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Nissan Primera P11 144 Rattle and Knock Sensor

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loline View Drop Down
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    Posted: 21 May 2018 at 9:30pm
2001 Primera P11 144 S 2.0 CVT

MIL illuminated and OBD-II reader returned code: P0328 (Knock Sensor)

Constant rattle from top of the engine from cold and warm start-ups and throughout any length of journey at any speed and in all rev ranges. Although it maintained a steady idle from a cold start it hesitated on pull away and then ran lumpy on level road, and considerably more lumpy on inclines, losing power momentarily from time to time at speed (akin to misfiring) and periodically stalling while idling in stop/start traffic.

The car had not been serviced for 10 years but MOT certs indicated that it had been driven 'only' 30,000 miles in that time. Current mileage is 77K. 

Checked the voltages were OK across the TPS and Knock sensors.

Flushed the engine, replaced the oil filter (Nissan), filled it with 5W30, cleaned the throttle body, replaced the plugs, fuel filter, air filter, cleaned the MAF unit and replaced the sensor. Replaced the coolant and bled the system.

Cleared the knock fault from the ecu.

The constant engine rattle remained, oil light illuminated for a couple or three seconds on ignition but the rev counter kept steady at idle and at all speeds...which lead me to believe the chain was not stretched and that the tensioner was engaging at least well enough to stop too much flapping...the hesitation on pull-away was gone as was the stalling in traffic, but the general lumpiness continued, albeit to a lesser extent, and was more or less constant, although much more noticeable on acceleration.

Reset the ecu (my code reader couldn't do it so disconnected the battery for 24h.)

The lumpiness towards the end of the first 20 mile(ish) trip following the ecu reset was definitely reduced but still noticeable...more gritty than lumpy...although by this time I had become hypersensitive to any vibration whatsoever. Checked ecu after every journey and no faults shown.

Wondering if it wasn't the chain rattling but rather the lifters, and having already decided to reflush the oil in any case, I added a tin of hydraulic valve treatment...24h and 50 miles later and no discernible difference in the noise. So in for a tenner in for twenty, I added a tin of Wynns "Super Charge Oil Treatment"...24h and another 50 miles later and no discernible difference in the noise nor the lumpiness/grittiness, but the P0328 knock fault was back.

Then something strange; I rechecked the knock sensor and the voltages still showed okay, but decided to replace it in any case if only to avoid chasing my tail if the thing was just intermittently failing, so priced a replacement at a reasonably tame (£56) local motor factor who surprisingly had one on the shelf...no idea what make it was. So I jumped in the car to pick it up...turned the ignition and the rattle had totally disappeared, gone, as had the couple to three second flash of the oil light. The car runs smoothly at all speeds with no hesitation and absolutely no lumpiness whatsoever. This was two weeks ago and no return of the knock fault. 0-60 in around 13 seconds and happily sits at...errr...70mph where it is legal to do so. 

Now, this is either a magically self-healing car or someone with better knowledge than I can explain what happened...anyone?  












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loline View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote loline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 21 May 2018 at 10:49pm
Admins/Mods my topic should have read:

"Nissan Primera P11 144 Engine Rattle and Knock Sensor fault"

Can't find a way to edit it myself, sorry about that. I should learn to RTFM. :)
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essNchill View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote essNchill Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 6:54am
^^ All good and I've changed the topic title for you ^^.

Many thanks and take care,
Shaun
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loline View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote loline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 9:39am
Thank you Shaun. 
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Astral07 View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Astral07 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 10:21am
I've got nothing to add but this was interesting to read :)

You're taking good care of the car, she's giving some love back i reckon :)

I hope your fault doesn't return. Good luck
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loline View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote loline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 10:58am
Originally posted by Astral07 Astral07 wrote:

I've got nothing to add but this was interesting to read :)
You're taking good care of the car, she's giving some love back i reckon :)
I hope your fault doesn't return. Good luck

Thanks. The guy at the motor factor's wasn't too impressed when I called to tell him I no longer required the knock sensor, especially since I'd got him to shave an extra 20% off 'for cash' ...then again those guys are never very much impressed at anything. :)

I've now reconsidered the reflush...something along the lines of 'if it ain't brock, don't fix it.' 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Astral07 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 11:14am
Agreed.

I never had any issues with AC until i decided to have it refilled for no apparent reason, it was working fine. Then the leaking started...

I decided to do a full flush of the cooling system, and then the leaking started.

I decided to....insert blank...and then the leaking started!

So really if it ain't broke...
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loline View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote loline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 12:39pm
Originally posted by Astral07 Astral07 wrote:

I decided to....insert blank...and then the leaking started!
I have a 1999 MGF, notorious for cooling system problems made worse because the majority of them are only driven during the summer. There is a whole industry built around every aspect of it...stainless pipes, low coolant alarms, reverse plumbed thermostats, gold plated radiators, Kevlar heater cores, you name it.

My problem was just a very slight water pump leak; in fact more of a weep than a leak (half a cup of coolant a week) so I added some 'magic' stop-leak and it was solved. I drove the thing all over the south of France for two months during that summer, 3K+ miles, not a hint over over-heating and not a drop lost. Then I made the mistake of telling the story on the mgownersclub forum. The horror! By the end of the thread it seemed like every MGF owner had assured me my engine wouldn't last past Xmas.

Long story short; I changed the pump (which meant removing the timing belt so that was replaced along with the tensioner, because 'while the cover was off you'd be a fool not to') the whole exercise cost me the best part of £500 and four days' work and most of the skin off my knuckles because the job was tantamount to re-papering your hallway through your letterbox. That was five years ago and within a month the seal on the new pump was weeping, so I poured in another bottle of 'magic' stop-leak, which fixed it immediately, and now its 20K+ miles later and the thing has never run better.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote Astral07 Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 22 May 2018 at 2:26pm
Sounds about right :D
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loline View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote loline Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 24 May 2018 at 2:59pm
An answer to my own question, perhaps:

It has been suggested to me that, in the 10 years since the previous oil/filter change, old oil deposits had built-up in the channels feeding the top end of the chain blocking them (or at least restricting them) and starving the chain of any lubrication where it meets the camshaft gear.

While the engine flush had failed to clear the channels the new oil together with the addition of the valve treatment had started to break down the old oil deposits and then the final addition of the tin of Wynns had raised the oil pressure just enough to fully clear the channels.

Sounds logical to me. Or at least more logical than having a magically self-healing car...whether it's actually the correct explanation is another matter. :)
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