My story may help you. Once I started my J30 and moved it onto the street from the driveway and turned it off. The next day it would not start. I talked to an Infiniti mechanic and he said it was common for a J30 that had not been run long enough to warm up to not want to start. The solution is to start it with the gas peddle all the way to the floor. The car will start VERY ROUGH and spew WHITE SMOKE out the exhaust. You will need to pump the gas to keep it going. Once it reaches operating temperature, it will be OK.
I have a '94 J30 with some of the same recurring issues I've read here. The "speakers not working" problem is really not the speakers or Bose system at all. It's the head unit which is made by Clarion, Bose doesn't make stereos. It can be replaced with a Sony or JVC model which will mount directly in place, or you can send it back to Clarion in CA. and have it repaired.
The dash lights come on when the headlights are turned on. The dimmer roll switch located on the dashboard left of the steering column is the culprit when the dash lights don't work. Replace or clean this switch.
I am thinking of buying a 1993 J30 with about 142,000 miles on it from a buy here pay here car lot for $4000. The two problems that I have noticed with the car are the stereo, which does not work, and the antenna which is broke. The antenna makes a loud vibrating noise sometimes. Does anyone know about the antenna's problem? Can I just remove the stereo and put in another brand? And do you think buying the car is a good thing?
I bought a '93 j30 with 181,000 miles on it for $2000. it actually runs great. a/c is great, stereo has been replaced, headlights seem to work fine. the suspension is bad, and I was wondering if anyone knew where I could get some struts for cheap, to install myuself. also, the dash lights (instrument panel, clock) are out, and there doesn't seem to be any fuse for this. what do I do?
On the J30 that needs an antenna... you can buy an antenna for nissan maxima on pep boys or any other retailer and replace it yourself. is not hard at all. The radio...that's something else. You can install "ANY" radio... may not look as cool, but it will do the job. Simply by-bass the connectors and make sure you tape the ends well. That should do the deal. The car is a good purchase. Dirve it before you buy it.
Regarding the J30 "one headlight works" but not the other, here's the problem: The stalk-mounted switch inside the cabin used to turn the headlights on/off is too small to handle the amps drawn by the headlights. When you turn that switch on the steering column it actually turns on a couple of RELAYS. There is a little black plastic relay/switch box near the firewall (engine side) on the driver's side that houses these relays. When the relay contacts close, the lights go on and vice versa. What happens is that the circuit board in the switch box gets hot and the solder points on the relays melt a bit. That's why the light sometimes work... and sometimes not. Also, that's why no amount of banging on the bulb or socket does anything. You can do one of two things: If you know how, remove the relay box and re-solder the leads of the relays (bad solder points are brown or "hazy silver" not bright silver) OR buy a new relay kit from a dealer. (If you buy a used one, you should inspect to make sure the solder points aren't bad.) This'll do the trick... it did for me. Took me a couple of months to troubleshoot this, but once I found it, I've had no problems at all with the headlights. Best of all, the fix was free.
I recently bought a '93 J30t with 120,000 miles on it (only 2 owners, always dealer serviced). I immediately had the timing belt, brakes and broken window motor replaced. Having the same problem with the dash lights, though (and radio display), so really appreciate all the great advice here, definitely going to try that.
I am so in love with this car! It's drop-dead beautiful, incredibly sweet ride, especially at high speeds on the freeway, so comfortable and solid, the sound out of the speakers is phenomenal. Still taking it easy while I get used to what the car can do, but the four-wheel steering (?) seems to be capable of things other cars only dream of (as they slide off the road, ha ha!) Yes, the trunk is tiny and there's no place to stash all my stuff in the console, but I would not trade it for anything.
Two questions: do I really *really* have to use premium gas and should I be using the gears at all or just leave it in "drive" all the time?
What a great website ~~ thanks to everyone for all the great comments.
One more question from the happy new '93 J30t owner. I cannot find the seat heater button in the location shown in the manual. It's a Southern California car... do some of them just not have that feature?
To the person who asked about the gears.
I have heard a lot of people say that when you are driving around in town (mainly under forty miles per hour) you should put it in 3, or non-overdrive, because it reduces gear-hunting A lot. I don't always do this, but I probably should, and I think it might be better for the transmission.
I have a 1994 Infiniti J30 T with 180,000 miles and have had 2 of the above problems.
1) Right headlight intermittently turning on and off - was resolved by going to the Infiniti dealership service department, buying the $50 relay (don't buy the headlamp relays that look like weird jumpers, buy the big piece of curved plastic relay that's like two bars of soap). I asked the service dealership for a printout of its location to save $100 charge for their labor, but required the help of a neighbor for 1.5 hours trying to get the thing out of the worst location near the driver's side bumper.
2) I have the cold start issue. I originally towed it to that same Infiniti dealership on AAA's tab, and paid $100 for their suggestion to have a fuel filter installed rather than a $180 diagnostic. For that $100, they told me how common this cold start issue is and to just hold the gas pedal down 3/4 before I turn the ignition - which sounds good, but didn't work this morning. So, that would have been a waste of money, had they not also cleaned all my windows and made my hubcaps shinier than I've ever seen them.
Here's some good tips that another website has suggested for this cold start issue that I hope to try in the future (being as I have to drive to work tomorrow). http://infinitihelp.com/diy/car_care_tips/cold_start_problems.php
It's kind of sad that this issue happens to my car in a covered carport, in 55 degree San Francisco fog weather that isn't that cold, but what can I do, but hope and put the pedal to the metal.
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Brent / Eccent.