2001 Nissan Altima Speedometer cluster dead and car loosing

Tiny
CODING
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 NISSAN ALTIMA
2001 Nissan Altima 69000 miles

Sometimes, when I begin driving my car from work. When it is is very hot (the car has been standing outside in sun for long) weather, the speedometer cluster doesnt work. The car starts fine but the whole speedometer doesn't work. After some driving it starts working again. When the cluster is not working the car still runs ok but doesn't go beyond certain speed. Like not beyond 50 MPH

What could be the issue?
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Thursday, July 17th, 2008 AT 9:41 PM

8 Replies

Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Hi coding,

If the speedometer is not working, it could be due to the speed sensor being faulty.

A faulty speed sensor would cause a lot of erractic problem with the engine running. Get it checked out and replaced if necessary.
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Friday, July 18th, 2008 AT 5:10 AM
Tiny
CODING
  • MEMBER
Hi,

I apologize, I should have given a bit more details. The whole cluster - including - RPM gauge, Fuel Gauge, Temperature, Current mileage doesnt work when I turn on the ignition. The behaviour is when the car has been standing in sun for the whole day.

I took the car to a dealer and dealer change my speed sensor for 250 $ already (before contacting u guys) so, the fix you suggested has already been tried !

So, in details, when I turn on the ignition (after the car has been standing in sun for the day) the whole cluster is dead. When I turn the keys, I see other lights like SES, BRAKE, AirBag etc. As normal behavior, these lights go away after the car has been started (so, the car starts fine - but all of the cluster is dead). If I take the car to a freeway with this behavior the car starts loosing acceleration - as if there is some power loss, I still have control on Brakes - Steering. All other electronic works fine - AC / Radio / Power Window. Once I slow down, the car regains acceleration. After driving it for 5-10 miles the cluster turns back up - perfectly fine and then everything is perfect ! It doesn't go down again after it has came back up.
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Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008 AT 12:40 PM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Hi Coding,

I suspect this is a grounding issue and it would not be easy to solve as there are many areas to check.

I would suggest checking the grounds for the engine wire harness.

The fastest way to confirm it is to remove meter cluster and connect an additional ground wire to the cluster ground.
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Tuesday, July 22nd, 2008 AT 9:35 PM
Tiny
CODING
  • MEMBER
Great. I am with you, I also have an internal feeling that the car might be having some ground issue. My experience comes from a previous car I had in India which had similar problem and had ground issue.

Now, the bad news is that I have no clue of how to do what you said. Do you have any mechanic in your mind in NYC area where I can take the car and get it inspected?

After having spent 300$ (dealer's stupid resolution), I am still wiling to spend a bit to have it fixed. Its very scary to drive it when the speedometer is not working.

I appreciate your quick replies.

Thanks a ton ! You guys rock.
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Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008 AT 6:45 AM
Tiny
KHLOW2008
  • EXPERT
Hi coding,

Sorry I am unable to recommend anybody to you.

To do the job, an auto electrician should be able to do it.

One more thing that just cropped up my mind, it could also be a power supply problem and you need to test the ignition switch. It might have intermittent bad contacts.

If you are into DIY, you could try checking the grounds by testing the holding bolts. Especially those arould the inside of the engine compartment by the fenders.
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Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008 AT 9:06 AM
Tiny
CODING
  • MEMBER
Thanks for you advice. I will certainly get hold of someone to have this tested. I will also post back when I have it fixed :)
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Wednesday, July 23rd, 2008 AT 10:12 AM
Tiny
CONCORDCHICK
  • MEMBER
My car is doing the same thing and I've taken it to countless shops to try and be fixed but nobody can seem to figure out whats wrong with it. Have you figured out how to fix it yet?
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Thursday, July 24th, 2008 AT 3:02 PM
Tiny
SMM7E1DP
  • MEMBER
My Altima does the same thing the everything on the dashboard is out. Then when you take off a get to a certain speed(which I dont know what speed since my speedometer dosnt work) it starts to go putt putt the if you put it in neutral the back to drive it will be fine for a couple of minutes. WHAT THE HECK IS WRONG?Also when this problem started when you would hit the dashboard everything would come back on.
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Monday, September 8th, 2008 AT 1:44 PM

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