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cs2000

Solid Cranking but no start ?!?

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Hey guys,

 

Having an issue tonight starting the car, and am stumped why, but some background first.

 

I have an 04 GT, battery is an Exide brand around 4 years old. The car is strictly a toy, it gets used for trips most weekends during the summer and I try to get it out every few weeks in the winter, but with the recent cold snap, rain and busy weekends the cars been parked for about a month.

 

went to start it last weekend and it was flat as a pancake, one crank and dead, so I put it on my battery tender system which shows the voltage at 9.2v and left it all week (working, weekend only car). 

 

Started the car this evening, seemed ok. However I was getting the battery light flickering at Idle RPM’s, when I was driving above 1000rpm ish, the light went away.

 

Got to my in-laws house around 5 miles away and parked the car, came out an hour later and the car cranks just fine, but will not fire up.

 

ive changed the key battery, done an ECU reset and still nothing. I THINK I’m having a NATS issue. When I lock the car, the alarm led flashes like crazy, I think this is normal, but when I unlock the car the light goes out. From memory, this should only go out once a valid key is inserted into the ignition.

 

The fuel pump primes, cranks ok but no start.

 

I know for almost a decade around here, these cars can do very very odd things with a failing battery. Is this one of them Even though the car cranks ok?

 

ive left the battery disconnected but connected to a charger overnight and will tackle it tomorrow, but wondered if the collective hive mind could come up with anything I can check.

 

i plan to take the spare key,  code reader and maybe buy another battery, but assuming it’s not this?

 

really appreciate any advice!

Edited by cs2000

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You seem to have taken the right steps so far.

 

OK in no paticular order, The light on the dash should blink slowly when just a constant "blip" about 1 a second when the car is locked, off when unlocked.

So yes possible NATS problem.

 

The charge light on - a battery tender is just that not a charger so possible battery fault or the battery tender is not giving enough charge, but a week should do it - possible battery fault as well.

 

Cranks but not starts - NATS I'm leaning that way also worth checking is the main coil pack loop earth this is a poxy little black wire with the circle type end and a 10mm bolt through it found on the left hand side top of the cam chain cover just below the pal;stic engine cover. Clean the bolt as well!

Next setp is battery off for 30 mns plus reconnect (make sure you have 12V+) close all doors and bonnet, lock the car wait 1 min then unlock jump in and (fingers crossed) you are away. If not it's onto the normal is there fuel, spark etc tests then CPS etc etc.

I say NATS due to flat battery thats my feeling at tyhe moment but I've been wrong before :lol:

 

Good luck mate :thumbs:

 

 

 

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Right, had some good and bad luck.

 

Got to the car this morning and the battery was all nicely charged. Connected it back to the car and tried it with my normal key, just cranked over. Tried my spare key, just cranking again. Damn.

 

Didnt bother swapping in my new battery.

 

Tried an ECU reset, then she fired right up, hell yes! Left it running for 10 mins whilst I checked tyre pressures and put my tools away. Turned the car off and then started it just fine with both my spare and my original key, fixed!

 

i went on a 40 min drive with no issues, no battery light or any weirdness.

 

its now around 60 mins later, my wife just wanted to move to the car and it won’t bloody start again, just cranks over.

 

Sadly, she didn’t know the pedal dance to perform an ECU reset, but I heard on the phone the car was cranking over strong and sounded just fine.

 

I scanned the car this morning and no codes were stored or pending in the ECU.

 

so....any further ideas from anyone what’s wrong? Still a low battery issue, Crank position sensor or a NATS problem? Is there any way I can check what is happening with the CPS?

 

Edited by cs2000

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Done some lateral thinking this evening.

 

1. Car has ONLY started when cold.

2. NATS LED on dashboard isn’t lit up solid red, indicating (I think) that it recognises my key and should therefore turn off the immobiliser.

3. When the car is running, it runs just fine, even under high throttle/rpm.

4. ECU reset appeared to clear out a stored code that my reader couldn’t see (it was flashing a pattern, but I took no notice of it)

5. Car then started ok when cold with ECU reset.

 

This leads me to one think. Crankshaft position sensor.

 

From my reading, this can cause intermittent starting and doesn’t always trigger a engine code, if it was a camshaft sensor failure rather than crankshaft, it would cause intermittent power loss when driving, limp mode and would cause a code to be thrown.

 

ive ordered one, but can’t get one locally before Tuesday, so we shall see on Tuesday I guess. @Keyser remember we did a gearbox swap, I can’t remember if we swapped the sensor from my old box or if we used one that came on the 2nd hand gearbox.

 

il keep you all updated

Edited by cs2000

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Well, Euro car parts said they had one in stock for home delivery, then emailed yesterday saying they couldn’t find it and it would be 45 days for a replacement. Cancelled!

 

Called GSF car parts who did have one! Went to collect it today and opened the box in the store, it’s a Left Hand camshaft sensor, not a crankshaft one and they don’t have any in the entire company.

 

Tried all of our sellers, a few do have them, but they’re 2-3x the cost I can find elsewhere. 

 

Had to order a complete set of crank and both side cam sensors now online to actually get them. Still came in cheaper than traders on here so not too bothered, just frustrating to not be able to get parts I guess.

 

will update when I get to fit the crank sensor, when our lovely British weather allows at least. Nothing but rain forecast for the next 7 days... :(

Edited by cs2000

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Sorry, just seen this, I know that my input is a bit late, however for future reference for anybody requiring the crank and cam sensors for the 3 x variants of 350Z I have all the cam and crank sensors in stock.

I have new aftermarket and new genuine Nissan OEM sensors in stock and all are very competitively priced.

 

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Thanks Alex, I was initially shopping locally as I thought “I can just go pick the part up”, turns out everyone was out of stock.

 

for clarity, I didn’t check the prices with Alex, just torqen and tarmac as I could check easily on their website, so alex’s prices may well be spot on, I’m sure they are!

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Welcome to the latest adventure in me not knowing what the F'ing hell is wrong with this thing.

 

I had a new set of Crankshaft (left and right) as well as Camshaft sensors arrive today, dashed over to my in-laws house where the car is currently broken down, to fit them.

 

As I suspected the Crank sensor, I started here, promptly did the bolt up, rather than undo-ing and sheared the thing in half right at the head. I HATE that feeling when a tight bolt suddenly becomes loose. I knew what id done before I even moved the ratchet off of the bolt :rant: Anyway, stuck the sensor in, same result, crank but no firing up.

 

Since I had them, I replaced the drivers side Camshaft sensor anyway, same issue, crank but no firing, however I did notice the electrical connector side was oily, smelt like engine oil but I cant be sure, engine bays tend to just smell oily, could be dirt and moisture. Is this normal? Id suspect not...

 

By this time id totally lost the light, so didn't even begin on the passenger side, airbox, strut and intake tube all have to come off.

 

Ive got the 2 sensors ive removed from the car with me and followed a guide on Pro Street Online about testing the sensors "https://my.prostreetonline.com/2016/02/11/how-to-test-a-nissan-350z-camshaft-sensor/" they test as follows

 

Drivers side Camshaft

Pin A to B - 1.8 mili ohms

Pin B to C - 1.24 k ohms

Pin A to C - 1.8 mili ohms

 

Crankshaft

Pin A to B - 1.2 k ohms

Pin B to C - 1.7 mega ohms

Pin A to C - 1.8 mega ohms

 

Brand New (not yet fitted) Passenger side Camshaft

Pin A to B - 0.2 ohms (is this 0.2 mili ohms...?)

Pin B to C - 5.5 k ohms

Pin A to C - 5.4 mega ohms

 

These values are WAAAAAAY different than the ones I've measured that were fitted to the car, is this "normal" between manufacturers, or just the replacements, or the OEM ones are duds?

 

The guide doesn't say what a good value is, but it says "As long as your digital multimeter does not return a 0 or infinite value, your 350Z camshaft sensor is okay." SO are my OEM sensors fine?!? :wacko:

 

 

Next, my generic OBDII code reader couldn't read any codes that were stored or pending, but when I was doing the ECU reset, I noticed the light was flashing in patterns, so I did a recording of the values until I got bored and thought sod it that will do. The video is below (im really sorry about the beeping noise, just hit mute, there's no useful audio anyway...)

 

 

From that, as far as I can tell, im getting

P1615 - NATS Malfunction

P0340 - Camshaft Sensor Bank 1

P0335 - Crankshaft Sensor

 

But what gives? I just replaced those bloody things...

 

P1615 - I've not had a valid "start" because of the cranking issue, so I'm suspecting NATS has just locked the system. I did also put a totally unregistered/unprogrammed key into the ignition and turn it to ON to check the Security LED, it flashed rapidly and it doesn't do this with the two good keys I have, but this could have locked the NATS system. Maybe nothing to worry about, not 100%.

 

P0340 - This connector was oil (I think) soaked. Could this be the cause of this fault?

 

P0335 - I did snap the retaining bolt, but ive checked, the metal ring the bolt goes through on the sensor isn't electrically connected to any pins, so this alone would cause a fault, so WTF is wrong?!?

 

Im at my absolute wits end here. I have a non starting, but otherwise seemingly functional vehicle, ive fired the parts cannon at it and came up empty.

 

I cant get the car to any garage with any knowledge (Kaiser or another good forum garage) as it wont start and im totally out of ideas for where to turn next, plus im fighting with our British winter rain to get any meaningful further diagnosis performed.

 

As far as I can tell my next steps are the following.

 

- Buy a bolt extractor set to remove the sheared bolt for the Crank sensor and replace this bolt with...something.... If anyone is breaking  acar and has the Crankshaft sensor bolt spare, il take it. Its Nissan part number 08156-62033 but I cant find any UK suppliers. I believe its the same part as the Camshaft sensor bolts too.

- Re-fit the OEM Crank and Cam sensor, cleaning the connectors with some contact spray

- Sacrifice some small animal so the ECU reset procedure actually works, clearing the three error codes shown in the video above

- Sacrifice a slightly larger animal and pray something just bloody works when I turn the key

 

Im also looking at buying Nissan Datascan II http://www.nissandatascan.com/ as I have a VAG-COM cable and this supposedly is basically like a Consult II and could help me locate a fault easier, im just wary of wasting another bunch of cash on something, its a expensive time of the year!

 

Guys and gals, I know this is asking a lot, but help me with a Christmas miracle here. Seriously, ANY replies with things to try would be much appreciated. If someone cracks it, il send some cash your way for a crate of beers to enjoy on the big day. I'm desperate to get her up and running again :( 

 

/cs2000.

 

 

Edited by cs2000

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2 minutes ago, andybp said:

did you change the battery in the end ?

Never did swap the battery over, ended up returning it, because the car solidly cranks, I ruled out the battery being the issue

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had a lot of random codes and issues with mine the other year cranking but wouldn't start I'm guessing that the voltage was too low for the electronics during cranking not had an issue since changing battery

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Interesting indeed. Ive probably tried to start the car...I dunno...20 times since it was left on a proper charger overnight, its still going strong, but I guess perhaps the voltage could dip, but the amperage be OK during cranking.

 

Ive got a brand new battery in my 6 month old van I can swap in to try id guess. Not sure it the battery in a 1.6 diesel is man enough to start a 3.5 petrol though?

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Its a Renault, so..fitting I suppose ;), il give that a shot tomorrow. Currently trying to work the bolt situation out for the Crankshaft sensor too. Ive found the bolt, but nowhere seems to list the thread, pitch and length, I have spare bolts around of various sizes, but the car isn't at my house, makes it difficult to "trial and error" things

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I think the bolt is the same as the camshaft sensors can't be sure though it was about 5 or 6 yrs ago I had mine out

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That would be super helpful if you do! From my reading, there seems to be some early years where they were indeed the same. I used the Nissan parts system, stuck in my VIN, found the particular bolt and it did show as being used in the three places in my case (both cams and crank sensor), so thats a start.

 

Ive got to pick up some bolt extractors tomorrow and try to get the old one out. I dont think it will be too difficult, i just turned it the wrong way :surrender:, dont think its actually seized or anything.

 

Il also try the new battery from the van, see if that helps, and i have a license for Nissan Datascan II too, so i can do a ECU reset without the very finicky pedal dance routine to do the reset, ive done that about 7 times, had it work once...

 

It should  if all goes well, read me the codes that my basic OBD2 reader cant (the ones that show in the video posted earlier) so i can double check, then clear them, try a start and see what happens. I have the old sensors to replace too if thats required.

 

Also going to check the BCM for water ingress, apparently thats a thing too. My passenger side window has also stopped working in recent weeks, i put that does to a faulty regulator/motor as its a common thing, but could be a BCM issue.

 

All of this of course depends on the weather which currently forecasts rain. all day... yay for this country...

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Righty-o. So, im baffled, but happy for the first time in several days...

 

Today's tasks went as follows:

- Drill pilot hole in sheared Crankshaft bolt, snapped 4 2.5mm drill bits doing this, but got there, bolt extractor got her straight out, wooooo!

- Swapped battery from work van to 350z

- Connected to the ECU with Nissan Datascan II (NDS II) and reset the ECU using the "Reset Learning" button

- Then connected my bog-standard code reader, nothing showed up, but reset codes anyway, why not.

- Reset the NATS system by turning the ignition to ON for 5 secs then OFF for 10 seconds 3 times

- Try to start car, no crank at all, same symptons as a low battery.

- Swapped back to the battery that was already in the car, Cranks but no start, same as before. 

- Someone also said the NATS antenna could be at fault and try flipping the key the other way around, same result for me here, no start...

- Reconnected NDS II and scanned the ECU, this gave me codes P0340 (Cam Bank 1) and P0335 (Crank), however P1615 (NATS) issue had gone, progress at the very least.

- Removed the NEW Cam sensor & used electrical contact cleaner in the old sensor's socket and the plug & then installed old sensor again

- Reset codes using NDS II, car cranks but no start

- Code scan again only showed P0335, so more progress!

- Removed the NEW Crank sensor & used electrical contact cleaner in the old sensor's socket and the plug & then installed old sensor again

- Borrowed bolt from Cam Sensor and installed to Crank Sensor bracket (Cam sensor is VERY firmly attached, crank is kinda loose and i needed it to be solid).

- Cleared codes & reset ECU again.

- SHE STARTED UP!!!!

 

I then measured and found the bolt for the Crank and Cam sensors was M6 in size, nipped in the shed and got a M6 machine screw of a random length, this fitted straight in! So for future reference, the Crank and Camshaft bolts are both M6 x 20mm (roughly) but the Nissan bolts have around 5mm of bolt thread shaved off at the end to form of a taper. I bought some M6 x 10mm bolts and they tightened up perfectly, 15mm may also work, but if you feel any resistance before the bolt head is against the sensor, dont force it, your bolt is too long.

 

Tried to turn on and off the car 3 times with my Day-to-day key, and also with the dumb little key from Nissan, both worked absolutely fine.

 

I think the P1615 (NATS not recognising the key) was caused by me trying to start the car with my secondary Nissan OEM key which was on the same keyring as an aftermarket non coded key, rookie mistake.

 

Soooo. what the heck happened? The car is now literally back to stock and works just fine. The only thing i have really done in essence is an ECU reset and cleaned the connectors for Cam Bank 1 and Crank sensors. Remember, this happened after running the car with an almost dead battery which seems to have recovered.

 

Genuinely confused, but it seems like a clean sorted it... very very very strange.

 

In other news, ive gotten a refund from the eBay seller who sold the sensors. Lesson learnt, dont buy cheap sensors (but i did have no other choice, couldnt get any locally/quickly)

 

Im still...nervous about the car, i wont be doing any long journeys in it for a while until i regain confidence in it. Id also like to spray some more contact cleaner into the sensor plugs as id ran out and i can see more dirt/oil/grime in them, but if thats all this was.......

 

One super useful resource i found. ALmost all of the sensors and some of the electrics on most Nissan's are made by Hitachi Automotive. It would have been cheaper to get the sensor directly using Hitachi's parts code rather than  Nissans part code. All Nissan do is purchase the parts, do some quality assessment and add their stamps onto it. Take a look at the (very large) pdf for everything from these sensors, to throttle bodies.

 

http://www.hitachi-automotive.us/download/catalog/currentcatalog/hitachinoamericacatalog.pdf

 

The 350z parts start on page 309 :)

Edited by cs2000
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Fantastic news pal and very glad you sorted the issue in the end. More banks, more sensors, more problems. 

Edited by davey_83
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crank sensors are or can be temperamental mybe removing it and putting it back in helped but thats just a guess, also cleaning them may have helped, best thing is keep an eye on it for a few days.

 

Glad she is running aganin though :)

 

Got your PM will reply soon :)

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Yeah, it has me truly confused. I know the new sensors I got just were not correct, the car flat out through error codes with them, but the old sensors it didn't, odd!

 

Im going to get some more contact cleaner and really give them a good clean out. I believe the oil was actually from when I had the all too common spark plug O ring leak which I fixed a long time ago, I cant see any new sources of oil and that connector (Camshaft Bank 1) could have gotten dripped on over time I guess.

 

Still not 100% confident in the car, but did manage to take it on a short drive to the shops today, started up first time every time, so fingers crossed she's OK now :)

 

I can also code new keys to the NATS system with my new software, so that's something il be offering as a service ;) 

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