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Common Nissan Altima Problems to Watch Out For

May 5, 2021
Nissan Altima Problems

The Nissan Altima is one of the most popular cars in the Raleigh area. This midsize sedan’s comfortable seating and a quiet ride make it an ideal choice for families. While the Altima is generally dependable, it does suffer from a few common issues. Here are some key problems to watch out for or you might be scheduling a Nissan repair. Call Creech today to fix your Nissan Altima problems.

Transmission Failure With Your Nissan Altima

Like so many other Nissan models, most Altimas built-in with the last decade come equipped with a continuously variable transmission (CVT). This modern automatic transmission, which uses a heavy-duty belt to transfer power to the wheels, is designed to boost overall fuel economy. While a CVT tends to be quiet and efficient, it’s not quite as durable as a traditional automatic transmission.

Many Altima owners have reported CVT issues. Some of these transmissions begin to fail before even reaching the 100,000-mile mark. If you begin to notice a delayed throttle response or a shaking sensation upon accelerating, there’s a good chance you’re dealing with a bad CVT. Keep in mind that the cost of repair can be upwards of $5,000.

The good news is that there are ways to extend the life of a CVT. Most importantly, be sure to religiously change the transmission fluid every 25,000 miles or so. Nissan experts also encourage Altima owners to avoid aggressively stepping on the accelerator. This could cause the belt to break prematurely. Another tip is to allow the car to warm up for at last a minute before hitting the road.

Nissan Altima Problems with Catalytic Converter Failure

All modern vehicles feature a catalytic converter, including the Nissan Altima. It’s part of a car’s emissions system. The primary function of this component is to reduce the amount of toxic gases coming from the exhaust.

A catalytic converter can fail in a few different ways. The ceramic honeycomb elements can break apart, thus blocking exhaust flow. Your engine won’t be able to breathe properly. Expect to notice a dramatic loss of power.

Remember, a bad catalytic converter doesn’t always cause poor performance. If the onboard computer detects excess exhaust emissions, it will trigger a check engine light. Your catalytic converter is likely not effectively doing its job. All these can cause you to have Nissan Altima problems and need a repair.

The installation of a new catalytic converter can be expensive, so take the necessary steps to protect it. Routine car maintenance is crucial, especially tune-ups. Bad spark plugs can cause excessive fuel to enter the catalytic converter, which ultimately leads to failure. Also, have any oil leaks repaired as soon as possible. Once motor oil seeps into the catalytic converter, it’s only a matter of time before contamination occurs.

If your Nissan Altima is often parked for the majority of the week, be sure to take it for a 15-minute drive on the highway. This will enable the exhaust to sufficiently heat up and burn off any carbon deposits sitting inside the converter.

Bad Camshaft or Crankshaft Position Sensor

Your Altima is engineered with dozens of sensors. However, the camshaft and crankshaft position sensors are especially prone to going bad. They can cause your vehicle to suddenly stall while you’re on the road, which is dangerous.

Keep an eye out for the signs of these sensors failing. If your car doesn’t have enough pep or has started to run rough, definitely take it to a Nissan mechanic. Things will only become worse over time. When a camshaft or crankshaft position sensors completely malfunctions, your Altima is unlikely to start.

Failed Engine Seal Can Cause Nissan Altima Problems

If your Altima is equipped with a V6 engine, be aware that the engine seal can fail with age. This typically leads to a noticeable oil leak. To fix the problem, a Nissan mechanic may need to install a new o-ring.

Far too many Altima owners wait too long to get this problem repaired. In the event you can’t have the problem fixed right away, be sure to check your oil level at least once a week. Oil starvation becomes a real concern. When the oil level drops too low, there’s a chance for the engine to seize. Your only option will be to either have the engine rebuilt or to install a new one. We hope this has been a helpful guide to solving your Nissan Altima problems. Give us a call to help you with your Nissan.