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*Updated: 02/06/2022 5:26PM PST


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Everything posted by drewp29

  1. I did clean the MAF with CRC MAF cleaner, and it looked good, but I'm thinking there is some internal issue with the filaments. I replaced the MAF yesterday, so we will see if it truly did solve the problem. I do know the idle was better than ever after changing it. Engine was still up to operating temp when I swapped it and the last couple times I had started it with the engine warm the RPMs dropped after the crank and bogged down, almost killing it before it caught itself and bumped them back up. Started it up and it was solid, let it idle for a bit and no change to the idle RPMs once they settled at about 750-800 RPMs. Shut it off and started it a few more times without issue. Now I just need to fix the rear coolant line off the intake. I think in the process of trying to get the pinch clamp back on the hose I make have sliced it a little. It has a slow drip, and I can see the coolant shining on the hose. It is really slow though, so I'll take care of it here soon, but it shouldn't matter if she drives it for a couple days. Stupid location for a coolant line anyhow, just about an inch higher on the plenum and you could remove the top of the hose without issue, but the location they went with makes those two hoses ridiculously hard to get at. One of them is almost impossible, which is why I cut it to get the plenum off, and consequently why there is a small hole I accidentally made in the replacement hose while putting it back on.
  2. I wiggled a bunch of connectors the other day to see if I could get it to change at all, but none of them made any difference. Definitely worth checking though! I went ahead and changed the fuel filter. The old one wasn't crazy dirty, but it had been on there a long time as evidenced by the amount of corrosion (which we don't really see in Colorado). It definitely helped the idle a little, but it was pretty smooth before. Then I pulled the new codes that cropped up yesterday. It had thrown a MAF code and had the same code pending. So I think that seals it, or at least I hope. I ordered a Hitachi replacement which should be here this weekend, so we shall see if it solves it! What's odd is that the MAF follows the throttle quite well when viewing real time data on the scanner, but it must have some overshoot or or delay at some point while driving since it tripped the code. Both codes were lower RPMs right above idle, so I am guessing it errored when trying to keep it idling while slowing down or stopped. Hopefully we have the answer! I will report back when I get it changed.
  3. I posted this on the FB group but I am fairly long-winded so likely didn't receive much help because it was a lengthy read. So my girlfriend's niece, whom I'll refer to as my niece from here on out, has a 1999 Infiniti QX4 with 265k miles on the clock. Recently I rebuilt the AC system. Had a few hiccups along the way, but it is back up and blowing cold air! For quite a long time, she has been having some issues with intermittent stalling. Lately it had gotten worse, so she asked me to take a look at it. She said it had also started blowing smoke out the tail pipe. The head gasket had been changed less than 6 months ago, so I asked her what color the smoke was, light or dark. First she said dark, then she said light, and I thought if it was the head gasket again, the shop that replaced it would have to warranty the work. She brought it over, and it was obvious that it was a fuel issue. The smoke was dark, and it smelled like fuel. It was so bad I currently have a line of dark soot across my garage floor from where the tail pipe was located at the time. I started it up and lifted the hood. The distributor was obviously on it's way out - lots of bearing whine. So I ordered a distributor, hoping that it had just skipped a tooth and was running rich because timing was off. I knew in the back of my mind that there was little chance that the dizzy would solve the over fueling, but it needed changed anyway. Along with the dizzy, I also did spark plugs. New NGK Iridium IXs went in after a serious amount of cursing at cylinder #6 and Nissan for stupid placement of that plug. The Nissan spark plug tool was the only thing that kept me sane, though even locating the plug was almost impossible. Just a note on the distributor install. I had checked top dead center with cylinder #1 plug out, but it wouldn't crank over no matter what I did. At the advice of my girlfriend's brother, I sprayed carb cleaner into the throttle body and got a small backfire. So he said to take the cap off the dizzy, mark the location of the rotor, pull the dizzy, and rotate the rotor 180 degrees. Turns out I had been at TDC on the exhaust stroke. I had considered this, but I would have pulled the dizzy and rotated the crank 360 degrees. Rotating the rotor was a million times easier! It started up after a few cranks! The truck was still running extremely rich, so I did a ton of research and realized that the most likely issue was the fuel pressure regulator. Dripping fuel out the tail pipe, Lots of smoke, and the oil smelled like gasoline. Bought a replacement, and then attempted to locate the stupid thing. On my VQ it is easily accessible, but I couldn't even see the regulator on the VG. Looked it up and realized I would have to pull the upper intake manifold. What a stupid design! Oh, the codes that were stored were the knock sensor (surprise surprise), and B2S2 O2 sensor. Neither of these should be an issue for the intermittent stalling, correct me if I am wrong. I should have waited to do the plugs until I had determined the fuel regulator was bad. Changing them with the plenum off would have been cake! Anyway, I removed the plenum, struggled with the rear coolant lines that are also stupidly placed by the moronic engineers, cut those and bought replacement hose. Cleaned out every item I removed, including EGR and throttle body (still on plenum). Finally I could see the regulator. I realized I would need to pull the fuel rail because you cannot get at the screws holding the regulator to the end of the rail, also a stupid design. Stripped the heads of those idiotic screws, and used a screw puller to finally remove them. Found some replacement screws with the same thread, Put plenty of anti-seize on them, and plopped the rail back in with the new regulator. I was going to do the knock sensor, but removing the lower plenum was not going to happen, so I plan to relocate it if it keeps throwing the code. Got everything buttoned back up, with more cursing at those rear coolant lines, as well as the stupid EGR bracket that is easy to remove, but dang near impossible to get back in place without removing even more parts from the plenum. Started it up and BOOM, no more rich condition! Exhaust looked clean after burning off what was left over from before. Finally I was able to pull the brown plug on the TPS and set timing with a light. During this process I also bought a OBD2 reader that will show and record/graph real time sensor data. After setting timing, I plugged back in the brown TPS plug, which controls advance/retard of the engine in real time to keep the RPMs stable at idle and improve fuel economy while driving. After letting it warm up at idle, I checked values with my code reader. Everything looked good, fuel trims were responding normally, MAF data moved with the throttle, O2 sensors were responding and approximately the same for B1/B2 (even the bad one was responding now). The only odd thing was the timing was at 15 degrees and not really changing at idle, whereas before it was all over the place.. Prior to the regulator change, the injectors cycled between 'closed loop' and 'open loop - fault' over and over. It now stayed on closed loop. I should have watched the scanner during driving or at least modulating the throttle to see if timing changed, but considering everything else looked good, I took it for a test drive. It drove fine. I drove for about 15 miles with no issues, so I thought it was fine. I text my niece the next morning to see how it was doing, and she said it was running better, but had stalled on her once on the way to work. It always starts right back up, but I need to solve the stalling problem. The stalling only happens when slowing down or stopped, after driving for awhile. TL/DR - 1999 Infiniti QX4 VG33E Intermittent Stalling - New Distributor, Spark Plugs, Fuel Regulator - Sensor data looks good to me, but I do not know what values should be reported for each sensor. Idles fine at start-up, stalls during driving when slowing down or stopped. Starts right back up. Prior codes stored for Knock Sensor and Bank 2 Sensor 2 O2 sensor. So I am thinking it may be the following: MAF - The sensor data seemed to respond correctly with throttle input - Does anyone know the value range that should be reported? Coolant Temp Sensor - Reported values are believable, but I do not know what it is reporting when the stalling happens. Throttle Position Sensor - Was advancing/retarding timing prior to Fuel Pressure Regulator change, seems to respond fine during throttle input. I did have some issues with dying as RPMs dropped after changing everything, but I had also put in a good amount of Sea Foam and every vehicle I have Sea Foamed has the issue until it burns that stuff off. Crankshaft Position Sensor - This is a likely candidate. The oddness with the static 15 degree advance output reporting on the scanner leads me to believe this may be the issue. Anyone have any more items to add to the list?
  4. So, how'd the weekend go? Were you able to get the engine out without dropping the front end too low? Just for reference, my swap with everything ended up a little over $4k. What that ultimately got me was engine, transmission, and transfer case. And I replaced the following with new parts: Tranny and Transfer Case Fluid (Redline MT-90) Thermostat (Nissan) Water Valve (Nissan) IACV (Hitachi, OEM) Both primary catalytic converters (Magnaflow OEM direct replacements) All 4 O2 sensors (NTK and Denso) New Clutch (Exedy OEM) New belts (Gates Century) Upper and Lower Radiator Hoses (Gates) Spark plugs (NGK Laser Platinum) Rear Main Seal (Fel-Pro) Upper and Lower Oil Pan Gaskets (Fel-Pro) PCV Valve (Beck/Arnley) Rebuilt Steering Rack (Detroit Axle) Tie Rod Ends (Moog) OIl change Coolant change A/C Recharge It was a little more expensive since the engine came from New York, and my mechanic swapped all the piping, hoses, and the like from my old engine to the new one. Mine were in much better shape from being a Colorado vehicle and garaged when at home. I looked for awhile at various vehicles, but the 4x4 tax in Colorado is strong and everyone thinks because they have a 4x4 it is worth twice what it should be.So, I went this route and am totally happy I did!
  5. Try replacing your radiator cap. If the cap is faulty the system won't pressurize and it can cause overheating. You could also add a high performance radiator fluid additive like Hyp-er Lube or Water Wetter. I read some comparison tests awhile back that had decent results with both of those when mixed with an antifreeze solution already in the vehicle.
  6. Yes, only the VQ35de has it. So according to the Nissan VG Wikipedia page the VG33e was only offered in the Pathfinder in 2001 and 2002 in the Australian model? Weird...
  7. It depends. Are the voids in the bushing actually open to both sides, i.e. are they a hole? If they are, then I would think whether or not the PU sticks extremely well to the rubber it wouldn't really matter as the new material would be connected on both sides of the sleeve, resulting in a plug of sorts. If using the old bushings, you could always cut the thinnest sections of the rubber to make them a hole I suppose. I am thinking I might try this with my old mounts after I replace them, just as an experiment.
  8. For future reference, idx.pdf is the index. It's the first one I open when I need to find a specific section for a part.
  9. I ordered the Nissan replacement mounts, and will be replacing mine in the near future. I did have an idea though. What about taking the polyurethane (3M window weld or equivalent) and just squeezing it into the voids in the rubber bushing? If you use plastic wrap, or something that will release from the PU after it has set, you could fill the voids flush to the edge of the steel mount, which would give you a much stiffer bushing, and repair your old bushings without having to press out or cut out the old ones and figure out a mold for replacements. A lot of people do this with transmission mounts, which works pretty well apparently.
  10. Changed out all the u-joints this weekend. The rear u-joint on the main driveshaft was a huge pain! I was using a ball joint press to push the cap, but the body of the u-joint bottomed out on the opposite side of the yoke (the small yoke that bolts to the rear differential) without pushing the cap out far enough to work with the slip joint pliers. That joint was in pretty bad shape, but it seemed odd that all the other joints pushed the opposite side cap out equally as far as the other cap got pressed into the yoke, which makes me think there was something wonky going on with that joint. Sort of like it was actually the wrong u-joint. I only say that because the previous owner was a bit of an idiot. I do not know them personally, but given the amount of things I have replaced that were done totally incorrect, it is apparent that the idiocy was strong with that one. Case in point, when I replaced the lower rear trailing arms, the previous owner used 2 LEFT HAND ARMS!!! I mean, SERIOUSLY?!!! That's just one example. Anyway, in order to get the bad u-joint out, I used my little Harbor Freight ball joint tool (pops the shaft out of the knuckle) to push one of the caps outward and expose the shaft of the u-joint. I then wrapped some wire around the shaft to make a shim. Then I used the ball joint press to push the cap next to the wire outward. the wire shim allowed the joint to push the cap out farther and it finally came out! The Spicer joints feel nice, and it is apparent that there is less rolling resistance just based on the ability to coast without losing speed on slight downward inclines.
  11. If it is a 2002, it should be the 3.5 liter VQ35de engine. Unless Nissan did weird things in other countries, but a quick search does not say anything about the VG33e continuing beyond the 2000 model year. If you have the VQ35de then yes, it does have a water control valve. It is located on the coolant piping on the back of the engine, up against the firewall. It is quite difficult to access with the engine in the vehicle. The pathfinder VQ35 had additional piping with a water control valve that opens at 203 degrees Fahrenheit and allows coolant to circulate to the opposite side of the head in order to increase cooling distribution. It is Nissan part number 21230-6N20A.
  12. My mechanic replaced my IACV and it idles like a champ again. So luckily it did not take the ECU out on my drive to work yesterday! Time to do the u-joints! I also ordered the replacement front differential carrier mounts. I have had a bit of vibration in 4wd for a long time, so replacing the u-joints and carrier mounts will hopefully solve the issue. It is quite a bit better with the new transfer case, but still gives some shudder if I accelerate just a little too quickly in 4wd. So we'll see which one solves it. I'll keep this updated with my results. Thanks for reading!
  13. One of the things on my list of 'things to do' is replace the brake lines. Mine have felt the same way as described for the last 70,000 miles, or as long as I have owned it. I've bled, and rebled, had it bled at the shop, adjusted the rear brakes, etc. and my thoughts are that it is likely the lines need changing to firm up the pedal.
  14. Some vice grips and a BFH might get 'er unstuck. Spray a little PB Blaster on it to try and penetrate.
  15. Well that sucks... My Pathfinder died on me 3 times this morning on the way to work. I got it here, and it will start, but won't idle. My thoughts are IACV, so I overnighted the OEM Hitachi valve from Amazon. I talked to my mechanic and he said they did have some issues with idle after replacing the engine, but they replaced the IACV with my old one and did the relearn procedure and it cleared them up. I am almost certain it is the IACV, but what I am not certain about is whether the IACV going out subsequently fried the little MOSFET chip on the ECU. So I ordered the STA509a chip from Amazon as well. My circuit board soldering skills aren't the greatest, but I do have a nice temp controlled iron, and given the size of the MOSFET chip I don't think it will be too difficult to take care of. It was running so well too...
  16. Just remember they are all brittle, no matter which set you buy, so the likelihood of snapping the end off is very real. Kind of like a set of thread taps, lord knows how many of those I've broken because I was at a slight angle. The sets that have the drill end on one side and reverse thread on the other can be useful, but the diameter of the end on the threaded side always seemed a little large, though I think they do that to avoid the inevitable snapping off of the point. They just always seemed to need a much deeper hole to get it to grab though, and drilling hardened bolts is difficult as it is. Is it nice though that there are those items when needed. It would be preferable to TIG weld a nut onto the broken end, but not always feasible and definitely not for those without the equipment or the skill set.
  17. The best EZ outs I have found are the Black and Decker. They have a tight thread profile with decent tooth. If you can get a small drill bit about 1/4" into the bolt the Black and Decker set will grab and zip it out. I wouldn't even bother with the EZ Out brand or the Kobalt brand. They have no real thread to bite in to the metal. Edit: This set https://www.amazon.com/Black-Decker-16270-Extractor-5-Piece/dp/B000KKR7JM
  18. Before? Where have you been for the past month? Lol...
  19. Hey TowndawgR50 - Those rear dampers wouldn't happen to be the Bilstein 25-187717 would they? The extended length is 27.4in and the collapsed length is 16.14in? https://www.4wheelparts.com/Suspension/Bilstein-5165-Series-Reservoir-Shock-Absorber-25-187717.aspx?t_c=1&t_s=90&t_pt=3306&t_pn=BIL25-187717 Looking for extended length rear dampers for my soon to be 4" lift, and figured there is no reason to reinvent the wheel if it has already been determined that these work.
  20. Got my Pathy back on Friday. The motor definitely feels a lot more responsive, and the transmission is nice and smooth! I am planning on doing the front drive shaft u-joints later today, and then probably the rear u-joints next weekend. Then on to the SFD and NRC9448 coils in the rear!
  21. I don't have an R51, but I can agree with 'the ABS is just an annoyance' sentiment. I'm glad the R50 doesn't have that second one, lol. I'd so much rather not have ABS. The jerking rumble crap scares me every time, and I automatically lift up on the pedal, which is the opposite of what you are supposed to do with ABS. The stupid thing is it does it with the SLIGHTEST of traction loss, and in most cases I travel further than I would have if it just wasn't there. I think I'm seriously going to look into bypassing it.
  22. Holy crap, that's some fast shipping! I ordered the springs on Tuesday and I am receiving them today, Thursday. From fricken England!
  23. Placed an order for a pair of the NRC9448 coils! They should be to me the middle of next week. Now I just need to get my CNCs ready for a random day when we are cutting 1/4" A36 on the plasma in the shop. Then I can get the panhard drop bracket and strut spacer flanges cut. I'm going to order some rectangular tubing in 1/4" thickness (because I like overkill) and get everything prepped for an install in the next couple months. Since it is my DD I need to have a plan together and everything ready and laid out for as quick of an install as possible. Then I just need to figure out a way to get my 175# English Mastiff in and out of the back. He'll jump down from the current height, but another couple of inches might be too much for him. Down might not be an issue even with the extra height, but up might be a problem. He jumps up now, but I am afraid he will believe he still can and launch himself into a bad situation. I have loading ramps, but good luck getting him to go up and down those, lol. Let's just say, you don't MAKE him do anything he doesn't want to do. Oh, and I had a question. I purchased the Bilstein rear dampers from 4x4parts back when I did the AC lift. They had the sleeve for the lower mount point, so I assume they are likely F250 (?) dampers. Do you think I can use them as is, or do I need to look for a longer extended/compressed length?
  24. https://drive.google.com/open?id=1ADB7RpRZgS9bPJyJukXft9MzVPU6Pr3s So we have a minor problem. The transmission has a crack in one of the mounting points. I contacted the salvage yard and they assured me that they would cover the cost to weld it, which is cool. Since it does not cause the transmission to leak, I think a good TIG weld should take care of it and get it back to being solid. Other than having to swap all the piping from my old engine due to surface rust and whatnot, my mechanic said the bottom end looked really good when he changed the rear seal, so that's a good sign.
  25. One thing I would mention about the front strut install. The KYB struts come with a metal spacer ring about 1.5" in diameter if I remember correctly. DO NOT forget to install this!!!!!!!!!!!!! If you do not put it on, the strut shaft nut bottoms out on the threads and WILL ruin the strut since tightening it stretches the threads and you'll be really really pissed at how difficult the stupid nut is to get back off. Likely, you will also ruin the top hat because the only thing keeping the top hat from rotating on the strut shaft is a TIIIIIIIIIIINY little flat spot in the center hole of the top hat. This flat spot rounds out if you look at it wrong, seriously, it is ridiculously easy to round out the hole. Edit: Actually now that I think about it, the strut mounts came with the spacer. I didn't use the KYB mounts, but another one that had good reviews since the stock Nissan mounts are insanely overpriced. the spacer is built in to the Nissan mounts, so if you use them you are good to go without a spacer. Oh, and I used 2 sets of spring compressors, one set open wide and grabbing like the 2nd coil in from top and bottom, and the other set grabbing whatever coils I could get them on further towards the middle of the spring. This was on the AC lift springs, so if you are doing stock or Moog replacements then it is a bit easier and 1 set of spring compressors is likely fine. I almost had to clamp the middle spring compressor set tight against the coils with the outer set to get it compressed far enough to get the top hat on. It was a huge pain, but I could not get one set to compress far enough without feeling like it was gonna let go and kill someone.

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