1996 Nissan Altima Stalling Out

Asked by Apr 06, 2015 at 04:39 PM about the 1996 Nissan Altima GXE

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Hello folks. First timer here. I have a 96 Altima that has given me nothing but a
massive headache. From the start, about a year ago she wouldn't start on her own, but
could be push-started. After much trial and error and a bought and returned starter, I
discovered it was the Clutch Position Sensor. Now, a month ago, she started giving
me (almost) the same problem. She won't start, can be push-started, and I can hear a
click that sounds like it's coming from the starter. I've tried tapping the starter to no
avail. Once I get her push-started, it craps out every time I downshift or slow down. I
just went less than a mile today and had to restart her by popping the clutch 4 times
before getting stuck in a parking lot. I'm pretty handy, but pretty broke as well. I'm
thinking it may the the ICM or ignition switch, but I'm not sure and can't afford to
purchase a whole new electrical system for it. Any ideas?

9 Answers

I should add that I've checked the OBD and there are no codes, no engine light.

Hey @Reelin68, (not seeing your answer on site for some reason?) Thanks for the suggestion and link. I've checked all the relays and fuses, but I have not yet checked to ensure the starter is receiving the start signal (per the below link). I should also add that the battery is fine (won't jump & push-starts fine) and that I've also tried bypassing the safety switch altogether. I need to wait for my bro to get off work to go get the car and I'll give the Throttle Body and MAF a good cleaning. Are these two different cleaners? Thanks again for the help. http://troubleshootmyvehicle.com/nissan/2.4L-2.5L/how-to-test-the- starter-motor-2#2

@Reelin68 Sweet, thank you. I'll post an update tomorrow. That'd be a blessing if it's something as simple as a quick cleaning! Keeping my fingers crossed.

Cleaned the Throttle body and MAF today as well as the (heavily corroded) EGR valve (used carb cleaner for EGR). Unfortunately I wasn't able to push-start down my driveway, probably due to the cleaner--I hope- -so not sure if it helped. But, the bottom is where I needed her anyway. Going to jack her up and check for start signal tomorrow.

35,805

Pop your cap off the distributor. Look inside. Is there oil inside? Been doing a little research, and a common problem with the no start is due to the oil seal on the distributor shaft. It fails and oil gets up into the distributor causing the no start condition. Check your PCV valve also.

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Got her started today with a couple blasts of WD-40 in the throttle. Took on a test drive through the neighborhood and try as I might, I wasn't able to get her to stall out. Still wouldn't feel comfortable without the starting issue taken care of. Never stalls when you want it to! Waiting for a dry day to come so I can crawl under and test starter. Haven't looked at the distributor cap yet, but had that same problem with my old Honda; moisture getting into it. I'll get to that today. As for the PCV, I looked everywhere when I was doing the EGR, and I'm not sure it has one?? Cannot find it anywhere. I figured that maybe since it had an EGR it doesn't have a PCV? Are they the same thing? I don't know enough about it. I should also correct my year--95 rather than 96--not sure if that makes a difference. Your last answer finally appeared, I hope I can get you some rep! You've been a huge help! re: PCV, I've got a Link to my engine if you could give me an idea where to look for it: http://www.tamparacing.com/forums/attachments/cars-sale- wanted/48361d1114743821-1995-altima-gxe-sale-100_0059.jpg

35,805

PCV location: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZT-iRh7oBio

1 out of 1 people think this is helpful.

Well, I see why I couldn't find that thing! Got the PCV taken care of, checked distributor cap; looked dry, though the valve cover gasket is leaking bad right around it. Starter is getting start signal, so picking up a new one today or Sunday and I ought to be set. So far I've taken her around daily and haven't had a stall yet. Thank you again for your help!! :)

35,805

Not a problem!

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