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5th Generation Maxima (2000-2003) Learn more about the 5th Generation Maxima, including the VQ30DE-K and VQ35DE engines.

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Old 03-09-2010, 11:29 AM   #1
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car shut off driving yesterday, wont start, no power.

I assumed it was the alternator but now i dont know, car wont turn on, no power at all. I got a jump yesterday and the engine ran but when I hit the gas but it struggled and just shut back off. Someone told me it might be a sensor or the alternator just went bad. I have a 02 se with 160k on the clock.
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Old 03-09-2010, 11:35 AM   #2
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any codes? that would help..
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Old 03-09-2010, 12:03 PM   #3
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It could be your MAF ... I've replaced mine twice!!
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Old 03-09-2010, 12:18 PM   #4
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anyway I can check for codes myself?
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Old 03-09-2010, 12:25 PM   #5
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anyway I can check for codes myself?
you would need a OBDII reader or you could go to autozone
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Old 03-09-2010, 01:12 PM   #6
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No power meaning lights and other electronics don't work? If so it's def not the maf. Sounds like your alternator died and it killed/drained your battery. Try swapping in a battery that you know is good and starting the car. Then disconnect the ground and see if it keeps running. If it dies, your alternator is bad. If your alternator is good, you SHOULD be able to drive without battery once the engine is running
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Old 03-09-2010, 01:16 PM   #7
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Any blown fuses?
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Old 03-09-2010, 02:25 PM   #8
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hhhmmm struggling then shut off?


definitely sounds like the MAF sensor is the culprit. OR you might be getting unmetered air in.


if your ALT is bad you should be getting the battery & brake light on the dash
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Old 03-09-2010, 07:19 PM   #9
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I had a similar problem a couple months back. My 03 GLE shut off while I was driving (luckily I was on local streets and not the highway)---loss all power. Thought it was the alternator since I got a low voltage reading, so I changed it; but the same problem occurred a few weeks later. Did some research and found out that 5th gen maximas commonly have camshaft and crankshaft sensors that go bad (poor manufacturing from factory suppler) which causes the car to randomly shut down. Changed the sensors---it's been about 6 months---and everything runs great!
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Old 03-10-2010, 08:25 AM   #10
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Same thing here. I have an 00' GLE..I was driving (sitting in mcdonalds drive through actually) when the radio and heat shut off..then the gauges started going skitzo and had little to no throttle. I pulled in and parked the max and then it wouldnt start back up. It was real close to my house actually so I just walked home..later that day I jumped it and just barely got home before it started crappin out again. Tested the battery and it was fine. I replaced the alternator and haven't had any problems yet. But it still has have some funny electrical issues like when I turn the heat or AC on my headlights get dimmer.. or when i roll up/down the windows the headlights dim as well? hmmm.
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Old 03-10-2010, 12:44 PM   #11
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well i think the fuel pump is bad, when i turn the ignition the lights come on but no power . when i hit the gas the car just stalls and dies, engine struggles and shuts off. i also see alot of dirt in front of the engine like a build up of oil is there.

im a poor dude and the max isnt a poor mans car, might be in my best interest to get it running and selling the max. does anyone have triple aaa towing? tell me how many miles they tow and is it worth it?
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Old 03-11-2010, 06:40 AM   #12
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Let me see if I understand correctly:-
1) Turn the ignition
2) Give it 5 seconds; see if you can hear the fuel pump
3) Start the car
4) Let it idle for 10 seconds
5) Give gas - does engine die?
6) Repeat 1-4; put it in gear and try to drive - does engine die?

If engine dies as soon you try to move the car or with any load on the engine or if it dies if left idling, this does indicate that fuel pump is NOT running after the engine has started.

Fuel pump have cut-off mechanism which is bypassed when you crank (i.e. key is in the start position and/or ignition is turned on). As soon as the engine is started, there is a always some kind of logic in the system to stop the fuel pump if the computer *thinks* engine has stalled. This is so that when you crash the car, the computer wants to turn off the fuel pump even when the ignition key is on. Different cars use difference schemes to figure out if the engine is running. Some use alternator signal, some use cam signal, some use crank signal to assert if the engine is running. Few have inertia switch which gets tripped if you banged car in to solid object.

You should definitely have the check engine light ON during the car is running for a short while. You need to get the code before further diagnosis. If the engine starts every time but dies as soon as given gas or trying to move, then it is NOT the fuel pump per say but the logic which tells the fuel pump to cut out.

Maxima is one car which has very good reliability. Please name me another one which you think would be more reliable in the same mileage/year/price/performance category.

- Vikas

Last edited by sontakke; 03-11-2010 at 06:43 AM..
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Old 03-15-2010, 04:12 AM   #13
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sontakke View Post
Let me see if I understand correctly:-
1) Turn the ignition
2) Give it 5 seconds; see if you can hear the fuel pump
3) Start the car
4) Let it idle for 10 seconds
5) Give gas - does engine die?
6) Repeat 1-4; put it in gear and try to drive - does engine die?

If engine dies as soon you try to move the car or with any load on the engine or if it dies if left idling, this does indicate that fuel pump is NOT running after the engine has started.

Fuel pump have cut-off mechanism which is bypassed when you crank (i.e. key is in the start position and/or ignition is turned on). As soon as the engine is started, there is a always some kind of logic in the system to stop the fuel pump if the computer *thinks* engine has stalled. This is so that when you crash the car, the computer wants to turn off the fuel pump even when the ignition key is on. Different cars use difference schemes to figure out if the engine is running. Some use alternator signal, some use cam signal, some use crank signal to assert if the engine is running. Few have inertia switch which gets tripped if you banged car in to solid object.

You should definitely have the check engine light ON during the car is running for a short while. You need to get the code before further diagnosis. If the engine starts every time but dies as soon as given gas or trying to move, then it is NOT the fuel pump per say but the logic which tells the fuel pump to cut out.

Maxima is one car which has very good reliability. Please name me another one which you think would be more reliable in the same mileage/year/price/performance category.

- Vikas
As of right now the battery/alternator is completely dead. I signed up for Triple AAA and I'm towing it to my mechanic today, I will update when I hear something.
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Old 03-16-2010, 02:36 PM   #14
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my mechanic told me is the 2 front sensors, he told me he used the computer and it to him 2 front sensor were bad.
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Old 03-16-2010, 04:43 PM   #15
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Quote:
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my mechanic told me is the 2 front sensors, he told me he used the computer and it to him 2 front sensor were bad.

thats sounds pretty gray and not specific.


what 2 sensors?
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Old 03-16-2010, 06:12 PM   #16
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hey has this issue been solved yet? what happened?
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Old 03-16-2010, 08:00 PM   #17
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Well,

I'm waiting to hear back from the mechanic about the sensors, I told him to tell me what exactly the sensors are.

I will post back when I hear something.
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Old 03-16-2010, 08:19 PM   #18
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probably the crank and camshaft sensors
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Old 03-16-2010, 10:27 PM   #19
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Wait a second, what year Maxima are we talking about?
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Old 03-17-2010, 03:31 AM   #20
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Old 03-17-2010, 07:24 AM   #21
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I know its a unpleasant task but here's the 2002 Maxima factory service manual download link. The zip is password protected, use something similar to WinZip or 7z to open and extract the PDF files.

Read through or look up parts in the IDX file and read about how to test their functionality. This way you'll know the mechanic is right on or just trying to make money by replacing parts.

FSM download link http://www.mediafire.com/file/wqjn3k...a%20manual.zip
zip file password: http://forums.maxima.org
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Old 03-17-2010, 01:17 PM   #22
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Thanks, he says it's the alternator now....
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Old 03-17-2010, 08:45 PM   #23
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I'm not so sure, my old 240 had a bad alternator. I was still able to jump start it but the engine would stall after driving after a couple of minutes. Since the alternator was not charging the battery, I could not start the engine with the vehicle battery, I had to jump start it again.
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Old 03-18-2010, 06:07 AM   #24
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Thanks, he says it's the alternator now....
You have a *great* mechanic!

Seriously, this guy does not know what he is doing. Get it towed somewhere else where they know what they are doing.

- Vikas
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Old 03-18-2010, 06:20 AM   #25
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Easily the alternator... at least... You say when you turn your key, the lights came on. Were they dim?

Mechanics who "guess" are why I do my own work.

Make sure if you stay with this guy he has everything tested before its replaced.
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Old 03-18-2010, 06:20 AM
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