Nissan Altima 2.5 Engine Common Problems

Nissan Altima 2.5 Engine Common Problems & Preventative Maintenance Practices

The Nissan 2.5L, model QR25DE engine has been around for 22 years as it was initially introduced in 2001. While it is known as a dependable, powerful engine, like most other engines on the market, it is not without the occasional performance issues. Thankfully, these engine glitches are easily discovered and can be repaired before they cause irreparable damage. Engine retailers like have seen these problems over and over again.

Upgrades Made to Enhance Performance:

Nissan Altima 2.5 Engine Common Problems
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Since the Nissan 2.5 engine was originally manufactured and introduced, the 2.5L engine has gone through several upgrades, which helped the engine’s performance on the road.

Upgrades made to the engine increased fuel efficiency and engine consistency/reliability. Enhancements were also made to reduce engine emissions and improve the overall performance of the engine.

Some of the latest upgrades made to the newest model QR25DE engine (upgrades effective in 2007 and newer models) include:

  • A wider diameter intake manifold
  • Updated piston shape which helps to support higher compression
  • Cam profile upgrades
  • Piston, bearing, and additional coatings to reduce friction and heat when in use
  • Extra engine mount for added security
  • Higher resolution and horsepower for a more reliable and powerful engine

Features of the Nissan 2.5 engine:

Here are some of the specs found in the popular Nissan Altima engine:

  • It was introduced to the marketplace in 2001.
  • It offers between 175 to 182 horsepower, which varies depending on the model and year.
  • It has around 180 Torque.
  • It comes with a DOHC Valvetrain design to support consistent, reliable performance.
  • Features Inline-4 configuration.
  • It is manufactured with reliable aluminum block and head materials.
  • It has a 5:1 to a 10.5: 1 compression ratio.

Frequent Issues (and Repair Suggestions) with the Nissan 2.5L Engine:

Nissan Altima 2.5 Engine Common Problems

While it is considered to be one of the most reliable engines currently being used, there have been some issues, which occurred primarily on engines built from 2002 through 2006, which used early design concepts.

The company analyzed the engine after preliminary issues with earlier models and since 2007, there have been very few issues since the redesign.

According to and others, here are a few of the issues that some Nissan owners may experience:

  • Issue: Exhaust manifold which uses pre-cat (pre-catalytic converters): This can break and cause damage to the engine because the materials used are not as sturdy as required.
  • Solution: Installing an affordable aftermarket exhaust manifold and adding a heat shield.
  • Issue: Intake and power valve screws: This issue is most often seen in Sentra and Altima models. These screws can enter the engine damaging the walls or head of the cylinder as well as the catalytic converter.
  • Solution: The company redesigned the screws to correct the issue. These new “butterfly” screws offer a long-term repair for models made from 2002 through 2005.
  • Issue: Oil leaks: Like many vehicle engines, the older they get, the more they may experience leaks. In the 2.5L engine, the key area for leaks is the valve cover gasket, which is made from a rubber-type material, which can falter when it is exposed to extreme heat.
  • Solution: When leaks occur, replace the cover gasket.
  • Issue: Timing chain tensioners can become faulty: This is a rare occurrence in the 2.5L engines, but may occur. This could lead to the timing chain faltering, resulting in loss of engine power and overall poor performance.
  • Solution: Have your timing chain checked. If it shows wear, you may need to have the timing belt or tensioners replaced

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