Question about 1995 Nissan Maxima

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Just bought a used '95 Maxima with 159K on it last week. I drove it regularly for a week with no problems or strange noises anywhere, but now I have a knocking or rattling sound emanating from the passenger side, that increases with the revs. This just suddenly happened and it sounds like something loose or chipped off underneath the timing belt cover or it might be coming from a pulley on water pump/alternator/idler pulley or ? I'm not sure if it's still running with it's original timing belt but what's the recommended change interval on these 3.0 V6? The check engine light has been on since I bought it, but it isn't running hot or anything. Thanks! Angie

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Could be just something as simple as the idler/tension pulley damper. Take a look at the belt and pulleys when the car is idling. When normal everything runs relatively smoothly. Identify the tensioner pulley, it has a smooth track edge and the belt runs around it with its back to it (the v belt 'face' runs over driven pulleys) and the bolt in the middle of the pulley remains stationary (it does not spin with the pulley as with others). If this pulley is spring loaded to apply tension to the v belt. If it shimmying around and the sound coincides with its action it is most likely that the damper, which normally smooths out vibration, needs to be examined. I recently sorted a car that was chattering quite loudly and all that was wrong was that the rubber bushing on the damper end had split and this was causing it it rattle. With regards to the belt, if the back of the belt is glazed and the front is cracked (you will see this plainly where it is exposed over the tensioner pulley) then it would be a good time to change it. They are not expensive and only take a few minutes to swap out. Have a mechanic give it a diagnostic look and for him to give an opinion. My guess is that the engine light is down to a duff oxygen sensor but without more details this is no more than just a guess.

Posted on Jun 01, 2010

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Post your problem on maxima.org and you will get an answer. The 1995 Maxima does not have a timing belt, it has a timing chain that should last the life of the engine. Sometimes the timing chain tensioner needs to be replaced.

Posted on Jun 12, 2010

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