Huge win for car owners! All TSBs to be made public. The Center for Auto Safety just made the NHTSA (US Government) make public the full text of all TSBs from now on. They are the same organization that has petitioned the NHTSA & filed lawsuits to protect car owners over exploding gas tanks & other major safety issues. Whenever you drive in your car, you are safer thanks in part to a lot of work over the years by this small but very effective consumer advocacy group.

Please take a moment & say thank you by donating $5 or whatever you can to the Center for Auto Safety.

CarComplaints.com Notes: Here's a disturbing trend for the 2002 Nissan Altima: the engine starts burning oil like crazy, the catalytic converter goes bad, the head gasket blows and eventually the entire engine needs replacement. Sound familiar? Like a script from a horror film, these Altimas seem doomed to fail around 95k miles.

8.4

pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
$799.00
Average Mileage:
109,793 miles
Total Complaints:
22 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace the floor (10 reports)
  2. not sure (9 reports)
  3. repair floor (3 reports)
2002 Nissan Altima body / paint problems

body / paint problem

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2002 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #22

Jun 102013

Altima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 130,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The car had other problems and paid dealer $550 to diagnose and decided to cut my losses and run because of the 2 holes each about 8" x 20". So this is the last Nissan I'll ever own, they all seem to have either rust problems or transmission problems or engine problems on every model I have looked at. Only going to buy a Honda or Toyota from now on.

- , Andover, MN, USA

problem #21

Nov 292015

Altima 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,625 miles

After taking my car in for a check up prior to winter at the end of October, 2015, I was shown and visually saw underside the drivers' and front passenger seats that were completely rusted through to my carpet. Upon further investigation I learned that this was a well documented problem for Altimas manufactured between 2002 and 2006. I had my car repaired and immediately wrote to Nissan Consumers Affairs about this manufacturing defect and requested they assume responsibility for their negligence. It appears that the company used a plug in the floor boards which trapped water and caused rusting from the inside out.. I received a call from a customer rep who asked what I wanted. I replied I wanted a reimbursement for my bill. He assured Nissan would review my case and he would get back to me in 2 days. Well he did called back in 2 days and told me my car was out of warranty. I explained to him that by the time the problem manifested itself all cars with this problem were out of warranty. There is no expiration date on a manufacturing defect. IT JUST DOES NOT DISAPPEAR OR CORRECT ITSELF WITH AGE! That's not rocket science.

I angrily told the rep that I would never buy another car from an irresponsible company as Nissan and would discourage everyone I knew from doing the same. I was told by my mechanic that Toyota had a problem due to manufacturing and took care of their customers even though it happened beyond the warranty date. Apparently, Toyota proved they know the importance of a happy customer and can separate the,'boys' from the 'men'.

- , Springfieeld, USA

problem #20

Feb 022015

Altima STD 2.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 171,000 miles

Hello, I had to get the passenger side floor board repaired at a local auto body shop in order to pass Maryland inspection in winter 2015, costing me $800-900. I just ran across CarComplaints.com and noticed the word "floorboards" in one of the sites general complaint comments of my 2002 Altima and the pending lawsuit. As of Nov., 2015. I see it is still in litigation. Anyone have any updates and is there a glimmer of hope in getting some ca$h back from Nissan?

Thanks, Happy Hoildays.

- , Havre de Grace, MD, USA

problem #19

Jan 022014

Altima SE 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,778 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

The work has not been done, but the mechanic that has been looking after the car indicates the floor area on the passenger side is quite soft and there is risk of the floor rotting through. In our Province, a hole in the floor is reason have the vehicle removed from the road and deemed unsafe.

- , Winnipeg, Manitoba, canada

problem #18

May 012015

Altima ES 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 150,000 miles

MECHANIC TOLD ME THE FLOOR BOARD HAD MAJOR RUST AN I SHOULD CONSIDER HAVING IT REPLACED.

- , Milford, OH, USA

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problem #17

Mar 042013

Altima 2.5

  • 49,710 miles

click to see larger images

floors rusting out floors rusting out

I had a major repair for the car in March as the coolant was leaking in engine. When the tech lifted the car found this big hole below the passenger seat. It was a big crack around 8 inches and 4 inches hole. The damage was found in March 2013.

The year 2002 Nissan Altima brand new car was bought at wrong time. I had spend lots of money fixing this car due to coolant leak in engine (gasket change), cylinder misfire 2 times, water drum change, timing belt, coolant changed few times due to acceleration had water gushing noise, Heat would not come when idling.

As of now used only 118000 KMS. Now the new problem is intermittently gear would not switch. Gear would not switch from D to P. Have to move little further and the gear would change when parking needed.

Spent tons of money in this make car.

- , Edmonton, AB, Canada

problem #16

May 012013

Altima S 2.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 170,000 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

Too many problems with this car. I will buy a Toyota next time.

- , Kansas City, MO, USA

problem #15

Jan 072015

Altima SL 2.5L?

  • Automatic transmission
  • 120,000 miles

1) getting ready to drive to Florida, mechanic doing check notices he can put his hand through the floorboards, had to find a welder quickly (1/2 FOOT OF SNOW ON GROUND). Cost $500

2) heater box, replaced, cable keeps either breaking or gets trapped. A 2 minute fix, however driving home 1119 miles from Florida, no heat in car for 18 hours of driving in the cold and freezing temps. Had to wear emergency clothing the entire way. Mechanic had to flip a lever under dash to get it to work on high heat only. Home 5 weeks, cable suck again on cold air only, good thing it's in he 60's at the moment.

- , Akron, OH, USA

problem #14

Mar 202010

Altima SE 3.5L V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 99,419 miles

After I purchased this car I took it for inspection to my mechanic. During the safety inspection I found two patched holes on the floor panel in the driver and front passenger seat foot area. Holes approx 5-7 cm in diameter were covered with black tar, underbody rust protector. When I removed the carpet inside the car in this area I found metal sheets that were welded in this area with sealed perimeter. This car was just 8 years old and I found condition rather strange. Later I shared my finding with other Altima owners in Toronto Altima Club and I found that people have the same issue. L31 is notorious for rusted floor. I read somewhere that the problem with poor floor panel drainage design in this area

- , Etobicoke, Ontario, canada

problem #13

Jun 092014

Altima LX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,600 miles

I had my Nissan Altima since 2002. Since having my car I have never allowed anyone else to service my car but Nissan. I take my car in to have it serviced in June of 2014. While waiting for it to be serviced the receptionist came and ask me had I thought about trading my car in and I said no, I don't have any problems at all with my Altima, plus, I am unable to afford getting back in to car payments.

So she said come with me I need to show you something with your car. I followed her. Lord and Behold my car was up on the lift and all I see was a rusted out floor pan. I said how could that have happen when I take care of my car and you here at Nissan are the only ones that service my car and no one has seen this completely rotted out floor before it ever could have gotten like this where myself or passengers in the front seat could have gotten seriously injured? All they were able to say to me was they had never seen anything like this.

I went home and decided to do some research on rusted out floors on 2002 Nissan Altima. What popped up, all these other complaints on the rusted out floor pans. I am very upset with Nissan because I feel it is definitely a manufacturing defect on their part and I shouldn't have had to be the one to fix a rotted out floor pan.

- , Springfield, MA, USA

problem #12

Sep 302013

Altima 3.5 V6

  • Automatic transmission
  • 211,266 miles

A D V E R T I S E M E N T S

This car has had a high TCO. Everything from a hole in the floor on the drivers side to replacement of brake sensors multiple times. Engine seems to be working fine despite the high kilometers.

- , Aurora, ON, Canada

problem #11

Mar 102014

Altima S 2.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 105,590 miles

I bought my car after I got married in 2002. My 2002 Nissan Altima is considered a death trap. The passenger and driver side floor panels have rusted through. I noticed it when I went to pull the gas tank lever and saw the ground. I planned to keep the car another 2 years before replacing it. Now my husband and I have no choice but to replace the car for the safety of our children. I am so upset I have to replace my car tomorrow.

This is a problem because the car is otherwise sound. Heat and a/c work, engines fine, radio works, tires are in great shape. We wanted to sell the car to help with the down payment on my new one. I hope Nissan compensates all of us owners.

- , Jersey City, NJ, USA

problem #10

Oct 172012

Altima SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 162,200 miles

I noticed some rust under my car about 9 months ago and I showed it to my son-n-law who is a mechanic and he said it looked like the floor board is rusting out. Since then it has progressively gotten worse, now the passenger side front floorboard is almost completely gone. My mother who is 80 years old rides with me in this car and I am scared to death one day her feet will fall thru. I have seen all the complaints on the internet regarding the same issues between 2002-2005 Nissans. They also state that Nissan America will not do anything regarding the issue. I do not have $2000-$2500 for a repair. I can't even sale it the way it is. I think Nissan should stand up and take care of the situation, before someone really gets hurt in the vehicle.

- , Nicholasville, KY, USA

problem #9

Jan 012010

Altima SE 3.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

click to see larger images

floors rusting out floors rusting out

Rusted through floor boards. I purchased this 2002 Altima new and loaded. It has been very well taken car of and garaged. I bought it for my daughter and she still has it garaged. I few weeks ago, I was looking under the car and noticed that both floor boards have rusted through. The holes are the size of skateboards. The car is unsafe to use at this point. Your foot can easily go right through to the street. There is no rust anywhere else on the car. Nissan says "sorry" it's out of warranty. And they don't admit that there's a defect in the manufacturing of the car, even though the internet has THOUSANDS of cases of this same problem. Wow. They must be waiting for a class action suit. When some large legal firm grabs this issue, and sends letters to every present and past Altima owner, the SH-T will hit the fan. What an insult. I will never buy another Nissan product again. I'm in the car repar business and will gladly spread the word.

Update from Oct 7, 2013: So, Nissan did not even recognize this issue as a common problem. There are thousands of complaints for this exact problem of rotted-through floor pans. I spent $900.00 to have a body shop rebuild and replace the floor pans. Fabrication and extensive welding was needed. Techs at the dealership said they have seen multiple cases exactly like mine. SHAME ON NISSAN. They know there's a legitimate major issue here.

DON'T BUY ANOTHER NISSAN. THEY DO NOT STAND BEHIND THEIR CARS

- , Manhasset, NY, USA

problem #8

May 222010

Altima S 2.5L Li 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,538 miles

click to see larger images

floors rusting out floors rusting out floors rusting out floors rusting out

WE CONTACTED NISSAN IN 2010 --THEY ASKED TO SEE THE CAR AT A DEALER--NISSAN REFUSED TO DO ANYTHING SAYING CAR IS OUT OF WARRANTY. MECHANIC SAYS IT IS A DESIGN PROBLEM WITH THE PUNCHOUT MATERIAL ON THE FLOORBOARDS. THE CORROSION WAS EXTENSIVE--COMPLETELY THROUGH THE FLOOR ON BOTH DRIVER AND PASSENGER SIDE AND SIDE IMPACT SHIELDS WERE ALSO TOTALLY ROTTED OUT. DEFINITELY A SAFETY/BODY INTEGRITY PROBLEM AND SHOULD BE REPAIRED BY NISSAN.I PLAN TO CONTACT THE NATIONAL HIGHWAY SAFETY DEPT.AS WELL. NISSAN IS AVOIDING THIS SERIOUS PROBLEM. IF THEY PAY FOR THIS IT WILL OPEN A CAN OF WORMS FOR THEM. DEFINITELY A DAMAGE CONTROL MOVE FOR NISSAN.

- , Red Hill, PA, USA

problem #7

Nov 082010

Altima 2.5L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 83,264 miles

All the comments about this Nissan Edsel I have read are all familiar. I think the only thing that is original is the cigarette lighter. I would advise EVERYONE to look at their floorboards. My mechanic just discovered that I am driving a Fred Flintstone car. (The car was rustproofed and yet I have holes in the floorboards, yes driver & passenger side)) There are too many problems with this car to list. I'm surprised the "Service Engine lite" hasn't burned out.

I WILL NEVER BUY A NISSAN AGAIN. Has anyone else had to have the gas filler neck replaced due to corrosion TWICE in 3 years? I could go on, and on and on . My car is a piece of CRAP. Now I feel a little better. Time to go back to buying a North American automobile.

- , Toronto, Ontario, Canada

problem #6

Jan 012007

Altima SE 3.5L

  • Manual transmission
  • 100,000 miles

Gaping softball size hole in the passenger floorboard caused by AC condenser drain that would back up and dump into the front wheel well. Design change in 04 fixed the cause but Nissan never officially owned up to the issue. Had to cut the floor pan out tack weld some tin in it's place and undercoat the area to "resolve". Very disappointing for a 2002 vehicle

- , Nottingham, NH, USA

problem #5

Jun 112009

Altima 2.5L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 66,487 miles

The car looks perfect from the outside - not a spot of rust anywhere. Bought undercoating from the dealer with a 5 year warranty. All service was done by the dealer who never spotted the problem. Problem was spotted when I took the car in for government safety check. Nissan refused to do anything. Had to trade the car in for almost nothing even with only 107,000 km.

- , Ottawa, Ontario, Canada

problem #4

Jun 022008

Altima SL 2.5L 4 cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 110,000 miles

click to see larger images

floors rusting out

Hello everyone, if your reading this chances are you either have a problem with your Altima or are looking to purchase a Altima. DON'T DO IT!!!!!!!! I have owned many cars, this one has been the worst by far, the build quality, fit and finish and customer service are all below average. I own a 2002 Nissan Altima the car has 112,000 miles on the odo, purchased it brand new in January 2 of 2002. Within the first 6-8 months it had to be towed away twice due to a defective crank angle sensor. The high number of recalls has had me to the dealer more times than I care to mention. In June of 2003 the air conditioning went out only for the dealer to tell me that it was NOT covered under warranty because the car was in an accident. Mind you this car was owned since new, I however did not purchase the car at this particular dealership, so what does the dealership do? Say the car was damaged and repaired by my dealership and that I owe $489.52. The car had 1.7 miles on it at the time of purchase, I think there was a problem on the assembly line and was neatly covered up with the passenger side fender, JUNK!!!. Anyway, I sway from the main and most aggravating trouble so far. My friend owns a repair shop, put it on a lift to due the brakes only to find out the floor on both the passenger AND driver side were rusted out. The driver side was the worst, having a hole in it 12.5" X 21.25"!!!! The funny thing about this is I just came from the dealer to take care of yet another recall, they told me I need new rear brakes for the grand total of $1200.00 ( I own a Mercedes Benz and have recently had the brakes done by a dealer, front AND rear for a total of $792.16) the dealer never mentioned anything about the gigantic holes in my floor, but why would they aren't they one in the same? This is the last straw! The dealers seem to care less and Nissan USA is even worse! After many unanswered emails and phone calls, I'm fed up I thought that Nissans were made to last and cheap to keep up, I guess that Nissan is no longer, I just hope that the cost cutting, low quality and poor service come full circle to Nissan and they suffer for it. If anyone is pursuing a class action lawsuit please let me know, I'm in! My e-mail address is Planeact@sbcglobal.net

- , STREAMWOOD, IL, USA

problem #3

Sep 012008

Altima 2.5 SL 2.5L I4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 114,954 miles

While my car was on the lift at the garage a few weeks ago I took a look underneath and found two holes rusting their way through my floor. I was shocked that a 6 year old car would be rusting out already so I went to the dealer, where they told me the warranty was only 5 years against perforation. Still not satisfied, I called Nissan, and they told me the same thing.

I have since found out that this seems to be a somewhat common problem with this generation of Altima so I plan to harass the manufacturer a little more since it may be a design flaw.

- , Montreal, Quebec, Canada

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