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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
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Having a rough 48 hours.

Have a 2006 Nissan Xterra, SE 175K miles.

Back in September, I had serious misfiring that led Check Engine Light and me having to do an emergency dealership fix which cost me an atrocious amount for Coil Ignitions and Spark Plugs... After the fix, the truck was okay until the Engine Light came on again, diagnosed it and they didn't plug the harness all the way in for two Coil Ignitions!! My Check Engine light came on and about a week to two weeks later.

Well, I have been driving since that time with no issues and this week, I noticed two days ago a very different feel to my truck. I have lost power/acceleration above 2000k/40MPH and have what sounds like a very loud fan blowing air when trying to accelerate. I believe this sound is possibly backpressure from clogged cats? I never ended up doing anything with the Cats when they did the Coil Ignitions/Spark Plugs as it appeared my truck was resolved.

All of this led me to getting under the truck last night and look around. I was disappointed to see that no holes in my cats or exhaust existed, except for a little loose connection on one of the exhaust joints.

I was in the hood and discovered that my Cold Air Intake Filter had been rubbing on my radiator hose and wow, it has put a gaping hole and slit into my Filter which has been sucking particles into my vehicle for God knows how long. Honestly, it has has been a long time since I changed the filter and I have no idea how long it has been like this, not good...

So clearly you can see I have a potential for some seriously bad things happening. I replaced the Cold Air Intake Filter, cleaned the Mass O2 sensor and tried to clean some of the fine dust inside the tube...my brother will be taking everything apart in the coming week to replace the Valve Covers and Gaskets (they have been spewing oil for quite some time) so we will further clean what we can, sea foam etc.

Also in this moment, when I was doing the filter, I noticed a black hose near the oil dip-stick, that I thought was plugged into something...but was not, it's a hose just chilling out, I have NEVER noticed this hose and have no idea where it goes!!!! Is it a breather tube, I didn't see anything obvious?

I panicked last night and ordered a cheap, 4 Cat system from Ebay. I'm going to order o2 Sensors all around from Rock Auto (Bosh, NTK or equivalent) and I'm hoping this clears my Check Engine Light and gets me power again.

I am more concerned about the dust that has been sucking into my engine so we shall get everything cleaned up when the Valve Covers come and replace the gaskets...

I can't afford a new car or a used car being marked up more than 25%, so I gotta keep my truck going and do everything I can.


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while the hole in the intake is concerning, I dont think that is causing the p0430. its most likely the cats. once a coil goes bad it allows gas to get into the cat(s) and essentially ruins them prettty quick.

I had the same thing happen, replaced the primary cat with a cheap one from amazon, and it only lasted like 20k miles, if that. I replaced it with a walker brand carb compliant this time, hopefully it lasts longer.

I understand where your at, just be aware, cheap cats wont last long at all.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Brunner- thanks, don't remember seeing it, but it looks like it popped out from where it was secured.

MTN- I'm gonna have the trucked scanned within in an hour. Those were the initial codes back in September, have not checked since!

I know I'm taking a chance with this cheap Cats, I'm hoping to get more years out of my truck but I'm just trying to get something. Hopefully they will last me a little longer than. 20k.

Again, I can't afford another car at the moment.
 

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I know I'm taking a chance with this cheap Cats, I'm hoping to get more years out of my truck but I'm just trying to get something. Hopefully they will last me a little longer than. 20k.

Again, I can't afford another car at the moment.
There's a chance the cats might not work at all. I went with some cheap no-brand cats off Amazon, along with 4 new Bosch O2 sensors and my cat codes came back immediately and I can't get them to go away. Next step is to drop some money on the Walker cats, which I should have done in the first place. Instead I've wasted about $280 on the cats, about $200 on O2 sensors (which I'm sure are long fouled out by now), and another $260 in Doug Thorley secondary cat delete pipes (which are well made, but the rasp and simply awful, they sound horrible)...that's about $750 I spent trying to do things the "cheap" way. And I still have another $900 or so to spend on the Walker cats and new O2 sensors. It's been a hard lesson to learn, don't make my mistake. And all of that because I didn't want to drop over $1300 on OEM cats from Nissan, which I know would have fixed my problem. Sometimes going with the expensive OEM option is cheaper in the long run.


And as @mikidymac said, you're actually losing power with your current air intake set up. You're just sucking in hot air from the engine bay, hot air produces less power than cold air. Going back to the stock set up should be a noticeable improvement.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Okay, fair point on the hot air intake. The reality is. I did that a long time ago. Why I got rid of the stock setup is beyond me, but I'm done doing "mods" amd upgrades except to keep the truck going. I have been on this setup for probably over 5 years, so it's not like I just did this and things started to happen.

I mean, I may regret the cheap Cat purchase but I got a bit toasted last night, was trying to figure things and out and just went a certain direction. I may regret it, hopefully not.

I will order the Bosh O2 Sensors today. Probably should have ordered the Cats from RockAuto as well, but I did what I did. Hell, maybe I'll get into a slump tonight and order the set and return the other ones back to Ebay, the night is early...
 

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Its possible the P2A00 is bad 02 sensor - primary sensor - ie front - on bank 1. Get a Denso as their OEM - worth the money.

P0430 is bad cat on bank 2 most likely (drivers side).

Cancel your cat order on the cheap cats - your wasting your money. Buy one decent cat for the one that's throwing a code. Or gut that one until you can afford a better one if you must. You shouldn't need secondary cats ever really - so don't waste money there.

Then go to a junkyard and spend 10 bucks on the proper air intake. Seriously, not being flip. The OEM air intake works really well.

As for the dust in the engine - if it took in enough it will start burning oil. You'll likely know in the next 1000 miles or so - so keep an eye on the oil level. You don't know until you know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Lowcountry- thanks for the Denso point, will be adding to Rockauto tonight.

Unfortunately the Cats from Ebay were shipped, they do have a 30-60 day return window so I will absorb the advice and perhaps order tonight from Rockauto, proper, name brand Cats.

Related to this, my brother came to my shop tonight and he is busting out the original cats just to get them cleaned/cleared out so I don't get into anymore trouble driving. I'm not due for N inspection, so we'll be just fine until I figure out what I should with the Cats on order/will be ordering.

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
Thanks, it's my pride and joy :geek:

We ended up cutting driver side at the Flange, or between the flanges to cut the bolts but we still have to drill out the old corroded bolts etc...or so we thought.

Decided to do passenger side and just cut the damn pipe just behind the Flange. We'd be doing the same if not more work just to get rigged back to before Cats come. Yea, it's going to be super loud, and my wife will be pissed when I leave at 5 am for work but...shouldn't be more than a few days before we install real hardware.
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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
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We had a late night but very good work, we discovered that the Upstream Passenger Cat was shot. But we got the Cat cleared and drop the exhaust, perhaps not quite legal but at least I know I'm not sucking anything up into the engine.

Turns out the Driver Cats both Upstream and Downstream are okay.

Bulk of the labor done.

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...And as @mikidymac said, you're actually losing power with your current air intake set up. You're just sucking in hot air from the engine bay, hot air produces less power than cold air. Going back to the stock set up should be a noticeable improvement.
There's a caveat to an open filter vs a factory box filter.

The ideal modification to this would to have went with a less restrictive drop-in filter for the factory air box. However, in this instance if the drop-in filter was stock, the open air filter is likely a better mod as long as the owner kept the air tubes directing fresh air from the outside into the factory air box in place. If you live in an area where there's traffic and you're always stuck in it, then your engine is probably heat soaking when you're stuck in traffic with the open air filter solution. Just depends where you live.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Barely idle. I drive on highway, 50 miles a day so plenty of movement.

I'll figure it out, I'll 3D Print or machine a bracket, or go stock.

More to come this week.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 · (Edited)
Question, as of now I only have my Upstream cats installed, one we think is okay (driver) and one that is gutted and cleared (passenger) , clearly what has been the cause of my issues.

Is it necessary two plug back in the rear o2 Sensors and zip tie them until I finish this job? One of the rear sensors could be bad(or it could be the upstream one), our assumption is that it is all driver side only since the front Cat was clearly damaged, clogged.

Just want to know if I should waste any time this morning trying to get the o2 Sensors off the rear Cats and plugging them back in and zip tieing them. They obviously won't be installed into any cats since I'm waiting on parts.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
I went for a test drive. Not sure I'm going to be able to drive like this for a couple of days.

I can't get very much speed/power and just feel like my engine is gonna rip off the mounts (sarcastic) but man, not sure I can actually drive with just the front cats...
 

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I went for a test drive. Not sure I'm going to be able to drive like this for a couple of days.

I can't get very much speed/power and just feel like my engine is gonna rip off the mounts (sarcastic) but man, not sure I can actually drive with just the front cats...

I would recommend at least getting a cheaper primary cat on each bank. the engine is designed with those as a critical component. the rear ones are not as critical and really all that does is make it sound louder and raspier when they are gutted or removed.

and yeah the ecm is going to want to see all 4 o2/ AF sensors plugged in and reporting within range or its going to throw a code and mess with the fuel trim. I notice once the p2a00 is triggered, the engine has less power.

im dealing with cat issues myself. just replaced the pass primary cat and sensor and still getting p2a00 which i hopefully fixed today by sealing up an exhaust leak at the exit flange of the primary cat.
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
MTB- Both my primary cats are installed, except the passenger was internally gutted because it was clearly the Cat that was damaged.

Rear Cats are removed along with the entire exhaust. But this morning I did install the rear sensors.

I'm a bit worried driving my commute tomorrow, I gotta take it slow and ease into the speed. I might be in "limp mode"... but I did disconnect my battery.

Ordered 4x Denso Sensors.

Here are what the rears looked like, left is Driver side (those cats should be okay). The right is Passenger, again, the front Cat was busted.

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so are you saying there is nothing after the primary cats, one of which is gutted? no pipe or anything?

i wouldnt drive like that at all really, except to move it around in my drive way.
 
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