Nissan Sentra - Service Engine Light On


#1

Hi everyone,

I own a 2006 Nissan Sentra, a little less than 74K miles, that has been a very reliable car until recently. A few months ago while I was driving back from school my steering wheel started vibrating and I barely made it home as my tired completely deflated on my driveway. The tired was replaced and the vibration persisted so I took the car to the AAA for a check up. They gave me a long list of items to be repaired that totaled over $4500! Among the items were the front break pads and rotors,which I agreed to change hoping that the vibration ended. However, it did not so I ended up taking the car to a repair shop in Baltimore where they placed struts to secure I believe the front wheels and the vibration stopped (I am not a car whiz by any means). Last Thursday, the service engine light went on and I was about due for an oil change so I took my car to AAA for the oil change hoping that the engine light will go off. This was not the case and again they gave me a long list of items to change that total over $1300! The list include the following: belt alternator, alternator drive belt (R&R), air filter (Proselect), Cabin Air Filter (Proselect), replace engine air filter, fuel induction service, Soltec 3 part fuel kit, cabin air filter (R&R), shock or strut assembly, quick strut modular assembly - rear alignment. Honestly, the only thing I have noticed since the service light went on is that there is a slight sound coming from the engine. All I want is to know what repairs are necessary and if it is worth investing that much money in a 2006 car. Please help!

Update: I’ll be going to Autozone after work today. 7/26/16. Code P2A00


#2

Take you car over to Advance Auto, Auto Zone or similar parts store, most will read the codes (check engine light) for you for free. Get the # and post it here, it will look like P01234 or similar. You can replace the air filter and cabin filter your self, buy them at Walmart. Do not pay a nickel for induction cleaning service, this is a great revenue enhancer for the shop but has very little value for improving performance.


#3

AAA doesn’t own shops. You went to a shop that is certified/approved by AAA. However, this is no guaranty that they won’t take advantage of you.

Get those codes and report back.


#4

Incorrect!
It is possible that there aren’t any in your neck of the woods, but in NJ–and more than likely in other states as well–AAA has closed many of their smaller regional offices and replaced them with much larger facilities that have service bays in addition to office space.

So, it is entirely possible that the OP did “go to AAA for a check-up”.


#5

Hi again,

Thank you for being so kind and helpful. They ran me a report at Autozone with code P2A00. Based on the previous list of repairs, which repairs would you recommend? Btw, I live in Maryland.


#6

Don’t know if it has anything to do with the vibration issue, but the website @Tester mentioned says the importance of getting this fixed is 3 out of 3.

If you think you or a friend can do basic stuff like the filters, you will save a lot of money and learn more about your car. Nissan owner’s manuals are pretty good; I checked and both filters you mentioned are in the “basic maintenance & do it yourself” section. If you don’t have a copy you can download one from Nissan: http://www.nissan-techinfo.com


#7

DTC P2A00 indicates a problem with the air/fuel ratio sensor circuit.

Or, as they used to be called oxygen sensors.

Tester


#8

[quote=“VDCdriver, post:4, topic:94037, full:true”]

Incorrect!
It is possible that there aren’t any in your neck of the woods, but in NJ–and more than likely in other states as well–AAA has closed many of their smaller regional offices and replaced them with much larger facilities that have service bays in addition to office space.

So, it is entirely possible that the OP did “go to AAA for a check-up”.
[/quote]Well, well, I learn something new every day!. No, there are no AAA shops in my neck of the woods. But having been an AAA member for 20, you’d think I would know about them.:flushed:


#9

I highly recommend NOT to go back to this AAA shop for any service whatsoever. The list of things suggested to you to fix the service engine light are ridiculous. None of the things listed would fix a P2a00 code. I can only imagine that the shop never pulled the code or they would have known.


#10

The guy at Autozone suggested to take the car to a repair shop and to show them the code so they can do the repairs. I think I can top off the fluids and change the air filter myself.
Does anyone know how much does it cost to replace the oxygen sensors?


#11

If all you asked for was an oil change they were not authorized to diagnose the check engine light and therefore no diagnosis. My service writers will sometimes note; “customer is aware of the check engine light, do not diagnose”. This note saves time, we won’t try to up-sell the needed work. However this “AAA” lube shop pushes filters,belts and struts, all which may be needed but I suspect these are gold diggers that may not be qualified to perform engine management repairs.

An air/fuel sensor should be less than $200, labor $100-150.


#12

They are about $70 a piece retail at Autozone or Advance Auto Parts. I don’t know if your car takes one or two of those. Labor should be around 1 hour, unless the mechanic runs into difficulties.


#13

…don’t forget, Nevada_545, the car was taken there because of the engine check light.


#14

Last Thursday, the service engine light went on and I was about due for an oil change so I took my car to AAA for the oil change hoping that the engine light will go off.

I’m not so sure.


#15

I’ve never seen that either. We use to have the AAA stores to buy maps and membership and even insurance. But people use GPS, and you can buy memberships and insurance online.


#16

Even it hasn’t happened yet in your area, I think that it is almost inevitable that it will take place with your local AAA offices. As you said, in addition to GPS making AAA’s trip routing service unnecessary, it is possible to obtain many of AAA’s services online. However, I believe the major factor that is driving AAA into servicing cars is the reality that road service is already included when you purchase almost all new cars, and many car insurance policies automatically include it nowadays, or will include road service for a very nominal fee.

When I bought my current car, I was still a AAA member, but I decided to not renew simply because my car insurance company had added free roadside assistance a few months earlier, and the new car came with 3 years of roadside assistance. When I failed to renew with AAA, I got a phone call from a very nice woman who was curious as to why I hadn’t renewed my membership–following over 10 years of being a AAA member. I explained to her that 2 forms of roadside assistance were probably one more than I actually needed, and that I really couldn’t see any sense in paying a fairly hefty fee in order to get a third roadside assistance coverage. The AAA rep–who was much more thoughtful and professional than most salespeople would be–said, “You’re completely right. You are already covered, but when your new car coverage expires, and if you no longer have roadside assistance coverage through your insurance company, I hope that you will consider re-enrolling with AAA at that time.” I promised her that I would definitely consider re-enrolling, but because my car insurance still covers me for roadside assistance, I have not re-enrolled in AAA.

Given the millions of people who buy new cars annually that come with roadside assistance coverage, and given the apparently growing number of insurance companies that offer the same coverage, I believe that AAA’s traditional business is shrinking. As a result, several years ago they became more of a travel agency than anything else, and now they are beginning to branch-out into actually servicing vehicles. I think that this was a very smart move on AAA’s part, even though I am not at all impressed with the experience that the OP had when she went to one of their facilities.


#17

Hi Steve,

The code I got from Autozone is P2A00.

Thanks!


#18

I have towing with my insurance company. Far far better then AAA.

You ever needs tow you better be near a AAA tow company. And they better not be busy. One of our bad cold spells my neighbors battery died. Called AAA at 7am. They showed up at 2pm.


#19

I can’t really compare the two, as the last time that I used AAA was circa 1991, for a dead battery in my Taurus.
Subsequent to that incident, I never needed to call AAA, and in recent years I have not had to use the roadside assistance that came with my car or the roadside assistance that comes with my car insurance policy. However, I have heard horror stories of very long waits for the arrival of AAA trucks, so I wouldn’t be at all surprised if the roadside assistance that I have currently was faster than AAA’s response.


#20

I mentioned the oil change because after it was performed they came back with the list of suggested repairs. However I do not recall anyone mentioning anything about the service engine light. Obviously, it was wishful thinking from my part to even consider that the engine light will go off after the oil change.