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I was driving my 2001 Pathfinder SE (manual transmission) last night, shifted from 2nd gear into 3rd and felt some vibration, like driving over coarse gravel (the roads were a mixture of packed snow and dry pavement). It kind of felt like I had shifted into 5th gear by accident - but I hadn't... It got worse as I accelerated... I shifted back to 2nd and the vibration increased as RPMs increased. Then I shifted back to 3rd and vibration started again, and then the check engine light came on flashing, went off after 10-20 seconds. I pulled into my driveway, turned off and restarted and it seemed to run fine. Has anyone else encountered this problem? Any ideas what it could be?
 

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i have 99, and i had a probelm with A/T. it was vibrating while shifting between 3rd an 4th. it was rebuilt last weel. all internal elemant has been replaced now. it runs like new. and no vibration. this can be a mechanical problem inside transmission.
 

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Mysterious Vibration 2001 PF 4WD ??

Crow2001: Did you find out what the problem was?? I have a 01 PF LE 4WD, just yesterday - 113.8k miles, my son told me that there was a severe vibration at 45-50 MPH. Took 'er out this morning, warmed it up, checked oil, Tranny fluids: OK. Went for a drive, Yep, there is the vibration through 45+ MPH, diminishes at 65-70, then when decelerating, down from 55 to 45 you feel it again, then below 45MPH it's gone??? New tires, 6 weeks ago, new spark plugs, No Check Engine Light !!. Anybody have any Ideas . Note : it was worse with AUTO engaged on the 4WD, but was still there in 2WD, just not as Bad...:wtf:Maybe Wheel bearings??
 

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Possible bad front driveshaft u-joint?
You'll need to grab the front driveshaft at the u-joint and wiggle the crap out of it and see if there is ANY movement at all.
 

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No Metro, was inspected today by a mechanic, who is a Jeep person for 28 years. Best he could determine : it seemed a drive shaft to the front transfer case had a 'little play"... I asked if he checked the transfer oil (replaced about 50k miles ago), he showed me that the access plug was "frozen" into place, he couldn't remove it to check the fluid. he thinks the trnafer oil broke down, but he's really not sure. Told me to bring it to a Nissan Dealer. Worst case scenario: replace the shaft and transfer case -$1,800!!!. I drove it today, the virbration/rumble is preety severe at 45+ to 65mph, and worse with AUTO on in 4WD. SOB..... Just spent $1000 new tires, new spark plugs, wheel alignment. Oh yeah, i think it needs a water pump - it's chirping and the serpintine belt squeals at start up...
 

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Metro: On second thought, I think that is what the mechanic showed me today: The driveshaft at the U joint, just in front of the front transfer case!!, it DID have justa slight wiggle - movement to it. The mechanic did say that should not move at all. He did tug on it pretty hard. If that is in fact the problem, what is a ballpark cost to replace?? How could that happen to the driveshaft ??
 

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No Metro, was inspected today by a mechanic, who is a Jeep person for 28 years. Best he could determine : it seemed a drive shaft to the front transfer case had a 'little play"... I asked if he checked the transfer oil (replaced about 50k miles ago), he showed me that the access plug was "frozen" into place, he couldn't remove it to check the fluid. he thinks the trnafer oil broke down, but he's really not sure. Told me to bring it to a Nissan Dealer. Worst case scenario: replace the shaft and transfer case -$1,800!!!. I drove it today, the virbration/rumble is preety severe at 45+ to 65mph, and worse with AUTO on in 4WD. SOB..... Just spent $1000 new tires, new spark plugs, wheel alignment. Oh yeah, i think it needs a water pump - it's chirping and the serpintine belt squeals at start up...
I had a similiar situation for the last 3 weeks - vibration in "Auto". Dealership changed all ujoints due to play. Still had the vibration, replaced tires (needed anyway), still vibration. Dropped it off again, they replaced the transfer case with a new one (thank god for warranty). Vibration is all gone. Apparently the clutch in the transfer case was seized. Sorry for the bad news dude, hopefully its something else. Keep us posted.
 

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denvern: Bring my PF to an Infiniti Dealer (I also have a 2007 G35X, what a car!!!), spoke to the service advisor. He says that IF it's only the driveshaft and U joint - a few hundred dollars; If it's the transfer case like yours, "It won't be worth it" on my 2001 PF. Man that sucks after I just bought new tires - Genral Grabbers HTSs [great tire btw] and new spark plugs. Spent $950 6-7 weeks ago. I DON'T have Warranty. Last truck that I will buy, way Too Much Hassle for a Gas guzzling vehicle that I never took off-road anyway. 90%+ never do with these SUvs. Had a 1994 Jeep Cherokee, tranny went on it at about 90k, 7 or 8 years old- No Warranty. Had it rebuilt, That was a mistake !!!

Oh yeah denvern: what year PF do you have?? Did this vibration start all of a sudden? Did you ever change the transfer oils, tranny fluids before this happened?? You better - every 30-40k miles!!!
The worse part of this for me: I was just debating about 2 months ago whether to put the new $$$ into my PF with 113k miles - 8 years old,: new tires, new plugs, (did those 2) it probably needs a serpintine belt, water pump (its chirping now) AND I have a water seepage onto the passenger front fllor coming in under the carpet (that's been a f------g PIA); Muffler/exhaust system.......I know these maintenance items, but with today's costs and ineffective ripe-off service I really wonder if it's worth.
 

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Oh yeah denvern: what year PF do you have?? Did this vibration start all of a sudden? Did you ever change the transfer oils, tranny fluids before this happened?? You better - every 30-40k miles!!!
The worse part of this for me: I was just debating about 2 months ago whether to put the new $$$ into my PF with 113k miles - 8 years old,: new tires, new plugs, (did those 2) it probably needs a serpintine belt, water pump (its chirping now) AND I have a water seepage onto the passenger front fllor coming in under the carpet (that's been a f------g PIA); Muffler/exhaust system.......I know these maintenance items, but with today's costs and ineffective ripe-off service I really wonder if it's worth.
I have a 2004 with 51k which I purchased used. The vibration started right after I changed the tranny and transfer case fluids. I've come to the conclusion that it failed because either the previous owner never changed the fluid, because of the large boat they towed or abuse.

Thank God Nissan & my dealer came through and covered this under warranty. This is my 3rd Nissan and because of how they handled this I will most likely purchase Nissan again. I know these are rock solid trucks however no machine can stand up to abuse.

Are you the original owner? Do you drive in "Auto" year round? I'm curious as to why yours is vibrating.
 

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denvern: Just got the report from the Infiniti Dealer (I have a G35X, really like the dealership service). Here's the Sad Sad Prognosis: The transfer case and driveshaft U joint need to be replaced, the Check Engine light went back on this morning on the way to the service dept {I have avoided the O2 sensor(s) change for 2 years - my former mechanic was able to clean them, add some STP gas treatment and voila', it was good for awhile}Repace 2 - O2 sensors; A/C compressor is going bad; rear trailer arms and bushings need to be replaced; water pump on the way out; that didn't include the water seepage on the passenger side and the poor operating power window motor rear drive's side. $5,800 ESTIMATE FOR REPAIRS !!!. Goodbye Pathfinder. I'm thinking of selling the brand new tires - 300 miles on them, before I trade "er in. General Grabber HTSs - Hi grades from Consumer reports - my short term experience was that these tires are great. To answer your questions: No I'm not the original owner - bought it 2 years old with 29k miles, fully loaded with brushguards, hood & moonroof deflectors. I'd say that I drove about 75% of the time in Auto mode. I will apprise you of what my former mechanic (he moved on too far away from me) advised: NEVER SHIFT THE 2WD MODE INTO AUTO MODE ON THE FLY!! The manual will tell it's OK up to 50 mph[in Neutral gear, of course], He says that's a Nissan ploy to "help" you to the repair Bay at the Service dept. I'll never buy a SUV truck again, it's all overkill BS anyway. When's the last time you took it Off-Road on the way to the supermarket LOL.....really crying out loud
 

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That sucks bro. What you gonna get next? I know you're done with suv's however keep this in mind...........i had a 97 Pathfinder, traded it in on a 2005 Altima 3.5, had to get back into a truck (feeling can't describe).....now im back in a 04 Pathfinder. Aside from the vibration issue, i couldn't be happier.

Thanks for the advice on using the 4x4, my thinking is similiar to your mechanic. I drive in 2wd 98% of the time and try to keep shifting on the fly to a minimum.
 

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denvern: Don't shift to Auto on the fly. Come to full stop, go into neutral, then chnage to AUTO - just like the proceedure for 4HI or LO. The mechanic was pretty adamant about that...Who knows maybe that was initiating issue. I did chnage the transfer and diff oils at 75k miles. Since this was "3rd car' used mostly by my son - finally out of college and the PF was fully paid for - I'm thinking something more practical, and efficient. Being in suburbs of NY, the true 4 X 4 isn't needed.......Maybe a Mazda 3, a Subbie. Even fooling with an "american car" - Ford?? We have a Honda CRV 2007 AWD. I will say, its "cutsy", but that vehicle serves its purpose right on: moves in the snow, handles very well, pretty roomy, nice interior but seats are for smaller "girls' no real thigh support ...good, not exceptional on gas - but uses regular unleaded. I'll check this forum from time to time, maybe we'll talk again. Good Luck with your Pathy.
 

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Denvern: Exactly the same thing with my 01 PF LE 4WD. 2 U joints were bad 1 in front and 1 in the back drive shafts. Had all 4 replaced, the vibration was worse. Transfer case clutch NO GOOD. The mechanic who did the work, seemed to think, but was not certain that "something is not right in the transfer case, it's making slight noise and there was a slight movement he sensed".... But he went ahead and replaced the U joints - $650. I'm not about to replace the X-fer case Used and definetely not Used from a Junker....Oh well it's 2 WD for now. Disconnected the front drive shaft - she running smoother. Funny thing: the mechanic who knows Jeeps really well [they have a lot of Transfer case problems} said that in the PF, even in 2Wd mode, the shaft was spinning slightly offering some drive to the front wheels. In Jeeps, the X-fer case is not engaged in 2D modes. The vibration I originally felt - which happened suddenly one day - was worse in Auto mode, but was present to a lesser extent in 2WD mode.
 

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Denvern: Exactly the same thing with my 01 PF LE 4WD. 2 U joints were bad 1 in front and 1 in the back drive shafts. Had all 4 replaced, the vibration was worse. Transfer case clutch NO GOOD. The mechanic who did the work, seemed to think, but was not certain that "something is not right in the transfer case, it's making slight noise and there was a slight movement he sensed".... But he went ahead and replaced the U joints - $650. I'm not about to replace the X-fer case Used and definetely not Used from a Junker....Oh well it's 2 WD for now. Disconnected the front drive shaft - she running smoother. Funny thing: the mechanic who knows Jeeps really well [they have a lot of Transfer case problems} said that in the PF, even in 2Wd mode, the shaft was spinning slightly offering some drive to the front wheels. In Jeeps, the X-fer case is not engaged in 2D modes. The vibration I originally felt - which happened suddenly one day - was worse in Auto mode, but was present to a lesser extent in 2WD mode.
Update: After a new transfer case was installed (Nissan dealer), I still had a very slight vibration. I thought I'll give it time for everthing to "work in" however it seemed to be getting worse. Well with me being very picky and for someone who enjoys driving, this Pathfinder was becoming a nightmare. I just got sick of running back and forth to the dealer that I traded the Pathfinder in. I took a little bit of a hit but I was glad to see it go. Don't get me wrong I know R50 Pathfinders are solid trucks however I got one which was abused by the previous owner.
 
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