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Nissan Xterra Maintenance and Repair

tidestertidester Posts: 10,059
Got problems? Got solutions? Discuss them here!


  • 2001 Xterra SE 4x4, manual trans, 79,000 miles. I recently failed a California emissions test, about a month after a cracked right exhaust manifold was replaced (probably was cracked after an accident about 1-1/2 years ago). The level of Carbon Monoxide was 10 times the highest level accepted by the California EPA. The tester guy noted that my car computer was reading that the engine was running lean. I had the test done in California last year (also after the accident) for my prior out-of-state registration, and passed without a problem.

    My estimate (which also includes a new O2 sensor and replacing the caps, rotors and plugs) includes SRT resetting, for $333 parts & labor. I don't think I completely understand this, but as the wrench described to me, there are 5 settings in the onboard computer that indicate the function of the various smog-related parts of the engine, and at least 3 need to be set properly or the car automatically fails regardless of the quality of the exhaust output; these switches turn off (from what I don't know) and are apparently there to prevent manipulation of the computer.

    So to make a long question short, what are these SRT settings? Why do they switch off? Is this something I can fix myself?
  • 2001 Nissan Xterra front bumper has faded to 3 differnet color has this happened to anybody else if so what can I do?
    Harlan Hallberg
  • I just bought a '03 xterra about a week ago and I am really disappointed.The interior is so cheap.I went with this vehicle because I was willing to give up luxury for durability....Big mistake. All the plastic and vinyl inside has only a thin layer of color on the surface.You can rub the black color off of the steering wheel with your finger nail!!!Same with the arm rests on the door! WTF!!! I am finding that the seats are so flimsy,any bumpy freeway stretch makes the passenger seat vibrate and rattle just enough to make me crazy.(it only does it when it is empty) I am wishing I had bought an Envoy instead!!! Anybody else have similar complaints?? Why do people say these xterras are so great? I don't get it. Ready to cut my losses.
  • xcanukxcanuk Posts: 372
    Maybe late in the game, but yes, the plastic has been known to fade, most owners end up painting the plastic parts to freshen the look. Otherwise, black to black seems to even out the fade.
    As far as the durability and finish of the X, been in mine for 6 years (almost 7) and its bulletproof... even the interior has held up quite well considering the amount of junk, construction materials and 2 dogs. There was some issue with the seat rattle you mention, but at this time I can't remember what the fix was.
  • I had the same exact problem with the seat rattle, I took it in today and had it taken care of. There is a tsb on it so it will be taken care of for free by nissan (if your vehicle is part of the tsb)? I'll try to explain as best I can, which won't be very technical. Apparently there is some metal rod in the seat that is covered by some piece of plastic near the seat beltbuckle, this is what is causing the noise. They took off the seat and put a screw into the rod. No more rattle. That's about as good as I can tell ya.
  • My 2006Xterra has a horrible high pitch squeak whenever it goes over a bump. We had the front end suspension all oil and lubed, but it is still making noise. Has anyone else experienced this?
  • There is an auction running on ebay for a can of paint to re-color the bumpers and plastics. I know some one who used the product at a local Nissan dealership and they loved it.
  • 06 offroad manual 6 speed (3 months) w/ 7900miles. Clutch went out and is not covered, but get this, the new one is covered for 6 months. $1,100 estimate to fix. I think this is a scam. Plenty of others online w/ same type of clutch problem. I dont care how hard you run a clutch they shouldnt fail that soon. Had a 94 alfa when i lived in Italy that i ran into the ground and never had to replace anything but the radiator and some hoses. First and last Nissan I buy.
  • Where is the fuel meter?

    and the air fillter on the car? :lemon:
  • I purchased a 2006 Xterra SE 4X4 new and the VDC and SLIP lights have come on 4 times already. I actually got it to the dealer the first time while they were still lit and the problem (according to them) was the steering angle adjustment sensor had created an error message. Nissan says to check the connector and if it's good, to reset the code. Well. it has happened 3 more times. It clears itself after a few start-ups. Has anyone hear of this issue before? :mad:
  • petruspetrus Posts: 1
    the same make the same year 13000 miles and clutch is out. even didn't have an opportunity to drive offroad. what I notice is that the smell of clutch showed up after switching into 4wheel regime and back.

    never had automatic transmission, this is my 5th car, can't believe this.

    now trying to deal with nissan directly to have extension of warranty to the clutch. has anyone tried, does it work?
  • krashkrash Posts: 6
    I had the same problem and the clutch replaced under warranty. Could be the dealer and not Nissan.
  • kcuellarkcuellar Posts: 1
    The airconditioning in our 2000 Nissan Xterra has gone out FOUR times, all due to the SAME high pressure hose being faulty. We have replaced this hose three times, each time the parts manager at our local Nissan dealership refrencing how many of these hoses he sells and that it is definately A PROBLEM. Now that we are on our FOURTH time, and having a 8 month old baby w/summer right around the corner, I'M FED UP. Nissan needs to correct this problem and either make a hose that won't break or replace my entire system. After searching the internet, I have found that there are many people just like me, that have all paid and paid and paid to have their AC fixed by Nissan, same hose everytime. Why has there not been a recall?? Not to mention the driver window problem that Xterra owners are all experiencing - us too, and the CD problem, had that one as well. What is wrong with Nissan?? We have owned 7 Nissans - Xterra, 240 SX, Pathfinder, Sentra, 2 extended cabs and a truck. This will be the last one we buy if Nissan does not make this right. I also have a call in to our local news station who has a special segment on this very thing. I am a stay at home wife and mother. I have nothing better to do than to persue this thing until they issue a recall so everyone can finally have their AC permanently fixed or they replace my entire system, free of charge. My local dealership, Hudiberg Nissan in OKC, has been of no help. Seems to be "my problem" and I need to see if "my part" is still covered by a part warranty so they can give me yet another FAULTY HOSE so I can repeat this process EVERY YEAR until I sell this car. Not to mention labor and freon costs that we are out each time. I am extremely frustrated and like I said, I'm prepared to go as far as I need to - this is an obvious problem that Nissan needs to take responsibility for and FIX.
  • I also have a 2006 Xterra Off Road 4X2 and it also has done this to me about 6 times now. I took it to the dealer and told them about it with it's first oil change a few days ago but they were unable to find a code in the computer's history or anything. They told me to bring it back when it comes back on. The next day it came on and my husband took it to the dealer but they blew him off and told him they didn't have time to look at it and the diagnostic computer was currently being used. :mad: After a few key cycles the lights go off. So it is really hard the get it to the dealers when it is on and sometimes it doesn't come on for about two weeks. So this is a hit and miss.
  • I had the same problem! Took it to the dealer 4 times, they can never find anything wrong, told me to come back next time it happens. You can never duplicate it for them!
    I did notice that it only happens in the winter and when the vehicle is cold. If I put it in the garage overnight, it won't happen.
  • mysportmysport Posts: 19
    This just happend to our FY06 Xterra with 7300 mi on it. Stuck on the road. After not getting through to the Nissan assist number and having it towed to the stealership, they said the clutch is not covered under warrantee, hog wash! It's part of the drive train and at 7300 it not wear and tear. Is there a TSB on this? Any way, either the dealers fix under warrantee or they don't it shouldn't be subjective. How did you get them to cover it, do you involve Nissan home office, lawyer? What else isn't covered?

    Many thanks.
  • i had my x aligned about 3 times. wheels rotated also. it seems that it wanders to the right. i must hold the steering wheel at the 11:00 position for it to go straight. when i come to a stop sign i must turn it to the 10:00 position and then at acceleration, it gradually goes straight. i can be in the left lane and it will do this, so the road "crown" is not the problem. has anyone had any wandering problems?
  • I have only had my '03 xterra for five months, it's beautiful with only 40k miles on it. I still can't believe that even the dealership can't make it stop pulling to the right when slowing for a stop. Also , the front passenger seat shakes all over the place on any road that is not smooth as glass. The frame is straight,and the alignment is perfect. What the heck??? Really wishing I had bought the Envoy instead...
  • My Xterra's VDC and SLIP light came on again this week. I live in Arizona and doesn't get that cold. I've had my X since the beginning of December and the first time it did this was right before Christmas. So the lights come on about every couple of weeks. I wonder how many other X's owners have this problem. Maybe it should be a recall?
  • My 2006 Xterra also has a annoying rattle that comes from the back side of the radio. Does any one else have these problems? It seems to only happen when it gets around 80 degrees outside.
  • interesting, i read there is an ac clamp that holds some tube that may be loose on the firewall to cause this rattle. i get a "water dripping sound" after the truch has been wet. it seems it comes from the pass side.
  • mjienckemjiencke Posts: 1
    I've experienced the same problem with my 01' Xterra. Anyone find a cause yet?

    I bought my X with 60K i have added close to 60K in 2 years and the only repair I have made is 2 new leaf springs/shocks in the rear...not even a break job. So I couldn't be happier with the way my X has held up mechanically. The interior however has had the following problems:

    -AC stopped working (recharging makes it work for about an hour.
    -both front seats no longer slide back/forward!!!!
    -first 2 settings on the climate control knob don't work (so heat is always blowing hard on 3 and 4)
    -rear wiper works, fluid does not
    -rear windows slowly dieing
    - E brake doesn't stop it from rolling ever... even in a level parking lot. (only other mechanical problem). Had the cable tightened but it worked for a few days and then stopped again. Even when it did, the break would stick and my X didn't roll very well.

    If anyone has experienced these problems, PLEASE let me know how you fixed them!!!!!!
  • I live in AZ too so mine doesn't get cold. It was kept in my garage. It happened few times for dealer with different codes each time. Same thing it would cycle off after a while. I threatened the Lemon Law and they changed a spiral cable... problem solved. It's been 3 months and it hasn't happened again. Since then I feel so good I just did a 3" suspension lift. :shades:
  • On my 2006, besides the VDC and Slip lights, I needed the caster/camber kit, front tires and new fuel sending unit in gas tank. (the cause for squeaking from the rear at 1/2 tank). Also, I bought the NISMO cold air intake and the bracket broke within 3 weeks! We're all doomed!! :sick:
  • xcanukxcanuk Posts: 372
    I still drop ny here every blue moon, but maybe offer some help

    -AC stopped working (recharging makes it work for about an hour.
    >Sounds like a leak, dealer has to check hoses.

    -both front seats no longer slide back/forward!!!!
    >check for change and other small items in the track, look deep, it might not be obvious.

    -first 2 settings on the climate control knob don't work (so heat is always blowing hard on 3 and 4)
    >the resistor is burnt out, cheap DYI, its behind the glovebox

    -rear windows slowly dieing
    >Yet anohter resistor, but a recal it out on tis one

    - E brake doesn't stop it from rolling ever... even in a level parking lot. (only other mechanical problem). Had the cable tightened but it worked for a few days and then stopped again. Even when it did, the break would stick and my X didn't roll very well.
    > they have to removs the rear drum and super grease the pivot point to the cable, tightening/adjusting is a short lived patch as you noticed
  • bogfuggerbogfugger Posts: 3
    I get to go see my nissan dealer today,I have rust bubbles on a few of the spotwelds on my 2005 exterra/offroad,dont know if it is a paint,or metal issue,just dont think there should be rust on that new of a vehicle,has anyone else seen or have this problem.....mine X is 2005,offroad,4-wheel drive 30000 miles......
  • mwb1mwb1 Posts: 2
    I have actually had the same problem for months since purchasing my new X a year ago. Only last month did the dealer finally find the problem which was a sensor located in the steering column. A hefty expense fortunately paid under warranty. I think there should be extended warranty assuming this might happen again.
  • screech552screech552 Posts: 7
    i have a steering pull problem. was the caster/camber kit for that pulling problem? i was just wondering since i had alignment checked 4 times! i hold the wheel straight and it goes to the right. when slowing to a stop it pulls right. maybe i should go to a tire place.
  • webninja7webninja7 Posts: 4
    it sounds like alignment still. mine never pulled but it was scalloping the tires.
  • I have a daughter with an X-Terra, about 4 years old. She got an estimate for break work that I believe is to replace pads on all 4 wheels. I am uncertain about rotors, don't even know if this vehicle is all wheel disc or not, but I suspect estimate of $750 includes rotor replacement. I have replaced many brake pads and rotors, but never on an SUV. What is the process? Similar to other vehicles in that you remove two bolts on each caliper to remove the caliper and then pads, and then remove the rotors without much further ado? If the rear wheels are drum, remove the drums in the traditional way and then the shoes that will be loosely connected to be removed as an assembly connected by springs? Is there something about the price of parts that makes this worth $750? Any insight will be appreciated. I am trying to determine if I should make a 300 mile round trip to do this myself.
  • kiawahkiawah Posts: 3,666
    Hard to imagine that it would be worth you driving 300 miles and all your drive and fix time. Price sounds very high, I'd have her go another service location. Many many places do brakes. With a 4 year old vehicle, would doubt that she'd really need anything done to the rears. I would expect to do front pads, and replace rotors only if she wore the pads down to wear the gouged the rotors. You can check parts costs where you are (and I don't know the prices for an X-Terra) but I would expect front pad set costs about 30 bucks, and rotors 30-60 bucks each (if needed).

    They're probably quoting to do the rears as well, because they don't know if they'll need anything to replace until they take the wheels off.
  • Thank you.
  • mcwoods2mcwoods2 Posts: 2
    Has anyone tried one of these systems? Is it worth the effort? I am looking for little more power and mileage.
  • rbinctrbinct Posts: 1
    Hi- My first post here!
    When starting and driving my auto trans X after being parked a while, once you hit 15 miles an hour (seems to be shifting gears at this point)there is a clunk in the engine. Only happens once after it's been parked. Dealer svc has greased and lubed everything and tightened a Uclamp and everything else they can find and it STILL happens. Any ideas of what is causing and more importantly- how can it be fixed?
    Thanks so much! RBinCT
  • xtierraxtierra Posts: 55
    i had a similar concern with my 05 xterra, and after reading all the posts on and my dealership explaining that its the computer checking some type of system and you will hear that clinck..sound.. no need to worry. i am at 72,000 miles and everything o.k.
  • xterrablexterrable Posts: 1
    I also have a 2000 Xterra. I had the same hose go out on me a few years back. I took it to a friend who is qualified to work on AC's. (The dealers are certified but pathetic!) But now I have another problem. The compressor clutch started not working intermittently and I figured maybe the freon charge had leaked down to a point where there is just barely enough to allow the compressor to come on. The guys up on the corner put the gauges on and it was low, so I had it evacuated and recharged and by the end of the next day it started acting up again. They said they couldn't find a leak anywhere but noticed the fan wasn't working in front of the radiator. He said the fuses both were good and the relay checks out ok. In fact I swapped the other one myself under the cover with the one just like it to make sure. Then I checked the fuses myself with a meter to make sure. I made the fan come on by connecting jumpers from the plug to the battery terminal. It came on but it didn't spin up at the speed that it normally runs. There are four pins so it's probably a 2 speed motor. I tried different combinations to see if it would run at high speed but no luck. Usually the fan runs when the button is pushed on the dash to turn the a/c on, but there is no voltage at the harness end of the connector for the fan. The dealer lied and said the fan is working ok. It's been 4 days now and I haven't seen or heard it come on yet! They also said the high pressure hose is leaking. I said go ahead and order the hose and I'll have my friend put it on and charge it back up. So they ordered the hose and it looks like the wrong one! We crawled all over the place, under the dash and everything looking for the hose and we couldn't find it, so now I have to make a road trip back to Nissian to get the right one. (That hose ain't cheep either! $155 bucks!)
    I've already given the guys on the corner $168 to charge it, and the dealer $260 to diagnose it, change the oil, and for the hose. So were almost at $400 and we still aren't fixed.
    My friend came by and put the sniffer on the system and couldn't find any leaks. We took the black light and found some dye around the high pressure hose compression fitting but couldn't see any drips or see and feel any evidence of oil around the suspected leak. Almost as though someone smeared dye around the fitting and said, ooops! there's the leak...right there! This whole thing is wearing on my patience. The a/c will never work right until the fan starts turning. Seems to me the dealer boys are too lazy to get out the book and trace the problem back or call their tech support and get some help. As soon as I can find a vehicle that I like better that suits my needs I will trade it in and buy something other than a Nissan. But, in the mean time I need to get this issue fixed. Has any one had problems with the fan. If you found the fix I'd like to hear from you!
  • pete408pete408 Posts: 2
    I have a 2006 Xterra (Off Road Version, 6sp manual, about 13000 miles on it). I've seem the same thing with the VDC/SLIP lights coming on once in awhile. The dealer was useless. They said they captured the condition code but could find nothing wrong. Said to bring it in if it happens again. It happens every few weeks or so. I haven't brought it back yet. I figure if Nissan doesn't acknowlege a problem, I'll just build a paper trail with the dealership in case something big fails later that might be tied back to this problem. Anyone know if Nissan has a TSB open on this?
  • mithunmithun Posts: 1
    Hello all:
    This is the first post for me as I just joined this forum. I have 2006 Xterra 1ith 11484 miles on it and it just started making rattling sound that seems to be coming through glove compartment. I removed all loose objects from my car and after I drive for 20min the rattle sound seems to be coming from glove comportment or somewhere around that area! I tried my best to focus while driving to see where the noise is coming from but could not find the exact location. I took it to dealer today and they said it might be due to hot temperature outside, they put some insulation around AC cables, speaker lines but the problem still persists. It is intermittant now but Ican still hear rattle sound. I will be taking it to the dealer again tomorrow but if anyone had this problem before could you please share information with me?

  • mwb1mwb1 Posts: 2
    I too have an '06 manual - This was one of the most irritating new car issues I have ever experienced. The dealer cannot do anything and each time I went they said the same thing - come back with the light on. But each time the computer would not register. On the 10th visit it finally registered. They found a computer chip in the steering column was faulty. Perhaps you can aim them in the same direction. It would have been very expensive to replace so don't wait too long.
  • pete408pete408 Posts: 2
    I think my dealership isn't too good at this stuff as they said they had the error code captured when I last brought it in. However, they said everything looked good so they reset the code. And, it happens every once in awhile. I just don't have the cycles to drop what I'm doing when the light comes on to race to the dealership at least right now. I wonder if I'll have to leave the engine running as well lest the thing clears itself when I cycle the key. Seems like a common problem Nissan ought to know how to fix. Glad to hear they fixed your issue.
  • I think you are just being picky it sounds like
  • Yes that price is way too much. Try to get someone to do it themselves. The parts don't justify the total cost that's for sure
  • That happens to me all the time even after parking it 8 hours. What the is is the antil-lock brakes self checking itself. That is normal
  • Boris2Boris2 Posts: 177
    Anybody knows where to get a copy of the maintenance schedule for '07 xterra? I suppose I can ask a dealer to fax it to me, but if it's available online somwhere that would be nice. I'm trying to figure out what services needed to be done when and how much it costs and what I should be able to do myself and what I will need to bring it in. thanks!
  • steverstever Posts: 52,457
    Try the Edmunds Maintenance Guide for schedules and what maintenance should cost in your zip code. And check out Where To Find Your Car Owner's Manual Online too.
  • cjs3cjs3 Posts: 1
    I just started having the same problem with my 2006 xterra with 11000 miles on it. Did you find out anything at the dealer?


  • I have a 2006 S with 4500 miles and I get the same rattling sound behind the glove. I also get rattling sounds when my windows on the drivers side is half way down. has anyone experienced this issue?

  • The dealer had no clue what it was. Turns out that it was the rubber knobs on the hood were screwed in too tightly. So after three trips to the shop, they just needed to loosen the rubber knobs that are on the corners of the inside of the hood. No more annoying squeaks.
  • Hi:
    I had rattling on my passenger side window. The dealer just had to adjust something in the power window mechanism. Just have the mechanic test drive it so he can hear the sound. It's all under warranty. Is the rattling sound behind the glove box a squeak or a rattle. I had some squeaking issues but not rattling issues.
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