Engine won't go past 2800 RPMs - Nissan Forum
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#1 Old Jan 12th, 2005, 04:46 PM
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Question Engine won't go past 2800 RPMs

For all you motorheads out there, here is a question that has left me and many mechanics absolutely baffled...

I own an '88 Pathfinder, V6 (throttle body injection), with 110K miles. I drive it daily, and it runs fine. Overnight, the following problem surfaced - the engine sputters at 2800 RPMs and wont go past that mark! It idles real nice runs absolutely fine before it reaches that mark. It doesnt matter what gear I'm in, what kind of load its under, the position of the throttle (which rules out the throttle position sensor, right?), the engine runs fine exactly until it reaches 2800 RPMs, and then begins to sputter and jerk until I lay off the throttle. (Although it seems to have a little less power and might miss while going up steep hills)

There are no vacuum leaks I've found, no obstructions in the exhaust (I temporarily disconnected the cat, and the problem doesnt go away) From a visual inspection, the injectors are getting plently of fuel at the point of sputtering. I changed plugs, wires, and cap, without solving the problem. What could the problem be?

Although, by use of the throttle, the engine wont go past 2800 RPMs, I was able to get it past that mark by downshifting while going down a steep hill. Here's what happens: the engine still runs above 2800 PRMs, though pressing on the gas pedal has no effect, save a slightly different sound from the engine. As the engine slows to 2800 RPMs, pressing on the gas will cause the violent, on-again off-again jerking, until it goes below the mark and runs fine.

I am at my wits end! If anyone knows a quick fix, or if this is a common problem with the old Nissan V6s, please let me know. Thanks!

Scott Roney
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#2 Old Jan 12th, 2005, 05:01 PM
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I'm not sure you should rule the TPS out, but, how about:
  • throttle linkage binding
  • clogged fuel filter
  • dying fuel pump
  • faulty fuel pressure regulator

If it wasn't overnight, I'd wonder if you had some kind of valve spring problems.

Just some thoughts.

I'm assuming all of the standard tune-up components, filters, and other emissions valves have been checked/replaced and the timing is good.

Oh, could you be in some kind of limp mode? Can you check for error codes? Can you reset the computer's memory?


Jerry
2004 Frontier, King Cab, XE, 4x1, 4-cyl, 5-spd

Last edited by jerryp58; Jan 12th, 2005 at 05:05 PM.
#3 Old Jan 12th, 2005, 07:15 PM
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The symptoms do sound familiar. I had an '89 pickup (z24) and the problem turned out to be a stuck EGR valve.

Quote:
Originally Posted by jerryp58
I'm not sure you should rule the TPS out, but, how about:
  • throttle linkage binding
  • clogged fuel filter
  • dying fuel pump
  • faulty fuel pressure regulator

If it wasn't overnight, I'd wonder if you had some kind of valve spring problems.

Just some thoughts.

I'm assuming all of the standard tune-up components, filters, and other emissions valves have been checked/replaced and the timing is good.

Oh, could you be in some kind of limp mode? Can you check for error codes? Can you reset the computer's memory?
#4 Old Jan 12th, 2005, 08:42 PM
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I vote for the fuel pump, pressure regulator or filter first. Then the EGR valve or some other sensor.

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'88 Pathfinder: 6" of lift, 33x13.50 Swamper LTB's, Rancho 9000's, L&P Stage 3 steering system, K&N, Pacesetter headers and 2.5" exhaust, Lock-Right locker, 110A alty and electric fan swap, dual batteries, 700W+ worth of PIAAs, etc.
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#5 Old Jan 13th, 2005, 08:27 AM
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sounds like your Path is in "fail safe" mode, I have a 86.5 pu Z24i and I lost an injector and thats what it did! "fail safe" lets you limp the vehicle home, its better than being stranded somewhere! if you have the equipment check the injector pulse and see if one is bad

Last edited by SPEEDO; Jan 13th, 2005 at 08:31 AM.
#6 Old Jan 13th, 2005, 08:02 PM
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Run your ECU error codes and see what comes up. If you haven't changed the fuel filter recently, do it. It's cheap and simple and could possibly fix everything right away.

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'88 Pathfinder: 6" of lift, 33x13.50 Swamper LTB's, Rancho 9000's, L&P Stage 3 steering system, K&N, Pacesetter headers and 2.5" exhaust, Lock-Right locker, 110A alty and electric fan swap, dual batteries, 700W+ worth of PIAAs, etc.
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#7 Old Jan 15th, 2005, 10:52 AM
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Bad coil, take it to the bank

You have a bad coil that is breaking down when the RPM get's to 2800.
some of the Nissans have two coils, one of them can go bad and do the same exact thing.

Change the bad coil and problem will be solved.

I had the same problem and this fixed it . Took me forever to figure it out.

I hope this works for ya..
#8 Old Jan 22nd, 2005, 10:27 AM
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New info on the '88 pathfinder

So I put a timing light to the '88 Pathfinder. And here is what is happening: at low RPMs, the timing is fine. As the RPMs increase, the timing naturally advances, but it keeps on advancing until it is way out of range (of the tickmarks) and the engine sputters at 2800 RPMs. So, it seems I have a timing advance problem, and I would assume the problem is either with the mechanical advance in the distributor or the ECU. How do I find what exactly is the cause? And if this is the case, what is the best (and cheapest) way to fix? Can I just replace the whole ECU with another Ive found in a junkyard?
#9 Old Jan 22nd, 2005, 11:08 AM
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The mechanical advance in a distributor works with rotating weights which are held by springs. If a spring is bad or broken the weights will go to full advance at low rpms.

You will have to disassemble the distributor to see if this is the problem. Or, get a distributor from a junk yard and replace it to see if it is the problem.

Lew
#10 Old Jan 23rd, 2005, 04:19 AM
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Timing advance on the FI Nissan engines are entirely controlled by the ECU. No mechanical advance.

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#11 Old Feb 5th, 2005, 07:27 PM
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The diagnosis from the mechanic..

I finally broke down and took the Pathfinder to a Nissan dealership mechanic to have a look. His diagnosis; the computer was in fail-safe mode, and it is intentionally cutting the engine out at 3800 RPMs (making the car only well enough to crawl to a service station). The reason - the computer codes for faulty injectors and air flow sensor came up. I asked the mechanic if there was a way to reset the computer off of fail-safe mode, as I have been driving my car daily for the past 2 months, and it runs fine except for the RPM problem. He said the computer cannot be reset, but once I replace the faulty components, the computer will automatically perform normally. Anyone know different?

Regarding the timing advance, he said it is normal for the engine to advance up to 50-60 degrees at high RPMs. True?

If the throttle body needs replaced, I'd like to do it from a used one (and not pay the mechanic $1500), but I'm afraid anything I find from a junkyard will be in bad shape. Anyone know where I can get a throtte body in decent shape (the one with 2 injectors)?
#12 Old Feb 5th, 2005, 08:24 PM
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You CAN reset the computer and see what happens. Disconnect the battery for about 30 seconds, then reconnect it. That will clear all error codes stored in the ECU. If you get the same symptoms again, you know what you need to do, I guess.

No WAY the timing should ever advance by 50-60 degrees. That guy was full of crap. You can pull the TBI and replace the injectors singly, they're removeable. I rebuilt my entire TBI myself in the garage with no problems.

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'88 Pathfinder: 6" of lift, 33x13.50 Swamper LTB's, Rancho 9000's, L&P Stage 3 steering system, K&N, Pacesetter headers and 2.5" exhaust, Lock-Right locker, 110A alty and electric fan swap, dual batteries, 700W+ worth of PIAAs, etc.
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#13 Old Feb 19th, 2005, 04:30 PM
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Same problem...

I am having the same problem with my 93 Nissan truck. The thing happened overnight, and now my truck won't rev over 3000 rpms. Any follow ups on this issue?
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