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06 Nissan Altima Oil Consumption

Hi Everyone,

I own an 2006 Nissan Altima with about 90500 miles on it.

Recently i took it in for service and to fix a problem where the car was making this metallic sound while driving.

The mechanic discovered that the sound was cause by a low engine oil level causing the timing belt tension to loose pressure and make the sound.

The mechanic also found a Nissan Service Recall/Campaign (NTB06-082) related to Engine Oil Consumption where the following occurs: “extremely low engine oil level resulting from higher than normal engine oil consumption due to a manufacturing problem in some engines”.

NTB06-082 states that the first thing the dealer should do if the recall applies is reprogram the ECU followed by doing an engine oil check.

Does anyone have any advice on what steps I should follow to get the Nissan Dealership to take a look at this particular issue? I imagine that that it’s going to be hard convincing them that the NTB06-082 may apply to my vehicle.

Thank you very much Car Talk community!


How low was the oil level? When was the last time it was correct? Regardless of anything else, expensive engine damage may have been done here.

Why do you believe the dealership won’t perform the recall? I don’t understand your concern, to be honest.

Thanks for your reply.

Please bear with me as im somewhat of a car newbie. The oil level was correct as of my last service which was January of this year, I didnt get the specific readings regards to the oil level from my mechanic - he just noted that it was very low.

I’ve called the dealership to ask if the recall applies and they mention that it does not, however the listed VIN’s on the recall seem to apply to my car. So just wanted to get another opinion on how to go about this.

Thanks again.

Here is a novel idea…Check your oil yourself every 1000 miles at least…Save yourself a lot of trouble.

I’m in agreement with Caddyman again. Unless you get in the habit of raising the hood and actually checking the oil level now and then you’re going to end up with a totally trashed engine. Many other posters on this forum have already discovered this the hard way.

You probably mean timing chain, not belt. Oil pressure has no affect on a timing belt but timing chain tension is maintained by engine oil pressure. The problem you have here is that if the oil pressure dropped to the point where the chain was rattling then there’s a strong possibility you may have other engine damage. (crankshaft bearings the most obvious)

So just how low was low?

The '06 Altima’s were having oil consumption issues due to the pistons being the wrong size for the cylinder bores. If you had one of these engines, you would never have made it to the 90k mile mark without knowing it by now.

Do a compression and a leakdown test.
That’s all you really can do at this point.

Also, have them remove the catalytic converter and see if the catalyst material is coming apart. If yes, your engine is soon to die. If not, you’re in good shape.


I think Nissan extended the warranty on the 2006 model to 100k for this problem, check with your dealer.

Thanks everyone for the advice - I will be visiting the dealer tomorrow and will be paying closer attention to all fluid levels more regularly.

–It might be worth having the oil pressure checked while the engine is hot as well. This will help determine if any bearing damage was done by running the engine very low on oil.

You mean the hood goes up? Cool!