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Pinging, Knock Issue Solved.. Forums > > Pinging, Knock Issue Solved.. Pinging, Knock Issue Solved..
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Old 03-04-2020, 02:42 PM
Timberman Timberman is offline
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2005 Maxima
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 2
Default Pinging, Knock Issue Solved..

Pinging Issue, I hope this may help somebody.

Try replacing the PCV Valve FIRST. No guarantees but it did COMPLETELY fix the ongoing pinging issue with my 2005 Nissan Maxima.
Cheap, easy to do and if you want to know why, then let me bore you with my story.. it's long and expensive sorry to admit..

Two and a half years ago I started to notice a loud rattle from my engine, but it only happened when the car was hot, under light throttle and usually on a slight incline when the car had a bit of resistance.
Not always but this was the most common occurence. Sounded like a ball bearing being shaken in a paint can, often very loud, horrible sound.

To quickly explain how this was paid for, I was using my car as a company car (another long story), the arrangment if I supplied the car the company would pay for everything including repairs etc etc.
Using my car was way cheaper for them, so they were happy to cover the costs of the repairs (Lucky me!).

So it begins.. The car had been fully serviced at the local Nissan Dealer but the pinging continued, so I put the car back in again to have it properly diagnosed.
They they rang me later to say that they could not find any fault and that they would just charge me a standard diagnostic fee.
When I collected the car I spoke with the Service Manager and mentioned that I didn't understand why they could not find a problem, and what does that mean.
He told me the issue was complicated and that it could be any number of things, but the thing that I still remember was him saying that my best option was to consider
buying a new car!! Mate, how do you answer that!

Anyway, summary of the next two years which involved two seperate automotive shops.

- Changed to 98 octane fuel (we can buy that here).. no help.
- Additional Octane booster.. Did help but only masked the issue.
- Loose components checked, heat shields, pipes, gaurds etc.. no problems found.
- Full systems diagnostic (no errors including hidden errors).
- New Radiata was installed as cracks were showing in the old one, cooling system checked and flushed.. didn't help car wasn't overheating anyway.
- Compression test and bore scope (stethoscope). Compression was perfectly even across all cylinders however 20psi above normal because of carbon buildup.
- Decarbonize using Subaru Upper Cylinder Cleaner. Each cylinder was filled up completely (spark plugs out) with the product, left to soak overnight.
Manually cleaning of manifold intakes, Power Valve, MAF, EGR etc etc. New Spark Plugs Installed (standard not colder). Knock Sensor tested OK. They took video of startup, amazing to watch, white smoke for Africa!
Good stuff that cleaner.

The car ran great after this, no pinging for about 10 months then slowly it returned and went back to it's full glory. Obviously to some degree this worked but was not the only problem. Still worthwhile and probably played some role in the overall fix.

- Changed to a local auto shop which had great reviews...
- Full systems diagnostic again including computer reset. No help.
- Bore scope again, mechanic reported cylinders were clean.
- New MAF sensor
- New Intake Power Valve
- New front Catalytic Converter (Bonus! believe it or not didn't pay for this, mechanic told me they had misdiagnosed fault)
- Timing Chains (3) replaced at a cost of $2,000. Expensive but half the price of Nissan Dealer. Done at my request, mechanic could not confirm if the old ones were causing the problem or not.

Total Cost to this point, nearly $5,000 (including discounts) .. yep that's the cost of the trip to nowhere as they say. Could have bought the kids McDonalds at that price! (no offence if you work at McDonalds)

Then Finally after two and a half years driving me beyond insane (if that's possible - no correction it is possible) it ended for me with the little PCV Valve thing.
Less than $20.00 for the valve and 15 minutes to install. And as we say down here "wrap your laughing gear round that one mate", problem Fixed NO MORE PINGING.
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Old 05-06-2020, 02:36 PM
alx0101 alx0101 is offline
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1998 Maxima
Join Date: Nov 2012
Posts: 5


So how was the PCV diagnosed as the problem (of the symptoms) or was it an incidental change that then completely resolved the symptoms?
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Old 05-07-2020, 02:51 PM
Timberman Timberman is offline
Registered User
2005 Maxima
Join Date: Jan 2019
Posts: 2

Great question, there were no symptoms and both the auto shops seemed to have missed it.

Basically came across it as a potential problem by doing some research on the internet (Its all about how the PCV can change pressure in the intake manifold). So I checked out the cost of a new one, looked up a youtube video on how to replace it, and did it myself to honest. I could have got the shop to do it of course (it's a little fiddly to get to and you need the right socket) but I've worked on cars before so no worries.

To be fair the auto shops may have checked it and thought it was okay. An easy test is to take it out and shake it back and forth next to your ear. If you hear a rattle it's supposed to be okay, no rattle means its blocked so no good.

I did the rattle test on mine and it rattled, so in theory it should have been okay, but somewhere I seemed to remember a bloke who mentioned that even though it rattles it can still be faulty, so I bought a new one anyway (at the price I thought why not) and replaced it. Happy days no more problem!

I have since sold the Maxima to my niece, and it never pinged again from the moment I replaced the PCV to this day. Hope helps and answers your question.

Last edited by Timberman; 05-07-2020 at 03:02 PM.
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issue, knock, pinging, solved

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