Question about 1997 Nissan Sentra

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1999 Nissan Sentra won't start after switching drivers

After purchasing a used 1999 Nissan Sentra in 2002/2003 we found that if we started and drove the car for a short distance (like from inside the garage to outside of the garage), the next time we tried to start the car, it wouldn't start. The battery would work, it would sound like it would almost start, but just couldn't make it (wouldn't turn over, I guess). It acted as if it was flooded. It finally would start after pumping the gas a bunch and praying.

After getting annoyed enough at the problem and talking to a family member about it, the family member suggested just disconnecting the battery to reset the computer. He thought perhaps the computer was getting confused with our driving patterns compared to the previous owner's driving patterns.

That fixed the problem for several years.

However, we are now selling the car. We had someone test drive it a few days ago. Then, my husband had to adjust their parking job by a small distance, and today when someone else came to test drive it, it wouldn't start.

My husband disconnected the battery and finally got it started. Although, it seemed more difficult to start than it had when we had the problem previously.

Does this sound like a computer problem? Could there just be a bug? What else can we check into?


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  • gidgetebf Jan 08, 2009

    I also just thought, maybe it is just a flooding problem because of the short-distance driving, but then again, after letting the car sit for several days, it still has the issue.

  • Anonymous Jan 13, 2009

    I have the same problem, but I have been told that it should only happen in the cold.  Basically, in the cold/snowy weather, moisture can get into the spark plugs, and it we don't drive for long enough for the car to heat up, the moisture won't evaporate.  

    I'm going to try the battery re-connect, but we usually just replace the spark plugs.  

  • gidgetebf Jan 28, 2009

    Thanks everyone!

  • stacybelange Apr 14, 2009

    my car does the EXACT same thing, except for it doesn't even sputter. sometimes i have to keep turning and turning the key and holding it



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1998 nissan sentra won't start evarporation control code after driving it down the road it cutoffs while driving act like it want to start ran compression check and won't hold any compression and plugs fouling out! the egine turnsover but won't crank

Posted on Dec 09, 2010

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Check the ignition coil, i had the same problem before and they also told me that it was a computer problem, if it's a failed computer then it will never start.

Posted on Jan 25, 2009


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