might help is appreciated.
  • I'm going out on a limb here, but the first two things that come to my mind are:
    1. check the connection from the wiring harness to the main instrument cluster. I have seen the ribbon wiring wear and lose connectivity.

    2. Would you happen to have an aftermarket stereo installed in the dash? I hate to think that an installer would use the first power wire that they came across, but........I think you know where this is going.
    Any nick in the insulation of the wiring can and will cause a short anytime that it touches metal.

    However, I happen to have the entire wiring diagram for my 2004 desert runner that I bought online. It is extremely accurate, and I would be happy to email it to you if you like. I really think that you are going to need a good multi meter and a lot of time to find the problem. Let me know if you would like the electrical schematics, I will be happy to send them to you free of charge.
  • Instrument panel guages are not registering. Once in a while they will work correctly but it's just for a few minutes then the needles begin jumping around again. Everything else is working properly (i.e. lights, heater, radio, etc.)
    I would appreciate suggestions for troubleshooting or perhaps a wiring guide. Anything that might help is appreciated.
  • tobyjtobyj Posts: 1
    Recently, my 4 x 4 frontier electrics went wonky. The fuse for the dome and interior lights kept blowing, and now the Door Open sign is on ALL the time. The inside lights still don't work. I am woried that at some point, all my electrics will short out. Any ideas, anyone? Thanks
  • My 2001 crew cab 4x4 just WILL NOT keep a front end alignment. It might stay aligned for two days but after switching to then from 4x4 it goes awry again.

    I assume it's the alignment: there is a persistent shimmy in the steering wheel between 35 & 55 mph.

    Anyone know of chronic probs on 01 Frontier w/ front end? What else can I check?
  • Thad, the first thing that I would look at would be the torsion bars. If you bend one of them the front end will be very difficult to keep in alignment and could definitely cause the wheel to vibrate. Does it pull to either side if you let go of the wheel?
  • My 06' and 07' frontier do the same thing! My friend is a former ford mechanic he says that is is common for them to do diagnostics on themselves.
    By the way mine does it daily after I turn the key off-- just sit in it for a couple of minutes after you turn it off you will see what I mean!
  • This is common since the 1998 model year (unreliable electronics) in instrument clusters. Don't buy used, expensive with same problems waiting. Call Mr. Wizard or search online, their tel. #1-888-803-8523. Cost @ $199.00 for repair of YOUR cluster assembly. YOU must remove and ship to them for repair. They will provide you with prepaid UPS label for shipping (as they are a canadian co.). Some people say you can drive the truck w/o instruments while it is out for repair, I don't know if this is wise, it's a personal choice.
  • My 98 Frontier truck-auto. 2wd. Keeps dying when I drive it just a short ways. It does it especially when stopped at light and does not seem to like hills. It just stops when driving! I have had many parts replaced to no avail! I am out of money and this truck is my only way to make an income! Thanks in advance!
  • csprafcspraf Posts: 6
    What month is the model year change for the frontier ?
  • moparbadmoparbad Posts: 3,868
    Usually June/July timeframe. There is no set time and it varies depending on inventory and many other factors.
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