1st Jul 2008, 12:56

My 1996 Pathfinder has just started with a ticking sound. This is a great thread; lots of ideas of things to check on. I love my Pathfinder, the odometer just turned over 260,000 and aside from this noise it is doing great, it is THE MOST reliable vehicle I've ever had the pleasure of owning. We bought it in 2002 and it was like brand new. My husband is getting ready to do another timing belt and water pump replacement.

13th Oct 2008, 00:28

(Original author here again)

Good to see a nice amount of information coming up about this great truck. There's definitely some varied and experienced advice here.

Unfortunately, my update doesn't come with a happy note. Last February I was driving the 110-mile trek home on the highway in a downpour, which turned to freezing rain and solid ice on the roads about 20 miles from home. Yeah, managed to avoid the trees in the median, but I flipped it over sideways the long way.

After sitting for almost 6 months (money and time are tight, I've got a 1 year old) I bought a rusted-out '95 Pathfinder for parts and used everything off of that to fix mine up. They're easy to find, just search Craigslist or other equivalent sites - I got literally double my value for what I paid for the junker in parts. $500 for a near flawless windshield, doors, hood, lights? Heck yeah.

Anyway, sadly, as I was putting on the wheelwell shrouds, I started to notice the frame rust was much much more advanced than it had been right before my accident. Time has not been kind to this car, and in short order I found a rust hole in the frame by the right rear tire large enough to fit my entire hand in. Then I noticed one of the links to my sway bar had completely rusted off of the frame - nothing left. Depressing. I don't think I'll even bother to get it repainted, and drive it in the 3 colors it's in now; it's probably only got a couple years left with frame rust this bad.

If this truck had been in a garage or rarely seen winter then I'm sure I'd turn my 200k miles into 500k miles easy. But at this point I don't see any possibility unless I rebuild the entire frame. Add to that the exhaust leak that started literally 2 days ago. Bad luck, I know, but I've had my eye on some of the recent Pathfinders..

15th Oct 2008, 16:19

I bought a 95 SE, and was the one of best I ever drove. These past 3 years I haven't been able to get the truck inspected, no matter how much body work is done. Turns out the Frame, wheel wells and other parts are rusted beyond repair. I still have the truck, just starting researching if others had this problem, I would love to turn this one in for a newer one but only knowing the rust won't return.

17th Oct 2008, 00:48

Just a question, but has anyone tried adding a quart of ATF to the engine to try and stop this engine noise? I had a Ford Explorer that ticked and a quart of ATF in the engine solved that problem permanently.

I just test drove a 95 Pathfinder this evening and plan on buying it in the morning. It has 184k miles and I noticed a sleight ticking at first, but it went away in about 10 seconds... I'm not too worried about it...

As far as rust goes, I'm in Montana where we put sand on the roads instead of salt, so I don't suspect rust will be bad... anyway, try a quart of ATF about 200 miles before an oil change and see what happens... it won't hurt anything and might fix the noise...

12th Nov 2008, 10:36

Hello, I just inherited my father's 1995 Nissan Pathfinder V6 XE 4x4. 5-speed manual transmission, with just 102K miles. It's been sitting in the garage for almost 2.5 years. I was surprised it started up immediately with just a battery boost. The Nissan dealer replaced the CV joints and timing belt. Even with a wheel- alignment, I get a noticeable wobble over 55 mph. I changed the spark plugs myself. (that #6 plug was a challenge!) I do get that "noise" when I drive with a cold engine, and when accelerating uphill. The idle is really quiet; its like the engine is not on at all.

I just found out that the odometer works sometimes; the tachometer and speedometer are OK. Does anyone know how to check if some cable is disconnected? Maybe its something with the tires? My brother installed larger tires: 31 x 10.5 which come standard with the SE. Maybe larger tires should not have been installed here? I do know I go 5 miles faster when I compare my speed with a GPS. Please help!


2nd Jan 2009, 20:36

I have never owned a foreign SUV until a few days ago I bought a 95 pathfinder. From reading all you people's reviews and comments, I hope I have as good a luck as you guys. You seem to love yours.

So far I think I like it. I have to pull a trailer sometimes and haven't pulled it with it yet. I am concerned it won't have enough power. I'm only pulling a load of about 2500lbs including the trailer. What do you guys think?

And I have that sound too, it sounds like an exhaust manifold leak. Just a small one.

26th Jan 2009, 12:56

I bought a used 1995 Pathfinder SE as a winter car, to keep my 2007 Mustang GT out of the winter salt used here in Wisconsin. It was a great vehicle over all, but did require the exhaust manifold stud replacement on the passenger side of the engine. Would have liked to keep this Pathy forever, but the frame was rusted through in several places. Had a guy weld angle iron over the rusted spots and it was again safe. The body had a few rust-through holes, as well. I sold it for a bit of a loss locally.

With that being said, I found another 1995 Pathfinder SE in Denver Colorado that was rust free. It had originally been a California car before that. I flew out to Denver using frequent flyer miles, bought it and drove it home to Wisconsin.

It now has 207,000 miles on it and it runs great! Absolutely, no rust at all! The previous owner (original owner) replaced the manifold studs 3 times, the last time his mechanic used 2 gaskets per side and it has help up since. Apparently, using two gaskets allows for more expansion and less vibration which breaks the studs.

The engine still has a slight ticking noise but I'm not worried about it. It has not gotten any worse since I bought it in July 2008.

The throwout bearing started to make noise a month or two ago so later this week I'm replacing the entire clutch and throwout bearing. I figure that with 207,000 on the clutch it can't have too much meat left on the clutch disk, so might as well do the whole job and only pay the labor once.

This Pathy does not drip or burn a drop of oil, or any other fluids. Overall, it is one of my favorite vehicles of all time. I've owned three new jeeps in my life time and the Pathy is better in the snow than any of the jeeps, and it is more reliable.