Jump to content
Sign in to follow this  
Roo

Quirks of my new-to-me Pathy & what to do about them..

Recommended Posts

Hello! I recently found this awesome forum and I'm sure glad I did :). I have some quirks with my Pathy, as all used cars have their unique quirks but I was wondering how I should go about getting them fixed - none of them are a necessity to be fixed and I think it gives my truck character but it would be nice if the essentials worked as intended..

 

This quirk is really not that important in the grander scheme of things, my tachometer hasn't worked since I bought the truck, the dealership even mentioned that it hasn't worked since it was sold to them, some times jumps all over the place while never reading my engine speed correctly. Often times it'll sit at 0 rpm's while on the freeway and some times while at a stop light it'll be over redline, I think it's quite confused.

 

Along those lines is my lazy speedometer, it regularly doesn't pick up my speed until I am going about 25-30 mph then it works fine even when driving under 25 mph. Not that it's a big deal, it has never failed to work but I would much more like it to work than my tachometer as I feel my ears are a better judgement of how many rpm's I am at.

 

The second thing, again which is not important in the grand scheme, is that I appreantly have an alarm system on my Pathy? I was pumping gas today and the drivers side door was ajar slightly then all of a sudden it decides it wants to make its presence known.. this is the second time it has done this. The first time I was parked at home and peeling off tape that had been left by the dealership and it started going off. My only fix is to put the key in and turn it to accessory which seems to stop the alarm from going off.

 

And last but not least, I have a check engine light that has been my new friend and it has been on since I bought my truck. I've given a quick peak at the engine, checked the oil and whatnot, nothing seems to be out of place but it could be unseen to my untrained eyes. Though even with the light on, I don't notice anything wrong with it driving wise.

 

SO, should I take it to a Nissan dealership to see if I can get an actual key fob for it and have them diagnose everything and give me a list of the things that aren't up to specifications? Or what would be the best course of action to take with all of the facts considered?

 

If you want to see my beautiful Pathy I snapped some pics hours after I bought it and have them here :).

http://imgur.com/a/DDvQK

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I would start by pulling the instrument cluster and check all the ground connections etc. They are known to call issues, when I bought mine I had a bad voltage regulator behind the dash, 10 bucks at Pick&Pull...

As far as the CEL, run a diagnostic at the ECU for error codes. All of this info can be found in the Garage section, there is a downloadable FSM (factory service manual) that can help you with both of these problems.

Good luck!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

That's excellent information, thank you! Although my mechanic skills are about as good as using a screwdriver without knowing really what I am doing... are these issues fairly easy to fix and for someone such as myself who doesn't have very much knowledge about working on cars?

 

If they're both pretty easy I suppose it'd be worth a shot though, get my hands dirty and all of that good stuff and learn more about my pathy as I do it! I'll check out the Garage Section before bringing it to a shop or dealer to have it looked it :).

 

 

Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

owning a 20 year old vehicle will improve your mechanic skills or keep a mechanic fed... well

 

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

owning a 20 year old vehicle will improve your mechanic skills or keep a mechanic fed... well

 

 

Let's hope that I'll be improving my mechanic skills instead of keeping a mechanic happy as the latter would imply a crying bank account! :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i just did a write up on removing the alarm in the general section, look at that if you want to remove it, if you want to keep it, you may need a new fob programmed as was said.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

i just did a write up on removing the alarm in the general section, look at that if you want to remove it, if you want to keep it, you may need a new fob programmed as was said.

 

I don't think I'll be removing it just yet, though I think getting a fob just so it doesn't bark at me needlessly will be a good idea - even though I've driven family members cars that were equiped with alarms and I never used them. Besides how often do you hear a car alarm going off and instead of thinking that something was wrong, you thought "stupid people, turn off your alarm"! xD

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're talking to a bunch of guys that have had gazillions of past cars in each ones history and years of just built up acquired knowledge from personal experience that did not happen over night. This will be a lifelong endeavor. All you can hope to do at this stage is just start reading and trying to absorb anything you can just to build a base of relativity. Start with the easy things like spark plugs and oil change.

 

You can't learn a language if you don't have point of reference, you've gotta start learning what things mean. This is the Language of Auto Tech. When you get frustrated don't be scared to just put everything down and take a step back, sleep on it. Slow your pace and just try to let little bits and pieces come into your wheel house gradually. It's going to take some time. Eventually your mind will start putting the pieces together and you'll start to get whispers of inspiration that come bubbling up to the surface and you'll find yourself saying.."hey! I think I get this! When I get home I'm going to try x, y & z...." That's how it starts. :)

Edited by gv280z

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

You're talking to a bunch of guys that have had gazillions of past cars in each ones history and years of just built up acquired knowledge from personal experience that did not happen over night. This will be a lifelong endeavor. All you can hope to do at this stage is just start reading and trying to absorb anything you can just to build a base of relativity. Start with the easy things like spark plugs and oil change.

 

You can't learn a language if you don't have point of reference, you've gotta start learning what things mean. This is the Language of Auto Tech. When you get frustrated don't be scared to just put everything down and take a step back, sleep on it. Slow your pace and just try to let little bits and pieces come into your wheel house gradually. It's going to take some time. Eventually your mind will start putting the pieces together and you'll start to get whispers of inspiration that come bubbling up to the surface and you'll find yourself saying.."hey! I think I get this! When I get home I'm going to try x, y & z...." That's how it starts. :)

 

That's true! I am very glad I happened to stumble across this forum and hope to greatly expand my knowledge of cars and specifically my own pathy in the years to come. ^_^

 

I'll definietly be taking it in small bites and not trying to digest everything all at once, nothing is learned that way, step by step!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Removing the instrument cluster is very straightforward and it only takes a screwdriver! lol To run the codes is simple too, just follow the instructions in the FSM. I think the LED colors and pattern had changed between my '91 and your '95 so I don't want to confuse you with my ECU. It is under the passenger seat, just read the codes as directed and it will point you in the right direction. No where near as precise information as an OBDII reader though....

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Removing the instrument cluster is very straightforward and it only takes a screwdriver! lol To run the codes is simple too, just follow the instructions in the FSM. I think the LED colors and pattern had changed between my '91 and your '95 so I don't want to confuse you with my ECU. It is under the passenger seat, just read the codes as directed and it will point you in the right direction. No where near as precise information as an OBDII reader though....

 

I'll definitely look into removing the instrument cluster one of these days when I am feeling brave enough, ha. Being pointed in the right direction is at least a good thing though, so when I take it in for whatever the problems may be I'll be able to speak knowledgably about what's wrong and make sure the shop doesn't screw me over.

 

I swung by an O'Rielly auto parts store today and got my battery, starter and alternator checked and they're all fine. I was told that my alternator may be on its last quarter of life though.. just something to keep in my mind and add to my list of things I need to get done for to make sure my pathy keeps running for a very long time.

 

I'll also be going by a Les Shwab tire place tomorrow morning and getting the free safety check done, I don't hear anything wrong with my brakes, suspension or anything else they check for - but alas there could be something unseen I am unaware of, I hope for the best though!

 

I was also told, in my introduction thread that I should definitely look into getting the timing belt replaced as it should be done every 105k miles, and if it's been replaced once I need to seriously look into another.. do you or anyone else have an idea of how much that should cost and if I should take it to a shop or pay the extra bit to take it to a Nissan dealer to ensure it's done properly? I feel I should err on the side of caution with something so vital and bring my pathy to a Nissan dealer and pay the dealer fees.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A mechanic who knows Nissans can probably do the job as well as the dealer (and has probably done more of them). Mine cost $800 locally, though that does include an $80 radiator (found to be leaking during the job). Your mileage may vary.

 

Also ask for specifics on that safety check--they don't make money unless they find something wrong. My friend took her Pontiac to a Les Schwab with a brake pulse (later diagnosed as a warped rotor) and they tried to tell her the whole hub was shot and the wheel was going to fall off. :tired:

 

As far as the dash fix, it's one of those things that takes long enough that you don't want to pay a shop for it, but simple enough that you can do it yourself. Take pictures as you take things apart (to help you put it back together), think before you yank on something, and you should be alright. Just make sure you won't need the truck in the morning!

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Slartibartfast, les whatever was kind of right, it was a pontiac, so the wheel will fall off eventually :lol:

  • Like 1

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Not to get all weird, but I just moved from Cali to Westport, how far are you? I am looking for new people to hang with, and I have experience with all the issues your dealing with. PM me if your interested.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Stalker!! :lol:

 

Not in Fort Bragg anymore, eh? Sorry we didn't at least meet up...

 

B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

A mechanic who knows Nissans can probably do the job as well as the dealer (and has probably done more of them). Mine cost $800 locally, though that does include an $80 radiator (found to be leaking during the job). Your mileage may vary.

 

Also ask for specifics on that safety check--they don't make money unless they find something wrong. My friend took her Pontiac to a Les Schwab with a brake pulse (later diagnosed as a warped rotor) and they tried to tell her the whole hub was shot and the wheel was going to fall off. :tired:

 

As far as the dash fix, it's one of those things that takes long enough that you don't want to pay a shop for it, but simple enough that you can do it yourself. Take pictures as you take things apart (to help you put it back together), think before you yank on something, and you should be alright. Just make sure you won't need the truck in the morning!

 

Holy crap, $800!! I wasn't expecting that much.. a few hundred at best is what I had in mind xD time to start saving! It'll definitely be worth it though to ensure the life of my truck and its engine. I think it'd be a good thing to have that done before I buy a new clutch and tend to the other things that need attention on my truck though. I have been babying the crap out of my clutch though so that I can extend the life it has left in it.

 

I see, I need to use my truck enarly every day haha, I'll need to plan that out and see if enough research will make me comfortable enough to attempt to fix my cluster. It would be nice to have a working tachometer for the first time.. though I suspect the speedo may be more intense to fix as it seems to have a mind of its own in regards to what it wants to do. Usually when starting out it doesn't read my speed at all till I am going about 25-30 mph, but more recently with all of the driving I've been doing (it's so much fun!) it likes to quit picking up my speed entirely and go back to zero. Craziness, I just want it to work properly more than I want my tach... If it's an easy fix I may attempt to do that on my own, though I read somewhere around the fourms that it may be the vehicle speed sensor which is in the transmission, I have to be honest I am quite afraid to do any sort of work no matter how easy it may be around my transmission - probably for good reason too..

 

Not to get all weird, but I just moved from Cali to Westport, how far are you? I am looking for new people to hang with, and I have experience with all the issues your dealing with. PM me if your interested.

 

Ha, no worries.. I am in the 98012 area, though from where I am at exactly Google says I am roughly three hours and a half tank of gas away from you. Maybe when the timing is right we could hang out! I definitely want to get a new timing belt and an oil change before taking my baby on its first roadtrip to make sure I have enough confidence in it, you know? :P

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

my last two big things i have done is clutch and timing belt , clutch was a pain in a driveway , the biggest tools you need for that is friends and a cool head. the trans is heavy, awkward and everything is in the way of pulling it, but pulling the trans is the hard part by far. once i started working down there i found thing needed to go, replaced alot of bolts (at least $160) , tranny mount, trans oil , tension rod anchor, and my exhaust studs and bolts were all rust , i had to cut my y pipe out of the way (fun). once everything is down , butter. clutch replacement is a pain but with this board, it was doable

 

the timing belt , was 5 day in front of my apartment (it would have been less but i order the wrong belt) its pretty easy job but pay attention cuz there is do under if you dont. the biggest part is the belt placement , makes you ocd real fast , oh and beware of cam bumping.

 

long story short,

clutch, let someone cuss at it ( i didnt have the option)

timing belt, good learning experience

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I paid $550 in labor for my timing belt replacment, my mechanic did me a solid. the belt kit and water pump and gasket was probably $100. That actually also included trans fluid drain and refill and trans cooler flush.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

For the dash removal look up on youtube "Nissan Terrano led dashboard upgrade" it can be removed with a screwdriver and is quite easy to pry off the panels. Just follow the instructions on the video and you'll find it very easy to do. The main thing is you have to take the ignition cover off otherwise it's impossible to get the speedometer out. If you need to remove the speedometer there is three connectors you just squeeze the connector and pull out.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I have some good news for you. Your check engine light is most likely due to your speedo not working correctly. The computer will throw a code 14 (Vehicle Speed Sensor) if the dash freaks out. You definitely need to read this page before you worry too much about the CEL.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I think I have some good news for you. Your check engine light is most likely due to your speedo not working correctly. The computer will throw a code 14 (Vehicle Speed Sensor) if the dash freaks out. You definitely need to read this page before you worry too much about the CEL.

 

I was thinking that too.. as nothing else seems to be out of place and it hums along for being 20 years old with 216k miles.

 

I am only going to assume that it'd be the better course of action to self diagnose it rather than pay the $115 that the Nissan Dealer is asking for to diagnose it for me. Though they'll give me a print out of everything that's "wrong" or out of place with my pathy. Can I see the LED's without removing my passenger seat? If I can then I think I can totally diagnose it myself and bring information to a shop about what is wrong with my truck. :)

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

It's hit or miss. I'm pretty sure that I was able to run the diagnostics on my '95 without pulling the seat. I believe I did that before I bought it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Slide the seat all the way forward. You can see them easily that way.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

x3 you can see it easy. The only time I pulled a seat was to ship it to Arizona... :D

 

B

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

I pulled mine out the first time I ran codes, but just because I'm tall and couldn't see what I was doing. It also allowed me to remove the PO's surprisingly varied collection of french fries.

 

Now that the fries are gone and I know where the thing is, I can just slide it forward and go for it.

Share this post


Link to post
Share on other sites

Create an account or sign in to comment

You need to be a member in order to leave a comment

Create an account

Sign up for a new account in our community. It's easy!

Register a new account

Sign in

Already have an account? Sign in here.

Sign In Now
Sign in to follow this  

Welcome to NPORA Forums

 

Please register to gain full access to the forum.

Make sure you read the Forum Guidelines and don't forget to post a new intro in the New People Start Here! section, to say hi too everyone.

 

-NPORA

×
×
  • Create New...