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Discussion Starter #1
Sorry if this has been covered in the past, but I was unable to locate anything while searching. I just recently picked up a 1990 Sentra XE that is in pretty good shape but the passenger side lower control arm is shot. I have read several threads about replacing the bushings and the ball joint, but wanted to get expert opinion on buying a whole new complete control arm off of ebay. The pricing for them is $45 each side with a lifetime warrenty. I guess has anyone used this option and how did it work out. My second question deals with the timing chain. This car has about 142K on it and I have no idea if the timing belt has ever been changed. The guy I bought the car from had it for a year and that is the extent of the maintenance records available. Should I change it to be safe or are there indicators that I should look for first before I jump off that bridge.

Thanks in advance.
 

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Sorry if this has been covered in the past, but I was unable to locate anything while searching. I just recently picked up a 1990 Sentra XE that is in pretty good shape but the passenger side lower control arm is shot. I have read several threads about replacing the bushings and the ball joint, but wanted to get expert opinion on buying a whole new complete control arm off of ebay. The pricing for them is $45 each side with a lifetime warrenty. I guess has anyone used this option and how did it work out. My second question deals with the timing chain. This car has about 142K on it and I have no idea if the timing belt has ever been changed. The guy I bought the car from had it for a year and that is the extent of the maintenance records available. Should I change it to be safe or are there indicators that I should look for first before I jump off that bridge.

Thanks in advance.
Welcome to the forums. Your '90 Sentra has a timing chain and unless it's making niose at idle, you do not need to replace it. If it rattles on cold starts, that's one of the early warning signs that the timing chain, guides, and tensioner need to be changed. Sometimes the teeth on the upper and lower timing gears are worn as well.

Give us a link to those ebay control arms. Just $45? This I've got too see!

Mike
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks for the info, I'll make sure the noise I'm hearing is coming from the timing chain area before I change it. Here is the link for the control arm and it is $48 plus shipping, so I was a little off on my first post. You can also find a complete new one under "Sentra Control Arm" for about $38 plus shipping but it has a short warranty on it.

eBay Motors: 87 88 89 90 Sentra Lower D/S Control Arm Ball Joint (item 190033687800 end time Feb-06-09 13:01:27 PST)

If the link doesn't work just do an ebay search for sentra control arm.
 

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Thanks. I sent the seller a question and asked if they've got an actual picture of the B12 control arm they are selling. The picture in the ad is generic. Looks like maybe a Honda arm. I also asked if it comes with the bushings too, or just a ball joint.

Mike
 

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blownb310 did you ever get a response on the control arms? If so I would be interested in knowing what they said.

On another note I just picked up a 89 sentra today to use as a parts car and it is in better shape and runs better then the 90 I already had. I think I may just keep them both running for a while. I still have a little engine noise on both of them, and I think it may be the timing chains, but of course I'm not sure. Do the sentras all have a little timing chain noise or is this the start of trouble? I reread your post, and on initial start up (when cold) there really isn't much noise, but once it warms up and the engine calms down there is a light metalic sound. It might be from the timing chain but it seems to be coming from a different area of the engine compartment.

Anyway I put about 200 miles on it today without issue and I'm taking it tomorrow on a 240 mile trip in the morning so I hope it hangs in there. It has a rebuilt engine that only has 91k on it, so I'm hopeful it doesn't have a timing chain issue.
 

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blownb310 did you ever get a response on the control arms? If so I would be interested in knowing what they said.
Yes i did get a reply, but it wasn't of much help. I aksed for a picture of the actual B12 control arm, [not the generic picture they were using]. The responce was nothing more than a cut and paste of the ebay description that I already read. No picture of the actual product. For that kind of money, I can't see them being of good quality. I'll stick with Nissan arms for my cars.
 
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