2006 Xterra constant issues

MyNightmare

Test Drive
Location
Tucson, Arizona
Hi there everyone, I'm currently in Tucson , AZ and have been driving a 2006 Xterra for the past 3 years. This vehicle has been a beautiful nightmare from the moment I purchased it from what I found out too late was a shady used car dealership. Day two owning the vehicle, the transmission went and the dealership very reluctantly had it repaired (NOT replaced). Pretty soon after that I had problems with the engine and since then have had a multitude of problems. The check engine light is and has been on for a while. I realize it's not good to let that go however events of this past year made finances incredibly tight. I need to get the vehicle registered and in order to do so I have to pass the emissions test. In Arizona you automatically fail the emissions test if your check engine light is on. I went to a shop yesterday which was recommended by a friend in order to get the problems fixed and the check engine light shut off. $3500 later the check engine light is Still on and the mechanic is now telling me that I need to get the timing chain replaced. They quoted me $3200 to do this. That seems ridiculously high to me. Obviously I do not want the car to die on me and the reason why I spent the $3,500 on other repairs is because the price of new and used vehicles at the moment are ridiculous and I simply do not have means to purchase a different vehicle. $3200 simply to change a timing chain sounds pretty steep to me. Yes it is a very important part and requires a lot of labor but 3200???

As far as the $3500 they already charged me- catalytic converter, engine valve covers due to oil leaking, cam shaft sensor on passenger side, 2 hoses, 3 used tires plus mounting, tune up, and rest was labor. Unfortunately the things that they threw at me to fix did make sense and a few of them were things that someone else had attempted to fix in the past but apparently had only half-assed it...that character trait may be due to why that "mechanic" is no longer married to my friend.

Anyway I would not be surprised if somebody told me that I got fleeced on the repairs already. I need to keep this car going for as long as I possibly can. It already has 172,000 miles on it, I'm an adult student going through a career change, and have a 4 month unpaid internship coming up so really don't have money for constant repairs or new vehicle.
Please help, advise, anything...
 

kirk

I'm Shady AF. Ask Anyone.
Moderator
Supporting Member
Location
Allen, Texas
So I am not as familiar with your generation Xterra as much as the others. So lets start simple, can you take the car to an auto parts place, have them read the codes and tell us what the codes are? If your check engine light is on, its trying to tell you something. If we knew what codes you had, we can start helping you trouble shoot.

I wouldnt give them any more of my money. You have spent a ton already, let us see if we can help you stanch the bleeding some.
 

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
Buy yourself a code reader. That will greatly improve your ability to troubleshoot your vehicle and us help.

As for the money you spent, that doesn't sound like getting fleeced. It might be a little steep but I don't know your market or your mechanic. If you feel like they did good quality work, then it's probably worth it for what all you got. Especially if you don't have the experience.

So go get a code reader and let us know what codes you currently have active and we can start helping you figure out what you can fix and what you'll need to pay to fix.
 

MyNightmare

Test Drive
Location
Tucson, Arizona
Thank you for the responses. And good to know repairs sound about right. I definitely do not have the experience myself. I will get a code reader. Currently the mechanic has my vehicle again but only bc it's going to be free of charge-basically a bandaid to get the check engine light off temporarily.
 

Zack.

Has been dubbed Arnold
Supporting Member
Location
Livermore, CA
$3,200 is too much for timing. I paid I think ~1,900 to a CA Bay Area Nissan stealership to replace my primary and secondary chains and tensioners. Also probably not the cause of the engine light unless it jumped, and I think you’d notice something in the drivability if that was the case.
 

MyNightmare

Test Drive
Location
Tucson, Arizona
$3,200 is too much for timing. I paid I think ~1,900 to a CA Bay Area Nissan stealership to replace my primary and secondary chains and tensioners. Also probably not the cause of the engine light unless it jumped, and I think you’d notice something in the drivability if that was the case.
I love "stealership". Unfortunately the drivability of this one has been questionable. I have noticed a significant improvement in the handling and sounds it makes with the $3500 of repairs. I am annoyed at the fact that $3500 did not fix the damn check engine light and also at AZ since this means I fail the damn emissions. I am going to follow up on that code reader and definitely call around for pricing of timing chains. Of course they have me worried now that I will be stranded somewhere...they are good at worst case scenarios.
 

XterraRising

First Fill-Up (of many)
Supporting Member
Location
Utah
Timing chain is a big job. It’s not $3200 big though. Find another mechanic. As for the money light still staying on, I agree. Get a cheap code reader and look at the codes. You can find a ton of information online once you have the code in hand, and that can really help in dealing with mechanic shops.
 
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