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Discussion Starter #1
I have a 2003 SL with around 38k miles. My Murano starts normally in the mornings (cranks 2 or 3 times then starts), but occasionally over the last couple of months at lunch or in the evening when I turn the key it cranks 5 - 7 times and then starts. Sometimes it falters a bit while starting. The next morning it starts fine. The problem is sporadic and the type of thing that might not be reproducible at the dealership.

Has anyone had a similar problem or have an idea what the problem might be? This probably sounds stupid, but it seems to act up on hot days when it has been sitting in the sun.

Incidentally, my alternator never failed and I had it replaced earlier this week under the recall. I was hoping the starting problem might somehow be related to the alternator issue, but no such luck.
 

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Do you find this usually happens after the car has been parked for a short while, maybe an hour or two? Or does it also happen on a cold start (after its been sitting overnight)?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
It starts fine after sitting overnight and drives fine to work. I notice the problem occasionally when I go to lunch from work, and occasionally when I leave work in the evenings. Seems to happen more on sunny days than overcast day, but that may be irrelevant. It is probably more related to the duration for which it has been parked as you suggest. Thoughts?????
 

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sheersilver said:
It starts fine after sitting overnight and drives fine to work. I notice the problem occasionally when I go to lunch from work, and occasionally when I leave work in the evenings. Seems to happen more on sunny days than overcast day, but that may be irrelevant. It is probably more related to the duration for which it has been parked as you suggest. Thoughts?????
This was something that happened to me all the time on my Maxima. The problem was never "fixed" so much that the folks at Maxima.org came up with clever ways around it. It seemed that when the car sit for just a short while, the engine is gets cold, but the coolant temp sensor keeps a "hot" reading. So when you try to start it, it doesn't deliver enough fuel (thinking its a hot start, so it doesn't need as much) and you get the whir whir whir but the engine doesn't start.

Next time, try this. Before starting, turn the key from off to "on" (the position before start) and wait 5 seconds - you should hear some "pressure" noises under the hood - this is the fuel rail priming up with pressure. Then try starting. 7 times out of 10, it fixed the issue on the Maxima, might work on the Murano as well.
 

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Eric, I think you are onto something. My first thought was fuel presure. We know its not fuel filter as we don't have a servicable filter. I briefly thought the jets may be fouled. I don't think so but it could not hurt to run some quality gas/jet cleaner thru the tank.
Eric, could there be a link between the car sitting in the hot sun and your coolant is hot theory. At least the sensor thought so.
Where the hell is Grip when you need him?:rolleyes:
Bob1
 

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Sounds like a good solution since it worked I don't think its a coolant sensor but rather some vapor lock in the fuel lines.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
Thanks for the info Eric ... I'll give it a shot. A couple of questions:

1. Was giving it a little gas on startup one of the workarounds identified by maxima.org and if so, did it work?

2. Did the coolant temp sensor issue lead to any other problems or just this inconvenience on startup?

3. How much success did the maxima.org folks have getting the issue resolved with their Nissan dealers?

I'm a little surprised that nobody else on this forum has reported the issue. All my other Murano complaints have been widely discussed here, and if it is a coolant temp sensor issue, it shouldn't be limited to my vehicle. I'll give Bob1's cleaner suggestion a shot as well.
 

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sheersilver said:
Thanks for the info Eric ... I'll give it a shot. A couple of questions:

1. Was giving it a little gas on startup one of the workarounds identified by maxima.org and if so, did it work?

2. Did the coolant temp sensor issue lead to any other problems or just this inconvenience on startup?

3. How much success did the maxima.org folks have getting the issue resolved with their Nissan dealers?

I'm a little surprised that nobody else on this forum has reported the issue. All my other Murano complaints have been widely discussed here, and if it is a coolant temp sensor issue, it shouldn't be limited to my vehicle. I'll give Bob1's cleaner suggestion a shot as well.
Nissan has no explicitly identified procedure to fix this issue. I believe on some 3.5L Nissan engines, a constant no start problem when the engine is warm necessitated replacement of a crank angle sensor. You can find these TSBs at Nissanhelp.com - however they do not apply for the Murano.

Stepping on the gas did help on my Maxima, but I'm not sure how much it will help on the Murano since it has an electronic throttle.
 

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sheersilver said:
Thanks for the info Eric ... I'll give it a shot. A couple of questions:

1. Was giving it a little gas on startup one of the workarounds identified by maxima.org and if so, did it work?

2. Did the coolant temp sensor issue lead to any other problems or just this inconvenience on startup?

3. How much success did the maxima.org folks have getting the issue resolved with their Nissan dealers?

I'm a little surprised that nobody else on this forum has reported the issue. All my other Murano complaints have been widely discussed here, and if it is a coolant temp sensor issue, it shouldn't be limited to my vehicle. I'll give Bob1's cleaner suggestion a shot as well.
Actually I have reported this problem. It happens to me quite often, and the only solution I have at this point is to briefly gas it when starting, and that works every time.
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Tyler,

Good to know I am not the only one. How many miles do you have on your Murano and at what point did you notice the issue? Mine started around 33k. If it is related to a sensor I would think that the sensor must have gone bad or I would have had the problem from day 1.
 

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Starting when warm

Wow, I am not the only one having problems starting. I brought my Mo in for a routine oil change and to have the altenator recall performed (didn't receive a letter yet, but figured if I had it in there, might as well have it performed). Since then I have been having a problem starting the Mo when warm. If I run it for more than 15 - 20 minutes then shut off, when I try to start it won't even turn over, it just goes dead with the dashboard lights staying on. The work around I came up with was to gas it a little while starting and it fires right up.

Shouldn't have to be. I called the dealer that performed the recall and he want me to bring it back in. I told him I could replecate it and he said fine, they can hook it up to the computer and find out what's happening.

Does anyone think it has something to do with the work they did on the recall or is it just a coincidence???

I have 30K miles on the Mo and haven't had a single problem yet.
 

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I had about 30k on it when I noticed it too. I haven't had the alternator replaced yet (I'm on the list though), and I have about 60k on it now. I'm going to change the plugs soon and see what happens.
 

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Re: Starting when warm

DerosaET said:
...If I run it for more than 15 - 20 minutes then shut off, when I try to start it won't even turn over, it just goes dead with the dashboard lights staying on. The work around I came up with was to gas it a little while starting and it fires right up.
I don't understand. If it does not turn over, how can giving it gas help start it?
I think your MO has a different issue. I think the problem is that they they did not do a good job in tightening the battery posts when they were done with your car. You can check that by grabbing and twisting the battery posts, both positive and negative.
 

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Re: Re: Starting when warm

zebelkhan said:

I don't understand. If it does not turn over, how can giving it gas help start it?
I think your MO has a different issue. I think the problem is that they they did not do a good job in tightening the battery posts when they were done with your car. You can check that by grabbing and twisting the battery posts, both positive and negative.
I have a feeling he didn't mean that it wouldn't turn over, but that it would stall immediately, since giving it a little gas works great on this particular problem.
 

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I agree. The engine has to turn over for gas to do it any good. But the way DerosaET explained it was as if the engine would not turn, only dash lights would come on. That would be an indication that power to the starter is somehow being intrupted.
 

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I think the confusion here is what people mean by the engine "turning over." When I was young, I learned that the engine turning over meant it started. In other words, if you ran out of gas, the engine would crank and crank, but "would not turn over." However, I also learned over the years that it could also mean the cranking action (whir whir whir) of the starter while the engine is starting. I'm still not sure which definition is "officially" correct, but I'm pretty sure DerosaET is referring to turning over as the engine "starting and running on its own" vs. Zelb and TylerC's definition of turning over as the "cranking action" of the starter motor.
 

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Starting when warm

Sorry for the miscommunication. It turns over, by that I mean that I can hear the engine crank, and the tach hits approximately 2k then it just stalls (Tyler_Canada...you got the right term) and the dashboard lights come on. It is getting gas but obviously not enough. When I hit the gas it doesn't stall and fires right up. The "window of opportunity" with regards to pressing the gas pedal is like just a couple of seconds.

I checked the check the connections at the battery as Zebelkhan suggested and everything is tight. No loose connections.

I go back to the dealer on Tues (8/9) first thing in the morning. I will let you know what they come up with.
 

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I did a lot of searching on the net, and the best I could come up with was some '98 to '00 Maximas had the same problem, but noone really figured it out. I've heard it may be a coolant sensor problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I am convinced that Tyler, DerosaET, and I are all experiencing the same thing. The engine starts flawlessly first thing in the morning when cold. On subsequent starts when warm during the day, the starter cranks fine but the engine either falters a bit before running on its own, or appears to run for a split second and then cuts off leaving all the dashboard lights on. If a temp sensor somehow controls the amount of gas delivered on startup, then a faulty sensor makes sense to me. It would appear that this sensor must go bad over time as none of us had experienced the problem prior to 30k. I do not believe it is related to the alternator issue as I had the problem both before and after having my alternator replaced under the recall.
 
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