How to Replace the Knock Sensor on a 1997 Pathfinder


The knock sensor is responsible for monitoring the engine block for abnormal vibrations or internal components running out of balance. The sensor sends the information to the engine computer (ECU) and illuminates check engine light on the car, indicating the need for service. Replacement knock sensors are available from the dealer or most auto-parts stores. You need no special tools to replace your Nissan Pathfinder's knock sensor.

Things You'll Need

  • Wrench set
  • Locate the knock sensor on the back of the engine, just below the intake manifold. The sensor is a round, metal object with a single wire coming off its top.

  • Grasp the wire at the boot with your hand and pull it off the sensor. Set the wire off to one side and place a wrench on the hex portion of the sensor.

  • Rotate the sensor counterclockwise to remove it from the block. Discard the old sensor and thread a new one in its place.

  • Tighten the sensor until it is snug, using the wrench, then push the wire you removed from the old sensor onto the top of the new sensor. Do not use any thread-locking compound on the sensor, as it may affect its sensitivity and operation.

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  • "Nissan Pathfinder Factory Service Manual"; Nissan North America; 1997
  • Photo Credit Jupiterimages/Comstock/Getty Images
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