Random "Slip" and "VDC OFF" "ABS" Lights 'ON' [Summarized] - Second Generation Nissan Xterra Forums (2005+)
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post #1 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-05-2011, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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Post Random "Slip" and "VDC OFF" "ABS" Lights 'ON' [Summarized]

spinoff from thread Random "Slip" and "VDC OFF" lights on w

Well, I saw the 23 page 5 year old thread and a few others so I pulled out possible symptoms and cures many people have relayed on the Slip / VDC / ABS lights

IPDM-ER is the (Intelligent Power Distribution Module in the Engine Room).

Failure Symptoms: Truck can be stuck in "limp mode", erratic flashing lights such as SLIP, 4WD, ABS, Check engine etc., and most importantly the engine dies and can only be restarted after some time!... :smt005
New reports are also showing Titans that won't start up from cold due to a failed IPDM-ER.

Don't look for warning lights or codes to assist you for the diagnosis of a failed IPDM-ER board however there is a "Auto Active Test" feature you can perform easily:
1- Turn the ignition switch on
2- Press the door light activator switch in 10 times........notice the open door light on the dash will flash each time you press the switch.
3- Turn the ignition switch Off then back ON.
4- The horn will beep, oil light will flash, the defroster will cycle, headlights will flash, cooling fan will cycle, wipers will come on and ac compressor will cycle if the IDPM-ER is functioning "NORMAL".

pull the ABS fuse

As part of the alignment, if you want your VDC system to operate optimally, you should have both the steering angle and decel G sensors zeroed. The steering angle sensor provides one of the inputs to the VDC system. Assuming that the ABS connector is OK, I suspect this sensor is causing your VDC/SLIP woes.

Catching up as well - I changed out my stop lamp switch and it has fixed everything. I guess the switch going bad was causing my vdc off/slip lights to come on. I picked up a switch from the dealer for $30 and replaced it myself. Easy/cheap fix.

If you read the manual it advises how to reset it, basically drive above 15mph for 1 mile or somethin like that. I read somewhere once that if your wheels aren't straight when you start the engine that can trigger the sensors to think something is up!

Multiple solutions. It could be a number of things.

Low brake fluid
Leaky radiator
worn pads
pressure sensor.

Happened to me today, too. SES, VDC OFF, and SLIP light were on for about a 20 min. drive home. Turned it off and restarted with only the SES light on now. Its happened before, and the SES light stayed on for a few days and then went off. I figured that I had the gas cap on wrong or something. Seems that I have read somewhere about that issue, too (causing the SES light to come on, but not the others). I took the gas cap off and put it back on with about 5 clicks. We'll see what happens.

UPDATE: Went to scheduled dealer service appointment today. All subject dash lights were still "on". After 2 hours trouble-shooting with Nissan Help Tech via phone, it was accertained that the ABS Control Unit was inoperable. So part has been placed on order and will be installed upon arrival

UPDATE: Went to dealer for a scheduled service appointment today to replace the inoperable ABS Control Unit.

Part Number that was actually replaced was; 47660ZP30C, (Electrical - Abs components - Actuator assy - W/traction control), 4WD 2005 - 2006. Unit cost $1,007.01, but luckly it was covered by the warranty.

Looking at the owner's manual. It says if you leave your key in the ON position for more than 2 min's it could cause that to happen. Or if you're driving in some slipper conditions that could trigger it also. OR if you took off your negative battery cable, that could trigger it also. (just repeating what I read in the manual)

Alright... for my ABS, VDC OFF, SLIP lights in the dash...


The dealers replaces my front hubs on Dec 11th 2006 and the problem didn't came back yet!

Evidently, all of the codes are originating from the locker parts, be it electrical or mechanical. That's why they are looking at that first. The locker does not work either so it's a good place to start I guess.

Mine came back from the dealer this morning. They claim it was a dirty connector for the Diff Lock...Cleaned it and were done...we will see if the lights come back on.

We have heard of this in the past. Tell them to triple check the new axle before they begin. Nissan sent some other dealer (NJ if I recall) the wrong gear ratio for the same fix and thus created a nightmare. Maybe they learn from mistakes, maybe they don't. Just mention it so they will feel like an ass if it does go south and take responsibility for the mistake.

After 4 weeks and 4 visits, finally had my VDC/SLIP problem fixed last week! I told them that I know for a fact that many people have similar problems and they should have some knowledge on how do deal with it and all of a sudden they did. I was told that the steering wheel angle sensor was misaligned, hence the problem

Update! They had to reclibrate my steering angle to accomodate my lift.

My light went on a couple of month ago after the dealership replaced an Airbag clip..and because the steering wasnt adjusted properly the vDC light went on...until the steering was adjusted and since then no light...

On my '07 with 2000 miles I had the same problems that everyone described, with the addition of the speedo not working and the LCD for the 4WD status blanked out. I disconnected the battery for about 36 hours, and before re-connecting I had a really good look at all of the ground screws that I could find. I discovered that the ground screw on the drivers side fender that is directly below the air intake was finger tight. There are three gounds on the drivers side fender, and none were very tight from the factory. All of them are grounding small wires (like sensors or electronics).

In the end, with everything tight, I hooked up the battery and I'm back in business. I was pretty nervous about the problem, since we are taking off for a 7500 mile road tripp in two weeks. I'll post if the problem returns.

Nissan North America, inc. announced this week that they will be recalling certain models of the 2008 Nissan Xterras due to brake effectiveness. On Certain Sport Utility Vehicles, the antilock brake system/vehicle dynamic control (ABS/VDC) actuator is designed with one ball in the valve section. Some ABS/VDC actuators were manufactured with more than one ball in the valve.

What can happen in ABS/VDC actuators with more than one ball, it is possible that fluid flow could be blocked and cause a reduction in brake force in one or both front wheels or Affect operation of the ABS AND/OR VDC. This could result in a reduction in brake effectiveness without warning increasing the risk of a crash.

This recall covers Xterras with the manufacturer dates of 10-19-07 thru 10-29-07. Dealers will replace the ABS/VDC actuator with a new one. the recall is expected to begin on or about Novembver 17, 2007. Owners may contact NISSAN at 1-800-647-7261.

UPDATE: after reading the repair order and misinterpreting the bad phone explanation...it was the brake pedal switch going intermittent. The system needs to see a brake pedal switch and brake fluid pressure switch on at the same time or it will declare a fault.

I had the VDC-OFF and SLIP lights come on soon after initial purchase. Each time I returned to the dealer, a different part was replaced (ABS sensor, yaw (VDC) sensor, the computer they speak to, etc. Finally, the Nissan escalation techs that were brought into the issue told the dealer techs that all of the related parts had been replaced, so there was only one part left - the wiring harness that they all communicate with. This appears to be caused by a bad run of harnesses, which can corrode (?) And yes, it CAN be triggered by an overnight cold snap. No trouble since then.

The dealer said that there is a bad tail lamp connection which is falsing abs codes due to it's self check monitoring brake lamp current rather than some other input. loose light = slip/vdc light. I guess I might need to start thinking about getting a good scan tool..could have saved me a trip.

Happened to me too I think it has something to with the gas cap. One day filled the X went home parked the X went to the store then VDC/Slip light came on. I looked at the manual, the manual said check the gas cap. Took the gas cap off then tightened it up light went off the next day. Checked the codes nothing to be found. Has never happened after that day.

I had the VDC Off and Slip lights come on on Sunday. On Monday I went to the dealer, and they said the OBD was throwing the C1163 and C1143 codes, but there did not seem to be a problem so they reset it the computer.

Today I found an interesting service bulletin, NTB08-027, at the x.nissanhelp.com site:


This bulletin mentions that C1143 is ST ANGLE SEN CIRCUIT and C1163 is ST ANGL SEN SAFE. There is a detailed procedure for diagnosis of the problem and what they need to replace.

I had the VDC, SLIP, ABS and brake light come on when I bought my X in January. I was on my way home from buying it when it came on. It had 15 miles on it. After 4 trips to the dealer they replaced the ABS sensor 2 times, Adjusted the Sterring angle sensor 2 times then fianl replaced that sensor after that failed. All seems to be good now...knock on wood


Default Ntb08-027
A new entry has been added to Knowledgebase

VDC & SLIP LIGHT ON & DTC C1143, C1144, C1156, C1163
The VDC and SLIP lights are ON, and one or more of the following DTCs are stored in the ABS control unit:

To check it out, rate it or add comments, visit NTB08-027
The comments you make there will appear in the posts below.

the dealer checked it and reset it but said if it continues it needs to be replaced. it is $1300 to fix. I think that the more bulletins or owners that have issues with it, the faster it may become a recall. $1300 for a sensor is crazy. Mine continues to do it but only around tight corners, not all the time like before. But it is still doing it whereas it didnt used to do it on these corners. Take that bulletin, and keep updated. That is what I did for the fuel sensor and they fixed it for free after a bit of research on my part.

I came across this thread while searching for something else, but here's what I know...

I took my X to the dealer yesterday for this same problem and I was on my way back off the lot with the problem fixed within 10 minutes. The service manager said that those lights come on to indicate that you need to reset your center steering point (the new x's use sensors to do the alignment now, so you don't need to put it up on a rack to align the vehicle). He plugged in that diagnostic computer thing, and we drove down the lot in a straight line for about 100'. That's it. The lights went off immediately and I haven't seen them since. Hope this helps!

My VDC OFF and SLIP lights have been on for 4 days now after installing a new radio. Not anymore. Thanks! Turning off the car with the steering wheel straight ahead, starting it up and driving straight for about 5 seconds did the trick! I had read the user manual's instructions but they do not emphasize that the key is starting the car with the wheel straight. I was backing out of my driveway and then trying to dive straight for 10 minutes. What a waste, the true fix only took about 20 seconds!

Yeah, thats great but that fix only works if your lights are on due to disconecting the battery. Dont confuse that with those of us who have f&*@ed up trucks the dealers cant seem to fix. Trust me, I know how to read the owners manual and tried the above fix, and i am sure the dealer did too...three trips later and no permanent fix yet. Now they are trying to tell me its my BFG Mud terrains even though they are the same size as stock and the problem started the day after I bought this dung pile before I even put the tires on. This is my first, and maybe last nissan vehicle. Too bad, I love it in all other ways.

Last edited by jawz101; 05-05-2011 at 06:49 PM.
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post #2 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-05-2011, 06:32 PM Thread Starter
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part 2

this is jeepman1 and I also had this problem because of the lift kit from prg. The switch needs to be recalabrated due to the new suspension. I took it to the nissan dealer and they recalabrated the switch. Problem solved.

I have 33" tires, lift, shrocks, etc. and my dealer didn't care. They're really good to me. Those of you who are having issues that further require dealer assistance, I recommend that you look for another Nissan dealership if they want to charge you for this crap.

The fact is, reguardless of what type of vehicle you buy, every dealer is going to treat you differently. Unfortunately, some of us live closer than others to a good dealership, but once you find the one that will take care of you, it's probably worth your time and gas spent getting there.

The tech who hooks me up with my diagnostic and clears my X's system errors told me that the distance you have to drive can vary for the reset. He said that it's usually around 100', but can be anywhere from 50' to 500'. Yes, the distance you drive needs to be pretty straight, so make sure you're in a parking lot or a low traffic road. Also be sure to stop and restart the engine before you take off (I think the restart initiates a self-diagnostic on the Xterra and driving the straight line is the self-fix).

WARNING - When my tech hooked up the diagnostic PC to my truck, he could see a LOT of data. He said they wouldn't hold it against me or tell my insurance company anything, but I don't know that all Nissan techs and service departments are as laid back as mine. Some things displayed on the diagnostic were top speed, highest camber tilt (I had a 28 degree tilt!), impact data, high speed turns, and it even displays when you were and weren't wearing your seat-belt (I'm sure there is plenty more). All these events have a date and time stamp with them too. Reguardless of the fact that my truck was without power for a period of time, all the data was still saved. Be careful, guys.

X Ghost in the cluster

I agree with Dougw113. The VDC off light usually comes on during a system reset, wich usually means that your battery and alternator have stopped giving the X's computer power for a period of time.

A couple months ago, my alternator went bad and my battery powered my X for almost 80 miles before I fully realized what was going on. The symptoms that it produced were almost identical to yours.

I'd put good money down that says your alternator or an alternator related part is going out and may have already done so. AND, I doubt that the weather and VDC have little to do with your issue. Get your rig to a dealership ASAMFP, get a rental car from them (these fixes usually take at least one day), and plan for the worst. You may consider talking to your insurance company about comprehensive coverage in case Nissan won't cover the parts under warranty. I did that and it saved me about $1200.

The 2nd gen Xterra's alternator sits so low to the ground and right next to the wheel well... And with no splash guard or anything. I sincerely believe that the alternator is the Achille's heel of the new Xterra.

Well here is an update on my delema... thanks to all of your posts,and links the Judge ruled in my favor. The dealer could NOT and did not say we caused this problem. It goes to show you that with the right amount of paper work, we can win. I would still like to know what and why that happened. But her fix, from the dealer was to replace all (4) speed sensors, not the module, steering angle sensor, or from a very early post ,,feed it beer.Good luck to all of you with this problem.If I get any more info I'll post it up...Thanks for all the help..

APPLIED VEHICLE: 2008 Xterra (N50)
APPLIED VINs: 5N1AN08**8C 509334 - 510973

Nissan has determined that the Anti-lock Brake System/Vehicle Dynamic Control
(ABS/VDC) actuator in some 2008 Xterra vehicles may not have been manufactured
properly. This could cause a reduction in brake force to one or both front wheels without
warning, and could result in a crash. To prevent this potential condition, Nissan is
conducting a Voluntary Safety Recall Campaign to replace the ABS/VDC actuator with a
new one at no cost for parts or labor

took my car in for this problem like 4 times to dealer.. they changed the entire instrument cluster, changed the abs actuator assembly.. and changed the sensors on each wheel.. at the end they realized that the problem was the steering wheel angle sensor which had to be re-programmed.. after that all is good.. haven't gotten any lights back until I lifted my suspension 2", had new wheel alignment and bam! the lights came on again.. so I took to dealer and they reset the steering wheel angle sensor again and I'm back to normal.

I have been battling this problem on and off for the past 6 months. I had a bad ABS sensor in the rear passenger side. It was replaced and the problem went away for a while.

It came back again a couple of months ago and it seemed to have no rhyme or reason to it. It was very intermittent and, for the most part, it would go off the next time I started the X. When I was at the Rubicon a week ago, it came on and off on the trail. Finally, it just stayed on and would not go off.

The lights stayed on all the way back home (BC, Canada). I took it to the shop that had done the ABS sensor replacement. They tracked my problem down to the weatherproof connector on the ABS sensor. Apparently "weatherproof" does not necessarily mean mud, rock, stream, etc. proof. Nissan does not sell the connector separately. They want me to buy the entire assembly.

My solution was to just get a generic weatherproof connector and solder it in to the existing wires. This seems to have resolved my problems. I have not had the lights go on since I took it in for repair.

The moral of this story - do not just start replacing expensive components (ABS controller, sensors etc) when it may be a simple electrical problem that can be resolved with a $10 part.

check brake fluid, if its not up to line go get dot 3 fluid fill it up drive for a couple miles itll go away. This happened to me and i did this and it worked. I did have to go to dealership and they found a leak somewhere and covered it all for free.

OMG, had a Land Rover, bought an X and still it sounds like THE THREE AMIGOs may re-visit me sometime in the future!!
Had these same lights on wife's Quest and it was just break fluid.
Unfortunately, these 3 lights (same on Landrovers) can be due to allsorts of things - ABS sensors, brake fluid, brakes etc. However the internitent lights (as my Landrover) was due to corroded contacts in the ABS modulator. The Nissan ABS modulator looks just the same. The same fault hapers in Hummers. there is a fix to short out theses contacts (on both Hummer and LR forums)

I've been visited by the electrical apparitions now too. DIFF LOCK/VDC OFF lights come on after about 20 min of driving, then 10 -15 min later the diff lock light turns off, but the VDC OFF light stays on, and ABS, SLIP also come on.

Took it to the dealer to see what was up, they say i need a new rear diff/axle and I'm out of warranty by TWO months. Called nissan expressing my dissatisfaction and they are putting it under review...so my fingers are crossed.

I had the same problem as you, I also checked my brake fluid and it was at min. so i filled and have had no problem since.

You may need to perform an electronic exorcism.

I need a young priest and an old priest. The power of Christ compels you!

Nissan Technical Service Bulletin


--------- additional from safecar.gov

Make / Models:
Model/Build Years:

Service Bulletin Number:
NHTSA Item Number:


Make / Models:
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Last edited by jawz101; 05-05-2011 at 06:45 PM.
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post #3 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-17-2011, 08:59 PM
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I performed a search but could not find exactly what I had happen to me about an hour and a half ago.

Go to start my truck at my house...(I rarely drive it as I carpool) Got zero power, pop the hood and reseat the negative battery cable, power comes back...start the truck and notice the VDC and SLIP light are on...I drive it about 6 miles to my destination, park it and turn it off, lock it with my keyfob....10 minutes later come out, unlock truck with keyfob plenty of battery power, go to start it and it just cranks normally put will not turn over.

I googled some things on my phone...reset the security system by locking and unlocking the doors using the key...reseated the battery cable again...nothing...It just will not start...(Has plenty of gas in it and I could smell some gas fumes from the engine bay indicating it is getting fuel) Finally had to have it towed to my house where it is now parked still not starting making me angry.

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post #4 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-28-2011, 07:16 PM
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I was having the same issue.

Nissan wanted to replace the rear diff first, then when they checked for metal and found none in the diff they wanted to replace the diff lock position switch.

They were quoting me ridiculous costs for doing the work (in the thousands), none of it under warranty, and so I decided to just wait and see what happened with it. It's been going on and off every once in a while, flickering for a short duration before staying on. Turning off the x and turning it back on fix it (sometimes). Then, three weeks back, the X wouldn't start. Wouldn't turn over, wouldn't do anything. Immediately I checked the battery and noticed that the positive terminal was a little loose. Tightened it up and the X started. It also had some corrosion on it that I've cleaned since. Also added some dielectric paste to the terminals to aid in conduction. Long story short, Just after nissan replaced my battery last year is when this stuff all started. My hunch was that it was battery related but they insisted (and i mean insisted) that the battery and the connections were not the issue. Since I've tightened up/cleaned the post and terminal I have had -0- issues. No more VDC/slip/abs lights coming on, at all. It makes perfect sense too since voltage drops could be responsible for making it appear as though switches were malfunctioning even though they were fine. It was also happening more over bumpy terrain.

So I think I'm going to write Nissan canada a nice long letter explaining how either 1. The dealership I'm dealing with is incompetent or 2. (worse) that the dealership I'm dealing with has been dishonest and trying to part me with my money.

To anyone else with this problem, it MAY not be it, but check those terminals.
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post #5 of 31 (permalink) Old 07-28-2011, 09:28 PM
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I get the same lights - I'm in the orginal thread somewhere - and see no difference. My truck is a 2006 and now throws the light about once a year or so. Not a big deal in my mind.

Shrockworks Sliders/Skids/Diff/Bumpers, fwd: ICON 2.5, aft: AC Shackles/Deaver mini-pack/Bilstien 5125s, V1, Garmin 660, Delorme PN-40, Ultragauge, Yaesu FT-8800, MileMarker SE12 w/fireline, BFG KM2's/17" MB 72, Engel 45, KC's, 338W of LED lights, custom: roof light bar and rack, fuel storage, pin striping, hi-lift, & camera mounts.
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post #6 of 31 (permalink) Old 08-03-2011, 04:01 PM
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Had the same issue with my lights coming on... Nissan found a bad switch in the differential (can't recall what it was offhand) but the entire differential was replaced. It started happening under warranty they noted that I had brought it in for the issue while it was under warranty. Finally found the problem but was out of warranty.... Nissan still covered it after a few days worth of phone calls. No problems since. Now I have a pesky O2 sensor that is bugging me!

The hell I don't! LISTEN, KID! I've been hearing that crap ever since I was at UCLA. I'm out there busting my buns every night. Tell your old man to drag Walton and Lanier up and down the court for 48 minutes.
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post #7 of 31 (permalink) Old 08-31-2011, 05:35 AM
Join Date: May 2010
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i have this problem. the ABS, Brake, VDC off, and slip lights are all illuminated on the dash. But driving home today the Service engine soon light turned on. i havent read about having abs, brake, vdc, slip and service engine light all on. Wondering if my trucks in deep trouble? Also i dont have warranty anymore so im kinda reluctant to take it to nissan. any advise?
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post #8 of 31 (permalink) Old 05-18-2012, 01:24 AM
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Had the ABS VDC and Slip lights come on today. Threw code c1104 (ABS sensor left front) the abs sensor line rubbed itself in two against the tire. Damn it to hell! Ended up connecting the two ends and works just fine!

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post #9 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-22-2013, 04:21 PM
2006 Xterra SE 4x4
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Location: Lramie, Wyoming
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I'm going through this problem right now ('08 SE). Got the Nisstech Radflow extended travel lift kit about 3 months ago. Haven't had a single problem with the lift (except it rides a little rough in the front and the "Slip" light flashes when I corner hard) And I haven't disconnected the battery or had any electrical problems.
In addition to to the ABS, VDC off and the "SLIP" lights being on I also have no rear brakes (Tested it on Ice) and it won't go into 4-wheel drive either.
Had been out busting snow drifts the day before but I can't find anything obvious under neath and brake fluid appears full.
Goes in the Shop tomorrow morning and I'm afraid they're gonna take me to the cleaners.
I did print this Page in hopes it'll save me some Diagnostics time.
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post #10 of 31 (permalink) Old 04-22-2013, 05:33 PM
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Check for bad/loose grounds around the engine bay.

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