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Nissan Pathfinder Transmission Problems

I have an 06 does anybody hear whinning in transmission when get going tranny fluid is full truck has 68000. miles.


  • 145K total miles. I had major service 6K ago, including transmission flush. Dealership replaced leaking front differential pinion seal at that time. Occasionally the tranny has been a little balky or delayed about shifting into overdrive at highway speeds (70 & up). Last night, vehicle simply would not shift into overdrive above 65 mph. Pulled into gas station to check things out, found the tranny fluid was about 1.5 inches above the full mark and tranny fluid all over the bottom of the tranny case. After sitting about 10 minutes, there was a dinner-plate sized puddle of tranny fluid under the truck. Got towed back to the house. No fluid at all under the truck this morning. ???
  • the transmision on my 1997 pathfinder went and I took it to a garage and had a used one put in. When I picked up the vehicle I noticed it had a very bad vibration in it and after driving it about 30 km there was a loud bang and the transmission broke (no reverse) I took it back to the garage and they put another transmission in it . the car still vibrated and the mechanic never made a comment when I mentioned it . I took the car home and when driving to work he next morning the exact same thing happened. What is wrong here??? I can't afford to put yet another trasnmission in this car, I had to pay over 800$ in labour each time in addition to the transmission , what could be causing this to happen? I was not driving more than 70 km each time it broke.
  • The problem most likely(but not positive) lies with the cooler in the radiator not allowing adequate cooler flow...the garage should make sure that the flow is at the very least 1 quart per 20 seconds, if not it will damage the unit that is installed very quickly.
  • crh84dalcrh84dal Posts: 1
    I have a 95 pathfinder that the reverse just went out on. The rest of the gears work fine. I heard there maybe a band or belt (something that can be adjusted) that I can get to if i drop the pan. Does anyone know what I'm looking for and how to adjust it if there is one?
  • Hi all,

    I am at wit's end. My brand new 2008 Path was doing fine for the first 2 months. However, for the past week, I have been experiencing the following problem:

    1. Problem: Delay when shifting from Reverse to Drive on upward slope

    When the vehicle is on a street that is sloped upward, and after backing up I shift from Reverse to Drive, the vehicle will continue to roll backward (downhill) as if it is in Neutral for a few moments before it changes to Drive.

    2. Problem: Delay when shifting from Drive to Reverse on downward Slope

    When the vehicle is on a street that is sloped downward, and after driving forward I shift from Drive to Reverse, the vehicle will continue to roll forward (downhill) as if it is in Neutral for a few moments before it changes to Reverse.

    3. Problem: Delay when shifting from Drive to Reverse or Reverse to Drive

    When the vehicle is on a street that is level and not sloped, and I shift from Drive to Reverse or Reverse to Drive, the vehicle may not roll due to the lack of a slope, but it will have a delay as if it is in Neutral for a few moments before it changes to Reverse or to Drive.

    The mechanic at the dealership said that this issue is 100% normal and that his personal Pathfinder does the same thing. He says it was okay until now because it was not yet broken in.

    Is it true that this is typical or is it in fact a transmission problem?

    (note that once the gear is engaged there is no rollback, it is only in the first few moments after switching from Reverse to Drive or vice versa.)
  • esksesks Posts: 2
    Have a 2005 automatic pathfinder,97000Klm it seemed to be missing at about 80KPH or chugging when shifting into 4th gear. I just went to dealer and found out that the radiator is leaking into my transmission causing the trany to slip and I will have to replace rad and flush trany with Nissan J Matic fluid (no other type will work- very expensive) possibly up to 3 times Bill C$2000+. Has anyone else run into this problem and is there any other solutions less costly. Is there any possibility that once fixed the trany could be damaged and I will then have to spend additional $$ to replace?
  • same thing happened, supposedly changed transmission, but now 25K miles later at a small local shop in Los angeles, california, tranny shifts are into 2nd into 1st, some times get stuck in 3rd/ 4th gear..

    also when i restart, it shifts normal for a day or 2...

    i had the IDPM controller changed right after this, nothing but trouble, warranyts out,
    $700, caused the car not to start or stall after 5 mins

    i ihave over 112k miles.. [non-permissible content removed]..
  • My 93 pathfinder has no third gear. (Shifting) 1st, then second, then when third is supposed to hit, it just free wheels. I built the transmission under two years ago, I really doubt it's the clutch packs. Any ideas? Because I really don't want to have to pull it out again! It's four wheel drive and a total pain in the @$%! :mad:
  • This also just happened to my 2005 Pathfinder with 50k mi. I'm having the transmission rebuilt and radiator replaced for almost $3000. Dealer said not under warrenty and wanted $6-8K to replace transmission. Icalled Nissan USA and after making me wait 2 days, they said I was SOL. Earlier this year I had to have the fuel sensor in the gas tank replaced too. Total piece of crap. My first and last Nissan.
  • TarpedTarped Posts: 1
    I have 05 pathfinder with 85,000 miles and it is vibrating and stuttering on shifts around 45 -55 mph and 2000rpms. The tach jumps and around and if you back off throttle it will make the shift. I've been told 3rd gear is the weak point in these trannys but your comments and others about radiator leak into tranny fluid concern me as well. What was the outcome of your radiator fix and change of tran fluid.

  • Before you start worrying yourself over the transmission, It might be your TPS, that is the throttle positioning sensor. Comes off with two tiny screws. Real easy to get to. If you have an ohm meter you can actually test it first. See how much one costs, might be worth it to change it anyway. And third gear? Yeah, I have my transmission out right now for third gear. Oh well, at least I can do it myself! Good luck!
  • almattialmatti Posts: 164
    I did the complete 4WD service: change the tranny fluid, filter, all the differential oils [there are 3 of them], at 60k. I have 113k now. Time to do it again?. I do notice lately a slight "delay" when shifting into drive from reverse. How many people use the OD off when driving around town?
  • esksesks Posts: 2
    Well , it was the rad leaking into the transmission and after spending $2300 to have the rad changed and the transmission flushed with the Nissan fluid (took over $800 worth of fluid to clean)I got it back and it still was slipping slightly so the Dealer worked with Nissian and they replaced my Transmission under warranty (amazing) and the dealer refunded me $600 of the $2300 I spent. Every thing seems to be fine now. Truck is running real nice. If anyone has this problem get your dealer to approach Nissian for you and see what they can do. I was probably just fortunate that I have been dealing with the dealer for a while and have another Nissan that I take there as well which may have worked in my favor. Good luck
  • My wifes 2006 Pathfinder makes a clinking noise when she transfers from 2WD to 4H but no noise in Auto. Am I looking at replacing the entire transfer case? Or replace a part or 2 in the case? Have not taken SUV into shop as yet. Any input would be appreciated. jb
  • xtierraxtierra Posts: 55
    thanks for posting your problem... this will help other owners check their tranny fluid all the time to avoid going thorugh that problem.... dealer should have re-funded all of your money since its a problem with a batch of radiators that where installed on the 2005 models.... you might want to write a letter to nissan and see what they say... remember .. they are not going to offer any re-fund untill they get a certified notarized letter that will cause them to want to avoid any legal matters in court....
  • Just remember auto is only for when the computer senses a slip in the rear and at that point it will engage the 4wd. When you select 4h you are actually engaging 4wd until you un-select it, auto is just a nice feature for when you are driving in conditions where it's not always slippery that way you aren't running your 4wd on a non-slick surface b/c that can damage your x-fer case and such. I don't think you have a problem unless you meant something else in your post.
  • I just got my quote back from Nissan for $4,500.00 for a new tranny + tax and labor of course. 3 months ago I had the radiator replaced for around $1,000.00. It is the '05 Pathfinder with just over 104,000 on it. So much for thinking that I would get 200K out of it without any problems. It was making the same studdering and shifting vibrations prior to replacing the radiator that others have described in here to the T. We also had the tranny flushed and all fluids replaced. Nissan dealer recommended another round of cleansing if we noticed it again. Well, I'm noticing it alright and my wallet is now making the shuddering noises. My wife is an attorney so, I'll let you know how this one rolls out. It's her car and she is not gonna be happy about it....No she won't.
  • almattialmatti Posts: 164
    jbaumer: Don't fool around with this. See my earlier inquiry to this forum. I delayed checking the 4WD system fluids and in fact should have had the entire drivetrain inspected - sure enough last week, 1st week of March, my 2001 Pathy LE 4WD with 113k miles comes up with a serious vibration. Been to 3 different shops and Dealers. First diganosis : Transfer case damage (infiniti Dealer + a long laundry list of other things); another mechanic says U joints and driveshaft - maybe xfer Case; third mechanic: could be U joints BUT xfer Case noise was detected too. I've posted the problem another thread. The vibration is only really detected at 45+ mph, its smoother at 70 mph but still vibrates, then the vibration increases again 60-45 mph, then totally smooth as soon as you hit 40 or below??. Can't get a straight accurate answer. I'm not about to go spending all sorts of $$$ to "experiment" with various part changes. IMO, Change those fluids: x-er case oil, center & rear diff fluids; tranny fluid and filter... remember too they MUST speciifc Nissan Fluids!! No more TRUCKS for me, you don't need them anyway, unless you are a True Off-Roader.
  • buyamericnnow

    I'm with you! Thought Nissans were supposed to last! I have a 2005 Pathfinder, 93,000. Currently in the shop. Just found out that radiator fluid leaked into the transmission. Since it was internal there were no warning signs that anything was wrong. Transmission rusted out. Now I am replacing the transmission and radiator at a cost of $3,7000.
  • xtierra,

    How did you hear that there was a problem with a batch of radiators installed on 2005 models? I would love to get this information to see if I can pursue any kind of refund from Nissan. I'm replacing my transmission and radiator for a cost of $3,700 on my 2005 Pathfinder for fluid leaking from the radiator into the transmission. Rusted the wrong thing. No warning signs this was even happening until it was to late.
  • boonissan

    When you say there were no signs until it was too late what was too late? Did you stall out? I am experiencing the same studdering issues between 40 & 60 mph I also have the whining sound which started first. This has been going on for a few weeks now. I would like to get as much info on this as possible. If I have to bring my pathy in soon then hopefuly a fluid flush will fix the problem but as I read through all of the posts I can see that it may be much more than I can afford.
  • gunblupathy,

    When I stated there were no signs until it was to late. I meant that the truck started downshifting. I also experience the truck not moving without pushing hard on the gas when I stopped at a traffic light. This started about a week before I took it into the transmission shop. It wasn't happening very long. That's the first signs that anything was wrong with the transmission. The truck has been in the shop now for a week and half. So far they replaced the transmission, radiator, pump and now some electronic wiring. I would have thought there would have been some warning sign with the leak in the radiator. From what I understand the leak cause the antifreeze and the transmission fluid to mixed. So the truck did not overheat or did the antifreeze level ever read low. The only way they can tell if the fluids are mixing is by the color. This leak cause an extreme amount of rust throughout the transmission and beyond. The shop can't believe I drove it as long as I did.I would take your truck in asap to have it checked. Maybe you can save yourself from as much damage as I had.
  • xtierraxtierra Posts: 55
    i read a post on either under pathfinder or xterra.... one tech mentioned that a batch of the radiators on 2005s had a defect. thus causing the internal leak into tranny.

    i have been checking my tranny fluid every week just in case, since i cant afford to replace a tranny. i am at 107,000 miles.

    person that posted the tranny/radiator problem was a female driver with no off road time on her nissan
  • vehicle jerks left when i let off the gas and the right when i step on it. once i reach cruising speed the vehicle will jerk left and right violently.
  • I just want to know if anyone has had the same problem, I can't seem to figure out what it is. I had a four wheel alignment done and I'm thinking of replacing the shocks.
  • It has been my experience in automobiles, that radiators seem to start leaking right around 100,000 miles. (plastic radiators) Although the internal cooling coils for the transmission fluid may vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, open your hood occasionally and smell for a sweet smell. EASY indication of a coolant leak. I don't know what the tranny cooler in those radiators are made of, mind you, but a radiator is sure alot cheaper than a transmission! Good luck!
  • How can your transmission 'jerk left'? Are you talking about steering? How many miles?
  • Well, $4,000 dollars and a week and a half later I have my newly "rebuilt" transmission. If you are having this radiator problem being described your transmission will be ruined and need to be replaced or rebuilt. I have had it done for about 3-4 weeks now and just yesterday I noticed the oil leak on my new garage floor. It is going in today for a 30 day inspection to keep warranty up on the rebuild so I imagine they will tighten it up to stop the leak. All in all it is working fine with a few whines and ticks, but it is much tighter than it was.

    Prior to the rebuild it started banging into every gear and on the way to Nissan the OD went out so it was just a matter of time before it would have crapped out. The mechanic told me that it when this happens it gets really hot. The fluid pressure dropped which made the clutches not work properly etc etc. Its a bad deal really.

    Anyone have any luck getting Nissan to fork over someting for pain and suffering here?
  • To add another statistic to your wife's case, I too had an identical problem. The only symptom was a subtle shuddering sound at 40 & at 60 MPH. My 05 Pathfinder had only 65000 miles my dealer confirmed that the radiator had leaked coolant into the transmission. My choices were $5400 to replace radiator and transmission, or $1000 to replace radiator and flush transmission, with no guarantee that the transmission would last very long. My dealer made promises to help out, but the help was weak, at best. After a painful, weeklong round of voice mail messages with a Nissan North America "Regional Specialist", whom I was never able to speak directly with, the verdict came back "NO" to any financial help. The best they would do is a extended warranty service plan if I purchased a new Nissan.
    Needless to say, after owning 4 Nissans, I have moved on. I traded the Pathfinder at a $6000 loss, and would find it difficult to ever buy another!
  • medusanmedusan Posts: 5

    we have just had this occur with our 2005 Pathfinder. I was wondering how you managed to get the transmission replaced under warranty. Ours has just hit 61000 miles, was yours under the 60000 mile warranty limit ?

    Shame our Nissan Main Dealer did not know about this - they just spent $1400 on changing the rad and fluid, then found out the reverse did not work - they contacted the Nissan Central Tech Specialist who told them it needed a new transmission - another $4000 - interestingly we also had the fuel gauge sender unit replaced which i noticed is another common problem on 05's !

    Would really like to see if we can get the transmission done under warranty - anything you can provide to help us out will be greatly appreciated.

    Should something like this not be covered under a recall ? :sick:
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