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Nissan Altima Maintenance and Repair



  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,718
    Get a third opinion. If the engine is damaged due to lack of oil, it was caused by the bad oil change at the first dealer, and they should pick up the tab.
  • Thanks! That is what I am going to do. With my husband on an overseas assignment, I am clueless. The car has been maintained well - oil change every 5K miles, and maintenance every 30K miles, etc. It is hard to believe that the engine is dead, since it was running so well all this time.
  • I cannot believe that no one out there has this same problem. Did I describe the problem wrong? Is it that there is no fix? I expected some comiseration at least
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,718
    None that I am aware of. You could wire the socket directly to the battery, being sure to include a fuse, but I wouldn't recommend it. In my experience, the retained 12v power tends to be a "feature" of American and German brand cars, but it's switched on the Japanese ones (with a few exceptions). There are good reasons for doing it each way...
  • I had the same problem with my 2000 Altima about 2-3 years ago. The 2 drive belts were replaced and I haven't heard anymore squealing.
  • dballdball Posts: 15
    I know this is the buying experience forum, but this has to be made known. I bought a pristine 2002 satin white Altima 3 weeks ago. I live in Daytona, but I don't trust Daytona Nissan since they pull every dirty trick in the book. (Like taking floor mats out of all pre-owned cars so they can charge you for them or telling me my wheel vibration is a feature of having the 2.5 engine) Less than 2 weeks after purchase, my car was backed into in the parking garage at work. The man was nice enough to leave his card on my windshield, and after the estimates showed $900 worth of damage, he claimed it on his insurance. Anyway, went to Deland Nissan and visited one of the service reps. Told him I did not trust Daytona to service my car or fix the body damage, he immediately tells me he will write the estimate over the true amount so I can pocket some money!?!? Soooo, on I go to Bill Ray Nissan. Looked here on, BBB web site and a few others and didn't find any bad feedback. I take my car in Wed morning. The body shop Mgr. tells me he'll get the rental car all set up. Well, I end up waiting a half hour at Enterprise because he fails to do so. When I approach him about it, he laughs... No apology, sorry sir, nothing. Well I'm already getting that "this is gonna be a hassle feeling." I also requested to have two recalls, two service bulletins and a road force balance done while the car was in the body shop. (Bumper and left rear quarter panel had minor damage and need to be repainted) I called Thursday morning at 7:40 Am to talk to body mgr about an invoice for the tail lamp replacement that I had already paid for. The receptionist took a message and said he'd call me. At noon, I still had not been contacted. I then called the body mgr and asked him about the invoice, he told me the car was ready. Now let's keep in mind the satin white is a three sage paint that supposedly takes 2 days to paint and cure. Feeling suspicious, I pay a surprise visit to inspect the car around 1 PM that same day. Well, not surprisingly, the paint job is a joke. They didn't fix the damage, just painted over it. Not only that, but there are lumps in the paint and blue threads of lint in the clear coat. I haul the body mgr out to show him and again, no apology, just an okay, we'll fix that. I called the insurance company and let them know what was going on, just in case Bill Ray submitted to them for payment. Now we go to Friday. I call service dept at 7:50 to find out results of tire balance. Again leave message with girl, again no call by noon. I call back, get the service guy, and he says he never got the message. (Do we see a trend here?)He tells me all recalls, service bulletins and balance is complete, and that they road tested the car. (Remember the road test part as it comes in play later) Service transfers me to body mgr and he says car will be ready by 3 PM that day. Now when do you suppose he was going to call me?? 2:59 PM? It's already noon! Well I arrive at 3PM expecting trouble and I'm not to be disappointed. The damage has been fixed, but the lumps and lint are still in the paint! I call the body mgr out to show him, and he swears the can sand it and buff it. Now I'm not a painter, but since when do you sand down to the metal or plastic base and buff something? The dirt is covered by paint and the blue lint is in the clear coat! Anyway, he brings his paint guy out to look, a man that apparently just crawled out of a hole in the ground! I say hello to the painter and he says nothing back. I say hello again and he still does not mutter so much as a grunt. He asks "what’s the problem," and I start pointing out all the lumps in the paint. I get to the fifth lump and he says, "YOU DON'T HAVE TO COUNT HIGHER THAN FIVE, THE THING NEEDS TO BE REPAINTED," and walks away. I ask him, were you talking to me? but he just keeps walking. The body mgr is next to me so I ask him, "was he talking to me?" The body mgr says he thinks he was talking to him. Oddly, I was doing the counting, not the body mgr. Body mgr tells me they can sand out the bumps, but will have to repaint due to the various lint pieces in the clear. Well I call the insurance co back and they tell me to take the car, and they'll have a rep meet me next week to look at the paint job. I drove to the front of the store and went to find the service mgr, who is over the body mgr. I catch him in the service advisor bay, walk up and introduce myself, shake his hand and ask him if he has a moment as I need to talk to him. He says yes, and proceeds to stand there looking at me. No, come inside, let's step into my office, nothing. I get another stone face. (I sell consulting services and have for years. If I acted like these people, I'd be homeless by now!) Sooooo, I suggest we take it inside and what do you know, we go to his office. I tell him this whole story and he is not rude, but appears rather unconcerned about the whole event. I have still not received ONE APOLOGY from anyone at this dealership, INCLUDING the service manager. Regarding the painters antics, He tells me that "that's why they keep those guys in the back." Service mgr looks at bumper, and tells me it can ALL be sanded out. Now this is a direct contradiction to the body mgr’s statement. When I tell him he's contradicting the body mgr, he is unfazed. He takes my number and tells they'll get in touch with me next week to have it back in for repainting. I get in the car, pull out of the drive and do a u-turn to head home. I took the car in with a 1/4 tank of gas, but now I have about a 1/8 left. I think it's odd, then I look at the trip meter that was reset do to one of the recalls obviously needing the battery to be disconnected when I notice the car has been driven 50 MILES!! Now that's one heck of a test drive!! Bottom lines, these people lie, have the worst customer service, are unapologetic and had two opportunities to paint my car right and failed. Top it off with the 50 mile joy ride and I'm NEVER going back, will post this here and cc the owner of the dealership, tell all of my clients, and inform the BBB and State Farm Insurance, which claims this as an "Authorized State Farm Repair Facility." I hope this helps all those here in Central FL.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,718
    I also had a less than satisfactory experience with one of State Farm's body repair facilities. Same exact thing--acknowledgement of the problems I pointed out, but no apology, ever. It's not what they imply--the body shops just sign up for it, and then they're "certified." State Farm has the power to make the original shop pay to have it fixed somewhere else, but they rarely exercise this power.
  • greatdeals_007, the noise in my car (different model - 2005) is like a loose piece of metal. I only notice it when I move my foot, and not always. Never notice it when just driving. It is apparently the rear heating duct work, which seems strange. It may be same for your car, and they say nothing wrong, which is true, just part of design.
  • I've been having a few problems lately with my car. The first problem is that the driver seats squeeks whenever the car goes over bumps. Has anyone had any problems with squeeking? The passenger seats seem to be fine. Another problem I've been having is a whistling noise when driving high speeds (60 mph). It appears to be in the driver side near the mirror. Anyone encounter anything like this? And lastly, my front left tire seems to deflate often. I constantly have to put air in it. I've taken it to the service dept. to have it looked at but they can't seem to find a problem with it.
  • dballdball Posts: 15
    **UPDATE** Here it is Monday night, and even though the body manager and the service manager, (who is over the body dept.) both told me they would call me today to get the car back in and corrected, I never got a call. These people are THE worst! Even if they did call, I wouldn't have taken it back.
  • My 2003 Nissan 2.5s is making a noise on one of the belts on the passengerside. It started out as just a regular belt whining and then has now gone to a noise that sounds like a bearing that needs grease or something. It only makes then noise when cold over night. Once warmed up it is fine. I called the dealership and they stated that in the Nissans they have noticed that noise in other cars and have discovered in most cases it is the fact that that the power steering fluid is low or leaking. I always check the fluids and they are fine. Dealership said that you need to warm the car up then check the fluid and fill it up just a little above the warm full mark. only about a 1/4 of an inch or so and then it takes care of that noise. He said if that does not do the trick then let him know and they will check out the system. Anybody else have this problem on there Altimas and did you hear the same thing.
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,718
    On mine, there is no discernable difference in power steering fluid level when the fluid is hot or cold (it stays full all the time). Belt noise is usually due to a worn out belt or tensioner or pulley misalignment (rare). Seems to be fairly common on these cars. Mine makes a very faint chirping on a cold start, but after that it's quiet (mine's a 2002 2.5s with 50,000 miles, for comparison). I haven't done anything yet and won't until it gets more bothersome.
  • Can anyone tell me how to reset the service engine light on a 2000 Altima GXE?


  • I have a 2001 Altima GXE and I have an intermittent antifreeze leak. I've had a couple of different people take a look at it and no one seems to be able to tell where it's coming from. It only seems to happen when the weather starts getting cool and the car has been sitting parked for a few days. I first noticed it last fall (2003). Took it to a mechanic, he said he could only see a little trace of green and he tightened some hoses. I didn't really notice it after that. Went all spring and summer and didn't notice anything. Now as of late Oct. (when it started getting cool), it's happening again. There seems to be more leaking now than last year because when it does happen there is a puddle on the ground, and now we can clearly see where it has dripped down onto the transmission below. But it doesn't do it after the car has been running so whenever I take it to someone they can't tell where it's coming from. I thought it might be a hose, but there aren't any cracks or holes in any of them so the guy I took it to today said he doesn't think that's it. This is driving me crazy! The car isn't overheating or anything, but I want to catch the problem before it gets to that point. Has anyone else experienced this? Do you think it might be a bad gasket? Thanks in advance for your input.
  • This past Monday, I purchased a 2005 Altima 2.5 SL and one of the perks in the vehicle was heated seats. Well, the weather here in Charleston, SC has been pretty cold and those leather seats are really cold in the morning. When I flip the switch to activate the seat heating mechanism, the light comes on as if the system has been activated -- but the seats never heat up. As this is a relatively small item, covered by warranty, I am not in a huge rush to get to a dealership to have this looked at (after all, who wants to spend 3 hours in a dealership service waiting lounge during the Holidays). However, I am a bit disturbed by this. Could it be that I am missing a simple step??
  • adradr Posts: 3
    Regarding the warranty...I purchased a 2.5 sl and paid $775. for the gold preferred 60mths/100k.
  • adradr Posts: 3
    I recently purchased a 2.5 sl. The air and heat unit whistles when the unit is on auto or when the unit is on manual blowing from medium to high at any temperature. Any similar problems.
  • That part number would really help me. If you have it or can get it easily, it would be greatly appreciated.


    Thanks in advance,
  • adradr Posts: 3
    I recently purchased a 2005 2.5 sl. The dealer is presently attempting to order a blower unit that is on backorder idefinitely. Thanks for the headups. Perhaps, I will inform Nissan not to order the part because it won't fix the problem...and I won't have to wait 3-6 months for the part.
  • domvdomv Posts: 2
    I recently purchased a 2005 Altima 2.5S. When I go and sit in the car I hear a squeaking noise. Has anyone experienced this.
  • domvdomv Posts: 2
    My 2005 ALtima 2.5s feels like its pulling to the left when I am driving. Its only 2 months old. Does anyone have the same problem or a solution. I have a 1996 Sentra with 255,000 miles on it and never had a problem with it. Has the quality at Nissan decreased over the past couple of years?
  • corvettecorvette United StatesPosts: 5,718
    It's not uncommon for a car to be delivered with the alignment messed up. The warranty covers adjustments for a limited period of time (not 3/36), so get it to the dealer and have it checked out. You might check the air pressure in your tires first, if one is low that might be causing the problem.
  • alpine1alpine1 Posts: 51
    I had a similar antifreeze leak with my 1999 Altima GXE. The problem was with the hose connections and clamps. It leaked in cool weather, but was O.K. in warm weather or when the engine was warm. Tightening down on all the hose clamps seemed solved the problem. And they had to be tightened several times. Each time a clamp was tightened the rubber, in a few days, would compress allowing for a leak. I suggest to keep tightening all the hose clamps.
  • my 98 altima ate through the outside edges of its front tires in a year and a half due to bad alignment from factory. i got a firestone lifetime alignment, well worth the price. the toe adjustment goes out of spec quickly, it's always really far off when i take it in every 5k or so.
  • me too, 98 SE, mine leaks a tiny bit under the overflow tube attachement under the radiator cap, and it drips a little from the underside of the hose that connects to the metal pipe that goes down towards the bottom center of the engine. it runs down the underside of the tube and drips, but like yours, only when it's cold or sits for a couple days. coolant level hasn't gone down more than a 1/2 inch in the overflow. i plan on changing the hoses at next 30/60/90 coolant change, not worth the trouble now.
  • don't worry about it - my 2001 Altima is at 101K

    miles, service engine light came and gone 2-3 times already. i even passed inspection in jersey.


    i fixed the service light for my 96 towncar and it cost me $450. i have seince ignord this check engine light issue.
  • Hi guys,


    I have a Nissan Altima (year 2001 at 101K miles).

    Recently I have started having

    problem where the car is about to stall at low RPM (600 to 500)

    while stopping at the traffic lights. Any ideas where to begin?


    I have replaced spark plugs, cable set myself at 99K miles

    thinking that this should fix the problem. No, same problem came

    back when stopping at lights. Low RPM (600 to 500).


    in a difference instances I also replaced the pulley cable

    and lower radiator hose at $100K miles; the cable broke while driving

    and I begin to lose my power steering, check battery light on and check

    engine light is on too, it die on me by time I pulled into the gardge.

    after fixing the pulley cable I am still having the same problem - low

    RPM at the light and I have a feeling one of these day he will die on me.


    Any ideas??




  • took the car to Nissan @ Flemington New Jersey.

    very professional and a very nice facility.


    Check engine light came on and off. low rpm at the light.

    Diag: Error code P0171 - fuel system lean B1 - Intake manifold gasket leaking.

    Price: $830!! are you out of your mind?

    a quick search on this forums, found similar problem and repair cost at Message #296 and Message #297.


    Final decision: do nothing.

    car run great at 101K, push to Park at the light

    or run the light while no one watching.
  • I have a 2000 Altima GXE with 99k miles, and no problems (knock on wood). Does anyone know at what mileage the spark plugs need to be changed? I am of the belief that this car has platinum plugs, so around 105k. Would appreciate any assistance.


    Also, are there any other parts that I need to replace at this mileage? Thanks
  • on my 01 Altima, i changed mine at 99,000 miles because my car has a low RPM at the light. see message 876 and 877.

    Qty 4 spark plug from pepboys $8.36

    Qty 1 wire set from pepboys $$47.59

    ever since i did the above myself, i have spend

    another $181 to replace the valve cover gasket

    because oil leak inside the spark plugs.

    $536 to replace drive belt idle pullie, alternator p/s belt, new battery and radiator lower by pass hose plus labour;

    because the idle pulley cable broke while i am driving to work.

    all these happen right after i replaced the spark plugs in one month time frame.

    ....and i am still low on RPM at the light.
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