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Disappearing car mileage

I recently had my 2008 Nissan Altima V6 inspected for the New York state inspection at an independent garage.

At that time the car’s odometer read 4,703 miles and the trip odometer about 100 miles. After the inspection the next day,

when I started the car , the odometer read 4300 miles and trip odometer had 403 miles.

I went back to the garage and the mechanic told me that he used the wrong numbers. Can you explain what happened?

Where did the 403 miles go?

Guys thank you very much for your help. Don

Could your car have more than one trip odometer? Some digital odometers have more than one trip odometer. That would explain the inconsistent readings. Have you read the owner’s manual?

A recent Ford Taurus I rented had metric and English settings on the dash. If you accidently flip to English from Metric, you get a reduced reading. I would read the owner’s manual first and then experiument with the settings.

Yup! You definitely need to read that Owner’s Manual. As Whitey mentioned, most cars nowadays have an “A” trip odometer and a “B” trip odometer. Usually you toggle from the regular odometer, to the A trip odometer, to the B trip odometer with the same little button, but this may vary slightly on your Altima.

Alternatively, as Doc suggests, it is possible that someone inadvertently switched the display from miles to kilometers. In either case, your Owner’s Manual is the best source for the answer to your problem, as well as virtually everything else that you want to know about the car.

A distant possibility is that Nissan is AGAIN installing defective speedometers/odometers in their cars. They did have a run of thousands of Maximas a few years back that did not record mileage accurately. For your sake, I hope that Nissan has cleaned up their act.

Please explain the mechanic’s statement that he, “used the wrong numbers?” How does this fit in with the mileage change on the odometer?

Are you SURE the odometer read 4,703 miles (did you see this for yourself), or is this a number the mechanic wrote down?

Didn’t anybody see “Ferris Bueller’s Day Off”? I’ll bet they drove it backwards for 403 miles. Yep, that’s what they did…

Either the torque converter or the catalytic converter converted it. They fight a lot. Who you calling aftermarket?

I agree with the A and B trip meters, but if you switch from English to metric, you will have a greater number not a lesser number. Kilometers are shorter than miles.