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I think your posts are great. Eager to see what happens next. You should accommodate all inputs since each one has their own way of doing things. This is a forum after all. So long you are clear in you objectives then it’s all good. Folks that reply here have good intentions to point you to the right direction. I also post the work I do in some detail for the purpose of reminding me when and what I did should I tackle the same job again. At times it’s easier to find it here. When I do things out of the book I simply say why and keep on rockin. Hey, it’s fun to fix things yourself and save money. To some folks that’s pain and suffering. Lol.
 

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There's an old saying--"If you don't do things by the book, sometimes the book gets thrown at you." But seriously, it's your car so you can do whatever you want with it, but keep in mind that many people read these threads that aren't posters or registered forum members (or who know anything about cars in general) and they should be made aware when something that someone is doing is not a manufacturer-recommended practice.

Nevertheless, I find your threads entertaining so keep going--and if you do pour coke down the CVT dipstick tube, please record it and post it on YouTube because I'd love to watch it. A video titled, "What happens when you put Coke in your CVT" would probably go viral and who knows, maybe you can make some money of it to put down on your new F-Pace. :coffee:
 

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2003 Nissan Murano SE AWD
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Discussion Starter #43 (Edited)
Understand I'm not upset about anything, and I see the point of reminding others that what I'm doing goes contrary to approved practices. Coffee's last paragraph about "you need to stop dumping crap into the CVT" irked me, since it seemed to imply I'm doing reckless things and putting no rational thought behind them. I'm not putting gasoline in a diesel engine or using expanding foam in the radiator to stop a leak... I'm adding an oil-based, transmission-friendly product to a drivetrain component that requires an oil-based solution. I'm not pouring in Mrs. Butterworth or liquid Tide w/bleach. :) It's tranny-like fluid, and not really much of it. Besides, after years of successfully using Dex6, I feel more than comfortable using MMO and other fluids in place of NS-2. But, as I've said before, did years of Dex6 use lead to the progressing problems I'm having now? Was it simply old fluid that started creating this problem? Was it the rearend clip in 2019 by that drunk driver that caused the CVT to start to fail? Or is it just 290,000 miles that have taken their toll on the CVT? We'll never know...

In any case, I was kidding about adding Coke (but was serious about kerosene because I've used it succcessfully in a few trannies), although the Coke thing probably would be interesting to see. But I don't think I'd have the patience to slowly add carbonated, fizzing soda via the dipstick fill tube. It would be interesting to find out what would happen within the torque converter as the Coke spun around at crazy speeds.

In the following videos, I had no problem going up the hills over the past 5.5 years until about 5-6 months ago. In one instance, the cabin filled with smoke and I thought MO had caught fire. Although I mention things that could have caused it, I'm pretty sure it was a clogged CAT that was overheating and creating the smoke. In any case, adding about three gallons of laquer thinner over the past two months during gas fillups have again freed up the CATs and kept codes P0420/P0430 in line and prolonged MO's life. I've regularly used thinner in MO for about four years (and have used it in other vehicles over the years), and have not encountered any problems. The last time I used an entire gallon on a fillup (2-3 three weeks ago), it felt like MO was powered by rocket fuel...the acceleration was insane. But, as others will warn, using any additive has the potential to cause problems, and I don't typically use more than one quart every third fillup, unless I start throwing emissions codes.


Next day...hill #2 - 420 miles since MMO infusion. Had cold start high-taching this morning, even after a 10-minute warm-up, and during that over-taching to 3000RPMs the cruise set light started blinking. (NOTE: the roads were covered with ice and snow when I started out, so I wasn't driving MO the same way, and I had to accelerate up an icy incline to get out of my driveway and the tires spun and the RPMs got up there.) I had a pending P1778 later in the day that never went further. No over-taching or slack acceleration while driving hot.

 

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You might find out Dex6 is similar to Ns-2 :) have to remember Nissan does NOT make fluid, they just buy it and stick their name on it..

I would have laughed at anybody buying Walmart oil until I watched Project Farm on youtube show who made it and how it's actually rated better and performed as good if not better then Mobil 1
 

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I think your thread is instructive, but it seems to me that it's really kind of a report on an ongoing research project. I regard it as kind of a journal that applies only to you and your specific vehicle. You evidently consider your Murano to be a test bed that can be sacrificed at any point that one of your experiments goes badly enough. That's fine, but it's far from a typical usage or ownership approach.

In my case, I've worked on cars since 1968 and I can do anything I feel motivated to do; however, doing a major remove-repair-replace job on a Murano engine, transmission or transfer case is beyond the skills and facilities available to move members. I have the skills but not the equipment needed to do it.

Many of the things you've done (such as the MMO) are things I would advise against any member doing unless they have superior mechanic skills, facilities that support major engine and drivetrain work, and a substantial budget for replacement of drivetrain parts. That's simply because most of the people who come here can't do what you do.

I very much appreciate your frequently pointing out that your use case is the exception, and I hope that you will continue doing so.

When it comes to questions like why most of the members here insist on using NS-2, the answers are obvious: (1) Nissan will void a warranty in a heartbeat if anyone uses anything else, (2) the Murano transmissions are expensive and not locally repairable, and (3) the information available about any other lubricants is anecdotal and seldom confirmed by other users. In my judgment, it's worth paying for the NS-2 and eliminating doubt or controversy about whether the lubricant is appropriate. Most owners will only change transmission lube once during their ownership, and it makes no sense (IMO) for them to experiment with alternatives.

All that said, as far as I'm concerned, please carry on. It would be cool if you did us the favor of periodically reminding readers, both current members and others who will drop into this tread in the future, that your uses are experimental and not necessarily recommended for others.
 

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Discussion Starter #46 (Edited)
I think your thread is instructive, but it seems to me that it's really kind of a report on an ongoing research project. I regard it as kind of a journal that applies only to you and your specific vehicle. You evidently consider your Murano to be a test bed that can be sacrificed at any point that one of your experiments goes badly enough. That's fine, but it's far from a typical usage or ownership approach.
And that's precisely what it is, an accounting of MO's ongoing CVT saga. There's a thread I read here where two members were having P1778 problems, and did the usual parts replacement and fluid change and the problems and code returned. In one case, the member said his mechanic was going to replace the step motor again in case the first one was bad, but that member never returned to the thread to follow up, and the other member also never returned to say if his issue was ever resolved. And I've read posts at other forums about P1778, and even after a CVT replacement the car started throwing P1778 again. In some posts, members have mentioned problems with over-revving and/or loss of power, but never mentioned throwing P1778. In one thread, I believe one member's problem was solved by having the dealer perform a relearn process on the TCM. Maybe that's what needs to happen in all of these cases.

Once again, my purpose here has always been to demonstrate that, apparently, a problematic CVT (in some cases) can still be driven mostly normally without spending thousands of dollars, provided an owner doesn't mind adjusting his/her driving style a little to accomodate the problem (which, in my case, has mainly just been a longer warm-up period in the morning, followed by a few miles of methodical driving.)

Keeping an eye out for any pending codes...

Downhill engine braking test...
 

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I envy your writing ability.

Regarding your CVT maintenance saga... I would be willing bet that better than 99.9% of drivers don't have the fortitude to endure what you have over so many miles... However, I applaud you for your effort, and your ongoing documentation of your trials and tribulations!
 
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Discussion Starter #48 (Edited)
So far, things are still looking good, although I'm still getting over-taching in the morning, but it resolves quickly once up to speed and when slowing and reaccelerating. This mornnig, once again, it felt like something "gave" while going up a hill, and acceleration improved even more. It might not be related to the CVT, but likely the CATs unclogging further given the larger injections of lacquer thinner and MMO in the fuel over the past two weeks. I'm planning to add another quart of MMO to the CVT tomorrow. Interesting that since putting in the first quart of MMO in the CVT 800 miles ago, MO hasn't thrown any P1778 codes. Not saying the MMO is curing anything, just expressing an interesting fact. I did get one pending P1778 I think the first day using MMO, but it never triggered for real. I find that highly interesting, since before doing the first pan drain and refill, I rarely would get a P1778, then after doing the first and second pan drains, I was getting two to five P1778s per day. Also, the growling sounds of either the CVT or engine suddenly subsided greatly this morning, making MO sound quieter than usual. On a down note, I've got a decent coolant leak coming from somewhere on the pass-side of bank 1. I can't tell where it's coming from being underneath the car, so I'll have to pull the cowl and take a peak behind everything over the next few days. Losing about four ounces every 50 miles, and it's dripping down onto the CV axle and getting all over the pass-front inner fender well. Doesn't appear to be oil cooler-related or from the thermostat or water pump. Seems to be higher up, possibly around the coolant hub on the firewall that multiple hoses/lines tie into.

One big question remains about this CVT saga... If it's a step motor failure, why hasn't the P1778 code triggered every day or at least every week or at least every month for the past five years? Why is P1778 more frequent since the first CVT pan drain and refill? Why is P1778 now gone since adding MMO? If P1778 isn't triggering (now and over the years), why am I getting cold start over-taching? Are the two things 100% unrelated, or could it be multiple valve body component failures that sometimes don't trigger a code? Perhaps these problems are the result of an electrical glitch or a failing TCM.

Over-taching talk...
 

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So far, things are still looking good, although I'm still getting over-taching in the morning, but it resolves quickly once up to speed and when slowing and reaccelerating. This mornnig, once again, it felt like something "gave" while going up a hill, and acceleration improved even more. It might not be related to the CVT, but likely the CATs unclogging further given the larger injections of lacquer thinner and MMO in the fuel over the past two weeks. I'm planning to add another quart of MMO to the CVT tomorrow. Interesting that since putting in the first quart of MMO in the CVT 800 miles ago, MO hasn't thrown any P1778 codes. Not saying the MMO is curing anything, just expressing an interesting fact. I did get one pending P1778 I think the first day using MMO, but it never triggered for real. I find that highly interesting, since before doing the first pan drain and refill, I rarely would get a P1778, then after doing the first and second pan drains, I was getting two to five P1778s per day. Also, the growling sounds of either the CVT or engine suddenly subsided greatly this morning, making MO sound quieter than usual. On a down note, I've got a decent coolant leak coming from somewhere on the pass-side of bank 1. I can't tell where it's coming from being underneath the car, so I'll have to pull the cowl and take a peak behind everything over the next few days. Losing about four ounces every 50 miles, and it's dripping down onto the CV axle and getting all over the pass-front inner fender well. Doesn't appear to be oil cooler-related or from the thermostat or water pump. Seems to be higher up, possibly around the coolant hub on the firewall that multiple hoses/lines tie into.

One big question remains about this CVT saga... If it's a step motor failure, why hasn't the P1778 code triggered every day or at least every week or at least every month for the past five years? Why is P1778 more frequent since the first CVT pan drain and refill? Why is P1778 now gone since adding MMO? If P1778 isn't triggering (now and over the years), why am I getting cold start over-taching? Are the two things 100% unrelated, or could it be multiple valve body component failures that sometimes don't trigger a code? Perhaps these problems are the result of an electrical glitch or a failing TCM.

Some talk about over-taching and slack acceleration...
Is MMO marvel Mystery oil?
Years ago we put lacquer thinner in my pinto when it wouldn't go in reverse cold. Tranny guy said the seals get hard and it softens them
 

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Discussion Starter #50
Yes, MMO is Marvel Mystery OIl. If anything, lacquer thinner should have a drying out (deteriorating) effect on seals. The only way I could see laquer thinner helping a failing seal is if it starts to break apart and/or melt the seal and either those pieces or the melting material are able to fill minor gaps. But that seems like quite a stretch... I could see MMO possibly helping seals become more pliable, though, but I'm not sure to what extent if a seal is dried out or even burned out from use and heat.

Ironic as all hell... I didn't add another quart of MMO this morning, but late-morning MO threw a pending P1778, and then 30 minutes later while stopped partway up a hill in traffic, I slowly accelerated and P1778 threw for real. Talk about your coincidental timing.
 

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Yeah, the better product to recondition rubber seals in the engine/automatic transmission is ATP AT-205 Re-Seal. It has a good reputation, but ONLY for rubber seals/parts, it doesn't do anything to help gasket leaks...
 

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Yes, MMO is Marvel Mystery OIl. If anything, lacquer thinner should have a drying out (deteriorating) effect on seals. The only way I could see laquer thinner helping a failing seal is if it starts to break apart and/or melt the seal and either those pieces or the melting material are able to fill minor gaps. But that seems like quite a stretch... I could see MMO possibly helping seals become more pliable, though, but I'm not sure to what extent if a seal is dried out or even burned out from use and heat.

Ironic as all hell... I didn't add another quart of MMO this morning, but late-morning MO threw a pending P1778, and then 30 minutes later while stopped partway up a hill in traffic, I slowly accelerated and P1778 threw for real. Talk about your coincidental timing.
I had a 74 Pinto that wouldn't backup when it was cold. Add a quart and it was good to go but would eventually evaporate and have to add more :)

That was a nice car, LOL
I used to Joke Chevy made the Vega and said " worlds worse car" Ford say OH YEA and made the Pinto.. Chevy walked away sad but said hang on and came out wth the Chevette and Ford threw up the white flag. :)

If you were a Mechanic and worked on a Chevette you will understand :)
 

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Discussion Starter #53 (Edited)
I used to Joke Chevy made the Vega and said " worlds worse car" Ford say OH YEA and made the Pinto.. Chevy walked away sad but said hang on and came out wth the Chevette and Ford threw up the white flag. :)

If you were a Mechanic and worked on a Chevette you will understand :)
A white 1976 Chevette 2-door with 89,000 miles was my first car for $250. A little old lady lost control on an icy road and the pass-rear slapped against a telephone pole and collapsed the rear-quarter panel. I ended up doing all the body work and I repainted it neon-Pumpkin orange with a black lower half. Put air shocks in the back, put a header with a Y-pipe to glasspacks then to massive chrome side pipes, and it had a killer, 12-speaker Kraco cassette player system... I Mad Max'ed the hell out of Chevettes and Ford Fiestas. :D I had so much fun with that car that when it got demolished by an out-of-control cop car, I used the insurance money to buy another '76, then after I bought a '77, then I went to Ford Fiestas, then got into real cars like Nova, Cuda, Chevelle, Javelin, Charger, Cutlass 442, etc... Had a lot of fun for very little money back then. My mom had a Vega wagon...what a piece of crap. She upgraded to a Monza...
 

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A white 1976 Chevette 2-door with 89,000 miles was my first car for $250. A little old lady lost control on an icy road and the pass-rear slapped against a telephone pole and collapsed the rear-quarter panel. I ended up doing all the body work and I repainted it neon-Pumpkin orange with a black lower half. Put air shocks in the back, put a header with a Y-pipe to glasspacks then to massive chrome side pipes, and it had a killer, 12-speaker Kraco cassette player system... I Mad Max'ed the hell out of Chevettes and Ford Fiestas. :D I had so much fun with that car that when it got demolished by an out-of-control cop car, I used the insurance money to buy another '76, then after I bought a '77, then I went to Ford Fiestas, then got into real cars like Nova, Cuda, Chevelle, Javelin, Charger, Cutlass 442, etc... Had a lot of fun for very little money back then. My mom had a Vega wagon...what a piece of crap. She upgraded to a Monza...
To Change tranny fluid on it you had to drop the exhaust if I remember right :)
 

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Discussion Starter #55
Since adding another quart of MMO at the end of the day six days ago, MO has had no pending or perm P1778s. My hope in using MMO was that if the step motor piston was sticking, that perhaps the oils in MMO would help lubricate or clean it in a different way so it wouldn't stick. That thinking was also present for the flow valve. Time will tell.

However, since I suspected a had another issue besides P1778, I decided to buy the CVTz50 app four days ago and found that I have a problem with the secondary pressure solenoid valve, which is I think the first thing I suspected months ago before later changing my thinking towards the secondary speed sensor. Turns out I also had/have a potential issue with the crankshaft position sensor, since when I first read the info via CVTz50, it showed P0725. However, after clearing all codes four days ago, that code hasn't rethrown. The only code being thrown is P0868. I'm preparing to do a full and final flush of the CVT in about three more days, and hopefully by then I'll have pulled, checked and cleaned all of the suspected wiring/electrical aspects of the components that are likely the source of the other thrown codes that don't appear to be a problem at the moment - at least, not problem enought that they're generating codes.

I've attached some pics of what the CVT monitoring looked like upon a cold start, and then warmed up after 15 minutes of driving. For those interested...
 

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Since adding another quart of MMO at the end of the day six days ago, MO has had no pending or perm P1778s. My hope in using MMO was that if the step motor piston was sticking, that perhaps the oils in MMO would help lubricate or clean it in a different way so it wouldn't stick. That thinking was also present for the flow valve. Time will tell.

However, since I suspected a had another issue besides P1778, I decided to buy the CVTz50 app four days ago and found that I have a problem with the secondary pressure solenoid valve, which is I think the first thing I suspected months ago before later changing my thinking towards the secondary speed sensor. Turns out I also had/have a potential issue with the crankshaft position sensor, since when I first read the info via CVTz50, it showed P0725. However, after clearing all codes four days ago, that code hasn't rethrown. The only code being thrown is P0868. I'm preparing to do a full and final flush of the CVT in about three more days, and hopefully by then I'll have pulled, checked and cleaned all of the suspected wiring/electrical aspects of the components that are likely the source of the other thrown codes that don't appear to be a problem at the moment - at least, not problem enought that they're generating codes.

I've attached some pics of what the CVT monitoring looked like upon a cold start, and then warmed up after 15 minutes of driving. For those interested...
Thats cool you can do that..I battled an issue with my 2002 Mercedes and evn bought a $200 scan tool. Few folks on that form said to take to to Mercedes because they have a Star tool..Of coarse they charged more then it cost to buy a real start just to look at it .
 

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Wow, that 235,519 CVT deterioration number is the highest I've seen. The most I think I have seen previously was in the tens of thousands.

CVTz50 displays better when in landscape mode, things get scrunched together when in portrait mode.

Also, for many Android phones, pressing the power key for a few seconds will bring up a menu that has a screenshot selection to save the whole screen.
 
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Discussion Starter #58
Wow, that 235,519 CVT deterioration number is the highest I've seen. The most I think I have seen previously was in the tens of thousands.

CVTz50 displays better when in landscape mode, things get scrunched together when in portrait mode.

Also, for many Android phones, pressing the power key for a few seconds will bring up a menu that has a screenshot selection to save the whole screen.
Yeah, I'm not sure if Nissan ever reset the det. count whenever they'd replaced one of my CVTs. FYI, it was 213519 before I reset it. The first 7 CVTs were driven in SoCal, so maybe that's why it was such a high number. I didn't reset the count when I installed my current CVT in 2015.

I'm just used to grabbing the Handycam to record everything, since it's seems easier for me to access the files on that storage card as opposed to my phone. Just preference. But thanks for the tip. Here's a snap just for you. :)

From Google...

210000 points - Nissan recommends to change CVT fluid if deterioration exceeded 210000 points. Note that on the majority of vehicles the deterioration counter takes into account CVT operation only in high temperature conditions (the counter increases only when CVT temperature is above 90°C)
 

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Discussion Starter #59 (Edited)
I can't recall what I was reading, but I think it was a Nissan TSB for the step motor, wherein it mentioned something about the number 196 during CVT diagnostics for P1778. During my driving, I've noticed that CVTz50 is showing STM Step as having a max number of 196/196, and if I don't back off on the gas pedal to prevent the RPMs from getting out of hand and over-taching, that set of numbers flashes yellow. I also noticed that at one point, the torque ratio locked, and only released once I slowed below I think 10MPH, and I could feel the car release from whatever was holding it back (just felt like the CVT variated). During the torque lock, I was able to accelerate normally to 45MPH and everything was still driving fine.

Before doing a CVT flush and replace, I've decided I'm going to replace the pan filter. No point infusing fresh fluid only to have it run through a dirty filter. Since I'm not getting any step motor DTCs, it's possible a new filter with new fluid might resolve the secondary pressure solenoid valve issue. I tried to take a screenshot of the 196/196 yellow flash, but the timing was always wrong to capture it. But the attached image is when it was flashing. What was also interesting is the virtual gear 6, which I've never seen before. 5+ is the highest I'd seen. Not sure what the plain 6 represents, since all of the other number had a plus after them. I have to do some reading as to what everything means. I noticed the "slip rev" category had some wild swings.

EDIT: Since all the virtual gears below 6 have a plus sign after them, I think it just means the virtual gear ratio in relation to the pullies is between each gear (e.g. 2+ would indicate the gear ratio is between virtuial gears 2 and 3.) I've had MO up to 85MPH and 6 seems to be the max. virtual gear, which might explain why there's no plus sign after it. Then, again, I could be totally wrong.
 

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The torque converter will lockup around 10-20 MPH for fuel efficiency, then unlock at that speed to allow the CVT to slip enough to come to a stop and not move forward, like pressing a clutch pedal in.

However, it look like yours is still unlocked @ 79KM at operating temp in your second screenshot, I would expect it to be locked-up at this point... Maybe this is the cause of the over-taching?

BTW, you can change the units in the settings to MPH, unless you're more familiar with the metric system...
 
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