Transmission/radiator Cross Contamination on '05-'10 Models means BYPASS NOW! - Page 101 - Nissan Frontier Forum
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post #1001 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 07:26 AM
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06 Crew Cab automatic 4X2. Noticed evidence of atf mixing in radiator (not strawberry milkshake but white goo collecting on radiator cap and some droplets in radiator too). Bypassed at 173k, did about 5 drain/refills since then with Nissan ATF. Drain and refilled coolant two times. Currently at 177k, experiencing rough upshifts in most gears and a hard bang if you try and downshift from 4th or 5th down to 3rd or 2nd to accelerate quickly. Starting to slip in 2nd-3rd upshift every once in awhile.

I knew it was probably coming. Continuing to notice evidence of atf in coolant, which leads me to believe that, it probably pumped some water into the transmission before I bypassed. Going to gather the funds for a rebuilt or refurbished transmission and aluminum radiator. Luckily I have another vehicle to drive in the meantime, probably going to swap the transmissions myself to save money on the install.

Along with a new driveshaft, catalytic converters, and valve cover. Going to be a long and expensive next couple of months for the Frontier
Wow. That really sucks. 11 year old Nissan with 173k and all of those repairs planned I might consider that end of life. 5 drain and fills on the tranny alone probably cost you $300 already. How are the body panels? Much rust?

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post #1002 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 09:41 AM
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Wow. That really sucks. 11 year old Nissan with 173k and all of those repairs planned I might consider that end of life. 5 drain and fills on the tranny alone probably cost you $300 already. How are the body panels? Much rust?

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Thats what i would think. I would probably ditch it. No sense in putting a couple grand into it. Unless you really love it.

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post #1003 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 12:31 PM
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Wow. That really sucks. 11 year old Nissan with 173k and all of those repairs planned I might consider that end of life. 5 drain and fills on the tranny alone probably cost you $300 already. How are the body panels? Much rust?

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Thats what i would think. I would probably ditch it. No sense in putting a couple grand into it. Unless you really love it.
It is a tough call. I do love the truck, but it is at the point where I have to decide if it's more worth it to save up for a year or so and buy a used 2010 or newer Frontier and start over. Or go with another truck. The hardest part is I just got new tires, re-did all of the brakes and bled the system. Changed all fluids. Lots of time and money put into it. No major rust, body panels great. I've owned it since 2007 and always took care of it.

I'm already invested in a 07 FJ cruiser which has 0 problems and drives like it was brand new. But the feeling of not having a truck really kills me.

I haven't decided what to do yet. Transmission will run close to $3k, driveshaft custom built $600, catalytic converters $1500 aftermarket (California emissions).
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post #1004 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 12:41 PM
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Find a donor titan? Swap engine, tranny and front end?

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post #1005 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 02:41 PM
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Find a donor titan? Swap engine, tranny and front end?
Wasn't ever really considering that, but I suppose that is a possibility too
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post #1006 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 04:07 PM
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Wasn't ever really considering that, but I suppose that is a possibility too
If I was looking at major engine work or Tranny work, and I lived in the lower 48 where there's junk yards. I'd be seriously looking at that. From what I've read on here it's not too hard as everything fits and plays well with each other. Someone even made a list of everything you need. There's another guy who makes the harness adapter for around $100. V8 Fronty would kick ***.

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post #1007 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 04:41 PM
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Seth, 5K$ for a good running truck that you could drive for another 100k miles (or more) and not have a payment seems like a good deal to me.
I keep feeling like I want a new truck, and then I drive it and think ...... I can definitely deal with my truck and no payment. Im at only 103K miles and 10 yrs old, bought it new and still like driving it.

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post #1008 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-11-2017, 04:57 PM
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Seth, 5K$ for a good running truck that you could drive for another 100k miles (or more) and not have a payment seems like a good deal to me.
I keep feeling like I want a new truck, and then I drive it and think ...... I can definitely deal with my truck and no payment. Im at only 103K miles and 10 yrs old, bought it new and still like driving it.
That is my thoughts. At 177k miles the engine idles and runs great. Could probably go 300k. It's just the transmission and driveshaft carrier bearing (CV/rzeppa style joints so you have to replace the whole driveshaft), and radiator. Valve cover is easy, I just broke a bolt off that holds one of the coils accidentally while changing spark plugs. Catalytic converters are just emission related and I can probably hold off 1.5 years until it needs another smog again.

Either way it's not like I can sell the truck for very much with these problems. They would have to all be repaired to even get around $6500 mark used.

This was my dream truck for looks/performance/function. I will probably just slowly fix everything this year as the funds come in.
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post #1009 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-12-2017, 08:00 PM
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i heard the bypass method should be a temporary fix until you get a new radiator. Since i live in the new England area and temps do fall below freezing during winter. If you don't get the fluid warm enough it will collect water simply from condensation. Water + ATF = bad?

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post #1010 of 1053 (permalink) Old 01-14-2017, 03:49 PM
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i heard the bypass method should be a temporary fix until you get a new radiator. Since i live in the new England area and temps do fall below freezing during winter. If you don't get the fluid warm enough it will collect water simply from condensation. Water + ATF = bad?
My personal preference is to replace the radiator and retain use of the radiator's integral cooler. That said, there are a lot of people that have been running the bypass for years without an issue and just utilizing the factory-installed, auxiliary cooler. Those that have monitored the trans fluid temp temperatures with the bypass have reported readings around 160-165 degrees F. Optimal temperature for trans fluid is in the 175-200 degree F. range. You don't want to be running the trans fluid at 150 degrees F. or lower or at 275 degrees F. pan temperature/300 degrees F. converter outlet temperature or above. Basically, the auxiliary cooler has sufficient cooling ability for the trans fluid under most conditions, but lacks the radiator's integral cooler's ability to warm the fluid up to temperature quicker and maintain it in the optimal range. Plus, it also adds another level of cooling ability, if so required under extreme circumstances.
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