1999 Nissan Sentra will not turn over, after attempting to start it remotely.
My name is Jake, I recently purchased a 1999 Nissan Sentra as a daily driver. I've owned one before, it was a 1996 and I've also owned a 1995 Nissan 200sx. Those cars were great, they ran and ran until the 1996 was totaled and the 200sx was too beat up to put money into.
I've owned the 1999 Nissan Sentra for about a week now, it ran great, drove two hours to pick it up and drove two hours back with no hiccups or problems at all.
The main reason I bought the car was to drive it to school, which is about a 45 minute trip one way and it would save me twice the money on gas than my previous 97' Jeep Grand Cherokee.
When I bought the car, the next day I realized that the car had a remote start. I do not think it was factory installed, but I could be incorrect as there are stickers underneath the hood on the radiator brace. I was curious as to why the person who sold me the car never mentioned it, but quickly just assumed that he hadn't owned the car long enough to know.
With these cold mornings here in Indiana, I've been using it with no real problems until the other day while in class I accidentally left the lights on in the sentra resulting in a dead battery. I had the car jumped and drove 45 minutes home with no problems. Ever since then, the car will not start remotely.
I drove the car to school again and allowed it to sit for 8 hours during my classes, and when coming back out I attempted to start it remotely and it turned over a bit, then ceased. I unlocked the doors with the remote and attempted to start the car manually, and all I keep getting is a weird clicking from the evap canister purge volume control valve. Everyone I've talked to says that this will not cause the car to not start or at least not crank over.
I've tried a few things since then such as: holding the gas to the floor while turning the key, attempting to start the car in neutral, moving from neutral to drive while attempting to start the car, checking the plugs (which were fouled) and arcing them across the intake manifold (no spark) which leads me to believe that it could be the distributor? The fuel pump does turn on.
A few more strange things about the car, when the door is open, the dome light does not always turn on, but usually will when the key is inserted. (Maybe I just assume that it's strange), and also the radio volume can't be adjusted. Not sure how the remote start was wired exactly. Tonight while trying to unhook the remote start (to no avail) I wedged my upper half into the foot area of the drivers side and noticed under the fuse panel attached to a metal brace was an on/off toggle switch and a push button switch... Clearly aftermarket. I'm not even sure what they lead to exactly, but I will be tracing soon.
Has anyone experienced any of these problems?
Thanks for your help, I tried to be as thorough as can be.
I guess I forgot to mention, I pulled the battery out and had it tested and re-charged. The machine at the O'Reilly instantly said that it was good as well as that it would only take about 10 minutes to charge. In that case, the battery wasn't even fully drained. It also will not jump from another vehicle.
I suppose I just need to think more simply next time, I jacked the car up in my driveway and tapped the starter a few times with a hammer and it fired right up (with a tap on the gas) I think the engine was still a little flooded from last night's troubleshooting.
What I think happened was that when I tried to start it remotely, (i'm actually not sure how remote starts work) that it may have sent a surge of electricity to the starter which wasn't enough to allow it to turn over so it became stuck partly turned over? Does that sound plausible?
I will definitely be replacing the starter soon and the solenoid. Do you know of any write ups on the procedure? I saw a video on youtube that required taking off the intake and it was accessible, but I think the year was different than a 1999 and his car was a manual. Do you have to do it from the underside?
Another weird thing, the car seems to start strongly even now. Starting after 1 crank.
The solenoid comes with the starter. Avoid cheap remanufactured starters as they tend to be problematic or don't last long. Best you can get is genuine Nissan remans, but they are a little pricey. As far as the procedure, you access the starter from under the vehicle. Disconnect the negative battery cable from the battery. One starter bolt is removed from the top side; it goes through the end of the negative battery cable, through the trans bellhouse and threads into the starter. It will have a 14mm head and you may need to remove the intake air duct out of the way, On the bottom side, there will be a support brace between the block and the bottom of the intake manifold you will have to remove out of the way; bolt heads will be 12mm. There will be a 12mm nut that attaches the positive cable to the starter; remove that and the washers. There will be a gray plug that will need to be unplug to the starter solenoid. Remove the bottom bolt from the starter; it will have a 14mm bolt head. Maneuver the starter out and down through the bottom. Reverse procedure to install.
The AutoGuide.com network consists of the largest network of enthusiast-owned enthusiast-operated automotive communities.
AutoGuide.com provides the latest car reviews, auto show coverage, new car prices, and automotive news. The AutoGuide network operates more than 100 automotive forums where our users consult peers for shopping information and advice, and share opinions as a community.