2002 Nissan Sentra


Claudoa Allen

November, 15, 2009 AT 9:54 AM

Transmission problem
2002 Nissan Sentra 4 cyl Two Wheel Drive Automatic 26,000 miles

I am the person who asked about the fluids leaking because my son hit something in the road. I am trying to determine if it is safe to drive to a mechanic. I received an answer that it should be safe if we topped off the fluids.

I forgot to mention that when I first tried to check the engine oil level, the handle of the dip stick came off in my hand and while trying to retreive it with needle nose pliers, it fell down into the shaft. Needless to say, now I can't reach it. What do I do now? I know I can just add 3 quarts of oil and drive to mechanic, but does anyone know what I do about the " lost" dip stick? If it dropped all the way down, is it in the engine now? Can it stay there and just buy another dip stick to use from now on or does it need to come out and what does that entail?

I made a donation with my original question and got an answer from one of your pros. I hope the same man will see this additional question and get back to me. Thanks!


3 Answers



November, 15, 2009 AT 12:50 PM

Hi Claudoa Allen,

You should have replied to the previous post so that I can get back to you once notification is received.

The dipstick would stay stuck in the dipstick passage and would not fall into the oil sump compartment unless force is applied to it to push it down so you need not worry for now. However it has to be removed to allow the new dipstick to be inserted. The dipstick tube can be removed from outside to allow the inner piece that has fallen to be retrieved. That job can be done by the mechanic.


Claudoa Allen

November, 15, 2009 AT 5:15 PM

Thanks for both answers. I don't really know how to use this site. I have been working on this car all day. I bought oil and poured it in to try to find the leak. All of the oil leaked out and all I could determine is that it is coming from up higher than my hand could reach from under the car. Now I don't know if the problem was caused by my son hitting something in the road or not. My son said that he definately hit something and oil immediately started to come out, but that seems like the hole should be right on the underneath surface. Any ideas? I pour transmission fluid in also and a little bit leaked out, but all I did was start the car to check the dip stick and it didn't really get hot. Will the transmission fluid begin to leak again when the car is driven and warms up? I hope this is the way to correspond with you.



November, 16, 2009 AT 7:44 AM

Yes, this is the correct way to correspond but sorry for the delay in replying.

The only place for oil to leak when oil is being topped up would be the oil sump. There is a possibility the leak is at the side of the oil sump on the front of engine. If it is a flying debris, it can hit higher than the bottom part. The only way to have a visual of the location is to lift the vehicle up and put on stand so you can crawl under it.

If there is any leaks from the transmission, it would most probably leak if it there are any faulty seals, broken hoses and damage to housing.

Under such circumstances, if you are not able to check, verify and at least temporarily patch the leaks, the next option is to get it towed to the mechanic to avoid damage to the engine.

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