2000 Nissan Xterra repair shop

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2000 Nissan Xterra 4 cyl Four Wheel Drive Automatic 140000 miles

I recently took my truck in for an oil change and 21 point inspection. The mechanic came back to me with a bunch of repairs he had suggested. I wanted to see which of these were high priority and how much I should expect to pay for the repairs. First he says the radiator hoses are soft and suggests flushing or repairing and he also says there's a possible coolant leak (but wouldn't I see coolant leaking from my car?); Also there is a wheel bearing loose and that I should replace or repack; the exhaust is rusted and broken; he also says there are leaks and that I should power wash to pin point leaks (i'm not sure if he meant in the transmission or what- but I think it was transmission); and he suggests front and rear differential services. There are a lot of issues that sound like they need to be fixed, but I have a very tight budget and don't want to get into repairs that aren't completely necessary or may cost more than I can handle. Please help me!

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Sunday, November 16th, 2008 AT 7:05 PM

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First, please help me out here; I am a little confused on the engine and if the vehicle is 2 or 4WD. Only the XE Model 2WD comes with a 4 cylinder. So here are the choices - if you need to get back with me please make sure we have the correct engine.

1. Xterra SE 2WD 6 cylinder 3.3L
2. Xterra SE 4WD 6 cylinder 3.3L
3. Xterra XE 2WD 4 cylinder 2.4L
4. Xterra XE 2WD 6 cylinder 3.3L
5. Xterra XE 4WD 6 cylinder 3.3L

Okay, well let's go over a few things to get them in order. I will rank what I think - put a note of why and you take it from there.

1. Wheel bearing
a. Safety item. This could heat up and come apart and cause extensive damage and possible accident. That would be number one. But with 140,000 have them all repacked/replaced. They all have 140K on them.
2. Coolant leak
a. Only if this is a problem. Are you loosing antifreeze? Is there antifreeze on the ground under the car after it sits or dripping out when running? Do you see any evidence or did he point out where it was leaking from?
3. Exhaust - rust problem
a. Depends on where. Did he say where it was? Any exhaust leak needs to be fixed. Depending on where the carbon monoxide is leaking it can make you sick, sleepy etc when driving. If it is a small hole in the muffler, then it isn't that major. Yet.
4. Radiator hoses
a. You don't want them to burst or split on you. Then you are stranded. He didn't sound like it was going to happen this second. But hoses are not that much and with 140K, it is a good idea.
5. Front/Rear differential service
a. Did he say why? This is not that expensive and can be done at some oil change places for not that much. Good to check.
6. Flush
a. Did he say why? If the car is not running hot, the heater is running fine then yes, this would be nice to do - but if you are tight and you don't have an issue. Then put money aside for it.
7. Leaks - transmission/engine
a. Leaks can show you have a problem or are starting to get a problem. So look under the car when it has been sitting and see what is there. Oil, antifreeze, transmission fluid etc. Unless something is running out then just keep an eye on this for major problems.

As you see - some of these depend on if you have a problem and how bad it is. So it may change on the list up or down. Not being able to see makes a difference. Example, the exhaust leak. If your pipe was cracked under the car before the muffler then that moves to number 2. If it just looks bad, the muffler has external rust and a few small holes, that is only the outside part and you still have time and that could even move to number 8. But again, not being able to see these things you will have to look and take it from there.

Just for general info since it is getting colder now, you could go to Auto Zone or O'Reilly's and for FREE they can pull the codes to the car. This way you can see if you have a problem starting and add that to the list depending on what it is before you are stranded and this is a free check. If you do need to get back with us, then most important: Once they check your codes, if they find something and you don't get it fixed and need to get back with us, please make sure you tell us exactly what the code was, number and all. Example, if the code was E0568 O2 Sensor bad. Then make sure you give us all of that. Also, while there for FREE also they can bring their tester out and check your battery, alternator and starter. That way if they say your battery isn't going to last at all, that becomes number 1 on your list.

I hope this helps - feel free to get back with us.

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Sunday, November 16th, 2008 AT 7:46 PM

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