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Discussion Starter #1
Well, the time has come to either do some maintenance with this truck, or sell it and get something else.

Truck has 70,000 miles. 2004 Crew cab long bed with the 3.3.

I know I need to do the rear wheel cylinders and the belts. Will do the water pump while I am in there if I do it. Also going to replace plugs/wires.

The other thing I have noticed. The engine knocks slightly upon light acceleration or going uphill (increased gas).

When I put higher test gas in, the knocking goes away, or is not noticeable.

I am hoping the plugs will solve this problem, however, I am wondering if there isn't a problem with the fuel system or maybe a vacuum leak? Maybe the knock sensor?

Any ideas before I decide to go at it or put her up for sale?

I do love this truck, and if I can do all the required work for $500-600 I will do it and keep it another couple years since the tires are still good and it's paid off. If the motor knocking is something that could be serious, I want to ditch it while it's still worth something and get another vehicle with that cash.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
 

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So it runs better with premium…. Use premium, some of us have to anyway, what kind of Gas mileage are u getting
 

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Discussion Starter #3
14-15 in city and about 17 highway. I can get it up to about 18 if I got 65 with cruise.

I am just wondering what is causing this, and if it doesn't get better/worsens will it cause damage to the motor.

I don't mind the extra $3-4 a tank if it isn't hurting anything.
 

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Im not sure as to what is causing this, im sure other people might know, all I have to say is if you feel your truck is running better on the premium than at least do that for now, wish I knew what it was
 

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Run over to Autozone and pull the codes. You are sure to have the KS bad (everyone gets it). Now a bad KS doesn't mean that you will get the knocking. A bad KS doesn't allow timing advanced during acceleration which means not as good of gas mileage.

Funny thing is, is that you get about the same MPGs as I get. Others get better MPGs (or they state so). Mine run 14-15 city and 17 highway.

Have you had any work done on the engine? Cap, rotor, timing, etc?

When it warms up I'm going to be looking into TPS adjustment and the front 02 sensors.

Mine is CC LB w/LSD in the rear, w/4x4. I've relocated my KS and left the bad one in it's place. I've got new plugs and rotor and still everything I do the MPG are the same. The only knock I get is rattle in the morning for 3 seconds and that's it. Other than that it runs smooth. Personally I will not sell mine because I enjoy the look and ride. But bad MPG has always plagued it.

How far do you drive it per day? Do you still have all the stock items like air intake and exhaust? What model is yours xe, le, sc, or se? I really want to find out why some are getting a lot better MPGs than me.
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Have you had any work done on the engine? Cap, rotor, timing, etc?

How far do you drive it per day? Do you still have all the stock items like air intake and exhaust? What model is yours xe, le, sc, or se? I really want to find out why some are getting a lot better MPGs than me.
Hey man, my truck looks just like yours. Mine is a cc lb 3.3 XE. I believe it has LSD, but I bought it from my father-in-law and he didn't know. When I burn out it leaves two scratch marks though.

As for the KS, I will look into that for sure.

Never had any work done on motor. Nothing but oil changes, tires, and front brake pads.

I only drive it about 10 miles a day during the week, then about twice a month I drive it 150 miles on the weekend (fishing trips).

Truck is completely stock.

I drive this thing very normally. No hard acceleration, but I don't baby it either. About 70-75 on the highway usually.

I know some talk about doing better in the MPG dept. I absolutely love this truck (had several trucks and this is the best for reliability), but I hate that there are guys in full size trucks beating my mpg by 15-20%.

Anyways, will try the spark plugs and knock sensor to see if that helps. If not, probably just go with the higher test gas until I sell the truck.
 

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To stop the knocking it may be worth to just manually retard your timing a few degrees. If this doesn't help, then you probably have other issues.
 

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If yours is an XE the LSD did not come standard and it would have been a purchased extra. The sure way to tell is to get under the rear end of the truck and look for an orange sticker on the back side of the pumpkin where the filler hole is. The orange sticker will say LSD only. You may have to clean off the dirt real good because my sticker you could not see by just bending over.

I also only drive mine about 10 miles a day. This doesn't let the engine to warm up nice and good. It also doesn't allow for the torque converter to kick in either. So having lower MPG in town is possible cause the engine is warm and a lot of engine controls are based on the coolant temp and transmission temp.

Mine is not completely stock - Nismo rims, exhaust, and cold air intake, also I installed an electric fan too. All of which I should see some form of MPG change. However, I get the same MPG maybe a tad bit less in city driving.

I talked to someone in Canada about their 02 4x4 SE LB rig and he runs 33" tires and a lift and gets better MPG than me. The 03 an 04 are more identical than the 02 and earlier.

According to the Factory Service Manual there are some items to check when MPG are down.

(not in any order but number marks priority)
1- Idle speed adjustment
1- Ignition Timing
1- Throttle position sensor
1- Generator Circuit
2- Ignition Circuit
2- Mass Air Flow
2- Heated O2 Sensors
2 -Throttle Position Sensor Circuit

The first step for you is to clean the MAF sensor. You will need a 6$ can from autozone it's called Mass Air Flow cleaners. It takes two screws to remove, but do not touch the sensor itself. Spray it down and let it dry. Next step is to seafoam your intake (search on here to find out how to do it). If that doesn't give you better engine response then you can always start checking other things. I'm going to be checking 02 sensors when it warms up.
 

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Well, the time has come to either do some maintenance with this truck, or sell it and get something else.

Truck has 70,000 miles. 2004 Crew cab long bed with the 3.3.

I know I need to do the rear wheel cylinders and the belts. Will do the water pump while I am in there if I do it. Also going to replace plugs/wires.

The other thing I have noticed. The engine knocks slightly upon light acceleration or going uphill (increased gas).

When I put higher test gas in, the knocking goes away, or is not noticeable.

I am hoping the plugs will solve this problem, however, I am wondering if there isn't a problem with the fuel system or maybe a vacuum leak? Maybe the knock sensor?

Any ideas before I decide to go at it or put her up for sale?

I do love this truck, and if I can do all the required work for $500-600 I will do it and keep it another couple years since the tires are still good and it's paid off. If the motor knocking is something that could be serious, I want to ditch it while it's still worth something and get another vehicle with that cash.

Thanks in advance for any advice.
You don't need any of this service, yet. Do as Dubie2003 said and knock the timing back a couple of degrees, or run high test. Why would you need rear wheel cylinders @70K?
 

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Discussion Starter #10
You don't need any of this service, yet. Do as Dubie2003 said and knock the timing back a couple of degrees, or run high test. Why would you need rear wheel cylinders @70K?
I need the belts since they are starting to have small wear cracks. And the wheel cylinders have a slow leak.

Will try the timing, spark plugs, and knock sensor first. If those fix it, I will do the wheel cylinders and belts. If not, will sell truck.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
OK, here's an update.

Just filled up the tank. 14.4 mpg in mixed driving!!!!! With premium.

Here's the ticker (literally), the motor still knocks now with premium fuel. It's also running rich, as it was 70 degrees and humid outside, and the exhaust was visible after 20 minutes of running. And I know it's not spark knock now, because I just realized the spark plugs were changed by my wife 15,000 miles ago. I am now up to a long list of maintenance required...

fuel filter
belts
wheel cyls (and brake fluid flush)
coolant flush
diff flush
AT flush
new radiator cap and hoses (skipped at 60k)
And whatever problem is making is run rich and knock.


I am still injured from my wreck, so I can't do this work myself for a few months. So I am wondering what that would all cost at a mechanic (against everything I stand for). Any ideas?

I am not willing to spend the national debt on this thing when I could just sell it and get something else. But on the other hand, I do like the truck and I hate car shopping.

Advise? Ideas on cost for all that?
 

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OK, here's an update.

Just filled up the tank. 14.4 mpg in mixed driving!!!!! With premium.

Here's the ticker (literally), the motor still knocks now with premium fuel. It's also running rich, as it was 70 degrees and humid outside, and the exhaust was visible after 20 minutes of running. And I know it's not spark knock now, because I just realized the spark plugs were changed by my wife 15,000 miles ago. I am now up to a long list of maintenance required...

fuel filter
belts
wheel cyls (and brake fluid flush)
coolant flush
diff flush
AT flush
new radiator cap and hoses (skipped at 60k)
And whatever problem is making is run rich and knock.


I am still injured from my wreck, so I can't do this work myself for a few months. So I am wondering what that would all cost at a mechanic (against everything I stand for). Any ideas?

I am not willing to spend the national debt on this thing when I could just sell it and get something else. But on the other hand, I do like the truck and I hate car shopping.

Advise? Ideas on cost for all that?
What plugs did she put in?
 

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sell it and put a turbo on your subaru! ;)
 

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Discussion Starter #15
No no no, you have it all wrong. Sell it and buy ANOTHER Subaru. HAHAHA

Depending on how much all that will cost, we might not keep the truck. We shall see, I am guessing that's about $1500 worth of work depending on what is causing the knocking... does that sound about right?
 

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Did you notice the knock before or after the Bosh plugs?

I will say that Bosch is not recommended only the NGKs. I'd pull the plugs and check the gaps. It's really up to you if you keep them or not but I would remove them and do only NGKs
 

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I don't know about the 2003 XE, but in the 2001 brochure it has:

Utility Package (XE-V6)
Limited-slip rear differential
Tubular roof rack
 

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Discussion Starter #18
Knocking started about 6 months ago, spark plugs were done about 2 years ago...

Not sure about LSD, but I don't think that would affect this problem...
 
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