6th Sep 2009, 23:26

I wish I could agree with the person above, but I seem to be having similar issues as mostly everyone else. I too have a 2003 Altima with about 94k miles, and the SES has come on twice. The first time Nissan told me that my spark plugs and coil needs to be changed.

After getting those two things changed, and letting the gas run out (possible bad gas), the car began to run fine. After about two weeks passing, the SES light is back on. The car begins to shake as if it is going to cut off while sitting at lights and so forth.

After reading the similar issues, I am beginning to wonder if this is worth it. These problems seem as if they are going to be continuous, without any true resolution, I am think I need to evaluate my thought on the Altima.

17th Sep 2009, 19:36

I bought my 03 Altima brand new. Have 81500 miles, and over the past few months it has been jerking while I'm sitting at a light or really bogged down when pressing on the gas. It died while making a left turn, but no check engine light on.

Took to a mechanic and he thought it was the coil packs. Changed those for $650.00. Within a month the car died twice and the check engine light came on. Took it back to the original mechanic, had a diagnostic test and it came back as the crank sensor. He went to Nissan, bought a sensor and replaced it, he got it started & died again. This time it will not start at all.

Frustrated, called Nissan, finally got it started to get to the dealership. They told me I need to replace the crank sensor. I just replaced it 3 days earlier, how could that be. They told me well I have an "after market" sensor & they don't recommend that. Went back to the mechanic, got proof of purchase of crank sensor from Nissan & went back to Nissan & showed them proof that they sold a sensor to my mechanic. Nissan checked the part# and they can't find it in their system.

Long story short... they sold the mechanic a part that is after market and didn't even work! So they replaced another crank sensor for free.

The car has not died, but it shifts really hard. I'm very worried hearing the stories that the car stops while driving 60 plus mph!!! Thinking that I may have to trade it in! Grew up with parents that had several Nissans with no problems, so naturally I went for the Nissan too, but extremely disappointed and now will never by another Nissan again. What a shame!

BTW - I took very good care of this car! It's an engineering problem in my opinion!

24th Oct 2009, 18:57

I also have an '03 Altima 2.5S, and my car did not start around 70K miles. I bought it used in '05 with only 18K miles on it. When the car did not want to start, I took it to Nissan, and they said it was the crank sensors. They replaced it for free and did not charge.

Now my car has 105K miles and my car had the same problem again. The car cranks but does not start. I took it to Autozone to check the engine light code for free. It was the cam sensors code. This time Nissan did not want to replace the crank/cam sensors for free, since technically my '03 was not on the recall list. I bought the sensors through the dealer for $55, since Nissan mechanics wanted to charge me $300 for the work. I replaced both sensors myself. The crank sensor was the hardest. After talking to one of the mechanics, they said there is not suppose to be any oil on the sensors. There was a lot of oil on my cam sensor, but not much on the crank. Part of the reason is I waited to change the oil on the 6K mile mark with conventional. I should be using high mileage or synthetic by now. Now my engine light is still on, but my car runs great as it did before. I guess I will wait a few days and check the code again.

24th Oct 2009, 22:04

Where do I start? Let's just say the Nissan dealership (they claim Nissan wouldn't pay for it) FINALLY stepped up and bought me a new engine at 72,000 miles. My car stalled (while driving on the 405 in Los Angeles) multiple times and began smoking. It broke down no less than 6 times in 7 months. They replaced the radiator, did the crank sensor, changed the key sensors, changed the head gasket, etc. The problems began at about 68,000 miles.

It turns out that my problem was that 3 of 4 cylinders were being flooded by the coolant.

Even with the new engine, my confidence in the Nissan product is about 5%.

Never Nissan again! Like Vista, Nissan burnt me and I will never forget. You will see me driving a BMW with a Mac in a couple of years (granted the new engine holds for a couple of years).

29th Oct 2009, 13:21

Well my daughter and I bought a Nissan Altima with 92K miles.

The service engine light was on at the time we purchased the vehicle. I went online and found out that the cam and crank position sensor were made of plastic, which would fail due to the heat cycle of the engine. I went to Autozone and purchased the sensors part # SU6364 for $39.00 each. I read the paper and it stated that although this sensor does not resemble the sensor you took off, this is the preferred sensor. It is a cylinder in shape and the part that is inside the engine is made of metal rather than the plastic. The cam sensor was located below and to the left of the throttle body. This one only took 5 minutes to replace once I removed the air filter assembly.

The crank sensor is located on the engine that is near the firewall between the motor mount and flywheel. I positioned myself on the driver side. I used a flashlight and a mirror to "see the sensor." You will know you're looking at the right one because you will see the green tab that you will have to push in. The direction you will push in is towards the engine. Once you hear the click sound, you can wiggle the connection loose from the sensor. You will need to use a 10mm socket and extension to remove the bolt. All of this is done with feel as you cannot visually see the sensor. The only part I removed was the air filter assembly.

Once the bolt was removed, you will still struggle with removing the sensor. I used a small vise grip that I was lucky to clamp on the sensor and removed it that way. I made sure that I cleaned the hole. The new sensor I sprayed some wd040 on my finger and lubed the rubber gasket. I did not connect the new sensor to the harness as it said that you could do, I rather inserted the new sensor, got my socket, wadded up a small piece of paper and used it to wedge the bolt into the socket, which was connected to my extension... I did this so that it would not fall when I was trying to insert it back. I carefully felt the bolt opening and lined it up. Once I had it snug, I took my ratchet and tightened it. I wiggled the socket and the piece of paper off the bolt.

I cleared the service engine soon light and was told that I needed to drive the car 100 miles before I could go and get my inspection sticker (emission test), because although I replaced the sensors, if Jiffy Lube were to perform the emission test, I would have still have failed. I do not know if this is true or not, but my daughter is driving right now to put 100 miles on the vehicle and take it back in to have the emission retest.

I hope this was helpful, and the crank sensor is very challenging.