Cam/timing Chain Tensioner Advice

k12pilot

Test Drive
Location
NYC
OK Gents,

First off I suck at searching on any forum so I am sorry in advance ((

07 Xterra in question
Owned and loved with extreme OCD since new ))
225K miles
My truck until 3 years ago when I gave it to my daughter

The truck has never had anyone touch it than me, except for the SMOD which Nissan took it hard for. LOL

The truck has been awesome, it has gone & done everything I asked it to & owes me nothing

It had an airbag light on (I cleared) & my daughter was complaining about it sliding out on her.

Since I was getting ready to ship it out for this semester, I brought it in to the dealer to scan the ABS & airbag system (I cant do)& flush the brakes (didn't want to) lol

All checked out good & brakes flushed YAY!!

But they said it needed a chain job... I smelled BS but...225k...

I got to listen to it Saturday Cold & Hot.. Long extension to the cover and 2 small covers on the cam gears.

Idk. It doesn't sound as scary as most YouTube vids I watched. Actually sounds smooth...

I have to do the valve covers & plugs and everything in the middle at this point, and was thinking of tearing the front off, but I was wondering if there is any room taking the cam gear covers off to send a scope in to see the secondary guides??

Or should I just go all in and do it all.

Again the truck is & has been awesome in every way & is still in great shape, I would love to get another 12 years out of her....

MAYBE my daughter will give it back to me.. she says NEVER DAD!! :))))

Thanks in advance for your wisdom.
 

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
OK Gents,

First off I suck at searching on any forum so I am sorry in advance ((

07 Xterra in question
Owned and loved with extreme OCD since new ))
225K miles
My truck until 3 years ago when I gave it to my daughter

The truck has never had anyone touch it than me, except for the SMOD which Nissan took it hard for. LOL

The truck has been awesome, it has gone & done everything I asked it to & owes me nothing

It had an airbag light on (I cleared) & my daughter was complaining about it sliding out on her.

Since I was getting ready to ship it out for this semester, I brought it in to the dealer to scan the ABS & airbag system (I cant do)& flush the brakes (didn't want to) lol

All checked out good & brakes flushed YAY!!

But they said it needed a chain job... I smelled BS but...225k...

I got to listen to it Saturday Cold & Hot.. Long extension to the cover and 2 small covers on the cam gears.

Idk. It doesn't sound as scary as most YouTube vids I watched. Actually sounds smooth...

I have to do the valve covers & plugs and everything in the middle at this point, and was thinking of tearing the front off, but I was wondering if there is any room taking the cam gear covers off to send a scope in to see the secondary guides??

Or should I just go all in and do it all.

Again the truck is & has been awesome in every way & is still in great shape, I would love to get another 12 years out of her....

MAYBE my daughter will give it back to me.. she says NEVER DAD!! :))))

Thanks in advance for your wisdom.

It'll whine pretty good if they are going. But my 07 had to have them done. At that mileage, I would go ahead and do the whole setup, not just the secondary ones.
 

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
Again the truck is & has been awesome in every way & is still in great shape, I would love to get another 12 years out of her....

At that mileage they likely need to be done. The chain on metal noise will progressively get louder and louder, my guess is yours is in the early stage of noise if you still can't tell yet. Mine got worse over about a year until the point where highway on ramp acceleration began to sound like a passenger jet on takeoff. Point being that eventually you won't need a stethoscope to hear it.

I took mine to a local dealer I've had good experiences with in the past to have the work done, I had them replace the primary + secondary chains/tensioners, water pump, oil pump, radiator hoses, and thermostat at the same time. I chose a dealer shop over private because they've done a TON of timing chain jobs on the Xterra/Frontier/Pathfinder VQ engines and they're able to use that experience to get the job done quickly and correctly the first time. I paid $1700 total and they threw in a loaner car for me to use, I dropped it off on a Friday and they had it ready for pickup Monday morning.
 

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
At that mileage they likely need to be done. The chain on metal noise will progressively get louder and louder, my guess is yours is in the early stage of noise if you still can't tell yet. Mine got worse over about a year until the point where highway on ramp acceleration began to sound like a passenger jet on takeoff. Point being that eventually you won't need a stethoscope to hear it.

I took mine to a local dealer I've had good experiences with in the past to have the work done, I had them replace the primary + secondary chains/tensioners, water pump, oil pump, radiator hoses, and thermostat at the same time. I chose a dealer shop over private because they've done a TON of timing chain jobs on the Xterra/Frontier/Pathfinder VQ engines and they're able to use that experience to get the job done quickly and correctly the first time. I paid $1700 total and they threw in a loaner car for me to use, I dropped it off on a Friday and they had it ready for pickup Monday morning.

That's an incredible price. They wanted $3500 to do the full set on mine.
 

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
That's an incredible price. They wanted $3500 to do the full set on mine.

That's the highest price I've heard for it so far, I remember on THX there was a thread where people were listing the price they paid and mine was about in the middle. There was one guy that paid around $1200 which seemed almost too good of a deal.
 

k12pilot

Test Drive
Location
NYC
Thanks guys,

Well after having the truck in my possession for the past week since my daughter went back to school, I had some time to play around & check it out a bit further, and realize how much I miss this truck compared to my 16 4runner.

Youtube helped a bunch ))

So at 225k, I would say it is at the "early" Whine stage (compared to the vids) which amazes me, I guess I did good taking care of her )

Some clatter at cold start (NYC winter here) so cold is cold ((

After warm up there is a noticable whine at 2500rpm and up revving the engine.

So for those who have done this, what parts did you use if not OE Nissan.

The chains & bits are "reasonable" from Nissan

Oil pump I think is excessive at $400 anyone know who makes the OE unit??

Are there any good links on here for the project??

Also any must have specific tools that are needed.

I am planning to do the leaking valve covers, plugs & bits also while I am tearing it apart.
Including other bits that I would do while I am there. Hoses, thermostat, full fluids, bla bla bla...

@ Terry & General. The stealer that the truck was at wants $4000 just to do the chains & guides.
(no tensioners water pump or oil pump) NAAA!!!


Thanks again for your wisdom )
 
Last edited:

TerryD

Total Tease
Supporting Member
Location
Covington, Va
Thanks guys,

Well after having the truck in my possession for the past week since my daughter went back to school, I had some time to play around & check it out a bit further, and realize how much I miss this truck compared to my 16 4runner.

Youtube helped a bunch ))

So at 225k, I would say it is at the "early" Whine stage (compared to the vids) which amazes me, I guess I did good taking care of her )

Some clatter at cold start (NYC winter here) so cold is cold ((

After warm up there is a noticable whine at 2500rpm and up revving the engine.

So for those who have done this, what parts did you use if not OE Nissan.

The chains & bits are "reasonable" from Nissan

Oil pump I think is excessive at $400 anyone know who makes the OE unit??

Are there any good links on here for the project??

Also any must have specific tools that are needed.

I am planning to do the leaking valve covers, plugs & bits also while I am tearing it apart.
Including other bits that I would do while I am there. Hoses, thermostat, full fluids, bla bla bla...

@ Terry & General. The stealer that the truck was at wants $4000 just to do the chains & guides.
(no tensioners water pump or oil pump) NAAA!!!


Thanks again for your wisdom )

Unless you think the oil pump is failing, I wouldn't worry about replacing it. Check the manual, there may be a procedure for testing clearances in there to tell you if it's wearing but I've run SBC oil pumps made in the 70's that spent their entire life idling in farm trucks in 7000RPM performance engines because there was no wear in them. As long as your oil doesn't get chunky, it's literally the best lubricated piece of an engine!
 

k12pilot

Test Drive
Location
NYC
Unless you think the oil pump is failing, I wouldn't worry about replacing it. Check the manual, there may be a procedure for testing clearances in there to tell you if it's wearing but I've run SBC oil pumps made in the 70's that spent their entire life idling in farm trucks in 7000RPM performance engines because there was no wear in them. As long as your oil doesn't get chunky, it's literally the best lubricated piece of an engine!

Understood. But I'm considering the 225k miles into the equation for failure & while it is a couple bolts away at that point I may as well change it out.
 

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
Understood. But I'm considering the 225k miles into the equation for failure & while it is a couple bolts away at that point I may as well change it out.

I'd probably do the same. I found that oil pump for $137 + shipping from PartsSouq. I've used them for parts in the past with no complaints, they're based in Dubai but the shipping is quick and the parts are OE Nissan.
 

k12pilot

Test Drive
Location
NYC
That is incredible pricing!!!

I just priced most everything out to do the full Monty, and literally 1/3 the cost in savings of the first nissan parts source that came up on google. And thats Shipped 1/2 around the world WTF? Insane.

I Salute you General.

Thank you
 
Last edited:

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
That is incredible pricing!!!

I just priced most everything out to do the full Monty, and literally 1/3 the cost in savings of the first nissan parts source that came up on google. And thats Shipped 1/2 around the world WTF? Insane.

I Salute you General.

Thank you

Glad to hear it helped you out!
 

General_Tarfun

Need Bigger Tires
Supporting Member
Location
Atlanta, GA
I need to order a thermostat so thanks for the link as well!

No problem! I ended up buying my inner tie rods from them back when rock auto kept sending me the ones for the Titan. Even with shipping it still cost way less than any dealer I could find here. Really makes me wonder how much markup is on all of these parts I've ordered over the years.
 
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