VQ40 Timing Chain Issue - Page 25 - Nissan Frontier Forum
View Poll Results: Have you suffered the VQ40 Timing Chain Issue?
Yes 184 30.72%
No 415 69.28%
Voters: 599. You may not vote on this poll

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#241 (permalink) Old 12-30-2010, 06:46 PM
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the slack in the chain will prematurely eat away at the valleys in the cam gears as it grabs. cam gears cost give or take 600 each in parts. ask me how i know...

with regard to the vq35s, i cant speak to numbers because i got the info from 2 different nissan techs from 2 different dealerships. i didnt ask about those, just whether they had seen tensioner jobs like it and both mentioned only on altima/maxima/quest, etc on the swing arm tensioner i spoke about previously. take it with a grain of salt, but it was 2 different techs...


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#242 (permalink) Old 12-30-2010, 07:05 PM
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Where is the evidence to support this claim? I haven't heard of this issue at all on engines other than the VQ40, and even with that engine, it appears to be relatively rare in late model vehicles.

My local dealers have seen more of the radiator cross-contamination than the timing chains, and have seen relatively few of even that problem.

The reality is that this problem doesn't appear to be much of a problem in the fleet. I've never heard of one completely failing, and I've heard of very few that had to be done again (especially in the last couple of years).


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I respectfully disagree with your assertion taht this is not much of a problem.
Search the various forums for the other models that use the VQ engine, and you will find this is more than jsut a handful of vehicles with this problem.
And of course the people that don't post their problems far outweigh the ones that do.

On the issue of cross contamination, I do agree with your concerns on that issue.
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#243 (permalink) Old 12-30-2010, 09:01 PM
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Originally Posted by HarshReality001 View Post
the slack in the chain will prematurely eat away at the valleys in the cam gears as it grabs. cam gears cost give or take 600 each in parts. ask me how i know...
So, how do you know? Should this be something else the tech should be inspecting when they are replacing the tensioner and chains?

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#244 (permalink) Old 12-30-2010, 09:42 PM
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I respectfully disagree with your assertion taht this is not much of a problem.
Search the various forums for the other models that use the VQ engine, and you will find this is more than jsut a handful of vehicles with this problem.
And of course the people that don't post their problems far outweigh the ones that do.

On the issue of cross contamination, I do agree with your concerns on that issue.
There could be thousands of verified reports on Internet forums, and the problem would still be a relatively insignificant portion of the total candidate vehicles sold. The problem may be common enough to where Nissan issued a TSB to guide dealers on how to respond to the problem, but so far not common enough to warrant a warranty extension or other action.

The folks who don't post generally don't have problems. Not everyone is a member of an enthusiast forum, but common problems usually turn up in consumer reviews or on consumer complaint sites.

I am not in any way trying to defend Nissan here, but this particular problem is relatively minor. I agree that it shouldn't be happening to anyone, but to think that another auto manufacturer is going to be materially better on these types of issues is unrealistic.

In my opinion, the leaking radiator is a much bigger concern for those of us with automatic transmissions. I can deal with the timing chain issue, but I REALLY don't like the thought of being hundreds of miles from home with my family (possibly out in the sticks) when the transmission decides to start shuddering. The warranty extension is nice, but all it does is tell me at what point I will have to proactively replace my radiator.


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#245 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 11:23 AM
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There could be thousands of verified reports on Internet forums, and the problem would still be a relatively insignificant portion of the total candidate vehicles sold. The problem may be common enough to where Nissan issued a TSB to guide dealers on how to respond to the problem, but so far not common enough to warrant a warranty extension or other action.

The folks who don't post generally don't have problems. Not everyone is a member of an enthusiast forum, but common problems usually turn up in consumer reviews or on consumer complaint sites.

I am not in any way trying to defend Nissan here, but this particular problem is relatively minor. I agree that it shouldn't be happening to anyone, but to think that another auto manufacturer is going to be materially better on these types of issues is unrealistic.

In my opinion, the leaking radiator is a much bigger concern for those of us with automatic transmissions. I can deal with the timing chain issue, but I REALLY don't like the thought of being hundreds of miles from home with my family (possibly out in the sticks) when the transmission decides to start shuddering. The warranty extension is nice, but all it does is tell me at what point I will have to proactively replace my radiator.


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Why do you downplay the timing chain problem and not the transmission cooler defect? I bet there's more ppl with timing chain problems than AT cooler problems if you consider all the models included in the TSB.

To me its much easier to replace the radiator than to replace the timing chain.

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#246 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 11:35 AM
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Why do you downplay the timing chain problem and not the transmission cooler defect?
To me its much easier to replace the radiator than to replace the timing chain.
Two reasons:

Number one, there is a lot less at stake with the timing chain problem. If it happens, it will get worse to the point where it is unmistakable, and put basically nothing else at risk. The radiator leak is insidious, and you typically won't know it until possible transmission damage has been done.

Secondly, timing belt/chain work is not uncommon as recommended maintenance (especially for belts). Spending $1k or so to have this done every 80-100k miles is inline with many other vehicles. I have a much easier time accepting the fact that if I hear the noise, I have some time to get it taken care of for a reasonable fee, without a concern that it's already trashed an expensive part of the vehicle.


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#247 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 01:40 PM
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but hes upset because the point of going from a belt to an internal chain is longevity. its not supposed to wear out. its not supposed to eat away at the guides. i wouldnt mind spending $700 on a timing belt service at 100k if i knew all along that it was going to have to be done. i DO mind spending well over $1000 at 70k miles to tear open the front end of the engine to replace all kinds of parts that are supposed to last longer than a rubber belt.

as for your other statement, i agree that the radiator is a much more insidious problem due to its hidden nature and greater damage done. but i still wont forgive nissan for so many design flaws and issues in this vehicle and only a half-assed attempt to make it up to the customers.


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#248 (permalink) Old 12-31-2010, 05:50 PM
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but hes upset because the point of going from a belt to an internal chain is longevity. its not supposed to wear out. its not supposed to eat away at the guides. i wouldnt mind spending $700 on a timing belt service at 100k if i knew all along that it was going to have to be done. i DO mind spending well over $1000 at 70k miles to tear open the front end of the engine to replace all kinds of parts that are supposed to last longer than a rubber belt.

as for your other statement, i agree that the radiator is a much more insidious problem due to its hidden nature and greater damage done. but i still wont forgive nissan for so many design flaws and issues in this vehicle and only a half-assed attempt to make it up to the customers.
I'm not sure that I see design flaws; I see parts quality flaws, and in that regard I would agree that the chain tensioner is perhaps less excusable than the radiator, because it's a Nissan part. However, the radiator failure can cause thousands of dollars in damage if it occurs, so there's a whole lot more on the line from the consumer standpoint. The cam drive system is most often a maintenance area, whereas replacing a radiator is not.

Apart from those two issues, however, I am not aware of many other significant problems with the second generation Frontier. I've had the occasional squeak and rattle, but most of them have come and gone over time.


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#249 (permalink) Old 01-05-2011, 03:19 PM
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Just an update on my situation. Dropped off the truck this morning. In/Out withing 10mins with a free rental car. Its nothing special but it works, its a 4door Versa, lol. I think I have found one of the few Nissan dealers that does supply loaners on warranty work.

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#250 (permalink) Old 01-05-2011, 03:44 PM
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Just an update on my situation. Dropped off the truck this morning. In/Out withing 10mins with a free rental car. Its nothing special but it works, its a 4door Versa, lol. I think I have found one of the few Nissan dealers that does supply loaners on warranty work.
lol..my dealer loaned me one of those, I drove straight home and waited until they called, and drove straight back, I was scared in that car.

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