Radiator Problems of Nissan Altima - part 1

Nissan Altima owners have reported 50 problems related to radiator (under the engine and engine cooling category). The most recently reported issues are listed below. Also please check out the statistics and reliability analysis of Nissan Altima based on all problems reported for the Altima.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2012 Nissan Altima 1
Failure Date: 06/10/2017

My vehicle is 5 years old and I have had to replace the radiator and now the transmission. There are over 700 complaints of this same issue with the NHTSA and consumer affairs. I have taken my vehicle into the dealer twice for this issue and this ongoing issue is going to hurt or even kill someone. Nissan is fully aware of the cvt issues and this needs to be resolved. This recently happened this past weekend (2nd time now). We traveled maybe 35 miles, when the transmission started to whine just before we reached the exit, I was unable to accelerate. No lights, no warnings, nothing stating there was an issue. My car had to be towed to a local auto shop, where they stated they could not address the problem as it is most likely the transmission. It was then, again towed to the dealer. Ken garff Nissan. Where I was told that my 5 year old car needs a new transmission! a year to date I had to replace my radiator, water pump, serpentine belt ect! this is not okay and not acceptable. Should I have had my daughter in the car and lost acceleration on the freeway, I cant event fathom. This issue transmission defect has substantially impaired the use, market value and most of all the safety of the vehicle. My family is worth more than this defective vehicle. The dealership has been more than helpful and they agreed a 5 year old car should not be having all these issues. I am asking that Nissan do the right thing and fix this problem and care about the consumer. I truly want to believe that Nissan cares about their consumers and I really hope that they review this complaint and act upon it, doing the right thing and recall these engines. I was blown away by how many Nissan owners experienced the same issue and filed complaints with the bbb, carguru, Nissan and consumer affairs. Please, have this looked into. I know Nissan is fully aware and this needs to be corrected.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2009 Nissan Altima 2
Failure Date: 11/03/2016

I change my radiator 2 times - and they change the steering column lock and they charge me 1,200 . I have change the pressure sensors couple times . This always happen when I was driving.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2007 Nissan Altima 3
Failure Date: 01/25/2016

The contact owns a 2007 Nissan Altima. While at a stop light, the vehicle began to jerk and independently accelerated. The contact had to depress the brake pedal to stop the vehicle from moving forward. In addition, upon inspection, there was oil in the radiator. The vehicle was taken to a mechanic who diagnosed that the motor and transmission needed to be replaced. The vehicle was not repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 100,000.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 4
Failure Date: 08/01/2014

The contact owns a 2002 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that oil was leaking into the radiator and the vehicle was using one quart of oil per tank of fuel. The contact also stated that the he could smell smoke emitting from the passenger's side compartment. The dealer diagnosed that engine needed to be replaced. The vehicle had not been repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 199,000.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2014 Nissan Altima 5
Failure Date: 05/24/2014

On the way to get a cup of coffee (less than one mile from my home) a car started coming into my lane. I swerved slightly to avoid a collision and my car went into the ditch and hit a telephone pole. Over $22,000 in damage. Radiator bent into an "l" shape. Side frames and engine went into the firewall, which totaled the car completely. I have spoken with Nissan corp. Air bag safety engineer, dealership owner, general manager, sales manager and they will not do anything about this $22,000 damage to the front end and none of the airbags deployed. Officer said driver airbag and side curtain and in seat airbags should have also deployed. They didn't and I was almost killed. The car was only 2 months old, no modifications, and very low miles. Kiro7 tv in seattle even did two stories on the crash and airbags not working and that Nissan had only recalled passenger airbags, not driver side airbags. . . Updated 07/16/14.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2004 Nissan Altima 6
Failure Date: 09/19/2013

On 9/19/2013, while driving on route 21 highway, I was on my way to rutgers driving in the fast lane when all of a sudden my car engine was full of smoke, my radiator blew up all over the highway and even worse my car just shut off instantly. The guy behind me was very close to hitting my car but luckily he had to slam his brakes very hard. I was so close to the divider thank god I did not slam into it or else I would have been dead on the opposite side of the highway. Another man came out with a fire extinguisher to put down my car. A police officer and other men pushed my car to the emergency lane. Another incident, 9/21 as I picked up my car from a mechanic that replaced my radiator, on route 17 my car was driving at a very slow speed and stalled. I immediately turned it back on and entered a landmark parking lot. I did some research and found out on NHTSA. Gov that there is a recall for the crank angle sensor parts: engine and engine cooling. My mechanic told me my car engine was unable to cool so a tow truck took my car to meadowlands Nissan dealer in NJ and they refused to perform the "engine and engine cooling" recall claiming that their ecm recall has nothing to do with temperature and drive-ability. I mentioned that on the government site it clearly states "engine and engine cooling" but they stated that Nissan dealers are private dealers and do not care what anybody else says. The man told me they follow whatever they have in their Nissan system, not the government. I am so offended that my life was on the line twice over Nissan's hazardous recalls. Yet, they are refusing to make my car a safe vehicle. I do not want this to happen to anybody else I'm only 21 I"m way too young to die over a defective vehicle engine. My car is still at the dealer and I want them to follow government recalls and make their vehicles safe enough to drive.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2006 Nissan Altima 7
Failure Date: 07/11/2013

Tl-the contact owns a 2006 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that while driving at 70 mph, the vehicle decelerated to 30 mph without warning. The check engine light then illuminated and the contact noticed load roaring noises. The contact maneuvered to emergency lane and the vehicle stalled. The contact discovered oil leaking from the front of the engine. The vehicle was towed to mechanic and diagnosed for catalytic converter, engine, radiator, transmission, and engine cooling system failure. The vehicle was repaired but the failure persisted. The manufacturer was not made aware of the failure. The approximate failure mileage was 103,000. Sms.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2013 Nissan Altima 8
Failure Date: 01/25/2013

Purchased brand new with 2 miles. At 4500 miles, heat gauge indicated an increase in engine temperature. Drove 2 miles to a service station, and upon opening the hood, anti-freeze was sprayed everywhere. Car was towed to dealer. Dealer inspected, and said the radiator had leaked, so the dealer replaced the radiator. After replacement, the dealer performed a test drive, when the check engine light came on. Dealer performed pressure tests, and said the engine would need replacement.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2003 Nissan Altima 9
Failure Date: 10/14/2010

I had just bought my vehicle in March 2010 for $4200. A few weeks after I started to notice that the vehicle was burning through oil every few days. I took it to my mechanic and he stated it needed a tune up. A few days after the tune up I noticed it started to run rough on the highway on my way to work. While on the the highway the car stopped running everything shut down, no power steering. I had to glide to the breakdown lane hoping and praying I would make it and not get hit. So I had the car towed to the mechanic who then told me that the motor was blown. I didn't have the money to fix it seeing as I had just bought the vehicle 6 months earlier. So I then parked the car in my driveway until I had the money to replace it($2000). Once I was able to replace the engine 2 months later the check engine light come on again. I take it back into the mechanic and he tells me its the radiator. I replace the radiator ($200). A few weeks later the check engine light comes on again. The mechanic tells me its the catalytic converter and that he's done atleast three Nissans in the past month with the same problem and that there is a recall and to contact Nissan. He also told me that if I to drive the vehicle like that it would blow the motor again because that is what caused it to blow initially. After taking it to a Nissan dealer they told me that there is not "open" recall on the catalytic converter just an ecm reset and the hallogen light recall. They did tell me the catalytic gone due to a cylinder 2 misfire but that was not covered by them. I then called Nissan directly and they told me that there was a recall previous for the engine and catalytic converter but it was not an open recall and they were not allowed to send me that information. If I wanted that information I would have to go through car fax. This was from their upper management.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 10
Failure Date: 09/20/2010

The contact owns a 2002 Nissan Altima. The contact stated that when first starting the vehicle, it would drive rough and would sputter abnormally. In addition, the vehicle would stall sporadically without warning. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer several times where they replaced the head gasket, radiator and the timing belt cover but none of the repairs corrected the failure. The contact finally took the vehicle to an independent mechanic and was told that the failure was caused by the crankshaft position sensor. The mechanic advised the contact of NHTSA campaign id number: 07v527000 (engine and engine cooling) but was advised by the manufacturer that the VIN was not included in the recall. The VIN was not available. The failure mileage was 72,000 and the current mileage was 76,000.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2000 Nissan Altima 11
Failure Date: 06/23/2010

Instrument cluster freezes indications for long periods intermittently. Odometer, tachometer, speedometer, engine temperature all freeze at what they were reading. This has been a repetitive, intermittent problem. Because of lack of true engine temperature reading, car was driven to overheating. Water pump failed causing the engine to overheat, blowing up the radiator and destroying the engine.

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car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 12
Failure Date: 02/20/2009

Recently traveling to nc and the car lost power and wont start. The service engine soon light engaged constantly and the car burns oil with no engine leaks. I purchased brand new manual transmission 2002 Nissan Altima 3. 5. The vehicle shifted very hard when purchased and clutch went straight to floor after 1 month. Took car to Nissan dealer on three occasions and they could find nothing wrong. Took it to an independent mechanic and he said the pressure plate was bad and I had to replace the entire clutch assembly in Aug. 2006 at 115k miles ($850). Theo2 sensor was replaced prior to the recall, had it replaced under the recall, and its still crap! to boot, the gear shift assembly broke within 6 months of purchase, and Nissan recalled. Their fix broke too. I was told that ill have to pay to have their resolution fixed because its not under warranty. Since that time, between 6/08 and 11/08, I have replaced the radiator, oil cooler, all motor mounts, fan belts, drivers axle, power steering box, valve cover gasket ($7k worth of work). Car currently has about 145k miles and I believe the car is just a lemon. I have always driven Nissan, but now declare it will be my last one. I don't have another $5k to put in to catalytic converters, sensors or an engine. Dont think so. Nissan needs to step up and take care of these issues.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 13
Failure Date: 09/04/2008

New 2002 Altima, well maintained, buying Nissans since 1992 receiving mileage over 260,000 miles. Looking back car constantly low on oil w/no light registering then light never came back on for 3 years, yet oil was always low. Checking oil every 2 weeks and every oil change at dealership-oil low at tip of the dip stick. Had car serviced-no indication of problems; September the car smelled hot; not registering or showing any signs of it running hot. Car constantly not starting, stalling as driving along the road. Go to dealership, need a motor replaced, warped head gasket cost $4,000 plus dollars. The dealership owner asked how many cars has come in (altima 2002) per mechanic several hundreds for the motor and/or radiator problems (replacing motors). He has ordered a large number of Nissan motors from the company to replace the engines. Owner was surprised of this motor having to be replaced and has kept my car in storage until I can afford to replace the motor. He will also follow up on a recall for the engines with that many cars being repaired. This has changed my mind on purchasing another Nissan product because of the rudeness when reporting the problems to their customer affairs department and nothing can be done (per the rep). This need to take some priority with the number of issues reported as complaints on all the websites. Ii have found 114 here plus one more 115 plus I have about 30 other complaints and then the report that the dealership has fixed over 200 cars. Please help us get our money and/or engines repaired. With the stalling and shut down of the motors, thanks to god the low death rates. Car is still in storage at the dealership when it stalled on route 29 interstate.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 14
Failure Date: 08/28/2008

I bought a used 2002 Nissan Altima 2. 5 sl 2 months ago. I took it to Nissan service center 2 times for in 2 months for oil change. Last time I got "engine check soon " icon so I asked to do diagnostic engine check and required repair. They did it and said coolant level is low and engine cap is leaking pressure so need to replace the radiator cap. After 1 month I had a mechanical failure problem on highway suddenly and a rod threw from inside the engine out and made a whole on engine. This engine was called for a recall in March 2008 and it was done. But now I got the same problem again and now turned out to be a big problem to replace the whole engine. I'm a student and I can't pay $4500 for this. Nissan should take responsibility for this and bare the cost. This car's warranty period is also over. But as Nissan servicers know that when engine check soon problem occurs in these vehicles it is going to crash but they don't tell this. Nissan must take responsibility for my losses.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2003 Nissan Altima 15
Failure Date: 07/03/2008

The contact owns a 2003 Nissan Altima. On July 3, 2008, while driving 40 mph, the vehicle began moving slowly and the check engine light illuminated. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer for a diagnostic and they identified the cause of the failure as the crankshaft position sensor. There is no recall available; therefore, the crankshaft sensor and radiator will be replaced at the cost of $815. The current and failure mileages were 32,955. Updated 09/10/08 updated 09/19/08.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 16
Failure Date: 02/15/2008

The contact owns a 2002 Nissan Altima. The service engine light began illuminating intermittently and then remained lit. When starting the vehicle and taking off, the vehicle made a strange noise and jerked as if something were slipping. Once the vehicle gained speed, the noise stopped. The dealer stated that the following components needed to be replaced: the catalytic converter, two major sensors, and the heating and air conditioning systems. The vehicle was burning oil on the inside of the engine, which caused it to fail. The vehicle could have an oil change and then four days later, the oil would have burned out completely. Nhtsa campaign id numbers 03v084000 (engine and engine cooling:exhaust system:manifold/ header/muffler/tail pipe), 07v527000 (engine and engine cooling), and 03v455000 (engine and engine cooling were referenced. The current mileage was 116,000 and failure mileage was 50,000. Updated 06/05/08 the driver side power mirror was replaced, the gear selector was sticking. The cylinder head, gasket radiator and thermostat were replaced. Were replaced. Updated 06/04/08.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 17
Failure Date: 07/18/2007

Car consuming lots of oil. No oil light ever came on leading to complete engine failure. 4 quarts of oil completely gone with no trace (no oil spots in garage, no smoke, . . . Nothing) in less than 2 months. Also a problem with radiator split.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 18
Failure Date: 06/14/2007

I have a 2002 Nissan Altima 2. 5 s I have had for less than 2 years. About 6 months ago at around 80k miles my engine started to randomly overheat even though coolant and fluid levels were correct. I had to tow it to a mechanic and he said the radiator was split. I spent $500 t replace that but then shortly after it happened again. We then replaced both thermostats on the vehicle and this helped for 2 months. Most recently we have been encountering a severe stuttering and shaking of the whole vehicle immediately upon starting it up. Regardless of it being in neutral, drive or reverse the car jerks back and forth very violently. After you drive it for a few minutes and the vehicle warms up it ceases this action. In addition to this though there is never any warm air coming out of the vents no matter how long the car is driven for. This is all happening simultaneously in addition to now the car is overheating all the way up but then jumps around so we never know where the temperature is at. Nissan themselves is very uncooperative in any capacity when attempting to rectify this situation. This is very disheartening as me and my wife are both working full time students and cannot afford to continue to chase this with time or money. My wife is a nanny part time and has had the car stop and need to be towed while she is out in the middle of the city with her 2 toddlers she watches. I am doing my best to avoid missing work as a result of having only one vehicle. We have a 2004 Volvo that has had no problems but this Altima is going to drag us down.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2004 Nissan Altima 19
Failure Date: 04/25/2007

2004 Nissan Altima. Consumer states vehicle stalled while driving the consumer stated there is still a major problem regarding the recall for the crank angle sensor and the reprogramming of the ecm. The consumer stated the crank sensor had to be replaced for the second time and the check engine light had illuminated on six separate occasions. The radiator was cracked and was leaking coolant. The passenger side mirror was loose, the sun roof had a rattle and the drivers side window would go up, but at times it would come back down on its own. The dealer replaced the regulator motor. Also, the alternator was replaced.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2007 Nissan Altima 20
Failure Date: 04/20/2007

I purchased my 2003 Altima 2. 5s new from the dealer. At approximately 50k miles I began hearing a water noise in the dash and was told by my local shop that I had a cracked radiator. I had the extended warranty so the dealership replaced the radiator for $50, they also fixed the water noise in the dash stating it was related to the radiator. Now at 78k miles, I hear the water again and was told by the dealer I had another cracked radiator. I now have the third radiator in my car but still have the water noise. I do not believe 3 radiators in 4 years is "normal" wear and tear. Nissan clearly has a problem with radiators/cooling systems and they need to step up and offer some resolution to the many unhappy customers that have purchased these "lemons".

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 21
Failure Date: 03/20/2007

Since I purchased this 2002 Nissan Altima 2. 5, I've constantly experienced cold starts. I've also taken the car to the dealership for a clicking sound that appears to be in the glove compartment area. The dealership could not locate the source of the problem. . I still have the clicking noise. On March 20, 2007 I took the car to the dealership because I am experiencing problems with starting the car. After 6 or 7 attempts the car starts. I thought it was the fuel pump. The car was put on a diagnostic machine whereby air pockets were found in the radiator system. They also found that anti-freeze was in my first and third cylinder. I was told that I needed an engine. I must say that I'm truly disappointed with this car. I've experienced nothing but problems since I purchasedit new. Now it is five years old and needing an engine. I don't understand it. I had an extended warranty which ended at 100,000 miles and I have 101,000. I don't think that I should have to pay for a new engine when Nissan knows that is problem existed with the 2002 models. The sales agent at the dealership also informed me that this was a common problem with this car. I will be contacting Nissan to get further compensation for the replacement of my engine. Why hasn't a recall been issued? thanks. . .

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 22
Failure Date: 02/01/2007

The contact owns a 2002 Nissan Altima. While driving 50 mph, the contact heard a knocking sound coming from the engine. She noticed that the check engine light was illuminated. The dealer stated that the catalytic converter needed to be replaced and they performed the replacement. Approximately a month and half later, the vehicle was taken to the dealer due to excessive oil consumption. The dealer performed an oil change. The contact stated that she had to add a quart of oil ten days after the oil change was performed. The dealer was unable to determine the reason for the excessive oil consumption. The current mileage is 78,739 and failure mileage was 72,633.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2003 Nissan Altima 23
Failure Date: 11/28/2006

I bought this car with 39,578 miles on it on September 9, 2006. After owning the car for 3 months, the radiator started to leak from the top. I took it to a radiator shop and they fixed it while saying that Nissan had used cheap parts. A car that has less than 50,000 miles on it should not have these types of problems. Less than a year later, the service engine light came on so I took it to auto zone to get the diagnosis of the problem. The crank shaft sensor was bad and had to be replaced. It caused the car to stall when cranking/starting and left me stranded at some points and times because it would not start. After replacing this sensor, later to find out there was a recall on the sensor and was told my car was not included in this recall eventhough I assume the same parts are used on all models of the same kind, another sensor is now causing my car to idle high when in park or neutral. This type of behavior in the car causes more gas consuming which in today's economic battle with fuel prices, is not favorable. Now that I have read many other complaints from other people, I have noticed that this is a widespread problem on 2002-2005 Altima models. If the crankshaft sensor had not been replaced sooner, the car could have stopped running in traffic, which is why it was recalled, and caused a serious accident maybe even death. I bought this car in confidence that it would be dependable for myself and my child but since I have called to log a complaint with Nissan north America they informed me that the car has three other recalls that were stated as " serious to my safety".

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 24
Failure Date: 10/01/2006

- the contact owns a 2002 Nissan Altima. The contact stated the vehicle had air pockets in the radiator, preventing it from having heat. The failure mileage was 49,639. The dealer/mechanic changed the antifreeze and removed the air pockets. The failure returned after four months. The dealer/mechanic again removed the air pockets, changed the antifreeze ,and this time flushed the radiator. The failure mileage 55,200. The contact has the repair invoices.

car image   Radiator problem of the 2002 Nissan Altima 25
Failure Date: 08/18/2006

Car needs an oil change every month because it burns so much oil. No heat in the winter because of malfunctioning radiator. Almost had several serious accidents on highway from the engine stalling, leaving me with no power steering or brakes.

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