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Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Hi All

I have a really frustrating and very dangerous problem with my Micra. I bought it privately a couple of months ago in really good nick with 50k on the clock, and it ran ok for a few weeks but recently it has been a swine to drive as it is struggling to do anything over 40-50mph. Car is a 2003, 1240cc petrol, 2door.

I will try and explain the problem but if you need any more info please get in touch. It will drive fine up to about 40mph but anything over say 4th gear and the car judders and just feels like the power is going to fail, it doesn't totally fail though, it will continue at about 40-50mph maximum (juddering), if I touch the accelerator slightly it seems to maintain its current speed and there seems to be power there ok until I press it down harder there is nothing there at all. It will run forever idle, in fact it sounds like it is running lovely at a stand still.

I'm really worried because I need to drive approx 10 miles down the motorway two evenings a week but in the last few weeks I have had some really nail biting journeys as my Micra seems to lose all power when I get over approx 40 to 50mph, obviously this means I need to pull over on a really busy motorway in the dark, one particular trip I had to stop 5 times and I was shaking by the time I reached my destination. After that really bad trip I took it into a garage who ran diagnostics which turned up nothing, they checked everything they thought may be the cause but one thing they couldn't get to was the fuel filter as the guy said it was hard to get to. He also gave the car a winter service and when I got it back it ran ok (but only ok) for a week or so but the problem is back and I'm gutted.

The car actually passed its MOT last week as well, needing only a headlight bulb, so that didn't flag up any problems so I am totally at a loss, I seriously darent drive it on the motorway until it's fixed and this is a big problem to me. Has anyone had a similar problem with a Micra? Any help would be awesome as having a car is essential right now.

One other thing I have tried is turning the ignition on and off whilst driving down my road, I was told this may re-set the engine management or something but it hasn't solved problem. I am totally skint right now so I really can't afford to keep paying to get it looked at but it not getting fixed.

Any help or advice with the problem would be really really appreciated as I need to try and solve this problem urgently. Many thanks in advance for any advice you can offer.
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - skidpan

Knackered CAT?

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - SLO76
Nissan Micra, both K11 (1993-2003) and the K12 (2003-) models have very weak throttle bodies. It’s a very common fault. When the throttle body fails, most garages will take it off and clean it up with carburetor cleaner and commonly on other vehicles this will normally do the trick, however, unfortunately the Nissan Micra although showing similar faults to other vehicles with failed throttle bodies (also known as air mass meters).. the fault is electrical and will not be cured with a squirt of carburetor cleaner.The unit will have to be professionally stripped & rebuilt or replaced.

Common symptoms of a failed throttle body on a Nissan Micra (both K11 & K12) are:
Stalling at traffic lights
Loss Of Power
Hesitation
Erratic Idling
Cutting out under Power
Engine Management Light On

Stretched timing chains are another common failing on Micra's that haven't seen regular oil and filter changes. This will knock the timing out and cause tough running and power loss also but you'd normally hear a worn or stretched chain rattling at least on start up.

A breaking up catalyst can also cause power loss but from your description that the fault is intermittent I'd suspect it's the throttle body.

Edited by SLO76 on 18/01/2017 at 20:43

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Brilliant informative answer, I will trry and get it booked in for repair again ASAP and hopefully get to the bottom of it now. Thanks so much for the help, I will let you know how I get on!
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bathtub tom

I had a silencer collapse internally, causing the wadding to obstruct the exit.

Caused similar problems.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Many thanks for your input, really appreciated.
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - Big John

Coil packs failing? (think it's one per cylinder on this car) - showing up now the weather has got colde/damper

When parked and in neutral and already warm - briefly floor the throttle , does it sound/feel as though it's dropped one or two cylinders

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
I will try that this afternoon, many thanks for the advice it's really appreciated.
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Hi, just to confirm I ran the car today idle for about 10mins until warm then I pressed the accelerator pedal right down and it felt and sounded great, I tried it a few times pressing hard and gentle and it was absolutely fine.

I will try a couple more times tomorrow, in the morning and evening and see if it is ok when I press the accelerator and get back to you guys again.
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Ok, just to confirm I warmed it up again today and revved it up a good few times, it still sounds fine when standing still.

Does this discount any of the potential problems listed above? Just so I know before I take it in for repair please so I give whoever looks at it as much info as possible.

One more question, would people recommend I take it to a Nissan specialist?
Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bathtub tom

Pressing the accelerator in neutral bears no correlation to driving on the road.

In neutral there's no load on the engine and it will happily rev its nuts off.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - galileo

Pressing the accelerator in neutral bears no correlation to driving on the road.

In neutral there's no load on the engine and it will happily rev its nuts off.

Quite true - in the olden days when ignition was by coil/contact points etc, I had a condenser fail, no load in neutral it would rev quite happily but no hope of driving anywhere.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - galileo

Pressing the accelerator in neutral bears no correlation to driving on the road.

In neutral there's no load on the engine and it will happily rev its nuts off.

Quite true - in the olden days when ignition was by coil/contact points etc, I had a condenser fail, no load in neutral it would rev quite happily but no hope of driving anywhere.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - Big John

If coils are failing - in neutral usually shows up when briefly FLOORING throttle when stationary(best when warm) - so it's probably not this then.

If you gently rev the engine - it will just rev to the red line - to test you need to briefly floor the throttle

I've experienced this with wasted spark coil packs (eg VW Golf /Skoda Octavia) , Individual coils (eg Nissan) and coil "modules" that incorporate one coil per cylinder (eg SAAB).

Edited by Big John on 25/01/2017 at 23:26

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - Big John
Hi All I have a really frustrating and very dangerous problem with my Micra. I bought it privately a couple of months ago in really good nick with 50k on the clock, and it ran ok for a few weeks but recently it has been a swine to drive as it is struggling to do anything over 40-50mph. Car is a 2003, 1240cc petrol, 2door. I will try and explain the problem but if you need any more info please get in touch. It will drive fine up to about 40mph but anything over say 4th gear and the car judders and just feels like the power is going to fail, it doesn't totally fail though, it will continue at about 40-50mph maximum (juddering), if I touch the accelerator slightly it seems to maintain its current speed and there seems to be power there ok until I press it down harder there is nothing there at all. It will run forever idle, in fact it sounds like it is running lovely at a stand still. I'm really worried because I need to drive approx 10 miles down the motorway two evenings a week but in the last few weeks I have had some really nail biting journeys as my Micra seems to lose all power when I get over approx 40 to 50mph

When it looses power - what is the revcounter doing? Does it increase in revs quicker than the car is gaining speed. If so then the clutch is slipping

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - skidpan

The car actually passed its MOT last week as well, needing only a headlight bulb, so that didn't flag up any problems

The MOT is not a service and diagnostic, its an annual safety check. The only check they carry out on the engine is the emisions and if they are within the required parameters its passes.

There are some out there who believe quite incorrectly that the annual MOT is the only maintenance a car needs.

Getting to the plugs on these cars is a total pain (requires removal of the airbox and parts of the inatke) and for that reason many never got a plug change. That would be one area I would check but beware, if the plugs have been in for a considerable time they can be virtually impossible to remove. An overnight soak round the bottom of the plugs with a penetrating oil can help but do not force them. Before refitting put some copperslip on the threads, it helps prevent them siezing.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Hi all, thanks for all the fantastic replies, not had much time or money last couple of weeks to look at the car but going to spend tomorrow having a look at the things you've mentioned and will report back. Much appreciated thanks.

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy

Just an update to this thread, I still havent had it to a mechanic as I dont have the spare money right now but I did drive it on a short journey yesterday, just local roads between 30-40mph and the problem of losing power started to happen, this hasnt happened before on short journeys so whatever it is it is definately getting worse.

When I pulled back up on my drive the exhaust was making a noise when I revved it up, not really bad but it was noticeable, could it be the exhaust is what is actually causing my loss of power probelm please?

Thanks again for any help you can give chaps!

Nissan Micra - BIG problem with my Nissan Micra losing power - bootcutboy
Hi all, I have a further update... I drove the car about a mile yesterday to a shop and when I got back in it wouldn't start up, it was turning over but just not connecting, it did actually start after about 15 mins trying it but it has never done this before.

Does this tie in with the rest of the power issues please? Does it help solve the puzzle of the intermittent fault? Please help if you can.

Many thanks for any help you can offer.
 

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