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post #1 of 17 Old Oct 9th, 2005, 09:58 PM Thread Starter
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Question Just bought 97 pick-up

I just bought a 97 pick-up, regular cab with the 2.4l with 56k miles and was just wondering what kind of things I should look for? I've scanned this forums pretty hard, but I haven't found any kind of check-list or common problems list. Would it be worth my while to check the PCV valve, it seems like a fairly complex proceedure (removing the oil filter, etc) but is it worth it? What other common problems should I look for/fix?

Also, I have a check engine light on, and the code is p0110, which I see is the "Internal Air Temp Sensor" error, and I've seen many pics on this forum of this sensor, but none in my engine bay type, and have no idea where to search for this? would it be under the air-filter? what does it look like?

Thirdly, I'm a bit confused about some of the terminology. I.e. I think I've gathered that "hardbody" refers to Nissan Pick-ups. Also, how do I know which engine model I have, I know it's a 2.4l, but I've seen people talk about z45a/whatever engines and I'm not sure if it applies to me... I bought a Haynes yesterday, but I can't find where it mentions the engine model...

Anyways, thanks for the help in advance

--Isaac
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post #2 of 17 Old Oct 9th, 2005, 11:07 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by twobitmechanic
I just bought a 97 pick-up, regular cab with the 2.4l with 56k miles and was just wondering what kind of things I should look for? I've scanned this forums pretty hard, but I haven't found any kind of check-list or common problems list. Would it be worth my while to check the PCV valve, it seems like a fairly complex proceedure (removing the oil filter, etc) but is it worth it? What other common problems should I look for/fix?

Also, I have a check engine light on, and the code is p0110, which I see is the "Internal Air Temp Sensor" error, and I've seen many pics on this forum of this sensor, but none in my engine bay type, and have no idea where to search for this? would it be under the air-filter? what does it look like?

Thirdly, I'm a bit confused about some of the terminology. I.e. I think I've gathered that "hardbody" refers to Nissan Pick-ups. Also, how do I know which engine model I have, I know it's a 2.4l, but I've seen people talk about z45a/whatever engines and I'm not sure if it applies to me... I bought a Haynes yesterday, but I can't find where it mentions the engine model...

Anyways, thanks for the help in advance

--Isaac
Being a fellow '97 owner, I'll chime in.

The intake air temp sensor is a common issues on the '97, but I don't really know why. Look underneath the air intake box where the filter is housed. You'll see a harness, and a bulb-like device going inside the air box - that's the sensor. I just put a new one on mine, from Napa. Works good.

On start up, you'll sometimes hear a loud chain rattle. That's the timing chain without any tension, and the tensioner operates on oil pressure. So on start up, when there's no pressure, the chain has no tension, and it'll make noise for a few seconds. This is normal - don't worry about that.

Yes, the "hardbody" is the '86.5-'97 truck, sometimes known as a "D21". The "720" is pre-86, and '98 and up are Frontiers.

Your truck has a "KA24E" 2.4L single-cam 12-valve engine. 134hp/154ft-lbs, and will last 300k+ miles with routine maintenance. You'll hear of the Z24s sometimes... that is a previous, older 4-cyl offered in the trucks, and it doesn't apply to yours.

If you're curious, KA is the engine family, 24 is the displacement (2.4), and E means it's multiport fuel injection. If it was a KA24DE, the D would mean it's dual overhead cams. The DEs come in the Frontiers, but ours is a single-cam, so there's no character representing it.

I hope this helped you out a bit.

ASE-certified technician by day, metal musician and computer nerd by night, and avid Nissan HB lover

1997 D21 XE KA24E 2WD 5-spd - 190,000mi
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post #3 of 17 Old Oct 9th, 2005, 11:53 PM
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There are FSM's available at phatg20.net
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post #4 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 12:26 AM
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Twobitmechanic,

Welcome aboard! There is a great wealth of knowledge on this forum so ask and you shall receive!

Yontrop kind of summed it up about the Hardbody. They can run for 300,000 miles if you take care of them and most likely the body and frame will rust away before the engine or tranny dies (if you live in the snowbelt).

As Yontrop mentioned, timing chain slap is common for a second or two at startup, so it's a good idea to buy an oil filter with an anti-drainback valve. I know of some members that only use OEM Nissan filters because of this. You might want to give one a try to see how it works out.

You didn't mention how you pulled the CEL code from your truck. I usually take out the passenger's seat (4 bolts w/12mm socket), turn the selector on the computer to "diagnose" and the ignition switch "on", then turn the selector on the computer back and count the flashes of the Service Engine Soon light on the dash. "55" means everything is normal.

I'm on my second Hardbody (97 XE x-cab, 4 cyl, auto 2wd). My first (90 reg cab 4 cyl 5 speed) had over 250,000 on it when I sold it. It didn't smoke or burn oil and still had the original freon charge from the factory. The young kid that bought it put some sheet metal and bondo on it, got it inspected and drove it for two more years.

2000 Nissan Frontier XE King Cab, 2wd , 4 cyl, automatic

Last edited by kkspeed; Oct 10th, 2005 at 12:31 AM.
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post #5 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 12:37 AM
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twobitmechanic,

You might want to file this away for future reference.

KA24E Codes:
11 Crankshaft Position Sensor Circuit
12 Mass Air Flow Sensor Circuit
13 Engine Coolant Temperature Sensor Circuit
14 Vehicle Speed Sensor Circuit
21 Ignition Signal Missing in Primary Coil
31 Engine Control Unit (ECU)
33 Oxygen Sensor Circuit
41 Air Temperature Sensor Circuit
43 Throttle Position Sensor Circuit
55 No Malfunctions

Complete list of Codes for other models:
11 Crank Angle Sensor/Camshaft Position Sensor
12 Air Flow Meter/Mass Air Flow Sensor
13 Engine Coolant Temperature Sensor
14 Vehicle Speed Sensor
21 Ignition Signal
22 Fuel Pump
23 Idle Switch
24 Throttle Valve Switch
25 Idle Speed Control Valve
28 Cooling Fan Circuit
31 ECU
32 EGR Function
33 Heated Oxygen Sensor
34 Knock Sensor
35 Exhaust Gas Temperature Sensor
36 EGR Control-Back Pressure Transducer
37 Knock Sensor
38 Right hand bank Closed Loop (B2)
41 Intake Air Temperature Sensor
42 Fuel Temperature Sensor
43 Throttle Position Sensor
45 Injector Leak
47 Crankshaft Position Sensor
51 Injector Circuit
53 Oxygen Sensor
54 A/T Control
55 No Malfunction
63 No. 6 Cylinder Misfire
64 No. 5 Cylinder Misfire
65 No. 4 Cylinder Misfire
66 No. 3 Cylinder Misfire
67 No. 2 Cylinder Misfire
68 No. 1 Cylinder Misfire
71 Random Misfire
72 TWC Function right hand bank
73 TWC Function right hand bank
76 Fuel Injection System Function right hand bank
77 Rear Heated Oxygen Sensor Circuit
82 Crankshaft Position Sensor
84 A/T Diagnosis Communication Line
85 VTC Solenoid Valve Circuit
86 Fuel Injection System Function right hand bank
87 Canister Control Solenoid Valve Circuit
91 Front Heated Oxygen Sensor Heater Circuit right hand bank
94 TCC Solenoid Valve
95 Crankshaft Position Sensor
98 Engine Coolant Temperature Sensor
101 Front Heated Oxygen Sensor Heater Circuit right hand bank
103 Park/Neutral Position Switch Circuit
105 EGR and EGR Canister Control Solenoid Valve Circuit
108 Canister Purge Control Valve Circuit


Note: These are obtained from counting the flashes on the dash. If you use a scan tool, then the numbers are different. I pulled a code 41 (41 Air Temperature Sensor Circuit) from my 97 by counting the flashes, then took the truck to Auto Zone for a free scan to verify. They pulled a different code number but the scan tool stated it was for the same sensor.

2000 Nissan Frontier XE King Cab, 2wd , 4 cyl, automatic
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post #6 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 01:32 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Yontrop
I hope this helped you out a bit.
Very much, thanks!

I'll post further if I have more problems with this sensor...
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post #7 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 01:34 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 79kz400
There are FSM's available at phatg20.net
Very handy indeed, thanks for the link.
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post #8 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 11:48 AM
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Just a quick question now that were talking general hardbody talk. Does anyone use semi or full synthetic in there hardbody's? I now have two Nissan hardbody's an '89 and a '95, both have about 131k miles. Will this help prolong the engine life? I used to run full synthentic in my '95 until the cost jumped. I have noticed that in the '89 the oil level was a little lower and it ticks at start up. Will semi synthetic help reduce burning oil? I'm going to only buy Nissan filters after what I've heard with the anti drainback valve. What do you guys suggest?
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post #9 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 03:37 PM
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temp sensor

My recently purchased 97 also has a constant check engine light. Early on I found that the white wire on the air temp sensor harness had been pulled away from the socket inside the harness connector, but it wasn't noticeable until I tugged on the wire. I had checked ok resistance across the sensor which is what led me to checking each wire. Instead of tearing the connector apart, I pushed a tinned and heavily fluxed piece of copper wire down into the empty socket and heated it with a big gun until it flowed into the existing socket and soldered the broken wire onto the stub of copper. I verified that the thermistor is now working by connecting an ohmeter to the harness and blew heated air across the sensor - resistance dropped slightly as temp increased. I also noticed that the vacuum line was stretched and torn, and the crankcase vent hose boss on the filter base was broken, so I suspect that some one in the past pulled the base without paying attention.
Unfortunately, I still have the light - most OBD2 computers won't clear codes by pulling the neg batt terminal, so how do you clear the codes on this computer without a reader/scanner?
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post #10 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 04:14 PM
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Autozone and maby other auto parts chains will read your code for FREE hoping that you'll buy something from them. Sometimes they'll complain about resetting the light but they'll do it once its connected to the computer. Its the same unit they sell for $150. Comes with a code book that they'll try to "guess the problem" with. Just tell them you've got a light and want it looked at. Once its hooked up you can explain and ask for a reset. Sometimes my local CSR's will just give me the reader because i stop by all the time.

Side note that my truck was made in 2/96 and is the 1st model to use OBDII. I went to one autozone and their reader did not work. Drove across town and theirs did. Went back to the first one and tried again to no avail.
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post #11 of 17 Old Oct 10th, 2005, 05:14 PM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Greybeard
My recently purchased 97 also has a constant check engine light. Early on I found that the white wire on the air temp sensor harness had been pulled away from the socket inside the harness connector, but it wasn't noticeable until I tugged on the wire.
Ironically I just now (five minutes ago) noticed that I have the same problem, one of the wires have been pulled out of the sensor. I was actually thinking about using a soldering iron to melt some of the plastic away from around the terminal and then trying to solder the wire back on, but I'll look it over again to see if that seems like a good idea, if not I'll take your solution into consideration.

Thanks
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post #12 of 17 Old Oct 12th, 2005, 11:08 AM
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I have a 1997 pickup. I can't find the Thermostat. It's not where I thought it would be, At the end of the upper hose. Can one of you guys help?

Please email me if at all possible at work. John_wilson@countrywide.com

I'll try to check here too.
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post #13 of 17 Old Oct 13th, 2005, 04:35 PM
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Hey guys....

I am glad I found this forum and this thread in particular. I have a 97 King cab 2wd, 2.4L and debating replacing the engine with a rebuilt- the truck/ tranny has 165000 miles. Here is the dilema - this is the 2nd engine and was a used engine not in great condition - the first one had a 'phantom' problem. The 4th cyl had fuel, compression, spark but wouldnt fire right...and we think it contributed to the first engine going splat.... I am worried about putting the new engine in and having repeat crummy performance....and I want a truck that runs like it should.....
I still remember the day the truck started runny crappy - I was going 65mph, turned off on an exit, took foot off gas, heard a backfire - truck never ran the same... I even had the computer rebuilt, you name it....

Anyway - I really dont want to buy a new vehicle and thinkin about a rebuilt engine....

Suggestions ? Comments ??

Last edited by EIGHTWGT; Oct 13th, 2005 at 04:45 PM.
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post #14 of 17 Old Dec 16th, 2005, 02:37 PM
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Question 97 Nissan Hardbody X-Cab 4-cyl 5 sp. Oil Overfill Problem

If anyone else has had this problem, I would appreciate some advice!! I have a 97 Hardbody (4 cyl - 5 sp) that I have had for about 6 months and have changed the oil twice with the same problem both times .... after draining the old oil and putting on a new OEM Nissan filter, the oil level shows full on the dipstick after adding only 3 qts of oil (the owner's manual calls for a little over 4 qts). When I bought the truck from a local dealer, the oil level was way over full and I drained some out thinking that they had put over 4 qts when they changed the oil before putting the truck out for sale but apparently the same thing happened to them as what has happened to me and they didn't notice it. So I don't know if this truck is full at 3 qts or if I should go with 4 and just ignore the high level on the dipstick. I had a '91 and '93 hardbody and this never happened with either of them (they both took a little over 4 qts). If someone can help on this I would greatly appreciate it.
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post #15 of 17 Old Dec 17th, 2005, 01:03 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sbigshot
If anyone else has had this problem, I would appreciate some advice!! I have a 97 Hardbody (4 cyl - 5 sp) that I have had for about 6 months and have changed the oil twice with the same problem both times .... after draining the old oil and putting on a new OEM Nissan filter, the oil level shows full on the dipstick after adding only 3 qts of oil (the owner's manual calls for a little over 4 qts). When I bought the truck from a local dealer, the oil level was way over full and I drained some out thinking that they had put over 4 qts when they changed the oil before putting the truck out for sale but apparently the same thing happened to them as what has happened to me and they didn't notice it. So I don't know if this truck is full at 3 qts or if I should go with 4 and just ignore the high level on the dipstick. I had a '91 and '93 hardbody and this never happened with either of them (they both took a little over 4 qts). If someone can help on this I would greatly appreciate it.
Yea, Nissan dipticks, for some reason, are always terribly inaccurate. The 4-cyl trucks take 3.8 quarts, I've found out. I've been doing that for the past two years and it's been fine.

ASE-certified technician by day, metal musician and computer nerd by night, and avid Nissan HB lover

1997 D21 XE KA24E 2WD 5-spd - 190,000mi
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