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Old 07-29-2008, 02:52 PM   #41
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Originally Posted by txe5502 View Post
Situation
Yes you are right about the situation. With the exception of just one thing. I would like to repair it and not replace it, thats my car and (I hope) it always will be, just like my grandfather (who I never met) who drove his first 1941 Ford until 1978 when he died. But you are right about this. I cant afford the stupid ga$oline prices and i cant afford to buy parts either! The whole source of this financial problem is the poor job market in the Piedmont Triad area of NC where Lexington Furniture Company, Thomasville Furniture Company, Henry Link Furniture company, RJR Tobacco Company, etc. are laying off SO MANY people and everyone is jobless, so the supply for employees is high and the demand for work is low.

Auto Zone
Well actually I dont even need to do this because I can get the codes myself, one thing I DO have (luckily) is this gadget my uncle gave me called a "Scan Tool" that plugs into the OBD-II port and gets the codes. Also I have a whole book on this car a "Haynes Repair Manual" so I have all the resources I need to figure stuff out. But the problem is the cost of the parts.

My Dad
Yes my dad was around when Gasoline was only $0.29 per gallon and when there were gas price wars it would drop sometimes to even $0.15 per gallon, he was born in 1953. However he does not have this mindset you say you think he has. He is CONSTANTLY complaining about gasoline prices. He makes very good income, but yet wont spend a dime of it! A real penny pincher! He wont even help me to pay for a new starter! (mine is currently about to fail from all the restarting (EOC) I have been doing!

What my dad says about arcing
For some reason he is led to believe that the arcing I see is "inside the wire and the insulation is thin enough that I can see through it at night". Frankly that sounds ridiculous to me! But I still want to hear this from more than one person if its true of not because I dont want to be misinformed.

What my dad says about IPA/Acetone
My father fusses at me and tells me that I will RUIN my engine putting Acetone/IPA in it because either of those will eat up O rings. However, he SWEARS by that CRC stuff. Should I try that? Is it worth it?

well once again, I just want to remind anyone reading this that my spark plugs are basically brand new.

However, the air intake is damaged a little from the wreck I had. The J pipe for a resonator is missing, I stopped it up so it dont just suck in air where air is not supposed to go in, but that still didnt fix my bad FE. Also the other end of that front scoop is not really held onto the air filter box so swell. The front scoop is crooked because the radiator core support is bent. But the hood has a bit of a gap so it can still breathe.

Tires are inflated to the MAX rated PSI of 45psi

Some things I wonder about:

The alternator has been replaced after a wreck I had that destroyed the original. The original was about 35 amps. The one I have now is about 165 amps. Would a more powerful alternator use more gasoline EVEN when its NOT under load?
I have wondered this for a while:
I try to accelerate as slow as possible to save gasoline, but i have heard that the Torque Converter is not efficient at these low acceleration rates until the lockup mechanism engages. Should I be accelerating rapidly until it locks and then slow afterwards instead? My TC locks in 3rd gear without overdrive at about 28 MPH and then it shifts into O/D WITHOUT unlocking the TC at about 35 MPH. So Should I accelerate more moderately from 0 to 28 then slow after that?

I do everything I can to fake the transmission to NOT downshift by toying with the gas pedal while going up hills and accelerating, for example, slowly easing on the gas to prevent downshifting on a hill, also letting off the pedal to force it to shift up early while accelerating. But is it possible that maybe lower RPM under heavier load might actually use more gasoline instead?


Thanks,
Tyler G.
Plug wires... If your wires are that thin that you can see the spark through the insulation then you either have cheap and/or worn out wires. Buy a good set. OEM preferred. Don't buy the cheapest ones you can find, and make sure they are made by a company you've heard of before. That generic no-name crap is just that - crap.

Alternator... 35 amps??? any car with factory a/c should have at least a 65 amp alternator, and most modern cars have at least 120 amp alternators standard. 165 amps is a little excessive for a vehicle of that size unless you have a 400 watt stereo in it.
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Old 07-29-2008, 03:54 PM   #42
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Quote:
Originally Posted by txe5502 View Post
(I hope) it always will be, just like my grandfather (who I never met) who drove his first 1941 Ford until 1978 when he died.
Cars are not built like that anymore. They last a lot more miles but I don't think modern cars will handle decades like old ones did; and either way, once a modern car goes bad it's often too bad to repair.

Quote:
However he does not have this mindset you say you think he has. He is CONSTANTLY complaining about gasoline prices. He makes very good income, but yet wont spend a dime of it! A real penny pincher!
Have you presented real numbers to him when asking for help and opinions? It sounds like he'll respect real numbers about money and realize that your car is not running right when he finds out how much extra money it's costing you. OTOH, if you don't drive many miles then the cost won't be much so it won't convince him.

Quote:
For some reason he is led to believe that the arcing I see is "inside the wire and the insulation is thin enough that I can see through it at night". Frankly that sounds ridiculous to me!
Sounds ridiculous to me but I suppose I could be wrong.

Quote:
My father fusses at me and tells me that I will RUIN my engine putting Acetone/IPA in it because either of those will eat up O rings. However, he SWEARS by that CRC stuff. Should I try that? Is it worth it?
His concerns are valid for old technology, but everything is designed for E10 and should handle a couple percent of that stuff easily enough.

Quote:
well once again, I just want to remind anyone reading this that my spark plugs are basically brand new.
The repeated suggestion someone else has made was not to replace them, just to remove them so you can inspect them, then put them back in. By inspecting them you may get some clues as to what's going on.

Quote:
Would a more powerful alternator use more gasoline EVEN when its NOT under load?
Modern cars effectively "turn off" the alternator when it's not needed. However, considering the condition of your car and the non-stock alternator, I would not be surprised if it's failing to do so.

Quote:
Should I be accelerating rapidly until it locks and then slow afterwards instead?
I accelerate somewhat briskly in my automatic, and at least one other user has had success doing that too.

Quote:
is it possible that maybe lower RPM under heavier load might actually use more gasoline instead?
It's possible but unlikely. The RPM difference would have to be small and the throttle difference very large.
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Old 07-29-2008, 04:19 PM   #43
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What plugs did you put in it? (Scanned the thread, couldn't spot it)

Just asking because Bosch plugs typically have high resistance of ~30-40,000 Ohms, they make a small spark last a long time. BUT if your ignition system can be regarded as high energy in the first place 30,000 volts plus, all they do is force the current to seek a more convenient path and flashover somewhere. Champion double copper and NGK plugs typically have resistances in the 10-12K range and run MUCH better in many applications that have relatively high ignition outputs. AC Delco are generally on the low side as well.
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Old 07-29-2008, 06:46 PM   #44
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Son I say Son I was born in 1954. heh heh heh

Yup check the plugs for sure to see what they are doing. Maybe a compression check while you got them out of the engine too would be good.

Get a high amperage charger for the battery and run an extension cord out to the car is all you need to do. Not much point in running anything in the car if you are not in it unless you have some big fridge in there cooling the beer keg hidden in the trunk.

Yup jack up the wheels and give them a spin sounds like maybe some lingering brake issues - and you can just check for them heating up after driving a little - my Geo used to get really hot in front when the brake was dragging and it only lowered my mileage 5 mpg or so.
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Old 07-29-2008, 07:45 PM   #45
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I'm sorry, but this is FUNNY!

Maybe your Dad's right and the engine is running fine.

Did you ever check to see if the transmission and/or torque converter are slipping? That could be causing all of your grief. You can find these at local wrecking yards for fairly reasonable prices.

I ask this because you earlier posted that the car won't spin the tires as it did when you brutalized it at the beginning.
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Old 07-29-2008, 08:58 PM   #46
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Originally Posted by soletek View Post
I'm sorry, but this is FUNNY!

Maybe your Dad's right and the engine is running fine.

Did you ever check to see if the transmission and/or torque converter are slipping? That could be causing all of your grief. You can find these at local wrecking yards for fairly reasonable prices.

I ask this because you earlier posted that the car won't spin the tires as it did when you brutalized it at the beginning.

Well I can at least tell you 1st gear is not slipping because it passes a stall test with flying colors (assuming the stall speed of my TC is 2100 RPM which is factory spec, and assuming that it wasn't replaced with an after market one before I had the car) But I'm not really sure how I could possibly test 2nd, 3rd, and OD. I can tell you this much, when I press the gas pedal with it in 3rd of OD the RPM does not increase without the vehicle speed also increasing.
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Old 07-30-2008, 06:18 AM   #47
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Bought a 99 Maxima for my wife brand new, when the 2000 Models were out. Paid for it with a check for $18,500.

One of the best cars we ever owned, except for the crap tires.

The history of your car consists of soo many disastrous events, diagnosis would be difficult, but I worked on them for 30 years, so maybe you should pay attention to my original post.

Nissan Mass Air Flow Sensors deteriorate with age, a very slow process which makes them gradually send a leaner signal to the ECU. In most cases the CEL will not come on until the car is alomost undriveable.

Born in 1950, and I had the unfortunate task of fixing what other "mechanics" had either destroyed or simple given up and told the owner they couldn't help them.

The most recent case involved a 2000 Ford Focus that had been to two dealers, with over $1000 in repairs with no change in the symptoms.

Hard to start, lack of power, poor fuel mileage, points to MAF. Of course with the sorry history of loaned to a friend who is soo stupid he doesn't even know which fuel to put in the tank, wrecked and not repaired, with possible alignment problems, blah, blah, blah, etc.

Then when you decide you can't afford to repair it unless we offer you some miracle solution, you have made the situation exponentially more difficult. It reminds me of the less than 1% of my customers who presented me with similar situations, and my advice that they take the car to someone who would fix it for free, yesterday, and smile at them when they picked it up, knowing their business life expectancy was measured in weeks , working on charity cases.

I could fix your car. In 30 years I never met one I couldn't fix------NEVER.
I also was NEVER summoned to court to answer for my actions, NOT ONCE IN 30 YEARS.

All that being said, and expecting your response to be very degrogatory, I will repeat myself only once.

Assuming it is not due to the diesel fuel, alignment, physical damage to components due to the wreck, more blah, blah, blah.

THE AFM IS YOUR BEST GAMBLE, AND YOU CAN BET IT IS A GAMBLE.

Flame away at me, looks like the old man has basically told you it was your problem, and probably for a good reason.

regards
gary
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Old 07-30-2008, 06:35 AM   #48
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Good point RIDE , yeah that's a common problem with Fords also, MAF gunged up or broke = undriveable/terrible gas mileage. On Fords they actually drive better if you unplug them at this point, but go rich so gas mileage doesn't improve any (apart from in cold weather) I haven't been into a Nissan MAF so don't know whether you can get away with cleaning the element by doing a non-contact hose down with brake cleaner, like you can on fords.
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Old 07-30-2008, 07:15 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by RoadWarrior View Post
Good point RIDE , yeah that's a common problem with Fords also, MAF gunged up or broke = undriveable/terrible gas mileage. On Fords they actually drive better if you unplug them at this point, but go rich so gas mileage doesn't improve any (apart from in cold weather) I haven't been into a Nissan MAF so don't know whether you can get away with cleaning the element by doing a non-contact hose down with brake cleaner, like you can on fords.
When I had a VW Jetta TDI, I had repeated problems with the MAF, and once tried cleaning it with brake cleaner... It didn't really help. After that, I just replaced them with the cheapest ones I could find (i.e. from someone parting out a wrecked car, or from a cheap online discount parts dealer, etc).

With the TDI, a bad MAF would result in poor performance and a slight decrease in fuel economy, but not a huge difference (i.e. from 39MPG to 37MPG). Note that usually when the MAF would go, I would get a code (CEL/MIL), and the car would operate OK by using some default values and ignoring the MAF. When I had a problem with the MAF that didn't trigger a code, the performance was horrible (i.e. the vehicle normally had ~95hp and 145lb-ft of torque suddenly felt like a Geo Metro). Now, that car was a diesel with a turbo, so the effects could vary greatly from a NA gasser.
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Old 08-03-2008, 06:58 PM   #50
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I'm sorry, but this is FUNNY!

Maybe your Dad's right and the engine is running fine.

Did you ever check to see if the transmission and/or torque converter are slipping? That could be causing all of your grief. You can find these at local wrecking yards for fairly reasonable prices.

I ask this because you earlier posted that the car won't spin the tires as it did when you brutalized it at the beginning.
Well what have we here?

I think you hit the nail on the head. I am sorry to say that today about 6:00 pm I got in my car to go somewhere and sure enough, the transmission is SHOT! It dont shift from 1st to 2nd until it is about 5000 RPM and when it shifts to 2nd it shifts SO hard that it spins the tires and nearly breaks my neck.

However, there is one thing that is questionable. I have a few trouble codes now that it is doing this.

P0150 Unable to obtain closed loop (left bank)

P1705 Throttle Position Sensor to A/T Signal fault

Maybe my hard shifting is simply because the TCM does not know the throttle position.
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