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Nissan Primera P12 1.8 Engine Start Problems

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MattC View Drop Down
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    Posted: 15 Oct 2010 at 4:12pm
Nissan Primera P12 1.8 SVE Petrol

Hi Guys,

This problem has been annoying me immensely for the past few weeks, I have searched these forums considerably, and have read and tried a number of things as far as I can, but with no luck. There are a few things I know I need to try, but was hoping to seek a little more guidance from yourselves.

I have had the car for a few months, and when buying it private, no problem at all. I had it serviced fully by a mechanic friend, and he did a thorough job, changed everything. I then had 2 new front tyres on, new discs and pads at front, braking system drained and refilled, PAS fluid drained and refilled. I'm trying to get this to last a good 5 years!!

Then the problem started.

First it would start, and then cut out. Sounded like it was choking, a lack of air, and would just die. Try to start it, and maybe it would happen again. By holding accelerate, and making it rev up, I could keep it alive. As soon as I moved off, it would stay on and wouldn't cut out. All good!

Now it's gotten a little worse, and has been like this for a few weeks. It won't even start up. The car repair man says it's all okay from a mechanical point of view, but he doesn't have OBD equip to test electronics so he's left it at that. He has suggested the EGR Valve, which I have done a lot of searching on, on these forums. I have also looked at the Elec. Serv. Manual, but that hasn't helped a great deal.

Sometimes it starts okay first time, and as long as I move off quickly, no problem.

Today, it just wasn't starting, even if I tried it 20 times. So I got 2 friends to push it reverse off the drive, and as they pushed, and I started the engine, it kicked in perfectly, and stayed on. We drove off, and no problems. It doesn't cut out at the lights, it idles perfectly without being erratic, at 800 or so RPM. At startup from cold when I do get it going, it sits at 1500, but this settles down after a little bit, and is fine, all as expected.

This is what I have tried:

1. Reprogram Keys (although this is just a door opening function, so I doubted it would be this, but did it anyway.
2. Clean Battery Terminals (again, probably not an issue, but I tried my best).
3. Check Air Filter is clean / in correct (this was serviced, but checked it anyway).

I look at it, I suppose it's not a lot ha! But I am trying my best to research and do what I have been able to find on the forum.

Now my research here tells me I should be doing these things, but have been unable to because of my lack of experience / knowledge where to find:

1. Check / Clean (a sticky?) EGR Valve (but I don't know where it is, does it even exist in the Petrol engine, all EGR related threads are for diesel I have noticed). Any pictures as to where it is in the Petrol, and what to do?

2. Check Earth cables from Negative Battery Terminal. This looks alright, I see JUST ONE cable from Battery Negative Terminal, to the Engine Block (I think it's the engine block?!?!). I have heard there should be more earth cables throughout the car, but I have no idea where to find them without pictures. Any pointers here please?

On one note, I can see no cable going anywhere else from the bolt that holds that yellow and black cable running from negative terminal to the bolt. From threads here, I am expecting perhaps another one?

3. Clean the MAF perhaps, but I have no idea how to find this and what to use?

====================================================

Just to say:

No warning lights on the dash coming on (except when it starts, indicating the lights ARE working / plugged in, and not been unplugged for a quick fix!!!).

Lots of (sometimes strong) static shocks from passengers that touch body work as they get out, possibly telling me the car earthing isn't working as it should / broken somewhere?

====================================================

And a few other little problems (but are less a priority for me right now). If you wanna throw anything at me about this, please!! :)

1. Low Engine Coolant Level, just past the MIN line - I heard that mixing 2 types is bad, so topping up with anything is no good right? It's a red colour, can I just go buy a red one from local car place and fill it, or no?
2. Knocking Sound when going over bumpy roads from back. I searched around a lot on the forum for this, and found things. AntiRoll bar snapped / links broken / warn bushes? How can I get to these parts to replace? Is it something to crank the car up on my wheel replacement jack, and pull off the cover on the bottom?

Massive post guys, hope it's not too much!

Cheers,
Matt.
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AGrice View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AGrice Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 10:09am
Hi Matt,

I souds like mine, I'll had this problem for 2-3 years. Nissan, The AA nor my local garge could fine a fault nor was a fault being registered in the system. Mine wouldn't start for approx 15 mins after i'd taken a journey of over 1 mile, a longer journey maybe it would take 1 hour.

This week the time it takes to start the car and suddenly jumped to 1-2 hours or we have to jump it similarily to how you do. The big difference being we now have a code for an error! The ironic thing is, there is loads posted about Nissan and Crank Angle Sensors, but my local nissan garage says there isn't an issue with my model ... I'm not convinced!!

So i'm off to search an old one before stumping up £400+ just to see if it works!
 




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MattC View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MattC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 10:15am
Thanks for the response AGrice!

At least it's not just me. I am working on the vehicle right now, first have to jump start the car. We'll see what happens. I am going to do a lot of the diagnostics given in the ESM. As soon as I find a fix, I'll post it here!!! (if I do!)

My battery is dead from all the attempted starts.

As for the Crank Angle sensors, I've no idea where to start, but I know there was a vehicle recall that would fix 'stalling vehicles' and was related to some sort of sensor angles. Mine has had this fix done though. I bet yours probably has too.

My fuel is rather low at the moment actually, advertising 36 miles in the tank on screen (i don't think this is accurate though). If there is gunk in the tank, can that affect startup if bad fuel or not so clean fuel is getting through?

Cheers again,
Matt.

PS. What is that fault code of yours?
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AGrice View Drop Down
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AGrice Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 10:18am
Mine hasn't had the crank angle sensor fixed, the local nissan garage says mine wasn't part of the recall, but VOSA says it was..

Anyway, the error being registered is crank angle sensor

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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MattC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 10:25am
Thanks for that.

Have you had a look at the earthing of the vehicle? I am wanting to check mine, but hoping for some help from some of the experienced guys here. If you've had a look at this too, can you advise?

Cheers,
Matt.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote AGrice Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 10:29am
I mentioned it to the nissan garage and local garage, they say they have checked it.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote MattC Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 11:24am
Thanks mate!

Does anyone know that if a pump has failed / is failing, will it be a problem at STARTUP only, or would we see signs all around, during driving, sitting at lights etc? It might help me to rule out Fuel Pump problem.

Thanks.
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote timeshock! Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 11:37am
Hi, sorry to here the two of you are suffering the same problem, I have the diesel version so am of limited help apart from i have read most of the posts on here so maybe able to point you in the right direction.
 
What I can say is that some of you symptoms have been posted up on here, not heard to much about crank angle sensors. Static shocks is not a common one and may be a clue to what is going on.
 
1st off we have an excellent 'How to section' in the general area here are some links for the MAF
Be aware you will have two the other is on the exhaust side.
 
Next the earthing problem
try this first but in your case probably less likely
As for earth straps there are I understand at least two critical ones one to the side of the engine and one to the underside of the gearbox, both can cause problems and the may be snapped, they may look ok but are no longer attached properly and giving poor connection. I have done a quick search on here and can't find what I know is on here and that is someone has replaced all them and had some pretty good piccies. You may have to take the engine under-tray off.
 
 
Also have a look here
 
Finally for now download the free electronic service manual from this site, the link commence at the top of the general section.
 
 
*************Edit*********
Another link
 
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote timeshock! Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 12:12pm
Fuel is the next place I would be looking and the suction control valve on the petrol pump may be on its way.. now there are loads of recent posts on here regarding SVC's so  little search will uncover all thoseThumbs Up
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Post Options Post Options   Thanks (0) Thanks(0)   Quote imckay Quote  Post ReplyReply Direct Link To This Post Posted: 16 Oct 2010 at 12:22pm
Be careful with the MAF. It is a hot film type and can be damaged by cleaning.
Try the car with the MAF unplugged. It probably won't drive very well but it should start.
 
Might be worth trying the Accelerator Pedal and Throttle Valve Closed Learning.
In the Service Manual Engine, Engine Control, Page EC-55.
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