Nissan Murano Forum banner

1 - 19 of 19 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Loud clacking noise from engine during first start of the day. Slowly went away. Never reoccurred. Mo has never been serviced other than occassional oil changes. 2004 SE, 18k milles. Any suggestions?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,077 Posts
Do a search.... apparently this is normal for the Vq egnines... mine does it too from time to time... I have an 03 with 24K miles.
 

·
Just wanna help
Joined
·
1,383 Posts
Oii..

Dennis Fink said:
It is the time of year when small rodents begin looking for a place to stay for the winter. A warm engine compartment is very attractive to them. Check under the hood for signs of rodent fatality. You know - blood, guts and fur.

Depending on the size of the varment, you'll get thumping noises and/or the sensation of a missing cylinder. A larger animal, like a cat, will generally give out a yelp.

Some of the organic parts may stick to the belt or fan blades. They can fling about and strike parts of the motor, accessory components or fan shroud causing a clattering noise.
This is gross :2:
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #4
Let me clarify my situation.....I started my vehicle yesterday morning (Oct 31) and immediately a loud clacking noise came from the engine compartment (sounded like the pistons in the engine were moving with no oil). I turned off the engine, checked the oil....it was good. Restarted the engine and the loud clacking noise was still there. No...there wasn't any blood or gore in the engine compartment from a rodent. Anyway, I left the engine running for about 2 minutes and the clacking slowly went away (as if lubrication in the engine finally started). I drove my MO around for ten minutes and the sound went away. Never reoccurred. One thing I noticed was on the first start, after I immediately turned off my MO, there was a strong gasoline smell in my garage. This also never happened before and never reoccurred.

Another thing, the day prior I was cleaning out my garage and left my MO parked in the driveway (steep decline) for a few hours. I parked my MO back in the garage and also had a strong gasoline order after I turned off the engine. Did not think twice about it until the next day and the engine started making this loud clacking noise.

This noise sounds similar to pistons moving inside of an engine without any oil like on older cars. I never had any problems with my MO. Excellent condition. I was totally shocked to hear this noise coming from my engine with only 18k on it.

I know most of you will say to take it to the dealer, but they will not even be able to duplicate it and we ALL know how terrible the service is at Nissan. I plan to check the transfer case today....I saw another post about leaking transfer case, but that person said that they heard a loud whining noise as if it came from the power steering unit. Any suggestions or has anyone experienced this? Please....serious responders....thanks
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,368 Posts
This might be really obvious, but did you first check the oil level on the dipstick?

I used to have some startup valve clatter on my Maxima too, but it was mainly cured when I switched to synthetic oil (which flows better on cold starts). You might want to demonstrate this to your dealership to see what they think, since you are still under warranty. Notice I said "YOU demonstrate" - I know how it feels when those Einsteins at the dealership cannot duplicate a problem (usually because they don't try hard enough). If they claim its normal, you are out of luck with that avenue, and I suggest trying Mobil One 5w30 to see if that fixes it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
44 Posts
Not knowing the ambient temp you have since your location is not listed...

I want to second the synthetic mention here as well. I have noticed clacking and clicking on cold starts using standard oil. Switched to synthetic and never heard it again even in some of the coldest starts down to -10 F or so. (nothing compared to our friends up nort')

Eric L. said:
This might be really obvious, but did you first check the oil level on the dipstick?

I used to have some startup valve clatter on my Maxima too, but it was mainly cured when I switched to synthetic oil (which flows better on cold starts). You might want to demonstrate this to your dealership to see what they think, since you are still under warranty. Notice I said "YOU demonstrate" - I know how it feels when those Einsteins at the dealership cannot duplicate a problem (usually because they don't try hard enough). If they claim its normal, you are out of luck with that avenue, and I suggest trying Mobil One 5w30 to see if that fixes it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the replies...yes I did check the oil level on the dip stick when it occurred and it was normal. My location is Pensacola, FL...I am new to this forum and forgot to update that information. Needless to say, it was a mild day that morning....around the upper 50's when this occurred. ANyway, I started my MO this morning no porblems. Just got home from work.....no problems....what gives.... I have had my car over a year even during cold weather and never experienced this. If anything else occurs I will update this post.

I do plan to convert over to synthetic. Even though it costs more....it is worth it.
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,368 Posts
There is no reason clatter should occur with FL temperatures on normal oil. It may be that the antidrainback valve on your oil filter failed, and this is the cause of the low oil valve clatter during startup. Do you have a Nissan filter on there?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
yes...I have a Nissan filter. At leaset it should be. My MO was last serviced at Sandy Sansing Nissan on 8/24/05 and the filter number is 15208-65F00. That is what's on the invoice. ANy suggestions? Like I stated before....I haven't had any reoccurring problems. RUns like a dream now.....
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,512 Posts
lenierdw-

A noisy valve lifter may be responsible for the noise you are referring to.

When the engine is stopped, any lifter on a camshaft lobe is under pressure of the valve spring and leak down (or escape of oil from the lower chamber) can occur. When the engine is started a few seconds may be required to fill the lifter with oil, particularly in cold weather. If the noise occurs only occasionally, it may be considered normal requiring no correction. If noise occurs daily, the hydraulic lifter may need to be replaced.

-njjoe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #11
njjoe, now I can relate to what you are referring to and yes, in many cases you are right. On vehicles with high mileage I too have noticed this. Now correct me if I am wrong, are all Nissan engines suspect with this type of problem. Especially with low miles. I have owned vehicles from Honda's, Chevrolet's and even Lexus and NEVER ever had this problem with a engine clacking loudly the way this one did that morning. I thought the damn thing was completely out of oil the way it was clacking. Please educate me on this because if Nissan's quality is like this, I will be reverting back over to Lexus and purchase a new 2006 RX 430. Thanks for the advice.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,512 Posts
lenierdw-

From everything I have read on this forum (and elsewhere) I do not believe Nissan has an issue with defective lifters. However, that does not mean that one out of a million installed lifters will not fail prematurely.

If the noise was in fact generated by a "deflated" lifter it may have been cause by leakage at the check ball seat due to foreign particles or varnish. Once the engine started back up the pressurized oil may have dislodged the particle(s) and the lifter resumed normal operation. If this was the case, then you may never experience this problem again.

I am a firm believer in gauges over idiot lights. My last car, a Jeep Grand Cherokee V-8, had the full complement of gauges. If these symptoms had occurred on the Jeep I would have immediately checked the oil pressure guage to verify the pressure was adequate. With the MO you might no have noticed the idiot light.

As far as the gas smell is concerned, I would guess that was due to the fact that the engine was shut off before the cat reached optimum temp.

I hope this helps.

-njjoe
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
12,512 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
11 Posts
Discussion Starter #14
njjoe, thank you for the advice and the link to the other forum. I see that i am not the only one experiencing this and a few people have noticed this with their MO. This is mighty peculiar for a new engine to have this problem, but I guess it is something we (MO owners) have to live with.

I still have not experienced the loud knocking/clacking noise since and my MO is running fine. But when you shell out the kind of cash we spend on the MO, you expect good quality. Since the MO and Altima share the same engine, I am also following the posts in the Altima forum as well.

I still plan to switch over to Mobile 1 synthetic, but will keep using the OEM filter from Nissan. I for one plan to sell my MO eventually and convert back to Lexus. Never had any engine issues with their vehicles. I noticed that even in the 2006 MO...Nissan has not made any major changes in the vehicle. It appears we will still have to deal with the flaws of a SUV built from an Altima.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,257 Posts
"an SUV built from an Altima"?

It was built on the same platform.
Like Some Lexi were built on Toyota platforms.
So when you buy a Lexus, are you buying a Toyota?

Here is
Wards’ 10 Best Engines for 2005

Model Engine
Audi A6 Audi FSI 3.2L DOHC V-6
Audi S4 Audi 4.2L DOHC V-8
Mercedes E320 CDI Mercedes 3.2L DOHC I-6 CDI Turbodiesel
Honda Accord Hybrid Honda 3L SOHC V-6 IMA Hybrid

Infiniti G35 Coupe Nissan 3.5L DOHC V-6

Mazda RX-8 Mazda 1.3L Renesis Rotary
Acura RL Honda 3.5L SOHC V-6
Chrysler 300C DCX 5.7L Hemi Magnum OHV V-8
Ford Mustang GT Ford 4.6L SOHC V-8
Chevrolet Trailblazer GM 4.2L DOHC Vortec I-6

I don't see a Lexus engine here?

And some people have had lots of problems with their Lexus engines.

http://www.consumeraffairs.com/automotive/lexus.html


Roy of Media PA (2/3/04):
In 2001 we were among the many unfortunate Lexus/Toyota customers (according to the web site) that were affected by an oil sludge problem. After a legnthy battle with Lexus, and only after the story broke on the internet about the sludge problem Lexus reimbursed us for the engine repair.

Two years later in 2003, after several trips back to Lexus for things that didn't seem right, only to be told things like, "only the sensor light, not a problem with the engine" also noises we heard, they did not. The oil was changed and the car maintained meticulously since the engine repair.

Dec 2003 the engine started making a loud noise, I took the car immediately to the dealer. They told us that it had "blown a rod" and needed $6,400.00 worth of engine work. Of course it is not covered. When I called an auto reapir shop near us in PA, who does all our inspections, he said that absolutely this would be caused from the original oil problem.

I contacted Lexus customer office several times, those I spoke to assured me that the head of maintenance at the dealership where the work was done, Lexus of Wilmington, assured them that the original problem was not to blame. It seems quite obvious that he would say this, because he would be at fault for possibly not doing the repair correctly in the first place. No one at Lexus head office seems willing to go over the dealership. Now the repair is done, to the tune of $7,100.00, and we were never notified or asked about the increase. We are extremely frustrated.

In some Pennsylvania counties, Small Claims Court takes cases up to $10,000, so that should be the first place Roy goes. Suing in Small Claims is much less expensive and the odds are on the consumer's side.

George of Brooklyn NY (1/11/04):
Engine has sludge, transmission has to be rebuilt, vehicle is absolutely deffective.

Margaret of Chapin SC (4/4/03):
I own a 95 ES300 Lexus. Lexus was having a problem with the Toyota engines with the oil jelling and sludge building up in the engine. Because of this happening they extended the engine warranty back to the 1997 models. The same thing has happened to mine with 130,000 miles on it. I have been dealing with them and Lexus of California since the 3rd. of Feb.

These engines should get at least 200,000 or more. They say it's because of lack of maintenance. I have all my oil change receipts and offered to send them and was told if I send them in they would present it before the service dept. people and let them review the problem. I was told the car is too old and has too many miles. I do not feel this is a problem of mine and this is no different than the problem they had with the 1997 thru 2002. They know they have had a problem with these engines in the past, they just don't want to take mine under the warranty.

I have contacted an attorney, but don't feel its my place to spend the money on an attorney when I have a car I can't trade of sell, must less get rid of.

I have a automoble I can't trade, sell or get rid of. Lexus wants $4,900.00 to rebuild the engine and the blue book price on the car is about $5,000. At this rate my car which looks like NEW is worth about $1,000. An Attorney would cost me 1,500 to take the case. So I'm in a enonomic loss if I can't get Lexus-Toyota to extend the warranty to my car.

First, there is no way anyone will extend the manufacturer's warranty on an engine with 130,000 miles on it. Second, Margaret should remember that lawyer's fees are paid by the defendant if the case is successful. But it's not necessary to retain a lawyer. Like the other cases above, this one is worth taking to Small Claims Court. Margaret may not win but she has a better shot there than anywhere else.

David of Lithonia GA (3/27/03):
Took 93 Lexus GS 300 for repair. Check engine light was on. Our regular mechanic could not find anything wrong with the vehicle but did not have the diagnostic equipment to turn the check engine light off. He did advise us that we had a pinhole leak of power steering fluid and that this could be what was causing the smoking when the vehicle was hot and then was stopped. He changed the oil during this service and found no irregularities.

We told the dealership that the check engine light was on, that the car was smoking when stopped, and that we had a leak of power steering fluid. Lexus service center called us and told us that we had a major oil leak and that the rear main seal needed to be changed. They said we had no power steering leak. Also, several sensors needed to be replaced. The entire repair was going to cost approximately $2,000.

We declined the service because of the price. They countered by lowering the price to about 1400. We agreed. Within a week after the repair, the car starting racing while parked for no apparent reason. We took it back and was told that another sensor needed replacing. We allowed them to make the repair, which cost another $500. The car continued smoking. They told us that the old oil was burning off and to give it some time. After about a month, we took the car back because of continued smoking and the car was now using oil.

This time we were told that we needed a new motor but, because of the expense, we should buy a new car. We argued that we had just spent $2000 to have the car fixed and that this latest analysis was unacceptable. We made an offer that a refund of our $2000 was the least they could do. They refused and said they had fixed the problems that they should have the first time. The manager put the car up on the rack to try and convince us that we did not deserve our money back. While observing the car, I pointed out the leak that my regular mechanic had brought to my attention. The manager admitted that it was power steering fluid and that his mechanics had missed it. He offered to have it fixed.

We declined because we believed that their misdiagnosis had caused this entire problem and that their negligence had created a greater problem than we had previously had. Again, I insisted that we should be given our money back. Again, he declined. Our position now is that they should pay to have the motor replaced. Prior to taking the vehicle to them, we had never had an oil leak, nor any other major problems.

K.T. of Houston (2/17/03):
I have a 1999 Lexus RX300 which Has been taken in for all its required services. 200 miles after the warranty expired the engine light came on and some serious problems were found with the engine. They supposedly fixed it as a goodwill, but a month later the engine light came back on and now the charges to fix it are $700.00. This is the worst car I have ever owned. I would not recommend a Lexus to anyone.

Sam of College Park MD (10/22/02):
My wife took her 1991 Lexus ES250 to Lexus of Rockville because it was running poorly on 23 MAY 02. They charged her 198.68 for engine diagnostics and told her the car "needs new motor". The compression readings were not on the repair forms, so I recently called the dealer to get this data. They were supposed to call me back that morning a week ago. But later in May, my wife took the car to an independent garage in Columbia, got a tuneup and the car ran fine. Was this fraud or error? Should we ask for a refund? I called the second shop and they told me the engine had 170 lbs of compression on all cylinders, right on spec.

John of Ooltewah TN (5/30/02):
My 1996 ES 300 6 cylinder engine seized up due to oil sludge. I purchased this car off a lease turned back into a Lexus dealer. I changed oil more frequently than recommended. Toyota only reimbursing for cars 1997 and up.

Damage Resulting: Much time and trouble and $3,800 for a used engine that not as quiet or smooth as the original.


Moral of the story?
Every manufacture has "some" problems.
The Nissan VQ engine is one of the 10 best in the world. And is the only engine that has been so acclaimed for 11 straight years.

Lexus?
They build nice cars.
They have a superior Dealship Network. (Of course you pay for it)

I would never go on a Lexus Forum and tell them that the Lexus was really just a Toyota Camry .
Platform engineering is practiced by ALL manufacturers.
But Lexus engines?
Some good, some BAD.
And THAT's the truth.

Homer
 

·
Premium Member
Joined
·
8,368 Posts
Adding to Homer's post, the VQ35DE is fundamentally the same engine (with the exception of exhaust routing and ECM programming) in all Nissan/Infiniti vehicles. If you are looking for the clacking engine to be a common problem, better read the forums for:

Altima
Murano
Maxima
2001-2004 Pathfinder
350Z
G35
M35
FX35
I35

While you are at it, might as well extend the search to all VQ30DE's and VQ40DE's, which are also fundamentally the same engine. That includes

4th/5th gen Maxima
I30
2005+ Pathfinder
2005+ Xterra
2005+ Frontier

Just try synthetic oil. The noise will probably never come back again.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,077 Posts
I can vouch for a bad Lexus engine... an RX300.... used was going through oil like nothing. The care was out of warranty... however unlike Nissan, a loaner car was provided, engine fixed and all has been well since. This was done at a dealership, wasn't even where we got the used RX300... heck we got it from an Acura dealership.

Good service from Lexus. I wish I could say the same about Nissan's service.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,076 Posts
Another thing, the day prior I was cleaning out my garage and left my MO parked in the driveway (steep decline) for a few hours. I parked my MO back in the garage and also had a strong gasoline order after I turned off the engine. Did not think twice about it until the next day and the engine started making this loud clacking noise
My guess is that the oil was to one side of the oil pan away from the oil pump when it was parked in your driveway. The oil pump was not able to suck the oil up into the engine cylinders because of the steep slope in your driveway and the momentum of you moving forward. Thus the pump ran dry.

You had just enough oil left that were supplied to the cylinders to not notice it when you moved your car from the steep driveway to the garage. A pump that is not primed can require some time for it to start sucking again.

I wouldn't worry about it unless it happens again without those conditions.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1 Posts
I can totally Relate ...

I read the post from lenierdw and can TOTALLY relate to his experience. I had this same issue on my 03 Pathfinder (same engine) two days ago, and have been doing searches looking for insights.

Here are specifics. Vehicle is 03 Pathfinder with 51,000 miles. Has the VQ35 engine - no issues up until yesterday!

Car was parked in my level garage - not on an incline and had sat for ~24 hours prior to "the event".

Note I have exclusinvely used 5-30 synthetic oil and genuine Nissan filters starting at the 3000 mile mark. (yes, I agree - they are TINY, but I got a good deal online for a case of them).

At this time, the filter and oil have 2400 miles on them since last change.

Upon cold start-up, the engine sounded HORRIBLE. I dont mean a one second "normal" start-up clatter - I mean it sounded like a diesel on steroids! A REAL attention getter! I shut it down, and checked oil level - right on the high mark.

I re-started and the horrible sound continued - agree 100% with lenierdw - sounded like NO OIL in engine. I didnt feel comfortable letting the engine run any longer.

I had the car towed to the Nissan dealership. The next morning, went out with their "engine tech" and sure enough, it clattered BIGTIME on the start-up. The tech believed he knew what the problem was - he later told me that he suspected the lose screws from the intake butterflies (?), but all screws were in tact.

By removing all accessory belts, they have confirmed the noise is from the engine. By the end of the day, they mentioned the sound was decreasing to the point where it was hard to hear. After overnight cooling, the sound resumed the next day. Using a stethescope, they are not convinced the sound is from the valve train.

There are two Nissan techs currently working on it - niether has encountered this condition before. One of my co-workers was suspecting that the bypass valve was not opening properly, leading to restricted oil flow to valve train during cold start. Dealer has acknowledged they have encountered this in the past, but that under such cases, the filter has been blown right off the engine.

They have been working for two days - still have not found root cause. I will post if the problem is found, but suspect its going to be a "it went away" situation. Dealership has been very good at agreeing that this IS a problem ...

Hopefully a story that has a "good" ending ....
 
1 - 19 of 19 Posts
Top