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Mike V.
Mike V., Nissan Technician
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 24387
Experience:  Nissan factory trained and Certified Subaru Technician.
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I have a 2000 Xterra with a weird issue. I was driving home

Customer Question

I have a 2000 Xterra with a weird issue. I was driving home (about 20-25 minutes). I was almost home when the temperature gauge just spiked out of nowhere. The air started blowing hot and as I started to pull over, the gauge dropped back to normal and the air started blowing cold again. I drove the 2 miles home but as I started to pull in to my subdivision, I noticed it running rough. When I got home there was antifreeze all over the outside of the car. I checked what I could (after it cooled) - it looked like the seal on the radiator cap was corroded really bad. I got a new cap, refilled the coolant, and started it up. It ran fine for like 20 minutes and then started running really rough for a minute and died. I've tried different things but I have repeated this process like three times now and every time it is the same. It starts fine, it runs perfect, and then like 20-25 minutes later it starts running rough and dies. Any ideas?
Submitted: 1 year ago.
Category: Nissan
Expert:  Mike V. replied 1 year ago.

Hi there,

Is the check engine light on when it's running and if it is do you know the code?
Also, is it still overheating or no?

Customer: replied 1 year ago.
I will have to check on the light when I get home tonight. The temp gauge does not go up past the half way point (which is where it usually runs). I do still get a little of the anti-freeze smell but I think that is just because anti-freeze sprayed all over the engine and as the engine gets hot, the smell is there.
Expert:  Mike V. replied 1 year ago.

That would be common to get the smell, so the truck hasn't been overheating on you at this point except for that first time then.

If the light is on then I think it's possible you are having a misfire issue. Basically this could be from the antifreeze soaking the spark plug wires. You might have an arcing condition if the wires are older. Let me know what you find and we can go from there. I am glad to hear it's not overheating at this point. That was a real concern for me because it could point to a bad head gasket.

Let me know.