Troubleshooting a Nissan Engine


Certain Nissan models have been designed poorly and this can affect how the engine performs. You can identify some common engine problems by listening for specific noises, monitoring the car's oil usage levels and checking for exhaust leaks. Some engine problems can be fixed by yourself with a simple part replacement, while others may need a complete overhaul of the engine by a certified mechanic.

  • Monitor engine oil consumption. Typical engine oil consumption for the standard Nissan V-6 series engines is a quart of oil for every 1,200 to 5,000 miles. If the car is using up more than one quart for 1,000 miles, there may be a problem with the internal engine.

  • Listen for a shaking noise. If the engine is shaking or vibrating when you shift gears in a manual transmission vehicle, or starts to shake when you are idling in an automatic vehicle, these could be signs of engine trouble. Take the car into the mechanic for a maintenance check.

  • Smell for exhaust leaks. A failing catalytic convertor could be creating excessive exhaust fumes. If you notice a burning smell when you start the car or smell fumes after driving for a long period of time, these could be signs that the engine and catalytic convertor need to be replaced or repaired. The 2003 through 2008 Nissan Altimas have been identified as some of the vehicles that are prone to these types of engine and exhaust problems.

  • Listen for a clicking noise while starting. If you hear a loud clicking noise coming from the front of the engine when you are starting it, check your battery's wiring and connectors. A poor or faulty connection can make it difficult for your vehicle to start.

  • Check for leaking radiator fluid. If you notice a thick oil-like substance leaking onto the engine or under your car, the radiator core may be cracked or leaking. Many Nissan vehicles were designed with a cheap radiator cap that causes the entire radiator to deteriorate.

  • Make sure your engine is not misfiring while moving. If the engine starts to speed up slightly when you are not applying additional pressure to the accelerator, your ignition system may need to be fixed. Check the ignition wires and spark plugs. All Nissan models are vulnerable to this type of engine problem.

Tips & Warnings

  • Always take your car to a certified mechanic for repairwork and ask for a quote before repairs are completed

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