What happens when one of the drive belts fail?
Drive belts, once called fan belts or alternator belts, play a vital role in the operation of the engine.
While the engine is running, power is transmitted through one or more drive belts to a number of vital external engine components. Among the systems that depend on drive belts for power are:
- The alternator, which supplies the entire vehicle with its electrical requirements
- The power steering pump, which provides power assist to the steering system
- The water pump which provides coolant flow for cooling
Should a drive belt fail, these systems will cease to function and the steering will immediately become stiff.
A battery warning lamp on the instrument panel immediately alerts the driver about the failure and the vehicle can still be safely driven for a short period of time. There is no warning lamp for the power steering or water pump belt.
If your vehicle is overheating, (indicated by an extremely high temperature gauge reading), pull over to a safe place, and stop the vehicle as soon as possible. Do not continue to drive your vehicle. Doing so could cause engine damage or a vehicle fire. (Consult your Owners Manual “Section 6: ‘If Your Vehicle Overheats’ “) It is recommended that you contact your Nissan Dealership immediately to arrange for the installation of a Genuine Nissan Drive Belt.
Why is it important to have the timing belt replaced when recommended?
Your Nissan’s engine may be equipped with either a steel timing chain or a synthetic rubber timing belt-check your owner’s manual to be sure.
The timing chain is maintenance-free. The timing belt is prone to wear and deterioration as the vehicle ages.
Because the timing belt is under a protective cover, it is impossible to perform a visual inspection to determine its condition. It is recommended that the timing belt be replaced as a part of a long-term maintenance program-usually between 96,000 km and 168,000 km.
The timing belt is a vital engine component that coordinates the internal operation of the engine. Should the timing belt fail, this internal coordination, or timing, is destroyed. The result may be that the intake and exhaust valves interfere with the proper functioning of the pistons and cause severe engine damage that could cost thousands of dollars to repair.
Replacement of the timing belt at the recommended interval is one of the most important maintenance items to perform.
Why do you need to replace the oil filter with every oil change?
Modern engine oils do more than lubricate, they help remove harmful engine deposits and contaminants as you drive.
The oil suspends these contaminants and carries them to the oil filter where they are trapped and held. Eventually, the oil filter becomes so saturated with these contaminants that its filtering capability is significantly reduced or made totally ineffective.
If the oil filter is not replaced at the recommended intervals, unfiltered oil will continue to flow through the engine and cause excessive wear, which will reduce performance and ultimately shorten the life of the engine.
Why is maintaining proper tire pressure important?
Proper tire inflation helps prevent accelerated wear that leads to premature tire replacement and is also important to safety.
Tires that are driven under-inflated generate excessively high heat levels that can weaken the tire to the point of failure.
At high speed, a rapidly deflating tire can cause loss of vehicle control.
An over-inflated tire will result in harsh ride quality and will cause uneven tire wear.
Where can I find the recommended tire pressures for my Nissan vehicle?
The tire pressures recommended for a Nissan vehicle are shown on a sticker (tire placard) situated on the (B or C) pillar between the front and rear doors, on the driver’s side.
Alternatively you can check your Owner’s Manual.
How can I maximize my fuel economy?
There are several ways you can maximize your fuel economy:
- Accelerate slowly and smoothly. Maintain cruising speeds with a constant accelerator position.
- Use your cruise control when conditions permit.
- Drive at moderate speeds on the highway. Driving at high speed lowers fuel economy.
- Avoid unnecessary stopping and braking. Maintain a safe distance behind other vehicles.
- Use a proper gear range which suits road conditions. On level roads, shift into high gear as soon as possible
- Avoid unnecessary engine idling. In colder weather, try to avoid excessive idling during warm-up
- Keep your engine tuned up. Follow the recommended periodic maintenance schedule.
- Keep the tires properly inflated to manufacturer’s recommendations. Low tire pressure increases tire wear and lowers fuel economy.
- Keep the wheels in correct alignment. Improper alignment increases tire wear and lowers fuel economy.
- Use the air conditioner only when necessary. Air conditioner operation lowers fuel economy.
- When cruising at highway speeds, drive with your window closed. It is more economical to use the air conditioner and leave the windows closed to reduce drag. Even with the air conditioner running, the fuel savings are significant.
- Use the recommended viscosity engine oil. Refer to the Owner’s Manual (“Section 9: ‘Capacities and Recommended Fuel/Lubricants’ “)
Why do my brakes squeak and groan?
Depending on driving or climate conditions, a certain amount of brake noise is normal. Occasional brake noise during light to moderate stops is normal and does not affect the function or performance of the brake system. However, unusual brake noise can often be an indicator of potential problems and should be assessed as soon as possible.
All Nissan brake pads have a sensor that makes a high-pitched squeal when the brake friction materials are nearing the end of their life span. If this squeal is heard, it is recommended that you make arrangements with your Nissan Dealership to have the vehicle’s brake system thoroughly inspected.
Nissan recommends that you have your brakes inspected at least every 6 months.
Why do I get a static electrical shock from my vehicle, and how do I avoid this?
Static electrical shocks from motor vehicles are caused by the friction between your clothes and the car’s seat fabrics.
When you climb out of the car, you connect its bodywork to the ground, and the static electricity runs through you to “earth”. This affects all manufacturers’ vehicles and is impossible to prevent.
You can lessen the effect by holding on to a metal part of the car, for example the edge of the door, as you get out.. This allows the vehicle’s bodywork to absorb the static gradually, and prevents the sudden discharge to earth, which causes the shock.