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Nissan Maxima Maintenance and Repair



  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Most likely you have a defective flasher unit.
  • kagedudekagedude Posts: 407
    Whew. I think I found the problem. One of my bulbs is out. I thought it was just a front deflector but its actually a working front side lamp. Thanks for the response.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    Tried to get the road salt off from the bottom of my 03 GLE, I took it to a car wash on Saturday instead of handwashing. I noticed a small leak from the sunroof just above the left edge of the passenger seat. Has anyone else experienced the same? I remember seeing one or two posts in the past regarding this problem, probably from Nissangirl (wonder where she has been). Any suggestions? Hate going to the dealer service.
  • beanctrbeanctr Posts: 99

    You're right about nissangirl mentioning that she had a leaky sunroof. I remember she did get it fixed but don't recall what was done to fix it. I have never run my 02 Max through a car wash, but wouldn't be surprised if it leaked too. The sunroof on my car does not fit flush with the roof. It dips down slightly in the rear. The dealer gave me the response "they are all like that" . . . and that is why I love going to the dealer.
  • lmp180psulmp180psu Posts: 393
    You can try using the "search this discussion" feature to search for Nissangirl's post about how she solved the problem, but I do remember she did take it to a dealer :(
  • 90max90max Posts: 15
    My 02SE is at the dealer today for a number of warranty items, including a leaking sunroof. I agree with the observation that the sunroof does not appear to be flush and instead dips at the rear portion of the sunroof.
  • kennyg5kennyg5 Posts: 360
    I found her post -- it was #6248 on 1/24/2003. She did not explain how her sunroof was fixed, but only indicated that a Nissan engineer said the glass needed adjustment.

    Beanctr -- it appears from your post that your dealer did nothing. How can all sunroofs leak? I also own a 97 GLE with sunroof, and I never experienced any leaks going through the same carwash ... many times.

    90 max -- was your sunroof fixed today? Did you take it to a carwash afterwards?

    Although the leak is small and the sunroof does not leak even when it rains hard or I wash the car with a garden hose, IMO, it looks like Nissan is slipping in the area quality control.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Concerning your last sentence, refer to post # 1288. Some people strongly disagree, but I believe that the quality IS slipping on new vehicles. New gimmicks are being introduced to impress potential customers at the expense of quality and longevity of parts. BS like climate controlled seats is a good example. Unfortunately, this trend appears to be widespread - there are numerous quality complaints even on some new Mercedes Benz vehicles, for example.
  • st_pust_pu Posts: 74
    Dear all, in case of accident with injuries, car detail breakdown or flaw, any other serious problem with your car, please go to NHTSA address and fill complaint form. This way NHTSA will request answer from manufacturer. And makers will fix problems soon, and increase quality of cars.
    NHTSA have great database with various complains about each car I found my Maxima 1999 ignition coils issue there also.
  • 90max90max Posts: 15
    According to the dealer, the sunroof in my 02SE meets factory specs and therefore there is no "fix" to be made. I hand wash the car and don't take it through car washes (I don't think the infamous Nissan paint will hold up well in a car wash). After owning many Nissans/Datsuns over more than 20 years, I have to agree that Nissan quality has dropped. In my view, while Renault has infused Nissan with much needed capital and design improvements, Renault simply does not have the same commitment to quality as Nissan did before its marriage to Renault.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Is this option worth getting? It costs over $ 300 and I found several 6 speed SE models with this option. I can see one on a RWD car, but on the FWD? What would be the real benefits of having this option if you do not drive in snow?
  • greenmaxgreenmax Posts: 47
    is most definitely worth it for a manual tranny Maxima. Get it, you'll thank me when you drive hard, especially on wet roads. Unlike Audi and Honda, Nissan can't seem to get rid of terrible torque steer in the Maxima and V6 Altima.
  • westprowestpro Posts: 1
    Hi Jamie from Toronto Canada here. I had the pleasure of driving my dealer purchased 2000 SE for 8 whole days. I left it parked while having dinner and an hour later came out to the smell of an electrical burn. I tried to start the car but it would not kick in. The dealer told me the whole main brain melted down and he showed me the box. When he opened it, it was charred. Anybody heard of this one. The boys at the dealership said it was a new one to them? The car has 73k km's on it and I'm worried that they will try to stiff me. Paranoid about dealers and manufacturer's I guess. Thanks
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Several months ago Nissan issued a safety recall for 97 and 98 Nissan Maxima vehicles. Reason:

    "On some 97 and 98 vehicles, there is a possibility that the alternator may contain a damaged diode. This could eventually result in an electrical short which may cause a fire in the alternator and could spread to the engine compartment."

    This recall does not involve 2000 model year vehicles and has probably nothing to do with your computer meltdown. However, there is a possibility that you had an electrical short in your computer due to some deffective component, just like a diode in this recall.

    Use this information if it helps at all to convince them that they owe you a new computer. It is bound to be expensive to replace. I assume your vehicle is out of warranty now. 73 K kms is about 45 K miles and the car is three years old. What are the new car warranties in Canada?
  • georged98georged98 Posts: 34
    I have a 2002 Maxima GLE with about 17,200 miles on it. The rear rotors, both rotors, have several grooves in them, unlike the front rotors, which don't have any grooves. The front rotors are smooth. The rear rotors feel like what you would get with worn brake pads. I checked the rear brake pads and they are just fine. They are far from being worn down. Has anyone seen this on their cars??
    Thanks in advance.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Rear brakes on your car provide only about 25% of the total braking force, the rest is done by the front brakes. Shallow grooves on rotors are nothing much to worry about. Do you experience any abnormal braking problems, e.g. chatter, strange noises, pulsing of the pedal? I would be concerned only if the grooves were really deep and there were some abnormal braking symptoms.

    Some time ago one of my coworkers had his front brake pads replaced at a local service station. When he gave me a ride in his car and stepped on the brake, there was this horrible metallic screeching sound. I mentioned that this did not sound right. He replied that the pads are "breaking in". Two days later he came back with one of his brake rotors in his hand. It had a groove in it that went 3/4 of the way through the rotor! The moron who replaced his brake pads put them on backward, i.e. metal plate with exposed rivet heads facing the rotor and the brake lining facing the caliper!!!!!!!! The rotors were completely ruined in no time at all. He could have been killed or kill somebody else in that car, as the braking capability was greatly reduced. Sounds incredible? But it really happened. The morale of the story is that you need to be careful where you take your car for service.
  • georged98georged98 Posts: 34
    reply to p100
    I called the local Nissan dealer and spoke to the service manager. He stated that as long as the pads are not worn and I don't hear or notice anything unusual, I shouldn't worry about it. The car stops without any noise or problems. I guess I am used to a smooth surfaced rotor and since both rear rotors display the same type of groove, I won't worry about it.
    Thanks for your help.
  • bill_lbill_l Posts: 38
    My maxima (gold) was seriously scratched by some kids yesterday. They feel like notches. Anyone knows how to remove those scratches or notches? Thanks.
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    If the scratches are not too deep they can be buffed out by using a rubbing compound and/or polishing compound. You have to be careful not go too far with this, especially when using a power buffer, because you could remove your paint down to the primer. Body shops generally use power buffers and polishing compound to remove minor scratches. The disadvantage for using this technique for deep scratches is that by buffing out the scratches, you are actually removing portion of the clearcoat, which then becomes thin and fails to protect the paint underneath from oxidation. Very deep scratches may require repainting of the affected areas.

    Buffing with an abrasive compound is also used to remove scratches from glass. Typical compound used for this is cerium oxide paste. Interestingly enough, wet buffing with a cork belt does an amazing job polishing glass and removing scratches from it. I have seen this done in glass manufacturing plants.

    Suggest you consult a reputable body shop on the best way to take care of the scratch problem.
  • navednaved Posts: 13
    My 03 Max SE has SES light always on, but it's very dim (only visible at night). It seems to me that I have the same problem as the guy in the post #865. Any ideas/suggestions? Thanks!
  • blh7068blh7068 Posts: 375
    Hey thats me!!

    Yes, My 02 SE(still)has the same problem. I have kind of put it on the back burner because I havent had the time to bring the car in(also no other probs).
    The problem is if the dealer cant see it, nothing will be done. Now that the days are longer it will be next to impossible to bring the car in when the problem will be "visible".

    I happened to run into the new car manager of the dealer whom I purchased from at the local auto show a few months ago. He suggested the following-
    Probably what we should do is call the nissan customer care/service number and explain the issue. He said that this is the best way to get an issue resolved. I feel he may be right. I like the car just fine(paint quality another issue), and not really calling to complain but to figure out the best possible way to get this unusual problem resolved.

    BTW- I think the problem may be a faulty circuit panel.
  • navednaved Posts: 13
    Here is what I found from

    There is a Nissan TSB out for the 'Dim SES Light'. Your Nissan dealer has to call the Nissan tech line and they will authorize a new instrument gauge panel replacement. It is an easy swap out and takes less than an hour to do but they will have to order the part. I have a 2k3 SE and had this problem. Most dealers are unaware of it however and they should call the Nissan tech line. It will become clear to them after they talk to the tech what to do. Nothing wrong with the car however...just a short in the gauge cluster which is one part.

    On a different note, what's your avg. mpg? Any tips you got? I am thinking about K&N air filter... any other mods that you have done?

  • blh7068blh7068 Posts: 375
    Thanks for the info! That should help a lot.

    I couldn't find on that website the actual TSB though. Would you be able to link me to that specific page?

    As for mods...none yet, mine is bone stock...but a K&N filter would be cool. Any paint issues with yours? I didn't do myself any favors by settling for majestic blue(sounded good at the time), but I did not have many choices since it was at the end of the 02 model year. Again, Thanks!
  • ahlinahlin Posts: 30
    About ten days ago the light came on and my 2000 GLE maxima began missing,vibrating,shaking, etc.Later in the day it stopped and the car ran smooth with none of the above problems. it has been running with no problems since. However, the service engine light is still on. The dealer says it will cost $79.00 to plug into the diagnostic computer to see what the problem may have been. They say it probably will not show anything now that the car is running fine. Anyone out there have this problem? Will this light go out on its own?
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    If I were you, I would have the diagnosis done for the peace of mind. It could be an intermittent minor problem, but could be the beginning of something that may leave you stranded on the road. Also, I believe that the light has to be reset to go off if the problem is not eliminated and it may come on again. I have seen people with old cars ignore the engine light and drive for years. This was entirely possible with cars like the 83 Pontiac Boneville which had computer controlled carburetor. If the computer failed, however, the car would merely revert to a fully rich mode and keep running. The only penalty was a slight drop in fuel economy. This is no longer the case with new cars that rely on multitude of sensors to feed the information into the computer, which then controls timing advance, injector pulsing, etc.
  • alexjr1alexjr1 Posts: 19
    I have 99 gle with 48,000 miles, I bought it about 3 months ago and I love it I love everything about it but a couple days ago I started to notice this groaning noise when i go really slow. I was wondering if anyone could explain what it is and whats the proper way of fixing it.

  • plaxcoplaxco Posts: 3
    Do any of you mechanically inclined know what happened to my car? I was driving along to work on a highway at a leisurely clip of 70. I started to notice a slight feeling of the car lurching - or more likely losing power for fractions of seconds. Then I noticed the car was losing power, causing me to press the peddle down more. After about 6 miles I was pulling into town and started hitting stop lights. The engine idled roughly and I needed to really press the peddle down. I could hear the engine revving up but there was very slow acceleration. It wouldn't go above about 20 miles per hour. By the time I got into the parking lot at work I could tell it was a goner. I turned the engine off and then back on. It wouldn't stay on. I had it towed to a Nissan dealer. They inspected it and said that, whatever happened, it had lost adequate compression in all cylinders. (BTW, I have had the car for about 8 years; it worked like a dream, and there was a total of 164,000 miles on it when it died.) It accelerated wonderfully -- and I swear -- it took just 15 minutes for it to go to it's maker. I towed it to a second mechanic in my home town, who I have trusted with the car for the last 8 years, and he gave the same diagnosis. No one knew just what happened to it. And it's not worth going inside the engine, apparently. I was baffled because if it was the rings or valves I wouldn't have expected them to all go at once. I loved that car. --------
          And don't feel too sad for me, I just bought a superb looking 2002 SE that is a gorgeous silver. Not that I'm fickle but . . . I love it too. Oh the shame of it.
  • My 00 SE SES light came on about a week ago and I decided to take it in. It cost $42 to code check it in the computer and they came back with both rear O2 sensors were bad. They were wide open with no response. This could never be a major problem but why take the chance. The final bill was $397. Good Luck...
  • p100p100 Posts: 1,116
    Oil pump failure could account for this series of events. Did your oil pressure warning light come on at all? Another possibility is that your engine was was badly gummed up internally and that critical oil passages got completely blocked by crud. I know somebody whose engine (GM 350 engine in this case) quit much the same way as yours because the oil passages were completely blocked off with parrafin or similar crud. What kind of oil did you use in your car?
  • plaxcoplaxco Posts: 3
    Reply to p100: The oil pressure light didn't come on. No warning lights ever came on. Neither of the mechanics mentioned a problem with the oil. The car has been having oil changes religiously every 3,000 miles. I don't know the oil that was used, but the auto clinic I have taken it to has been consistently rated highly by drivers in the northern Virginia area for years (Wiygul in Alexandria). None of the mechanics wanted to go further into the engine. The minimum for fixing it was estimated at $4800. So I decided to apply that to buying the 02.
       The mechanics report says they checked the spark, fuel filter, fuel pressure, "broke down everything and removed front cover/ T-belt and valve timing good, cams OK, performed dry compression test - no pressure in any cylinders, performed wet compression test - varied readings in cylinders (90-140 psi). Probably bad piston compression rings." The second mechanic, at Wiygul, said they found the same compression problems, but couldn't definitely say what it was due to without going further into the engine.
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