Last post on May 06, 2013 at 12:49 PM
You are in the Nissan Altima
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Nissan Altima, Sedan
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#296 of 2702 1997 Nissan Altima
Nov 25, 2001 (6:59 am)
I noticed that some people here are having the same type of problems as I have had with the car. My car has 53,000 miles on thus far... and it not had any major problems. About 1 year ago, the air bag light came on. I took it in, and it was fixed and no charge. They did not really say if it was a computer glitch with the light, or if was really a problem with the air bag. Recently, my "CHECK ENGINE" light started to come on and off. It would stay on a few days, then would go off for a few days. We took the car in to get it checked. They told us that it was the INTAKE MANIFOLD GASKET VACUME LEAK (4th cylindar).
To fix this, it would cost around $720. We decided to pick the car up, and see if maybe this is something we could do ourselves. (since the gasket is only around 10 bucks at Track Auto). The guy at the Nissan dealership said that he 'reset' the computer so that the light would not come on anymore.
This was kinda strange to me, cause shouldn't the light still come on if there was a problem.
Or maybe the computer in the car is pre-set to come on at a certain time to say "check engine" just so that take it in and they can pretty much tell us anything???
Please help. Thanks!!!
#297 of 2702 check engine light
Nov 28, 2001 (8:33 pm)
The dealer cane erase the trouble fault but the computer keeps on monitoring the engine. I would doubt the manifold leak. Ask the dealer what code number and check with another dealer or a shop that has a shop manual for that year of Altima. If it is the gasket
depending on how much you have worked on cars it should not be to difficult to replace. There are ways to pressurerise the intake and exhaust systems to check for leaks with soapy water. 409 works great.
#298 of 2702 Check engine soon
Jan 29, 2002 (3:01 pm)
Have 57 miles on my 2.5s,LOL.Assuming it's the gas cap thing.Click,click,click....still on.Gues I'll havta disconnect the negative terminal now.Anyone else find a way to get this fixed for good yet? The salesman put 93 octane with my first tank,so that won't help.
#299 of 2702 Altima or Maxima?
Jan 31, 2002 (9:59 am)
Am considering either a '97 Altima or a '97 Maxima as a first car for my 19-year old daughter. She's a new driver, cautious but inexperienced. My question is: Which is safer, the larger, more powerful Maxima, or the smaller, less powerful Altima? Is the 190 HP Maxima engine too powerful for a new driver? I want to get the safest, most dependable car I can afford. Another question I have is about timing belts vs. timing chains. I understand the newer Nissans have chains instead of belts. I have read that the belts need to be changed more frequently than the chains, and that both installations are very expensive. Is there a disadvantage to the chain? Are there other cars in the Maxima/Altima size range that use timing chains? Thanks for any input.
#300 of 2702 Battery, starter, or alternator
Jan 31, 2002 (11:55 am)
My daughters 97 Altima has a few problems. The Bridgestones that we got her a year ago are already worn out (front). The check engine light is on. For the past week, she's been having to get a jump start every morning and every afternoon. She said sometimes it just clicks. Sometimes it turns over real slow and then starts. She says the lights are not dim and all electronics work so she doesn't think it's the battery. How can I check to see if it is the alternator or starter or some other problem?
Jan 31, 2002 (2:39 pm)
Take the alternator down to autozone.They'll test it for you.They can test starters too,but the alternator is the place to start imo.
#302 of 2702 jab5346 and crissy1
Jan 31, 2002 (3:16 pm)
Jab5346: Sounds to me like you have a failing starter, although you could have a bad ground connection too. Check the battery posts and all ground connections you can see in the engine bay. My 84 VW Rabbit started doing the same exact thing (sometimes would just click, sometimes would turn over very slowly, and other times start fine) and I thought it was the starter finally giving out. Turns out it was a loose ground connection going from the battery to the front fender. Then again, my Mazda RX7 was doing the same thing but with a loud grinding sound and it turned out being a bad starter. So, I would check out the grounds and the starter, with a slim possibility being the ignition relay, if it has one. It's definitely not the alternator if all electrical parts work, because the alternator is not used when starting the car.
Crissy1: I just sold my 97 Altima to a 17 or 18 yr old girl. She was absolutely ecstatic over it. As far as safety, the 97 Maxima will definitely fare better since it is so much bigger and is a newer design (its platform dates back to 95, whereas the Altima dates all the way back to 93). Don't go for a 95-96 Maxima though, they had poor bumpers and didn't do good in the offset impact because of a failed seat track. They redesigned the seat track and improved the bumpers on the 97 model. Concerning timing chains, both the Maxima and Altima use them. They usually never need to be replaced in a normal car's lifespan, whereas a belt needs to be changed every 60-100k miles or you risk internal damage if they break. Ford and GM use timing chains on their cars in this size class, but I doubt you are considering them. The only other car that might use a chain is the Camry, but don't quote me on that. I'm pretty sure the four cylinder models use a chain though. The only downside to a chain is a slightly noiser engine at full throttle and when idling, but in most cars nowadays, that's not a concern. My 97 Altima was very reliable. I didn't have any mechanical problems other than the battery exploding (which wasn't the car's fault). At 68k, it wasn't burning any oil and everything worked fine. The interior did have a few rattles and buzzes in it and the ride was rather stiff and jiggly. It was not the nicest riding car in its class by far. The four cylinder has more then enough pep and the brakes are quite strong. I think the Maxima would be a bit too powerful for a beginning driver. I would stick with either the Altima, Accord, or Camry. Hope that info helps.
#303 of 2702 Altima or Maxima
Feb 04, 2002 (9:50 am)
Thanks, Inqtonge18 for all the info. I'll take a look at the Camrys also. I'll take the Maxima off the list of possibilities for her (maybe save it for myself, later!). I'll check to see if the Camrys use a timing chain. I don't like the idea of having to replace the belt so frequently. That's pretty expensive maintenance added to the cost of college tuition. She really likes the '97 Altima, but I want to compare it to some others before making the decision. Thanks again.
#304 of 2702 Engine question
Feb 18, 2002 (2:50 pm)
Has anyone with an Altima had the engine sludge problem that the Toyotas have been having? There are hundreds of posts from Toyota drivers who have had their engine fail. Supposedly more than 3000 people have had the problem so far. I dont know how to link to a different page, but you can search by Sludge and you will see what I am talking about.
#305 of 2702 1995 Altima STOPS. HELP!!
Feb 18, 2002 (5:49 pm)
I have 1995 Nissan Altima GXE, that started a problem. When standing idle or slowing down, I see the rpm goes up and down and then goes to zero and the car stalls. I have checked the car with couple of mechanics. They first set the idle rpm, then checked ground of the air intake sensor, changed the distributer and then changed air intake sensor, but the problem persists. Anybody have any input as to what could be the problem. I just want to solve the problem and sell the car.
Thanks in advance.