Alternator or Throttle Position Sensor Problem - Don't Know! HELP! - Nissan Murano Forum
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post #1 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 12:43 PM Thread Starter
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Alternator or Throttle Position Sensor Problem - Don't Know! HELP!

I've been doing A LOT of reading before I haul my car down to Nissan for them to look at it, because, it's out of warranty by 2000 miles. It was actually IN warranty when I went on the road trip, but after 2400 miles, I was out of warranty. I've read some horror stories as to how much it costs to repair the sensors or alternator, so I wanted to make 100% sure what the problem MIGHT be, before I call Nissan directly for some "complimentary assistance".

It died, twice, driving through a very busy intersection. I thought I just ran out of gas (which has happened to me before). A buddy of mine brought me some gas to which my car wouldn't start still, dead battery. He jumped me, we got out of the parking lot and back through the intersection only to have my car die again. It was late so we left it there over night so I could try a new battery, which seemed to work.

I got about maybe 12 miles TOTAL after installing the new battery, only to have it go from normal running mode, good RPM's and power, to the typical, low RPM, idle only forward driving mode. The brake light, battery light and check engine light were all on (all three times). I tried to crank it immediately after turning it off and all I got was the "click click click" dead battery noise.

As I said before, the battery was BRAND NEW, not 4 hours old and I had NOT left the car running at all, nor had I left any of the acessories on which would have possibly drained the battery as well.

My car is 10 miles from the closest dealership, I don't have tow coverage because I'm out of warranty, so I want to know if even taking it to Nissan as oppossed to a shop that does A LOT of work for a lot of my friends/family.

Does this sound like it is almost surely the alternator, or does it sound like it could be the throttle position sensor (which is actually covered under a recall).

If anyone, any of the master techs on here, can read this, tell me what you think and give me any suggestions, I'd apprecite it more then you know.

Thanks.
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post #2 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 12:51 PM
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Sounds like the altenator to me.....if you can get a jump and have a volt meter handy, check the voltage at the battery. If it is not at least 14 volts, ur altenator is croaked.

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post #3 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 12:56 PM
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Yeah the voltmeter test should easily tell you if the alternator is putting out a charge to the battery or not. If you get a very very high rating (above 14V) then your voltage regulator might be shot.

A bad alternator will usually light up both the ABS and battery (the [+-] figure) indicators. Since those lights are on for you, its a good bet its a bad alternator.

The check engine light means the computer has stored a trouble code. Without knowing what the code is, further diagnosis is not possible.




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post #4 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 01:06 PM Thread Starter
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Battery light is on, the ABS light isn't on, at least, I am 99% sure it isn't...

I'm going to go test it out here shortly, we'll see.
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post #5 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 01:12 PM
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Isn't it the brake light (!), not the ABS light?

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post #6 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 02:24 PM
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Yeah thats right, the brake light. I haven't had enough caffeine today yet....




2003 Midnight Blue SE AWD w/VDC
Colgan Bra, Mobil One, JWT POP charger
PAC aux input adapter, hardwired Escort Passport x50, KUDA mount for MP3 player, Porterfield R4S brake pads (now Akebono ProACT), ATE Superblue
Yokohama Envigor (much improved over stock Goodyears)
Lots of squeaks and rattles.
R.I.P. 10/15/2015 CVT failure.
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post #7 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 08:38 PM
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Brake and battery light means bad alternator. Check your car insurance to see if you're covered for towing. Replacing the alternator is a little tricky, but I figure the dealerships all have plenty of experience by now, so you may want to go to them. As I said in another thread, make a stink with Nissan to get them to pay, even though you're out of warranty. They're counting on most of the alts to fail out of warranty. And that's just one reason they don't want a recall.

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post #8 of 25 Old 05-05-2005, 10:01 PM
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My TPS did go bad and the only light that came on was the check engine. It sounds like yours is the alternator. If the check engine light went on you should be able to get the code by hooking it up to a computer. We have Auto Zone around us and they've read our codes at no charge. Then we take the car to a mechanic and tell them what the diagnosis is. It's been very helpful.

Good luck!

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post #9 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 11:48 AM
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Alternator !!!
Voltage regulator is built into the alternator if i'm not mistaken, so replace alternator anyhow.
The cheapest solution is to buy it online and use local shop to install, if you can't do it yourself

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post #10 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 12:30 PM Thread Starter
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I've never had to pay to have my car fixed at a dealership before. Would it save me a lot of money getting it done somewheres else as oppossed to Nissan directly?
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post #11 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 01:00 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by vettewon
I've never had to pay to have my car fixed at a dealership before. Would it save me a lot of money getting it done somewheres else as oppossed to Nissan directly?
It would probably depend what you mean by a lot of money. The Murano's alternator takes about 1.5 hours to replace if they do not remove the radiator (its a revised procedure according to a recent TSB) and taking it to an independent shop, you might save maybe $100-200.

I would estimate the dealer will charge between $500-600 to change your alternator if its not covered under warranty. If you are over the warranty period by just a bit, ask Nissan for their goodwill warranty, and see if it applies in your case.




2003 Midnight Blue SE AWD w/VDC
Colgan Bra, Mobil One, JWT POP charger
PAC aux input adapter, hardwired Escort Passport x50, KUDA mount for MP3 player, Porterfield R4S brake pads (now Akebono ProACT), ATE Superblue
Yokohama Envigor (much improved over stock Goodyears)
Lots of squeaks and rattles.
R.I.P. 10/15/2015 CVT failure.
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post #12 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
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I just got off the phone with Nissan. The lady I spoke with was very nice and very helpful. They asked me EVERYTHING that led up to the failure and what happened AFTER the failure, battery replacement, towing, etc...

She said since it was Friday, I wouldn't know til' Monday afternoon if they'd cover it.

The dealership wants $539 to replace the alternator.

If it's an hour and a half worth of work, what is the standard labor charge and how much is an alternator? It doesn't add up if it's only 1.5 hours of work... alternators don't cost that much money.

I guess we'll see in a few days, sucks it's the weekend though.
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post #13 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 02:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by vettewon
I just got off the phone with Nissan. The lady I spoke with was very nice and very helpful. They asked me EVERYTHING that led up to the failure and what happened AFTER the failure, battery replacement, towing, etc...

She said since it was Friday, I wouldn't know til' Monday afternoon if they'd cover it.

The dealership wants $539 to replace the alternator.

If it's an hour and a half worth of work, what is the standard labor charge and how much is an alternator? It doesn't add up if it's only 1.5 hours of work... alternators don't cost that much money.

I guess we'll see in a few days, sucks it's the weekend though.

I think Nissan's list price for the alternator is around $350. The standard labor rate of $80/hr = $120 hr worth of labor. $470+ a bunch of fees and taxes makes $539 sound reasonable (for dealer prices).




2003 Midnight Blue SE AWD w/VDC
Colgan Bra, Mobil One, JWT POP charger
PAC aux input adapter, hardwired Escort Passport x50, KUDA mount for MP3 player, Porterfield R4S brake pads (now Akebono ProACT), ATE Superblue
Yokohama Envigor (much improved over stock Goodyears)
Lots of squeaks and rattles.
R.I.P. 10/15/2015 CVT failure.
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post #14 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 04:24 PM Thread Starter
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So theoretically, couldn't I buy my own alternator and have them install it? Wouldn't that be the smart thing to do.

Where should I go to get an alternator if I decide to do it that way?
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post #15 of 25 Old 05-06-2005, 04:34 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by vettewon
So theoretically, couldn't I buy my own alternator and have them install it? Wouldn't that be the smart thing to do.

Where should I go to get an alternator if I decide to do it that way?

The Murano is pretty new so the local Autozone isn't likely to have an alternator for it yet. You can buy it from a Nissan dealer, but its only worth it if you can get it lower than list. Taking it to an independent shop might also be cheaper as well.




2003 Midnight Blue SE AWD w/VDC
Colgan Bra, Mobil One, JWT POP charger
PAC aux input adapter, hardwired Escort Passport x50, KUDA mount for MP3 player, Porterfield R4S brake pads (now Akebono ProACT), ATE Superblue
Yokohama Envigor (much improved over stock Goodyears)
Lots of squeaks and rattles.
R.I.P. 10/15/2015 CVT failure.
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