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Nissan Quest/Mercury Villager problems



  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    First off I'd recommend that you get the rear suspension checked out by the dealer or a trusted mechanic. I have heard of loose or broken rear stabilizer links causing suspension klunks on Villagers and Quests.

    Having said that, it is possible to beef up the rear suspension. Since it is a simple multi-leaf spring unit, a truck axle & spring shop should be able to add leafs to help stiffen the ride. You should be able to find one in your local yellow pages.

    You could also replace the rear struts with heavy-duty units like Monroes. This by itself won't prevent bottoming, but will help control the suspension bounce associated with heavy loads.

    Both of these modifications are tradeoffs. The ride would be much stiffer when you don't have a heavy load, and the van would ride higher in the rear also. Something to consider before making any modifications. Good luck.

  • A broken leaf (1 out of 3) can also cause the snapping problem. Just my opinion. I have a 99 Quest and finally read the Warranty. 36 months or 36,000 miles bumper to bumper, but 60 months (5 years) or 60,000 miles on engine, transmission and drivetrain. 36 months on battery...better than I thought. I thought it was only 12 months on the battery. Live, read and enjoy...:-)
  • brhjrbrhjr Posts: 3
    I have a 99 Quest GLE. Bought in Dec. 99. I have noticed a strange noise when I first crank my Quest. It occurs right after cranking the van and sounds like a grinding noise that lasts about 1 second. Noise coming from the under the van from the general area under the front seats. Has anyone else had this noise.
    I'm new to this site. I read this site thorougly before buying my Quest. It really helped me make my decision.
  • Purchased Nissan Quest new 5/97. 30,000 miles on it now. The following warranty work done. Power seat mech. replaced, power door lock mech. replaced, window re-set, vanity visor mirrors replaced, reverse light fell out, paint on rear door top peeling re-painted, paint on rear door peeling, bottom, re-painted. While at the dealer today they were nice enough to point out that the paint on the top of the van is bubbling and the black trim paint is fading. He shook his head and shrugged his shoulders and said to bring it back and they would re-paint those areas as well. I have a Toyota 4 runner with 70,000 miles on it and never a problem. Replaced the tires on 4 runner at 50,000 miles, Quest at 20,000. Is this crazy or what. Nissan is honoring the warranty but what a waste of my time...
  • guitarzanguitarzan OhioPosts: 764
    Brhjr, it is a possibility the starter is not disengaging right away. Are you going to have it checked soon?

    Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • I recently (12/99) purchased a 99 SE and have been having the same creaking in the brake pedal as in post #430. Dealer attempted to lube the linkages twice but it didn't last for more than a week. Also feel that the brakes must be pushed hard in order to come to a fast stop. I wonder if this is just due to new brakes, the anti-lock brakes or is their something else wrong. My wife also feels that it is hard to stop. The dealer tells me that the brakes are adjusted properly but it still doesn't seem right. Pochahontas....did your booster replacement work? I intend to bring it back for the third time....what should I have them do?
  • Sorry...the reference is to post #230 NOT #430
  • It certainly wouldn't hurt for you to get a second opinion on your brakes. That's what I did. The first dealer said there was "nothing wrong... the noise was normal."

    The second dealer had a different attitude. As far as he's concerned, the noise indicates that there is some kind of interference which may lead to a potential problem.... and better safe than sorry.

    But, I haven't had the work done yet, because I'm waiting for my running boards (on back order) to come in. Then I can do it all in one trip. In the meantime, my brakes have been working just fine, and the creaking noise has not gotten any worse.

    Hope this is helpful. Good luck. ;-)

    Community Leader/Coupes, Convertibles, and Sportscars Conference
  • brhjrbrhjr Posts: 3
    I hadn't thought of that. It really doesn't sound like the starter, but I'll have someone crank it and listen for the it.It may even be an electronic noise. It doesn't happen everytime we crank it, so I haven't rushed to the dealer because you know you can never duplicate a noise when you get it there.

    Checked the mpg for the first time this weekend and got 17.5, mostly city driving.
  • I took my 99 Quest SE into another dealership to get a second opinion on the brake pedal creaking and the excessive force needed to stop the van. The ORIGINAL dealership lubricated the spring on the brake pedal but the creaking came back within a week. The excessive force and brake pedal travel problem was explained away by the ORIGINAL dealership in that the brakes were set properly and that is way they are designed.
    The SECOND dealership found that the brake line had air in it which was causing the need for excessive force as well as the back brakes were a little loose. They bled the brake line and adjusted the back brakes. The creaking however is a common problem (where have I heard that before) and that it should go away after 4-5k miles. I'll keep an eye on it. After picking up the van, holy cow was there a difference in the brakes. They seem so much more forceful and capable of stopping with so much less force. What a wonderful thing it is to get a second opinion. I was going to take it back to the original dealer one more time but Pocahontas convinced me to get a second opinion.


    I can sleep better now knowing my wife (who drives the van) and 21-month-old can stop in a hurry if necessary.


  • @nd opinions count. Too bad you had to run into a bunch of monkeys posing as a service center.
  • I have taken my 99 quest in 4 four times for squeaky brakes. Each time, the dealer states that the rotors are "running hot" but they don't know why. The last time, they replaced the complete brake system since they don't know what is causing the problem. However, after replacement, still noticing the problem 5,000 miles later. Anyone notice the same problem? Note: it seems to occur more when the air conditioner has been on or the defroster.
  • I've posted about this problem before. My dealer said squeaky noise on Quest is normal due to type of materials used for brakes. In my case it come and goes from time to time and I've done nothing about it. So far it did not bother me that much.
  • dhoffdhoff Posts: 282
    Are you still out there? I just found myself wondering if you ever got your battery problem resolved.

    Let us know what happened.

  • Mine comes and goes as well. I guess part of my problem is that not only are the brakes squeaking, but the rotors used to run "hot" according to the Nissan mechanics, but they don't know why. Also, I don't know that I feel real good about my new car squeaking, which I can only imagine will get worse.
  • I am not sure what "hot" rotors represent in this case, but squeaking may not get worse. It actually can even go away, as it wears out squeaky layer of pads. It also may meen though, that at that point it you are closer to changing your pads. I heard from owners of other type of cars, that some brakes are squeaky too. It seems to me, as Pocohantos advices, you are ready for a second opinion from other dealership. Good luck.
  • guitarzanguitarzan OhioPosts: 764
    Cknight2, have someone check the trueness of the rotors/brakes and wheels. Suppose your lug nuts were overtighted at some point. This can cause such permanent damage.

    Worse when the air conditioning is on? Hmmm...if that is true, I would check the belts and vacuum hoses for irregularities. I suspect, though, something more along the lines of my first guess.

    Good luck, and fee free to search for topics on "brakes" to post this concern in. Please, let us know here when you get a resolution.

    Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • Mine comes and goes as well. I guess part of my problem is that not only are the brakes squeaking, but the rotors used to run "hot" according to the Nissan mechanics, but they don't know why. Also, I don't know that I feel real good about my new car squeaking, which I can only imagine will get worse.
  • Taking my SE in this Friday, so they can replace the brake booster. Also, getting the 2000 running boards installed.

    As I mention before, there's a slight creaking noise coming from the brake pedal. This can be heard at slow speeds or when the van is sitting still... when I push the pedal in/out. Seems to be coming from the brake booster, not the brakes pads. I'll let people know if the noise goes away with the booster replacement.

    So far, the brakes are working fine (no squeaking) at 10,500 miles.

    Community Leader/Coupes, Convertibles, and Sportscars Conference
  • Mine comes and goes as well. I guess part of my problem is that not only are the brakes squeaking, but the rotors used to run "hot" according to the Nissan mechanics, but they don't know why. Also, I don't know that I feel real good about my new car squeaking, which I can only imagine will get worse.
  • I took the van into a brake "specialist" and he said to have the suspension checked. He looked at the brakes and said the pads and rotors look fine, but he heard the same noise that I do. I guess I will take it in to have the suspension checked. I'll keep you all posted.
  • brhjrbrhjr Posts: 3
    The noise when cranking my Quest only occurs when the Parking Brake is engaged. If I release the brake before cranking, no noise.

    I'm also having the creaky brake noise, usually at very slow speeds or when parked and I'm releasing the brake. Van has 18,000 miles so I don't think it's going to go away. I plan to take to dealership within a week.
  • guitarzanguitarzan OhioPosts: 764
    That's kind of weird. If they are related, perhaps the parking cable rubs on the exhaust when taut, and the cranking vibrates it? What a coin-ki-dinky if so. Remind us of this, and let us know the problem, k?

    Community Leader/Vans Conference
  • VshunVshun Posts: 21

    I wrote at the end of December to Nissan Customer Service regarding battery dying. No response, probably they throw such letters straight to recycling bin if they are ecologically concerned.
    I give up on battery, at least till it goes dead again.
    I also have a break squeek, with the dealer who happens not to hear anything, it comes and goes away as many reported here.
    I have something to add regarding engine driving belts, that were making some noise. The first dealer did not hear it, second dealer found belts are responsible for the noise and adjusted them. Noise returned in a week and was fairly consistent till the moment the van was brought on the second dealer lot (at which moment it disappeared). Dealer emulated humid conditions and noise returned. They ordered the part (new belts) and said we will have to wait for a while as this is common problem with the Quest Nissan run out of parts for this, it is now on national order or something like that.
    We are definitely wasting too much time and energy on these repair attempts, especially given that dealers are at least 30 minutes away. Hope others are having a better time with their Quest, though from this topic one might come to a different conclusion.
  • VshunVshun Posts: 21
    I disagree with the folks here who mentioned that this is normal for every vehicle not to let you turn on the signal when the steering wheel is not in a straight position.
    Many roads where I live are a little curvy. That means that when I am coming to a reasonable distance from the intersection my steer is not straight and I have to force the signal by pressing the lever down consistently.
    My other car (Corolla) does not do it, neither I had it on previous cars so I think this is a Quest phenomenon.
    Some argued this is safety measure, on the contrary I find it extremely inconvenient and safety hazard, as I have to dedicate my attention to turn signal staying on and not switching back when getting close to some intersections.
    Unfortunately, nothing can be done as this is not just my particular Quest problem.

  • pocahontaspocahontas Posts: 802
    experience, I decided to test my 99 SE Quest turn signals. I took my 99 SE Quest in a complete circle... with the turn signals on, and they stayed on for the complete turn.

    On my quest, the signal will only shut off, if you to start the turn, than then you turn the wheel back the other direction before you finish the turn. Like we sometimes do when turning a sharp corner with a large vehicle... pulling out the other direction to give more space for your vehicle... so your wheels won't hit the corner.
    The shut off will also happen if you're changing lanes and then hesistate... letting the wheel go back the other direction. Perhaps the Quest turn signal (shut-off) sensitivity is a little much for certain people's driving styles. Perhaps it can be adjusted.

    Also, I have to admit, most of my roads are straight and flat. So that may be why my signals are working just fine for me.

    Vshun- Sorry you're having so many problems. Just curious, what year is your corolla? Also, have you tried testing another (make's) late model van to see how the turn signals function?

    With the problems you've listed, I would call Nissan Customer service 1-800-nissan1 and file a formal complaint. Writing and explaining/complaining about something may not be interpreted as a "formal complaint." Also, letters to large corporations have a tendency to get lost... sit on desks for a while. Especially if you don't send it as certified mail... it can very well get lost.

    Personally, I think you'll get a quicker response if you talk directly to a real person at the 800 customer service (get their name/file number) on the phone. Tell them you want to file a "formal complaint." They are suppose to fill out a form... and follow up on your problems... when you file a "formal complaint".

    Good luck.

    Community Leader/Coupes, Convertible, and Sportscars Conference
  • VshunVshun Posts: 21
    In my experience, the turn signal gives me the following problem: lets say the road bends a little to the left, so when I get close to the intersection the turn signal just will not be turned on. My feeling is that others here complained about the same.
    I had Nissan sedan "made in Japan" a few years ago and it was virtually flawless car "(except for the radio/tape that went dead a month after warranty excpired).
    Due to relocation I sold Nissan and bought Corolla in 1994 and thought it to be a rather mediocre car after Nissan sedan (1-2 problems a year, such as water pump went dead in 1994, and for the second time again in 1999, etc). But this is nothing compared to Quest. I will give this second Quest dealer a chance at repairing belts, but if/when battery goes dead again I will definitely file a formal complaint as you suggest.
  • jkrolakjkrolak Posts: 38
    Most battery problems are due to a bad battery. Sure, it might check good when fully charged, but that does not ean you do not have a bad cell. The Nissan Quest turns off all interior lights after 1/2 hr so i doubt it is a battery drain. My Windstar also has the same turn signal "problem", which is no problem in my opinion. My 99 Quest has been flawless so far.
  • I have a 2000 Quest (purchased 11/30/99) and the steering wheel makes a noise as if something is rubbing in the column. I've been to the dealer twice about this and the second time they sprayed some lubricant in the joint area but this did not help. It is not just a mechanical problem of two pieces rubbing together since the sound is different depending upon whether the engine is on or off, therefore, there is an electrical component to the problem. I'd be interested in hearing from Pocahontas as to whether replacing the "spiral cable" did the trick. Thanks.
  • I have a 2000 Quest (purchased 11/30/99, current miles 3,800) and the brakes make intermittent noise. It sounds as if the front brake pads are grinding. I took it to the dealer and of course it did not make the noise when the service rep drove it :( He gave me the Technical Service Bulletin about non-asbestos brake pads and said that one of two things were probably the cause 1)the non-asbestos pads are known to make noise or 2)a piece of grit/stone may have gotten into the brake system.
    However, I don't think that's the answer. For one, I have had non-asbestos pads on my previous vehicle and the sound from them was of a much higher pitch. Second, for the stone theory to be true, I must be regularly reintroducing stones into the brakes and I don't think that is plausible. Which leads me to a third theory, one not offered by the dealership. Could it be the "Ford designed" calipers as posted on this site about the 1999 Quests? Does this apply to the 2000 Quest? Insight appreciated. Thanks.
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