Advice on car problem

savithagopalanAugust 4, 2005

I have a 2001 Nissan Sentra with 27K miles on it. Today, when driving at 60 mph on an interstate the engine simply stopped and the 'service engine soon' sign came up. I pulled over to the shoulder, turned the keys off and tried starting the car again. The engine did not switch on despite several attempts. After about 15 minutes, I tried again and the engine took off. I could drive the car at about 60 mph but felt an unusal drag/effort in having to drive at that speed. I drove for about 6 miles and the engine died again. Again, I couldn't start it immediately but could start it after a 10-minute break. After this episode repeated itself 3-4 times, I reached home.

I just filled gas a couple of days ago so lack of fuel can be ruled out. Whenever the engine starts, it doesn't make any unsusual sounds. The car lights/AC etc are fine. I don't think the the car is over heated becasue the temperature level on the panel is normal. I have been servicing it regularly and the car is not due for the next service until it hits 29000 miles. Any idea what might be wrong with the car?

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Plugged fuel filter?

    Bookmark   August 4, 2005 at 8:06PM
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1. Fuel filter

2. Ignition module heating up and failing. Could be the cam shaft position sensor or crank (flywheel) sensor.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 7:18AM
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Your check engine lamp may have just come on with some of the other indicator lamps due to the car dying. Did the CEL light up just before the car died or definitly before any other light came on, if so then go down to the local code reader shop and get the code from the computer and let us know please for maybe some better assistance, there are some good ones already.

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 11:45AM
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Posted by: JemDandy (My Page) on Fri, Aug 5, 05 at 7:18

1. Fuel filter..... I disagree, just a service item , due to be changed at 50 to 100K miles !!

2. Ignition module heating up and failing. Could be the cam shaft position sensor or crank (flywheel) sensor.

.......This heat is hard on coils, transformers, computers.Temperatures are too high under the hood. Styling? running amok over common sense engineering...

    Bookmark   August 5, 2005 at 12:25PM
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I had a nissan truck that diod the same thing. It was an egr valve but I never fixed it.The reason it would not restart is becuase the computer goes into "safe" mode and resets after 3-4 attempts.

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 2:02AM
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Hi Everyone

Thanks very much for your inputs. As JemDandy suggested, it was the crank shaft position sensor. I came to know that Nissan had recalled some cars for this problem earlier. So the dealer fixed it for free!

Thanks again

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 4:24PM
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Pooh Bear

Glad you found out what it was.

Just because the temp gauge reads normal is no guarantee.
If the coolant level gets below the sending unit then it won't read properly.
And it will exibit the symptoms you described.

Pooh Bear

    Bookmark   August 8, 2005 at 11:38PM
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