Last post on Jan 08, 2012 at 8:34 PM
You are in the Nissan Quest
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Nissan Quest, Mercury Villager, Van
#383 of 511 Re: 2000 nissan quest [merenovice]
Jun 15, 2011 (1:20 pm)
It seems to me that your van loose electricity, and, I believe you and your boss may not have maintain your battery. e.g. get an electric charger and charge over night every quarter or at least once a year. Because van often have lots of electronics and usage of electricity often more than alternator can supply over period, especially, old vans when wires are not conduct 100%, some power loss here and there.
When you died and would not start, if you wait for a while, you may be able to start again with the last amount of electricity, and if you let engine run for 15 to 20 minutes, you may have your alternator charging more back, before you can move and drive the van again. If you move right a way, it will be likely to quit because your battery at that moment had very little surplus to run the van.
When you replace distributor, your auto shop may have been charging your close to dead battery with their higher power charger, and that's why you got an illusion that replacing distributor the van work fine, otherwise, why it died again? And, even need to replace distributor again?
You should get an electric charger to charge your battery overnight once in a while, and I believe your van should be fine, many odd problems will be gone and it is very cheap solution. Or you may get a new battery which is easy and quick, but years later you may running into same problems when battery dying ...
But with an electric charger, you can always charge back like your charge your cell phone every night or two.
#384 of 511 Re: 1996 Nissan Quest [debbie48]
Jun 19, 2011 (9:29 pm)
It seems to me your starter was fine. When you can not start, it has nothing to do with oil change either. Your mechanics may have done a wrong guess and did the unnecessary work and charged you, then find out your van still had problem, so continue to proposing more work that he just guess and not sure if it will cure the problem. Since you disagreed, so the problem of your van remains, except your mechanics did two unnecessary work for you van which can only make it better but no harm, except cost you money.
Keep in mind, it takes 3 things for your engine to run, the electricity, fuel and air. If your van has been running fine with electricity in your battery, the problem could only be fuel system. From what you describe later when you trying to drive the van out of mechanics parking lot, you seemed to get the "bad gas" from cheap gas station that has water in it.
When your gas has water in it, you may not notice till later one day when your gas gone and reach more water in your gas tank. Remember, the gas and water is not uniformly mixed, the gas is lighter and will be on top and water will be heavier and will be at the bottom.
When you tried to start the van at that moment, you did not get gas but water, so the engine will not start. If, for any reason, you can start, and your fuel pump gives you gas and water, your engine will run when fuel injector gives you gas vapor, and the next cycle when you got water vapor, your spark plug could not light up at the combustion state, so you got engine knock.
This is very non deterministic situation when you got a bad luck to get bad gas when many old car owners trying to save money on cheap gas. Most auto mechanics can not understand either but based on the computer read out to ask you to change many things one set at a time, hopefully to make computer happy, but often can not because the reason is the bad gas, nothing to do with your van.
What you need to do is go to parts stores like Pep Boys, Auto Zone or Advanced Auto Parts, ...etc. to buy "Dry Gas" bottle to feed into your gas tank. Some brand like yellow bottle Heet about $2 will do the great job immediately. What it has is also heavier than gas called methanol that sink down to mix with water in your gas tank and became burnable, but the bottle will simple telling you it "remove water" ...etc. So now you know why it is so cheap, just $2, but it is not, it is just methanol to bind the water in your gas tank.
Hopefully, next time you do not get cheap gas, and get some better gas with more octane grade, or get an STP Octane Booster, the orange color bottle to feed into your gas tank. You may do this for a few weeks, and it may be fine again.
#385 of 511 Re: Intermittently won't start or hesitation [back_dr]
Jun 19, 2011 (9:52 pm)
It seemed to me you also got the bad luck of bad gas with water in it.
Keep in mind that when you can run 90%, meaning your battery and electric system is good. And that also implies your air system is fine, so only the fuel system has problem, and that's why your mechanics guess on your fuel pump, but it was a wrong guess, but having a new fuel pump does not hurt but cost you.
All you need to do is go get a bottle of "Dry Gas" such as yellow bottle Heet that has power of "remove water" and as soon as you feed into your fuel tank, you shall find the magic of your van driving perfect again. Why is that?
Because inside your gas tank, gas and water not mixed well, gas will be on top because it is lighter, and water heavier going down to bottom. Initially, when you fill up the tank, your van should be good to hit gas all the time, if you got check engine light solely for this will go off. Then when you run out more gas, you got more chance to hit water. As your fuel injector spread water, the spark plug could not burn water at combustion stage, so you got engine knock.
Anyway, this Heet or the like has methanol that sink down to bind with water in your gas tank and produced burnable liquid so shall "remove the water" and "reduce the engine knocks".
In the long run, do not get cheap gas, or at least get more octane grade gas, and treat your gas to remove water by using "Dry Gas" like Heet bottle. It depends on how much water you got and accumulated in your van for all these years, but, soon or later, all shall be removed if no more water get into the tank.
Another quick fix is to fill the tank with expensive gas such as Moble, and never drive down to close to empty gas tank. i.e. whenever you gets knocks in your engine, go fill up good gas again. Now, you may recall the myth: never drive to close to empty tank of gas.
An analog is when you ate bad food and need to run restroom, it has nothing to do with your body, you do not let your surgeon to replace your stomach, ...etc. Don't you think auto mechanics are like surgeon? very costly and last resort. you may tried Auto Pharmacy first like "Heet" in this case. Or even better, monitor your Auto Diet, i.e. Auto Nutrition, don't get bad gas at the first place.
#386 of 511 Re: 98 Villager - randomly dies worse during summer [archtrek]
Jun 19, 2011 (10:16 pm)
It seems to me you got two problems. one is the bad gas, another one is the low electricity in your battery.
You can start and run fine means your battery and electric system is good, but intermittently just dies that implies your fuel system problem, but it is so odd that has to be non deterministic bad gas, aka gas with water.
If you look inside your gas tank that contains the fuel pump, after all easier to push than pull the gas of the pump, you know if your gas has water in it, gas is lighter will be on top and bottom will be water. However, when you go down hill, your fuel pump may pump more water that fuel injectors spread water spark plug fire can not burn "water" so combustion stage can not carry out, and engine stall.
It is non deterministic, at least appears to you as driver, because once you fill up the gas tank, you may run fine for weeks with no problem because you have NOT hit the water in your gas tank. Remember gas does not mix with water evenly, gas lighter will be on top and water heavier at bottom. Till your lucky days ends, and you finally hit your water, you got engine knocks due to water not burnable, and eventually die.
When you say worse in summer. It has another problem of low electricity of your battery, and it is common when people seldom maintain their battery, after winter when night time longer, more often using head lights, ...etc, when spring come, battery has lower electricity, and when summer comes, you turn on a/c, so you see many cars died on not able to start during that time of each year.
You may want to get an electric charger, $29?, and charge your van often, like I do every day 15 min to 2 hours depending on how battery react. e.g. It starts adding 6 amp when battery is not full, then it shall go down to 5 amp 4 amp, 3 amp ... to 1amp that doing trickle charge and last over night if you want.
Keep in mind, you need to have electricity, fuel and air to get your engine run well, so once you make sure your battery is always good, you can easily identify other problem.
You need to get a "Dry Gas" bottle like yellow bottle Heet to feed the tank to "remove the water". Basically, Heet got methanol that will sink to bottom of tank to meet with water and bind with it to become burnable liquid. One bottle to treat a tank, and I often add it when the problem starts emerging because when I fill the tank, the first weeks are fine like your case due to it not yet reach the water in the tank. Continue treating your gas tank "i.e. remove water", soon or later it shall be great!
But, you may want to avoid the cheap gas that may occasionally give you bad luck on gas with water.
#387 of 511 Re: Sputtering and shutting off [gyates]
Jun 19, 2011 (10:38 pm)
Believe or not, it has nothing to do with your transmission; I mean your transmission is good.
The problem seems your tank has water needs to be removed. When you are bad luck to get gas with water, especially in cheap gas station, you got what you described. So, what next?
To remove the water get into your tank, you need to get "dry gas" bottle like "Heet" yellow bottle to feed your gas tank that has methanol to sink down to bind the water into burnable fuel (i.e. remove the water).
Now, why it has anything to do with your transmission, especially 1-2 geer? Because when your fuel injector got gas vapor and spark plug fire at combustion stage will give your engine power, where as when the following cycles may hit water spreads that can not burn, your engine got knocks. Depending on the ratio of fire and knocks, you may find your transmission need "higher RPM" to finally able to move up to 2nd geer because some knock cycles give no power.
Why your idle became erratic? as you can now guess, your engine got some knocks, i.e. can not burn the water vapor. If you got too many such knocks, your engine may stall or die.
Throttle Position Sensor has nothing to do with this; it has something to do with your idle air intake, and that often will still not replace TPS but clean your throttle plate if your engine can not idle well. e.g. every time stop at traffic light and your engine may die at idle, but it is not what you described.
Other symptoms you did not describe, but you know you are loosing power when you push the pedal, but the root cause is that you got the bad gas that you need to get water out.
#388 of 511 Re: need help....!! [shortz1994]
Jun 19, 2011 (10:55 pm)
It seems to be your battery and electric system is fine, so what you have done replacing many things simply with better and new parts, which is ok.
I feel your fuel system may have some problem although over 75% of not able to start engine has something to do with electric system. When was last time you change your "fuel filter"?
#389 of 511 Re: Suddenly started running rough [gene55]
Jun 19, 2011 (11:08 pm)
It seems to me you got water in your gas tank. Your van is fine; do not replace anything unnecessarily.
When your engine got "gas vapor" from your fuel injector, it runs normal, however, the water vapor came, the spark plug fired but not able to burn water in combustion stage, your engine knock, and of course, your knock senors sends signal to your computer.
When your computer got many abnormal signals coming in, the check engine lights one, but next moment when it burns no water, it is normal again, the light off. When you accelerating, it runs up the RPM, and your fuel pump may not be able to pump enough gas to support but intermix with water vapor as well.
You may have gotten the bad gas from cheap gas station, or may be due to your seldom drive situation. The van or any vehicle may catch water moisture after raining days, and if seldom drive, eventually, this may happen.
Go to part stores like Pep Boys or Auto Zone to get a bottle of "dry gas" like "Heet" yellow bottle and pour into your gas tank to treat your gas, i.e. "remove the water". How? Heet contains methanol that will also sink down to the bottom to meet water and bind water into burnable fuel and will be burned out when fuel injector spread out, and you shall see much fewer knocks. Engine will run smooth again.
#390 of 511 Re: Suddenly started running rough [gene55]
Jun 19, 2011 (11:20 pm)
Keep in mind, the OBD II scan just gives you a snap shot of what the engine state was, and in your case, you got a knock due to fuel injector spread "water" instead of gas vapor, and spark plug fire not able to burn the water vapor, so you got an engine knock. Be aware, it does NOT mean your knock sensor has any problem, do NOT let your mechanics talk you to replace your knock sensor.
When this water vapor can not be burned, and it happened in your cylinder 3, and spark plug fired but not burn anything. This does NOT mean you need to replace your spark plug or fuel injector. Unfortunately, many mechanics saw the code will tell you replace all spark plugs, and wire, and other things.
As said, your gas tank got water, and water vapor not burnable, and you need go get "dry gas" bottle like "Heet" yellow bottle to pour into your gas tank to treat your gas "i.e. remove water" since Heet contains methanol that sink down gas tank to meet water to bind into burnable liquid that will then be burned and no more knocks. i.e. make your knock sensor happy and spark plug no misfire, and therefor, your check engine light not on.
#391 of 511 Re: Nissan Quest 1997 running "lean" [rardon]
Jun 19, 2011 (11:33 pm)
It seems your gas tank also got water. You got bad luck getting gas with water in cheap gas station. As you may know the gas is lighter so it is at top of the gas tank, and water sink down. When you gas tank fill up, you may have no problem for a long while till one day you hit that gas/water boundary. Well, fuel pump can not just pump gas not water.
Oxygen sensor has nothing to do with this. It simply compares the oxygen left in the exhaust vapor and that in air to tell the computer through voltage how well the fuel was burned. But knock senor will know that when your fuel injector eventually spread water vapor that your spark plug fire not able to burn at generate combustion stage, and it does not like it and tell the computer to give you check engine light on.
Get a bottle "dry gas" like "Heet" yellow bottle, $2, from auto parts store like Pep Boys or Auto Zone or the like, to pour into your gas tank to treat your gas. i.e. remove water. Since Heet got methanol that sink down to gas tank to bind water into burnable fuel, the knocks shall be gone and knock sensor happy, and check engine light may go away.
It should not have anything to do with your MAF sensor as if this Mass Air Flow sensor gets dirty, it may not be all of a sudden. However, if you have not done so, next time when you replace your air filter, often recommended by Nissan 30,000 miles, you may want to get an CRC MAF sensor cleaner to spread it, and let it air dry. It is right next to air filter host, so when you remove air filter, it is right moment to clean your MAF. Just 10 minutes about $3 to $5. Don't need to change, may cost you $$ to change.
#392 of 511 Re: 1999 mercury villager dies when coming to a stop [dennymorgan75]
Jun 19, 2011 (11:40 pm)
Did you clean your throttle plate or body?