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Trouble Moving

Details about my car: '91 Nissan Maxima. His name is Max. 183,265ish miles on it. Transmission was replaced maybe 8 years ago(?) My dad said the oil was changed at the 500 mark. Filled the tank up at Citgo with regular gas on Friday and only drove about 50 miles (I fill up every 200 miles or less). Max turns on but you have to floor it just to move an inch and it smells like gas.

My first thought was that you didn’t release the parking brake or it is stuck on. But first, you need to give us a little better description of what exactly is happening.

Is the oil light on? Have you checked the oil level? Check this first. If this is OK, then go on to the following.

When you floor it, does the engine rev up willingly or is it sputtering and struggling to do that.

While in Drive, does it rev willingly and smoothly to about 12-1500 rpm (just above the 1 on the tach) and then just stay there with the car barely moving.

Does it rev willingly and smoothly up to the yellow or red sections on the tach while in gear?

Does it rev willingly and smoothly up to the yellow or red zones while in park or neutral?

Will it idle OK? If so, open the hood and see if gas is spewing onto the engine. See if there is black smoke coming from the exhaust.

Thank you for responding to me so quickly. The parking brake was released. The oil light was on for a split second when I turned the car on and then it disappeared, my dad said that’s normal. I have not checked the oil yet because this happened after work last night and it was pitch black.

The engine revs willingly when I floor it. It does go above 1 on the tachometer, I have to go out to my car and do it again so tell you where exactly the needle stays on the tach.

I think it idles ok. I opened the hood last night but I did that with the car off.

Let me go out to my car now and check out if there is black smoke coming from the exhaust etc.

I took some photos and film footage for you. I was afraid to push the gas down anymore because it was already having so much trouble. There was no black smoke coming from the exhaust.

Oh and I was wrong, it sounds like it does have trouble revvin, I was afraid to redline it because it didn’t sound good even at the 3 mark. My dad is coming to look at it today, he’s not a mechanic but he is a civil engineer and how knows a lot about how things work so he might be able to come up with something. Over the phone he was saying that maybe it died. I really hope that he is wrong. I’ll let you know more information as I find out.

My dad came to look at the car yesterday. He says that he thinks there is a problem with either the linkage or the transmission. I’m hoping it’s the linkage because he said if it’s the transmission that I could just forget about it. I have to call AAA to tow it tomorrow and I won’t know for sure what is wrong until after they take a look at it for themselves.

In the first video, are you flooring it, or are you letting off on the gas so that it doesn’t go above 3000?

It’s hard to hear what’s going on because your microphone isn’t very good. It’d be more helpful if you opened the hood and had the camera near the engine while it was running.

BTW, does your speedometer always say you’re going 140, or did that start with this problem?

I was stepping on the gas but it just didn’t sound good so I was afraid to put my foot down anymore. Yeah, it wasn’t so easy to film because I was trying to film and watch what I was doing at the same time.

Haha…the speedometer always says I’m doing something in that ball park but I don’t know when that started. At least two years ago though.

Max’s transmission has a problem. Funeral arrangements are being made and I have to figure out where I am donating him to.

My dad doesn’t want to get another car for me. :*( If anybody wants to find me an affordable and nice used car, thanks. I’m in Westchester County, NY. OR if you know somebody who would like to be my sugar daddy and buy me a 69 Camaro, a 57 Belair, a 51 Thunderbird or a 65 Mustang, that would be my dream come true.

I have no idea how your initial description translates to needing a new transmission. It just sounds like the car is running so rich that its running like crap. I didn’t check out the videos - not enough patience for the download.

No offense to your dad but maybe you need an experienced professional mechanic. It would be a little silly to toss out an entire car for something such as a bad fuel pressure regulator or coolant temp sensor. Lack of engine power + smell of gas doesn’t even slightly point to a transmission.

Hello there, thank you for responding. Don’t worry, I’m not offended. One of the mechanics came to tow my car and he is the one that agreed about the transmission and my dad wanted to get it checked out but the guy said he would hate to see my father waste money checking it out.

Can you explain the phrase, “sounds like your car is running so rich that it’s running like crap”?

"you have to floor it just to move an inch and it smells like gas. "

Running rich means too much fuel. Its possible to have so much fuel that the car runs poorly or not at all. You would smell gas if this was happening. It sounds to me like your car just isn’t running well.

Oh I see what you are saying now. Is the only way to figure this out buy taking the transmission out and looking at it?

No - this kind of problem would have nothing whatsoever to do with the transmission. You need a mechanic to evaluate the car - perhaps with special attention to the fuel system.

Thank you, I’ll look into it. Do you know what that would entail?