Your Vehicle: 2009 Nissan-Datsun Altima V6-3.5L (VQ35DE)
 
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SQUEAK AND RATTLE TROUBLE DIAGNOSIS

Work Flow

  

CUSTOMER INTERVIEW
Interview the customer if possible, to determine the conditions that exist when the noise occurs. Use the Diagnostic Worksheet during the interview to document the facts and conditions when the noise occurs and any customer's comments; refer to See: Diagnostic Worksheet. This information is necessary to duplicate the conditions that exist when the noise occurs.

  • The customer may not be able to provide a detailed description or the location of the noise. Attempt to obtain all the facts and conditions that exist when the noise occurs (or does not occur).
  • If there is more than one noise in the vehicle, be sure to diagnose and repair the noise that the customer is concerned about. This can be accomplished by test driving the vehicle with the customer.
  • After identifying the type of noise, isolate the noise in terms of its characteristics. The noise characteristics are provided so the customer, service adviser and technician are all speaking the same language when defining the noise.
  • Squeak --(Like tennis shoes on a clean floor) Squeak characteristics include the light contact/fast movement/brought on by road conditions/hard surfaces

= higher pitch noise/softer surfaces = lower pitch noises/edge to surface = chirping

  • Creak--(Like walking on an old wooden floor) Creak characteristics include firm contact/slow movement/twisting with a rotational movement/pitch dependent on materials/often brought on by activity.
  • Rattle--(Like shaking a baby rattle) Rattle characteristics include the fast repeated contact/vibration or similar movement/loose parts/missing clip or fastener/incorrect clearance.
  • Knock --(Like a knock on a door) Knock characteristics include hollow sounding/sometimes repeating/often brought on by driver action.
  • Tick--(Like a clock second hand) Tick characteristics include gentle contacting of light materials/loose components/can be caused by driver action or road conditions.
  • Thump--(Heavy, muffled knock noise) Thump characteristics include softer knock/dead sound often brought on by activity.
  • Buzz--(Like a bumble bee) Buzz characteristics include high frequency rattle/firm contact.
  • Often the degree of acceptable noise level will vary depending upon the person. A noise that you may judge as acceptable may be very irritating to the customer.
  • Weather conditions, especially humidity and temperature, may have a great effect on noise level.

DUPLICATE THE NOISE AND TEST DRIVE
If possible, drive the vehicle with the customer until the noise is duplicated. Note any additional information on the Diagnostic Worksheet regarding the conditions or location of the noise. This information can be used to duplicate the same conditions when you confirm the repair.
If the noise can be duplicated easily during the test drive, to help identify the source of the noise, try to duplicate the noise with the vehicle stopped by doing one or all of the following:
1) Close a door.
2) Tap or push/pull around the area where the noise appears to be coming from.
3) Rev the engine.
4) Use a floor jack to recreate vehicle "twist".
5) At idle, apply engine load (electrical load, half-clutch on M/T models, drive position on CVT and A/T models).
6) Raise the vehicle on a hoist and hit a tire with a rubber hammer.

  • Drive the vehicle and attempt to duplicate the conditions the customer states exist when the noise occurs.
  • If it is difficult to duplicate the noise, drive the vehicle slowly on an undulating or rough road to stress the vehicle body.

CHECK RELATED SERVICE BULLETINS
After verifying the customer concern or symptom, check ASSIST for Technical Service Bulletins (TSBs) related to that concern or symptom.
If a TSB relates to the symptom, follow the procedure to repair the noise.

LOCATE THE NOISE AND IDENTIFY THE ROOT CAUSE

  1. Narrow down the noise to a general area. To help pinpoint the source of the noise, use a listening tool (Chassis Ear: J-39570, Engine Ear and mechanics stethoscope).
  2. Narrow down the noise to a more specific area and identify the cause of the noise by:
    • removing the components in the area that you suspect the noise is coming from. Do not use too much force when removing clips and fasteners, otherwise clips and fastener can be broken or lost during the repair, resulting in the creation of new noise.
    • tapping or pushing/pulling the component that you suspect is causing the noise. Do not tap or push/pull the component with excessive force, otherwise the noise will be eliminated only temporarily.
    • feeling for a vibration with your hand by touching the component(s) that you suspect is (are) causing the noise.
    • placing a piece of paper between components that you suspect are causing the noise.
    • looking for loose components and contact marks. Refer to See: Generic Squeak And Rattle Trouble Shooting.

REPAIR THE CAUSE

  • If the cause is a loose component, tighten the component securely.
  • If the cause is insufficient clearance between components:
  • separate components by repositioning or loosening and retightening the component, if possible.
  • insulate components with a suitable insulator such as urethane pads, foam blocks, felt cloth tape or urethane tape. A Nissan Squeak and Rattle Kit (J-43980) is available through your authorized Nissan Parts Department.

CAUTION:
Do not use excessive force as many components are constructed of plastic and may be damaged.

NOTE:
Always check with the Parts Department for the latest parts information.
The following materials are contained in the Nissan Squeak and Rattle Kit (J-43980). Each item can be ordered separately as needed.

URETHANE PADS [1.5 mm (0.059 in) thick]
Insulates connectors, harness, etc.
76268-9E005: 100 X 135 mm (3.94 X 5.31 in) /76884-71L01: 60 X 85 mm (2.36 X 3.35 in) /76884-71L02: 15 X 25 mm (0.59 X 0.98 in)

INSULATOR (Foam blocks)
Insulates components from contact. Can be used to fill space behind a panel.
73982-9E000: 45 mm (1.77 in) thick, 50 X 50 mm (1.97 X 1.97 in) /73982-50Y00: 10 mm (0.39 in) thick, 50 X 50 mm (1.97 X 1.97 in)

INSULATOR (Light foam block)
80845-71L00: 30 mm (1.18 in) thick, 30 X 50 mm (1.18 X 1.97 in)

FELT CLOTHTAPE
Used to insulate where movement does not occur. Ideal for instrument panel applications.
68370-4B000: 15 X 25 mm (0.59 X 0.98 in) pad/68239-13E00: 5 mm (0.20 in) wide tape roll
The following materials, not found in the kit, can also be used to repair squeaks and rattles.

UHMW (TEFLON) TAPE
Insulates where slight movement is present. Ideal for instrument panel applications.

SILICONE GREASE
Used in place of UHMW tape that will be visible or not fit. Will only last a few months.

SILICONE SPRAY
Use when grease cannot be applied.

DUCT TAPE
Use to eliminate movement.

CONFIRM THE REPAIR
Confirm that the cause of a noise is repaired by test driving the vehicle.Operate the vehicle under the same conditions as when the noise originally occurred. Refer to the notes on the Diagnostic Worksheet.