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Discussion Starter #1
Hey guys. First off, new guy Nate here. Joining you guys here from the wonderful PNW. Coming here for a little help with my newly purchased Murano.

So I recently bought a 2004 Nissan Murano 3.5L with 180k miles on the clock. Car needed work but I got it for $800 and wanted a project. It was throwing a Cam Sensor Bank 2 engine code but I have since replaced the sensor and cleared all the codes. So no active codes are showing up but the car only starts/runs when I remove the cam sensor in bank 2. And when it does start up and runs the thing knocks like a Jehovah's Witness. You know, wont freaking stop until you get up and do something about it. ;)

Heres what it sounds like:

Anyways, I know bank 2 is about 37 degrees out of timing thanks to my local Nissan service center. So after researching I discovered the timing chain tensioner/guides are common issues with these 3.5L's. I'm at the end of the tear down and after removing the oil pan I find this debris in there. I am really hoping its related to the timing as it looks like it could be sprocket teeth or tensioner parts. The little spring is pretty much the only obvious thing in there. Also the stuff in the right pile is magnetic, the stuff in the left is not. If that helps any. Any ideas? Cheers!

 

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You definitely bought a big project with that 8 bills. The only correct way that I see happening here is a complete tear down of the engine. Anything else will be half baked. Good luck. You need to account for the damage/s those stuff may have caused to the other parts of the engine besides finding out what and where it came from
 

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I think you can buy complete kits to do the chain guides, tensioners, and sprockets that aren't too expensive. I think that is what all of the broken pieces are from.
 

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I would say that the parts are one of the guides and spring in from the tensioner. I am 72 year old and have been working on vehicles from a young age and this is one job that I would not do again. Replaced the timing chain, guides, tensioner, water pump and camshaft chain shoes on my sons 2005 Maxima approx. 2 years ago. Toughest vehicle repair that I have ever done. Nissan recommends removing the engine from the vehicle to replace the timing chain. The best video showing how to remove and replace the components without removing the engine is by 2012 nugget parts 1 & 2. Be sure and look at his video. I purchased the parts from OEM Nissan in Weatherford, Texas. Could have purchased aftermart parts less expensively but the labor to do this project is a nightmare so I did not want to take a chance with aftermart parts. Best of luck you are going to need it.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
You definitely bought a big project with that 8 bills. The only correct way that I see happening here is a complete tear down of the engine. Anything else will be half baked. Good luck. You need to account for the damage/s those stuff may have caused to the other parts of the engine besides finding out what and where it came from
I am discovering that it is a hefty project. But so far its going pretty smooth. I am not removing the engine to do the job (so far anyways), so I have just inspected the bank 2 top end and soon will check the timing system. Wont be going any deeper if I dont have too. Praying those are timing sprocket/tensioner parts and didnt do much damage.

I think you can buy complete kits to do the chain guides, tensioners, and sprockets that aren't too expensive. I think that is what all of the broken pieces are from.
Im only replacing what needs to be done as I dont plan to keep the car if I get it going again. Once I get the timing cover off I will know more but right now im planning to by OEM from Nissan what ever I need to replace. Hope youre right about the debris tho.

I would say that the parts are one of the guides and spring in from the tensioner. I am 72 year old and have been working on vehicles from a young age and this is one job that I would not do again. Replaced the timing chain, guides, tensioner, water pump and camshaft chain shoes on my sons 2005 Maxima approx. 2 years ago. Toughest vehicle repair that I have ever done. Nissan recommends removing the engine from the vehicle to replace the timing chain. The best video showing how to remove and replace the components without removing the engine is by 2012 nugget parts 1 & 2. Be sure and look at his video. I purchased the parts from OEM Nissan in Weatherford, Texas. Could have purchased aftermart parts less expensively but the labor to do this project is a nightmare so I did not want to take a chance with aftermart parts. Best of luck you are going to need it.
Hey thats the exact videos I have been watching! Im a pretty amateur mechanic but pretty damn handy so I figure I could do it. This isnt a primary vehicle for me either so I am taking my time. I think I have one tricky bolt left in the timing cover before its ready to come off. But I guess Im only getting into the nitty gritty, so thanks for the luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Update and request for some more help.

Got the timing cover off and started inspecting the damage. Found quite a bit and possibly a even bigger issue. Found more broken debris inside the timing cover, seen in these pics. The large parts are from the intake cam sprocket. You can see where they broke off. Plastic pieces are from the chain guides.





You can also see how far out my timing is at Top Dead Center.





This is how loose my timing chain is:

https://youtu.be/cn9aI_489F4

Ok now here is my bigger problem and I'm not sure whats going on. at 25 seconds into the video you can see the intake cam pop/jump when a turn the crank. This is also the cam on the damaged sprocket shown above. So what am I looking at here? bad cam bearings, valves and pistons crashing? I'm trying to avoid taking off the head at all costs so any advice is welcome. Thanks in advance guys!

https://youtu.be/xrH_EzW0q98
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Finished up the MO repairs yesterday. That was one hell of a job but I managed to do it with out pulling the engine and kept the repair costs to a minimum. Probably put 40 hours of labor into it as I am not super mechanically inclined and pretty much just googled/youtubed the whole thing.

The issue ended up being a damaged Intake Cam Sprocket. I replaced it along with some other timing components like chain tensioners and such. Fortunately the valves did not get bent when the sprocket exploded so I didnt have to dig into the heads. Heres some vids of before, during and after.

Before:
https://youtu.be/fiWbYAqUdGk

The damaged Cam Sprocket:
https://youtu.be/TXGPoLL16qE

After:
https://youtu.be/PmSm5FAyWf8

If anyone needs to do service to timing components, feel free to ask any questions you have before getting started. I made quite a few mistakes along the way I would be have to help you avoid. Cheers.
 

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Well done! That had to be a major pain, but you deserve a gold star for the day for pulling off that repair!
 

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Good job! Make sure you give us an update after driving for a few months.

Can you post the parts/kits you bought and prices/stores you got it from.

What are those mistakes that we can avoid?

My 04 SE is running great so far @118K (original owner) and I hope I don't get this problem later on. If it comes up, your pointers will be a great help.
 

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Good job! Make sure you give us an update after driving for a few months.

Can you post the parts/kits you bought and prices/stores you got it from.

What are those mistakes that we can avoid?

My 04 SE is running great so far @118K (original owner) and I hope I don't get this problem later on. If it comes up, your pointers will be a great help.
Well I am hoping to not have the MO in a couple months. Already posted it for sale but I will be putting some miles on it while I have it to make sure it holds up.

I bought all parts from https://www.nissanpartsdeal.com/ and used OEM parts. They have better prices than getting them right from the dealers parts department if you can wait a few days for them to ship.

I ended up replacing the following parts:

Intake phasor cam sproket
Upper timing chain guide
Lower timing chain guide
Timing chain tensioner piston/guide
Thermostat
Valve cover gasket

Total cost in parts was about $550. (Cam sprocket is almost $400! :eek:)

Now you might be wondering why I didnt replace the timing chain itself or the water pump since I was in there anyways. Well, it was purely cost prohibitive for me. The timing chain is a wet chain system and is said to be good for the life of the vehicle. When I pulled it off it looked to be in great condition so I reused it. Same goes for the water pump. My intentions from the beginning was to sell the MO if I could bring it back to life. So for cost sake, thats how it went down. I HIGHLY recommend if you are working on your personal vehicle that you intend to keep, spend the extra $250-$300 and replace these component while you are already in there. Could save you thousands down the road.
 

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What are those mistakes that we can avoid?
So many but just off the top of my head some tips and mistakes:

Right out the gate drain all coolant and oil. Just do it first and clean up good and get it out of the way. I got half way through tear down and did them, made a mess and got stuff everywhere.

Also get your A/C vacuumed out before you even start. I tried to work around the upper A/C hose and ended up having to disconnect it to get the timing cover back in without getting sealant everywhere. D it before tear down and it will save you time wrestling the timing cover out/back in. You can also just disconnect the hose at the flange above the engine and let it vent to the atmosphere if you are an asshole like me.

Put car on jack stands. Move jack under the engine as you will need to jack up the engine to get the motor mount and bolts out.

Have a good cheater/breaker bar handy. My crank pulley was a tricky bastard to get off. The ol' "bump the starter" trick didnt work for me to get the bolt out. Broke 2 harbor freight breaker bars.

Taking the timing cover off, take your time, get ALL the bolts out (even the two under the oil pan), pry from the pry bar points that are there and dont pry too hard. Also dont break ****.

**Most important** before you take any timing components off, Make sure you know what Top Dead Center (TDC) is. You also need to make sure you are at TDC on the compression stroke and not the exhaust stroke. Youtube this and know it as well as the timing marks on the chains and sprockets. This is how you ensure your timing is going to be correct when you install everything.

In the same vein, I looked everywhere for a cam shaft alignment tool to set the cam timing properly. Those dont exsist. The cam sprockets are keyed to only go on one way. They are also marked with timing indicators to match up with the timing chain unique links. Save yourself the hassle and just learn and know TDC and the timing marks and you will be good.

Get swivel head 3/8s drive ratchet and metric ratcheting wrenches. Also need a ft/lbs and in/lbs torque wrenches.

If I can think of anymore, I will gladly share. Cheers.
 

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Good tips.

I have done timing belt, water pump and bearings/tensioner replacement. Familiar with the process. Except for the need to evac the ac system. That does suck but if it must be done/blocking the way then....

You mentioned the bump the starter to loosen the crank bolt trick. Why did it not work? Its not like those older honda engines where the engine turns the other way is it?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Good tips.

I have done timing belt, water pump and bearings/tensioner replacement. Familiar with the process. Except for the need to evac the ac system. That does suck but if it must be done/blocking the way then....

You mentioned the bump the starter to loosen the crank bolt trick. Why did it not work? Its not like those older honda engines where the engine turns the other way is it?
Many people on youtube got it to work on our engines. In my case I think the crank bolt was just on there too tight and I couldnt get a good place for my breaker bars to push against the engine when it turns over. I tried a air gun too but in the end I have to put something in the pulley to stop it from spinning and just muscle it loose.
 
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