Nissan Forum banner
1 - 20 of 35 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
My dad has a Nissan Sentra 2004 with a 4 cylinder 1.8 litre engine that has done 258,333. Recent repairs were track-rod ball joints for the front right tire, alternator belt, engine mountings, drum brake shoes, battery. The only repairs I did was battery and alternator belt.

We had recently done these repairs for our 12 hour road trip to Dubai, and after doing all of these repairs car was running almost perfectly except it would stall but VERY rarely(no CEL light back then so we couldn't check). The car was acting brand new, and didn't cause us a single issue during our travels.

The issues started recently after a month of our travelling when one day when my dad started his car idle speeds started fluctuating, and the moment he would turn on the A/C, it would get worst. The car feels like as if its losing power, and stalls. I couldn't pull codes because the Check Engine Light randomly disappeared after it was on for a day.


The car also has this problem of stalling in the middle of the road when the AC is on and sometimes it even stalls even when the AC is NOT ON. Is this a faulty Alternator issue? I am guessing this because whenever we turn on the AC and the car is stopped the lights in the car are flickering when we look closely and it struggles to pick up speed after stopping in a red light. It also doesnt blow cool air when idle but when we are driving its fine.

The final problem is that my dad sometimes has to now keep his foot on the gas pedal to start the car.

Now for the idle speeds fluctuation part I know I have to clean IAC and TB, but I have no idea where are these located in this car and Google has no info on this. If anyone could tell me about this I would appreciated it. I know it sounds like the car isn't maintained from what I have said but I swear these problems came outta nowhere. My dad is taking his car for full inspection to see what is faulty and what is not so that the car doesn't bother him anymore, but me and him like to know how much currently damaged his wallet is.

Thank you in advance for any responses I get.

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
It could also be the MAF Sensor (Mass Air Flow Sensor). This will be located near the airfilter box. You will see a cable with a plug connecting to the air intake hose just next to the box. It will require a Security Torx bit <-- Click (I don't remember what size) and a can of MAF cleaner (Do not use anything else as you will risk damaging the wire.)

Your MAF Sensor will look something like this from where you will be under the hood. <-- Click

It could also be the IAC (Idle Air Control) like you mentioned as it will allow too much air to pass by the throttle valve while closed or nearly closed if it is stuck open. This will also be located on your TB (Throttle Body). The best way to find it is to find your air filter box and follow the intake tube to the engine. Yours will look something like this. <-- Click




Hope this helps
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 · (Edited)
It could also be the MAF Sensor (Mass Air Flow Sensor). This will be located near the airfilter box. You will see a cable with a plug connecting to the air intake hose just next to the box. It will require a Security Torx bit <-- Click (I don't remember what size) and a can of MAF cleaner (Do not use anything else as you will risk damaging the wire.)

Your MAF Sensor will look something like this from where you will be under the hood. <-- Click

It could also be the IAC (Idle Air Control) like you mentioned as it will allow too much air to pass by the throttle valve while closed or nearly closed if it is stuck open. This will also be located on your TB (Throttle Body). The best way to find it is to find your air filter box and follow the intake tube to the engine. Yours will look something like this. <-- Click




Hope this helps

Thank you for the help. I'll use the information to locate the parts and clean them. For IAC and TB what can solvent I can use to them? Can I simply use a clean cloth to clean the valve? Also where can I find MAF cleaner locally? I usually order it from eBay but I ran out of my supply and it'll take a month to reach to my country.

Edit: That IAC pic. That looks more to me like a Electronic Throttle Control Actuator? Does my Sentra not have a IAC?

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
I don't know of any place specificly where you can get them other than ordering them or getting them from a local autoparts store. For the Throttle body you can use Throttlebody cleaner, don't use carburetor cleaner it will mess up the lining in your throttlebody. (This is what I was told before). I assume you can use throttle body cleaner on the IAC as well.

But yeah, I live in the States so I really can't speak for local dealers in your area. Maybe you could try amazon?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #6 · (Edited)
I don't know of any place specificly where you can get them other than ordering them or getting them from a local autoparts store. For the Throttle body you can use Throttlebody cleaner, don't use carburetor cleaner it will mess up the lining in your throttlebody. (This is what I was told before). I assume you can use throttle body cleaner on the IAC as well.

But yeah, I live in the States so I really can't speak for local dealers in your area. Maybe you could try amazon?
I thought Carburetor Cleaners were meant for vehicles having a carburetor engine and last I remember I think this car has one. At any case I'll just use the TB cleaner for safe side. Also I do believe I have a shop that sells car parts and fluids so I'll check it out there after the car returns. Do you think a dying alternator can cause those issues I mentioned on my first post? The lights in the car keep flickering or get dimmed when idle. Reason why I am asking because before changing the old battery I notice it was weak for this car and I have heard a weak battery can damage the starter motor and alternator itself

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
I thought Carburetor Cleaners were meant for vehicles having a carburetor engine and last I remember I think this car has one. At any case I'll just use the TB cleaner for safe side. Also I do believe I have a shop that sells car parts and fluids so I'll check it out there after the car returns. Do you think a dying alternator can cause those issues I mentioned on my first post? The lights in the car keep flickering or get dimmed when idle. Reason why I am asking because before changing the old battery I notice it was weak for this car and I have heard a weak battery can damage the starter motor and alternator itself

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
It could be the alternator but that could also be triggered by faulty grounds as well. A faulty ground could cost you a lot less money and time to fix. The ground wire from your battery runs down underneath the tray that the battery sits in and bolts to the body then runs along the front of the car to the other side and to the engine I believe. Check the connection under the battery for a good ground and while you're at it check the terminal that connects to the battery. If those corrode over it could also give the same issue.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Just checked the battery side. Damn the wires still look good for a car this age and I didn't notice any breaks in the wires, hell the ground wire was okay too. The terminals are not that corroded much but I cleaned them anyway.

Then again my dad told me its definitely not the battery side since a while ago he fixed up wires because most of them had their insulation gone or they were about to break.

I couldn't find the IAC despite working my way through the air filter and the hoses connected. Maybe I need to pull them out? Also may not be relevant, may be normal, also may be stupid, but I ain't a car geek so I gotta ask, why is there so much grease on the parts near the left side of engine?

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Grease? Is it brown like the engine oil? Check the valve cover where that metal cap sits on top of the motor. Mine has an oil leak at 177k miles so it could just be a valve cover gasket leak.
Idk when I touched it it was sticky as hell and got my hands blackened. If its a leak how it would be causing the car to stall though?

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #13 ·
huh... Mine looks like this:

https://goo.gl/photos/YWZdoSLm2tNiVsaR6

I live in the middle of Texas so it's next to impossible to keep any of that clean under the hood.
So what you're saying that its normal? Anyway an interesting situation development happened, so today I was in my dad's car and I notice that when my dad slowed down at a stoplight, idle obviously went low(around 200-500 RPM) and the dashboard lights and headlamps were flickering. Is it possible that this is indeed the alternator? I hope I didnt miss a break in those wires.

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
So what you're saying that its normal? Anyway an interesting situation development happened, so today I was in my dad's car and I notice that when my dad slowed down at a stoplight, idle obviously went low(around 200-500 RPM) and the dashboard lights and headlamps were flickering. Is it possible that this is indeed the alternator? I hope I didnt miss a break in those wires.

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
See... that is what bugs me. Even if it were the alternator it should still pull power from the battery. So if it did dim it shouldn't be too noticeable. I don't know what would cause that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #15 ·
See... that is what bugs me. Even if it were the alternator it should still pull power from the battery. So if it did dim it shouldn't be too noticeable. I don't know what would cause that.
It wasn't too noticeable for sure because I only noticed when we were in a dark alleyway, and I could clearly see headlamps and the dashboard lights flickering, but not that much. Maybe I should have a look at the wires again, this time gonna see the wires going to other parts rather than the wires just to the battery side. I mean what could it be at this point? Car is becoming worst by the day but right now a big money hogging fix ain't happening. Anyway that method of yours for checking OBD codes without reader works for other models?


Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
81 Posts
It could be alternator. Best way to test would be to take a multimeter and set it to DC put the black lead on a ground point and the red one on either the positive terminal of the battery or if you are brave enough you can put it directly on the power stud of the alternator to see if the voltage is dropping too low.

Something a lot of people on here will tell you is that Nissan doesn't make parts for the B15 sentra body style anymore. So most of the parts you get from auto parts stores are remanufactured. This means they fix what went bad and resell it. So people here recommend using rockauto.com

I couldn't afford to drop cash for a new alternator so I had to take the old one I had back to autozone and trade it in for a warranty replacement. So odds are mine will crap out sooner or later.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #17 ·
It could be alternator. Best way to test would be to take a multimeter and set it to DC put the black lead on a ground point and the red one on either the positive terminal of the battery or if you are brave enough you can put it directly on the power stud of the alternator to see if the voltage is dropping too low.

Something a lot of people on here will tell you is that Nissan doesn't make parts for the B15 sentra body style anymore. So most of the parts you get from auto parts stores are remanufactured. This means they fix what went bad and resell it. So people here recommend using rockauto.com

I couldn't afford to drop cash for a new alternator so I had to take the old one I had back to autozone and trade it in for a warranty replacement. So odds are mine will crap out sooner or later.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
I never have touched the multimeter but I'm sure my dad can do that one. He does the electrical fixing for this car anyway.

As for the limited parts I do realise that but junkyard for the win! Half of my Sentra's parts are donors from junkyard.

What was hard to find once was the engine though unfortunately, since junkyards don't have an engine that isn't totaled and mechanics said to get a engine directly from Japan is expensive, but in the end we had to do it. In this case though my dad deserved it. He was being such a cheapskate because despite me telling him thousand of times about cylinder misfires(cant remember why), the engine gave up and died.

He paid thousands of dollars for an engine to come for his car. It wasn't even the engine originally meant for his Sentra I think but the mechanics said it was close to his model. Never found out what Nissan car did the engine come from



Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
51 Posts
Discussion Starter · #20 ·
Lol taking it to a mechanic should never be looked at like a walk of shame. If its something you don't think you can fix and you have the money I'd say go for it.

Sent from my Nexus 6 using Tapatalk
It is a walk of shame for me unfortunately. As we speak I took out the IAC and TB right now and excuse my language they look like as if someone **** on it. Thats why I asked if its possible to just clean it without the solvent or am I talking nonsense.

Sent from my Moto G using Tapatalk
 
1 - 20 of 35 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top