Car Problems

RepairPal has identified the most common problems as reported by actual vehicle owners. We'll tell you what the problem is and what it'll take to fix it.

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Known Problems
Difficulty starting the vehicle may be caused by a defective vehicle immobilizer (anti-theft) control module.

On Vehicles with a 4.7L or 5.7L V8 engine, the Check Engine Light may illuminate with code P2181 for a cooling system performance fault. Or technicians tell us that updated software for the powertrain control module (PCM) is available to correct this concern.

It is common for the fuel level sensor in the fuel tank read the fuel level incorrectly. The sensor must be replaced to correct the condition. Our technicians recommend having the complete fuel pump module replaced on high mileage vehicles.

The electrical contacts in the ignition switch may fail and result in erratic instrument panel gauge operation or illumination of the Check Engine Light. A failed ignition switch will require replacement.

A whining or buzzing type noise may develop from the timing chain area caused by excess slack in the secondary timing chains. Nissan has issued a service bulletin (NTB09-128) regarding this issue. Replacement of both secondary timing chains and their tensioner shoes will be necessary to repair this concern. As part of this repair, the engine oil and filter should also be replaced.

Nissan issued a recall on the fuel pump for premature failure. There was an owner notification program and labels were placed on the fuel pump access panel and next to the AC charge label in the engine compartment.

The intake manifold gasket may develop and external engine oil or coolant leak. In some cases, an internal coolant leak may occur causing coolant to mix with the engine oil. Our technicians tell us that operating the engine  with a coolant/oil mix can result in internal engine damage. Replacing the intake manifold gasket should correct these leaks.

Prior to jacking or lifting a vehicle with air suspension, you must turn off the suspension switch. The switch is generally located in the trunk or on the right side of the passenger foot well.

A Loose or worn gas cap may cause Check Engine Light to illuminate. At this time, RepairPal cannot confirm a recall for this gas cap issue.

A coolant leak from the radiator can be caused by a defective thermostat bypass. This can cause pressure spikes in the cooling system, which leads to radiator failure. The thermostat assembly and radiator should be replaced.

4.0L 6 Cylinder
Due to misfires, you may experience a loss of power when accelerating between 50 and 70 MPH (most noticeable below 32° F). This is commonly caused by carbon buildup on the valve stems, as a result the exhaust valves may close too late. All of the exhaust valves should be inspected and if necessary the engine should be decarbonized.

The Check Engine Light may illuminate with throttle position switch fault codes stored. Our technicians tell us a revised throttle position switch is available to correct this concern.

There are reports of premature clutch wear on cars equipped with manual transmissions.  Clutch replacement on these vehicles can be quite costly.

After the vehicle has been operated with electrical loads (lights, air conditioning), a weak alternator can cause starting difficulties. In some cases, the original alternator could not sufficiently charge the battery; Kia released a new alternator which can correct this concern.

One or both head light bulbs may burn out prematurely requiring replacement. There have also been reports of other bulbs burning out often as well.

In order to correct a problem that results in difficulty starting, engine vibration, or a rattling sound from the engine compartment, Kia released an updated crankshaft pulley bolt.

A loud ticking noise (hydraulic valve lifter noise) may be heard from the top of the engine, particularly when the engine is still cold. The noise may occur more frequently on higher mileage vehicles; Hydraulic valve lash adjusters may need to be replaced to correct this issue. Following the maintenance schedule for oil changes will also help prevent a recurrence of the noise.

Sludge can build up in the engine because Lexus did not recommend frequent enough oil changes. Lexus will sometimes offer a discount on cleaning the engine if necessary. Owners who changed their oil every 3,000 miles did not experience these problems. This sludge build up can lead to excessive oil consumption.

The anti-lock brake system (ABS) control module may fail causing the ABS light to illuminate. Failed modules should be replaced to restore ABS operation.

The automatic transmission may fail prematurely. Transmission overhaul or replacement may be necessary to correct this concern.

Welds on the catalytic converter heat shield can corrode causing a rattle during acceleration and possibly causing Check Engine Light illumination. The common repair for this issue is replacement of the damaged catalytic converter.

Failure of the ignition power transistor can cause a "crank-no start" condition.

Nissan issued a recall on the fuel pump for premature failure. There was an owner notification program and labels were placed on the fuel pump access panel and next to the AC charge label in the engine compartment.

The camshaft adjuster solenoid (which is related to the variable valve timing system) may fail or timing chain/balance shaft components may wear, resulting in illumination of the Check Engine Light and various drivability issues. Mercedes-Benz has released a service bulletin outlining specific repair instructions depending on fault codes stored.

Vehicles equipped with a 7-speed automatic transmission may develop a rough shifting condition, most commonly going up from first to second gear and going down from third to second or second to first gear. Our technicians tell us this is due to an internal component failure. Mercedes has released updated parts; the transmission will need to be removed and disassembled to complete the necessary repairs.

As vehicles age, various problems may develop with the hard and soft tops. If problems are encountered, it would be recommended to have a technician familiar with these tops perform the diagnoses.

Worn door lock tumblers can cause the door lock to be sticky or not work at all. The lock has to be removed and the tumblers need to be replaced for this issue.

Power door locks can activate intermittently due to a faulty door lock actuator in the driver's door.

Erratic engine coolant temperature or intermittent overheating can be caused by corrosion inside the water pump. The impeller may spin on the water pump shaft or the impeller may corrode. Either condition reduces coolant circulation resulting in engine overheating.