pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
90,458 miles
Total Complaints:
77 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replaced intake manifold gasket (47 reports)
  2. not sure (30 reports)
2000 Nissan Altima engine problems

engine problem

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2000 Nissan Altima Owner Comments (Page 4 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #17

Jun 112007

(reported on)

Altima GXE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 47,926 miles


I purchased this car brand new from a dealer. Symptom developed with relatively low mileage at 45K miles, then the check engine light came on. I took it to the dealer, and it was diagnosed as intake manifold leak. I was fortunate that it was still covered under warranty.

Update from May 26, 2009: The same problem recurred again at 100k miles. The problem occurred at 45k miles, and it was fixed by the dealer under manufacture warranty. I used to be a loyal Nissan owner, and this is the 3rd Nissan car I have owned. After the experience of this piece of junk, I have decided no more Nissan ever again!

- , Fremont, CA, US

problem #16

Jul 182007

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 50,000 miles

The "service engine soon" light came on at about 46,000 miles and was diagnosed to be a vacuum leak in the intake manifold gasket. I, too, think this was an inherent defect and should warrant a recall.

- , San Diego, CA, US

problem #15

Apr 122007

(reported on)

Altima SE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 58,000 miles

Thanks to all who posted this problem. My mechanic diagnosed the problem as the fuel injector and was going to replace it at a cost of $400. It wouldn't have solved the problem and it would have cost an extra $500. Perhaps I will start going to the dealer. They should be more familiar with the "normal" problems of this car.

- , Green Bay, WI, USA

problem #14

Aug 032006

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • 57,000 miles


My complaint is in regards to my 2000 Nissan Altima GXE 2.4 $cylinder premature failure of the intake manifold gasket due to heat around the cylinder 4 area from the EGR pipe which bakes the gasket into leaking. I have a 2000 Altima with 57,000 miles with an intermittent idle fluctuation, I have also had stalling while driving the vehicle. I am really upset with this as the cost for repair for this is $600. This is a design flaw by Nissan and should be covered as a recall or emissions warranty (being that the check engine light comes on with code P0171). Reading all forums on the Internet this is happening to all these models. Every 40 to 80 thousand miles this happens over and over. I believe this needs to be addressed before the vehicle stalls out while in drive with a person in the back of me who rear ends me. Very much a Safety/Emissions issue that needs to be addressed by Nissan!


- , Sicklerville, NJ, USA

problem #13

Aug 072006

(reported on)


  • 60,000 miles

I drove for about 6 month with the engine light on (P0304 - cylinder 4 misfire). I finally had to fix it (had to smog the car). It cost me $520 not including the spark plugs and wires I had replaced, during troubleshooting.

The new gasket gets it to run great though (I guess I got used to the rough idle during the 6 months).

Now I have to start working on the air conditioning that's been broken for a couple of years...

- , Carpinteria, CA, USA

problem #12

Mar 052007

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 87,500 miles

I had the exact same problem that others have reported. The car started to shake and the RPMs would spike up and down while sitting at stop lights. I never had the car actually stall, but it felt like it was getting close to that point. I reported it to my local mechanic and he knew right away about this problem. Sure enough, the intake manifold gasket was bad. He replaced it and the problem seems to have gone away for the most part.

- , Olney, MD, USA

problem #11

Mar 012007

(reported on)

Altima SE 2.4L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 79,000 miles


I too have the same problem with my Nissan 2000 Altima (bought in LA but now I have moved to the Bay Area), engine has a rough idle which I notice only when I stop at a red light, not when driving.

I took it to the dealer (Boardwalk) who ran the diagnostic test and confirmed its due to P0304 and that I had a vacuum leak from intake manifold gasket. They said it would take $750 to fix which seems in the range of what others paid.

Since a lot of you have had the same problems I was wondering how we could contact Nissan to report this issue . Does anyone know of other sites which talk about similar complaints.

I would definitely keep the old gaskets, just in case I need them.

- , Foster City, CA, USA

problem #10

Feb 102007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

A long time ago I started hearing some rattling sort of noise in the front. Took it to Carmax, as I have the Extended Warranty. They said it was a loose belt and charged me $80 since belts aren't covered by warranty. The problem didn't really go away and only got worse. Around 89,000 miles it began to shake when idling and the noise was worse. The check engine light would come on intermittently. My husband found the info on this site, I printed it out and took it to Carmax and told them to fix my manifold intake gasket! They wouldn't refund my $80 from the first visit, nor would the pay me $80 for diagnosing it myself. Ha. Oh well. They did $600 worth of repairs, which was mostly covered by my extended warranty (which expires at 92,500 miles). They discovered that the problem had also caused premature wear of my spark plugs, however, and the warranty would not cover that. It is still making a pretty rough noise occasionally, but it is no longer shaking. I guess I'll have to take it back and have them look at it again.

- , Simpsonville, SC, USA

problem #9

Feb 062007

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I've got a 2000 Nissan Altima and just had the same problem another person here reported: Started idling really rough and engine light came on intermittently. Cracked intake manifold gasket. I've got 125K on it and, other than regular maintenance, have only had to ever replace a cracked radiator. The other person here reported it cost her $450, my mechanics came back with $600. They're a reliable place with a good rep, though, and usually charge a little more, but the work is reliable.

Another problem I'd noticed before and they're going to fix is the head gasket was leaking oil. That's a $136. So almost $900. I'd be griping except it's cost me almost nothing for 7 years, so I can't really gripe. It's a good car, I'd buy it again in a minute.

- , Berkeley, CA, USA

problem #8

Dec 152006

(reported on)

Altima GXE 2.4L V4

  • Manual transmission
  • 140,500 miles

I bought my 2000 Altima brand new, and just hit 140,000 miles. Up until now I have not done any repairs to it, just regular maintenence such as belts, filters, flushes, tires, brakes, etc. It's been a great car. Then my check engine light came on a few weeks ago. The car still seemed to be running okay, but the idle was a little off, and you could hear a misfire in the muffler. My friend ran a test on it and it came up a misfire code. I had just replaced the spark plugs a little while ago, but we went ahead and did the plug wires and the distributor cap just in case. But, the check engine light was still on and it still idled a little rough.

So, I read online about the intake manifold gasket. It seems to usually happen at lower mileage, I kind of wish mine did and maybe it would have been under warranty! But, I just got the intake manifold gasket fixed, $14 part and $460 labor. But, it was worth it. The car runs great now.

Just a side note too, about 2 years ago, maybe around 90,000 miles, my temperature gauge started bouncing around. It never went up to the hot zone, but it would bounce around like crazy between cold and normal running temp. I had the system checked out and they said everything was running at normal temp. So, instead of taking the dash apart just to fix a gauge, I've just dealt with it the last couple years. But, now that the intake manifold gasket has been fixed, the temp gauge is working completely normal again. I'm not sure what one would have to do with the other, but it seems to be fixed. The only thing I can think of is maybe the temp reading is somewhere down by the gasket and it started to go bad a couple years ago?? Anyway, it's fixed now and still running like new.

- , Hampton, MN, USA

problem #7

Dec 122006

(reported on)

Altima GXE 2.4L V4

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,400 miles


It was very helpful to read other posts here! I just moved to a huge metropolis and took my beloved Altima, which I did purchase new in Northern CALIFORNIA, into a shop for an oil change and to have them inspect the cause of the rough idle. When they came back with a $540 repair estimate, I thought I was about to get ripped off, so I decided to research it a bit more before going any further. All the symptoms described herein match mine: The Service Engine Soon light has lit up for a few minutes, then gone off. The engine idles rough, particularly when stopped, but still noticeable even when driving. The power is still good. The shop said that they used a smoke machine to test if there was a leak. That having a bad gasket creates a vacuum that pulls cold air into the intake manifold, causing the engine to run lean, which also makes it run hotter. They said it could damage the valves in the long run, so to get it repaired promptly. This should have been a recall issue--shame on Nissan for not taking care of it.

- , Phoenix, AZ, USA

problem #6

Dec 132006

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 102,000 miles

My Altima had the same problem as mentioned by the others. At idle the car would shake and the engine would be on the edge of stalling. Apparently the problem is that the intake manifold gasket leaks air into one of the cylinders, thus causing the stalling and shaking. I had it fixed at an independent mechanic for a rather steep price of ~$989.

- , Vienna, VA, USA

problem #5

Apr 062006

(reported on)

Altima SE

  • 59,000 miles

Intake manifold gasket went out just before the warranty expired, not certain about the mileage. Dealer replaced the gasket at no charge. Service manager came out to have a heartfelt talk with me to advise me that I also had a serious problem with my front brake pads. He said the pads were worn down almost to metal-on-metal, and that it needed to be fixed immediately. I thanked him and left, picking up a pair of pads on the way home. When I removed the front pads, not one of them had less than 50% of the pad left. I could have driven several thousand miles more before needing to replace them.

Now, at 110,000 miles, I have had the same problem again with the blown intake manifold gasket. The computer code shows a misfire on cylinder 4. The engine runs roughly and the sound at the exhaust pipe does not sound good. A dealer wants $810 to replace a gasket that I can buy from AutoZone for $5.99. With the great number of owners with the same problem, it seems abundantly clear that this should be covered by Nissan as a design defect.

Interestingly enough, the new service manager advised me that my car would not start up to pull it into the service bay for testing, and that they had to jump start it, and that I needed a new battery for $115. That battery was only 2 years old and still under warranty from AutoZone (I had paid $54 for it and it came with a 7 year warranty.) I took the car to AutoZone for them to test it (I never did have any problems cranking the car) and the battery and alternator tested fine. I can't help but wonder if the person who went to pull the vehicle into the shop did not know that you must depress the clutch pedal fully in order to start the car. My trust in the Nissan dealership repair shops is not too high.

- , Cumming, GA, USA

problem #4

Nov 262006

(reported on)

Altima GXE 2.4 16V DOHC

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,350 miles


Just got the 2000 Altima back on the road (Put my 78 280Z up for the winter). And the check engine light came on & it has a miss at idle now. So I read up about the intake manifold gasket issue on the web and try the carb cleaner test around cyc 4. Sure enough I could change the idle and even stall out the engine if I wanted to. This was in the dark with a flash light. Seamed almost like bad seals around the fuel injector.

Anyway looking like this typical gasket issue. Car only has 29,000 miles. Does anybody know if Nissan has updated the part and part number? Anybody try the old anti-seize compound on the new gasket trick? (Old hot rod tip for keeping header gaskets moist & flexible) I only want to do this job once :)

- , Stamford, CT, USA

problem #3

Oct 302006

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,000 miles

I am just adding to the complaints. The exact same thing started happening to my car recently. It starts to shake, and the engine surges, especially when idling at stop signs or stop lights. My husband and I have already tried replacing several parts ourselves, but the problem persists. We replaced all 4 spark plugs, the spark plug wires, the distributor and rotor, and the fuel filter. But no, problem still persists. I am scheduled to take it in to the dealer this week -- after reading the posts, I should just tell the dealer to replace the intake manifold gasket and be done with it....!

- , Round Lake Beach, IL, USA

problem #2

Mar 252006

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • 60,500 miles

I took my Nissan Altima year 2000 with SES warning to Pepboys and after detecting a P0304 (4th cylinder misfire) they advised me to get a tuneup which ended up replacing the not-so worn out spark plugs and the wires. After doing that and damaging me with $200 expense on replacing spark plugs/wires, when the misfire did not stop - they concluded that intake manifold gasket is the root cause and it will be $450 worth of repair for that.. that was very annoying to hear!

Looking at posts on the internet after that I came to realize that P0304 almost 100% corresponds to a malfunctioning intake manifold gasket. Surprisingly, I noticed all the posts mentioning P0304 code and the manufacturing year 2000 or 2001, there must be some correlation here leading me to believe that this is a Nissan design problem.

- , Santa Clara, CA, USA

problem #1

Nov 242005

(reported on)

Altima GXE

  • 66,000 miles

There are so many different points that when taken together make the conclusion obvious (to me anyway) that there is an engineering or material defect on the KA24DE in regards to the intake manifold gasket. From reading the posts of dozens of owners it appears it is happening to engines made in the 00-01 timeframe. You don't see posts about this on engines before or after that period. Isn't that odd? If this were just some random problem then you would expect to see about the same number of posts on P0304 and gasket leaks for ANY year car. But that is not the case. Just about all the posts concern specifically 00-01. What we cannot tell from the posts is whether this spike for 00-01 only concerns the California engine. Of the 2 guys that checked (myself included) - both were the Cali model. I'm trying to get in touch with the other guys that posted on this to ask what model they have.

What we do know is that Nissan redesigned and changed parts suppliers for the KA24 in September of 99 (the beginning of the '00 model year). Again the same time this problem starts showing up in greater numbers as documented in the posts.

The first hand evidence I had is when I took off my intake manifold and checked the condition of the gasket. The side with the leak was at cylinder 4. When I took off the gasket, the material at the cylinder 4 side was what I can only describe as "baked". It was hard and brittle and would just crack or snap very easily. The closer the gasket was to the number 1 cylinder it remained more pliable and would have more flex instead of just cracking like hard plastic. Obviously the gasket seems to hold up better closer to cylinder 1 because it is cooler there - that is where the passage for the coolant is. It's easy to understand how the gasket material will crack after being subjected to lots of heat (at cyl 4) and engine vibration over the years.

You asked for statistics to back this up. Well if you look at the posts - just about all of them say this problem causes a P0304 code to get thrown. That is a misfire at cylinder 4. Again, if this were some random problem - couldn't we reasonbly expect a normal distribution of the cylinder misfire code from P0301, 302, 303, and 304? But that is not the case. I don't think I have seen any posts on anything other than P0304. Which combined with what I saw firsthand leads to the conclusion that either there is extra heat around cylinder 4 above what the gasket material is rated for - which is an engine design issue. Or the gasket supplier used inferior material that did not conform to the Nissan spec for this part.

Assuming we give Nissan and their suppliers the benefit of the doubt that they consciously didn't want to put inferior materials in the car (which is what I believe), the most logical explanation is that the gasket is being exposed to more heat than it was designed to withstand. The fact that of the 2 cars verified so far happen to be California emission vehicles it seems plausible to me that the extra heat is related to the emission control devices these cars have - specifically the extra cat converter. You have to agree that there is more exhaust backpressure from the extra cat especially as it ages and tends to get blocked. This backpressure makes the engine work harder and get hotter.

I'd love to know what changed in 02 to eliminate this problem. Was it an engine redesign or different gasket material. I am not familiar with the '02 KA24s but I would assume they were redesigned for 3rd gen.

So that's my case. I wish I would have saved the old gasket so I could post a picture of it and you could see the shiny baked side as opposed to the duller normal looking side that comes from the heat differential on the engine. But it was so brittle it just snapped into little pieces very easily.

I hope this helps clarify the issue. Again, the smoking gun is contained mostly in the posts of guys talking about the P0304 code and how to fix it on the various Nissan bulletin boards on the net. I don't think it's necessary for me to copy and paste them all here - it's easy enough to do a search and read for yourselves.

- , Stamford, CT, USA

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