How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site.
    Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Jay Your Own Question
Jay, Nissan Technician
Category: Nissan
Satisfied Customers: 20259
Experience:  20+yrs experience with Nissan & Infiniti Trained & Certified.Currently still working for Dealer
Type Your Nissan Question Here...
Jay is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

I own 2004 Nissan Quest and I just fixed the timing chain

This answer was rated:

Hi Dan, I own 2004 Nissan Quest and I just fixed the timing chain ticking noise due to usual broken tensioner guide problem. However when I put back everything together, I am having P0011 and P0301 code showing up now. Any clue what could cause this ? I didn't have this problem before this fix procedure I performed. I am sure I must have messed something, but don't know where to start to pin it down

Hello my name is ***** ***** thank you for your question.

Did you disable the fuel system before starting the Van after you were done with the timing chain work?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
No I didn't. And don't know how to do it either.

Normally you pull the fuel pump fuse. Failure to do so could result in the engine jumping time since the tensioner have not built up oil pressure yet.

so at this point, you most likely jumped time. If you find it has jumped more than 3 teeth, you may have valve damage. At that point I would set all the timing chains and do a cylinder leak down before re-assembling.

If you have any more questions on this, please feel free to ask.

If not, and you're satisfied with my help, please Rate me. That is how I get credit for my work. I hope I have provided you with Excellent Service.

Thanks Jay!

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
do I have to take the timing cover off again to check if it has jumped the timing or teeth ?

Yes, Pull the fuel pump fuse first and let it stall. Then take it apart and recheck the timing. Once you make the adjustment and you put it back together, turn the engine over about 3 times for 5 second cranking to build oil pressure. Then insert the fuse and start it.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
But I didn't move any timing chain teeth, as the tensioner guide was broken, I replaced the guide & tensioner. Would it still cause jumping ?

If you did not disable the fuel system, the timing chain can jump time cause the tensioners have not built up oil pressure yet. So when it starts right up and fires, it jumps time.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Its a spring loaded tensioner, when I replaced it and removed the safety/locking clip, it didn't built tension in the chain, then I just put the crankshaft pulley and turned it a bit, then immediately the tensioner got completely expanded and the chain got all tight. I put back the cover with new gasket maker, and fortunately I cranked it 4-5 times without starting (as one of the ignition wire fuse wire was loose, if that helps). Then once I figured the wire is loose & put it back in the fuse box / IPDM module, I was successfully able to start it. But then it gives me this code. Do you still see, after the timing chain is that tight, it would still jump the teeth ?

It builts spring pressure. Not oil. Spring can allow it to move. If you turned the engine over with out it starting, the only other thing it could be is the timing may not have been correct from the beginning.

Did you replace the chains also?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
No I didn't replace the chains.

When ever the chain tensioners go, timing chains should be replaced. They could stretch. So that could be one of the problems. But it is definitely timing related if you have a P0011 or P0021 after doing timing chain work.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
timing was correct from the beginning, as there was no engine code before but only the ticking noise from broken guide causing the tensioner ineffective thus loose chain ticking over metal body.
Followed this link & many more like this over youtube & internet >> the timing chain was suppose to be jumped like that, the tensioner was never effective from the beginning, this problem would have occurred long time ago when the guide was broken.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
none of the people in those videos have changed the timing chain, and it worked for them. Another example >>

We can go back and forth about this. I have been a Nissan Tech for 26 years. When you are doing timing chain repairs, you want to replace the tensioners with the guides, and replace the chains as well. Especially since you can't measure it and see if the chain is stretched.

I understand your frustration.. Believe me

I have seen this before many times. That is why I am sharing what I know with you.

Did you make those video's?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Is there no other to adjust the timing from outside without pulling everything apart again ?

No, The upper oil pan I never remove. I do remove the wiper cowl and Pan to give me more room. It also makes it easier to remove the cover and you can use a jack on the upper pan to raise the engine. You only need to remove the lower pan.

I also have a trick to popping the timing cover off. Here is a video I made showing some timing chain works. this one is about the back timing cover gasket, which you may want to also check on yours. That could cause the P0011 or p0021 codes as well.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
a) What is this ignition timing adjustment, which I am checking at and they are selling that service for only $70 ? Is it different ?
b) And do you this timing issue, is also causing the cylinder# ***** misfire ?
c) Also If I have to do everything again, and this time changing the timing, do you have any guidelines or step by step procedure to follow to avoid any further code or problems ?

A) I have no idea what timing adjustment they are doing. There is no adjustments. It's a fixed timing system that the only thing controlling timing is oil pressure with the intake sprockets.

Did you do anything to the intake sprockets? You didn't touch any of the 4 bolts did you?

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Nopes didn't touch the sprockets at all.
Customer: replied 9 months ago.
Any say on point #b & #c as well ?

Timing if off to much can cause the misfire if timing is out to far. ( B )

Since most likely you have to go in there again. Before you go in there, start the van and pull the fuel pump fuse and let it run out of gas. Then do the work. When you are done, turn the engine over to build oil pressure. Then put the fuse in.

Make sure you line up all the colored links to the timing marks on the sprockets with the new chains.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
One more thing, is there a trick before I put everything back together with new gasket maker & everything bolted ? I can test that everything is well. Because it will be pain to make mistakes & dissemble everything again to correct it.

No tricks.. To this day, I double and triple check everything in the timing chain area before I put it together. I check that back timing cover gasket, I check the Cam Chain tensioners, I check all tensioners and guides. I look at everything. Once I know everything is right. I put the cover on.

I do have two tricks for you.

First if you watch my video, you can use Brake caliper depress tool to help pop the timing cover off.

second, I leave the upper oil pan on. I do take a bead of silicone to the top part of the upper oil pan where it mates to the timing cover and also put a bead on lower timing cover as well. Just in case I bump putting it on. Double up that area.

Customer: replied 9 months ago.
As you mentioned earlier, if more than 3 teeth are jumped, it could have caused valve damage. Cylinder leak down test will show it and/or what other ways are there to ensure there are no valve damage caused ? If caused, then what are the next steps ?

If you find that it's more than 3 teeth off. After you set your timing. When you do a cylinder leak down, if you have to much leak down, that would indicate valve damage. So at that point the cylinder head with that particular valve would need to be removed so that valve cam be repaired.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Jay, I went out on Thanksgiving vacation, so never got chance to work on it again. I am trying to open it up and fix that thing now. So proper timing and as I was also suspecting the valve covers were leaking, I opened the valve covers to check the valve opening & closing with piston movement, also inspecting bad gaskets. Though I am still putting things back together, I noticed the valve cover gaskets are fine but the source of oil leak might be the head gasket, I am attaching this picture for you to confirm, if you think the head gasket is leaking the engine oil. Look at the exhaust bolt dripping oil droplets. And if yes, what should be the fixing procedure to repair this problem ?
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
My apology I couldn't rate this conversation before as I never finished the job due to holidays, just saw your all reminders. I am planning to finish this job over weekend, and have this car back on road starting Monday. Please assist, so I can close this post. And yes you were right the timing was jumped but only 3 teeth. So assuming no valve damage, but I am still doing leak down test to ensure it.

That looks like oil, not coolant. If you look around that area, everything around it looks like it's from a oil leak. Possible valve cover gasket or something.

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Jay, please do answer above questions but I am posting more for you whenever you see this, I put back together the chain but since I didn't take the engine out of the car, its hard to tell if the camshaft intake & exhaust sprockets are exactly aligned with crankshaft TDC when looking from different angles. I always have a doubt whether they are one or two teeth ahead or behind. Since I do have access to camshaft now as I took off the valve covers, is there any other way to ensure teeth are properly aligned or all 4 camshafts are properly timing synced with camshaft ? Say by looking at all valve positions. These are pictures I took, but not sure if they are properly aligned now. It looks different from different angles.

Where are the chains colored links?

Customer: replied 8 months ago.
This pictures I took after rotating it 720* multiple times, and as I know the chains get realigned to same tooth after multiple revolutions.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
just sharing the good news, I did leak down on each cylinder at its tdc, and all came out positive, the loss was <=5%.

Yeah, it takes around 34 to 46 engine revolutions for the timing marks on the chain to line back up with the marks.

That is good news.

Jay and other Nissan Specialists are ready to help you
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
Hi Jay, I was able to fix the timing issue, its not throwing that code anymore. But after I had put everything back together, I am noticing my ABS, SLIP & TCS lights are all ON. I initially thought it would just automatically go away, as things were fine before the repair, but even after driving for 2 days like around 30 miles, the lights still stay ON. I tried disconnecting the battery to reset the code, but it doesn't go away. The brake fluid levels are fine and even I don't notice any problem with braking system and all WSS.
Is there a way to read & reset the ABS codes without the scanner ? I was reading internet forums, and some has mention of terminal 9 to be grounded for resetting or reading the code.
Customer: replied 8 months ago.
I appreciate your assistance and help with the timing issue though. Thank you so much. I just want this car to get done, it just giving me problems back to back or I am super messy in putting things back together.

Glad I was able to help with the timing issue.

The only way to really determine what is causing those lights to come on is to use a advanced level scanner to read the codes you have in the ABS system