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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone
I have a 02 Nissan xterra 3.3 4wd auto, its been a great truck but at 158xxx miles maintenance is starting to be more than usual, somethings i can do, other i take to the mechanic. Anyways i just got her out of the shop and the mechanic told me i need motor mounts and yeah he reved up the engine and it moves more than it should and i saw the driver side mount all worn so my question is, when you jack up the engine to secure it while changing the mounts, where is the best spot to put the jack on?? ive seen videos of people putting the jack on the oil pan others say not to, i just want to be safe on this and not harm the truck or me. Thanks
 

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Not an expert...but I did a timing belt on my wife's Kia spectra. It is an inline 4 with the timing belt wedged under the motor mount against the fender wall. I had to remove that motor mount, and continually raise and lower the engine repeatedly depending on what bolt I had to get to. (since they were blocked by the fender wall) I used the 2x4 method with no problems. I used a jack under the oil pan with a long 2x4 to go across the entire width of the oil pan. No issues.

use this information at your own risk...
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Not an expert...but I did a timing belt on my wife's Kia spectra. It is an inline 4 with the timing belt wedged under the motor mount against the fender wall. I had to remove that motor mount, and continually raise and lower the engine repeatedly depending on what bolt I had to get to. (since they were blocked by the fender wall) I used the 2x4 method with no problems. I used a jack under the oil pan with a long 2x4 to go across the entire width of the oil pan. No issues.

use this information at your own risk...
Thanks, ive seen many folks do it with the oil pan, today i am going to take a look under see if i can find another spot, i hope a member here has done this before and can shed some light..
 

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2000 Xterra XE 4x4 3.3L AT
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The Xterra VG33 pan is fragile I would not use it to support even part of the weight of the engine. Two main reasons for this. One the pan is made up of two, maybe three, separate stampings that are then welded together. Any distortion of the sump stamping risks fracturing a weld.

Two they are known for rusting through in any area where road salt is used during winter months. This corrosion weakens the pan further amplifying the issue of distorting the sump stamping and causing a leak at a weld.

To replace a bad oil pan the front diff must be removed it’s a lot of work you don’t want to have to do.

That in mind I have Rugged Rocks engine mounts on mine and placed the jack under the leading edge of the bell housing to lift the engine and support the weight while pulling one engine mount at a time and replacing them. The stock drivers side mount is prone to failure especially if the truck is wheeled. The rubber separates from the metal making it a two piece mount and allowing the movement you are seeing. Mounts will need to be re-tightened after you drive it a 150 miles or so once everything finds its center.

Big bonus of the Rugged Rocks mounts are they are much smaller than the OEM and allow a ton more room when changing the alternator. The space around the alternator is practically cavernous with the RR mounts compared to OEM.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The Xterra VG33 pan is fragile I would not use it to support even part of the weight of the engine. Two main reasons for this. One the pan is made up of two, maybe three, separate stampings that are then welded together. Any distortion of the sump stamping risks fracturing a weld.

Two they are known for rusting through in any area where road salt is used during winter months. This corrosion weakens the pan further amplifying the issue of distorting the sump stamping and causing a leak at a weld.

To replace a bad oil pan the front diff must be removed it’s a lot of work you don’t want to have to do.

That in mind I have Rugged Rocks engine mounts on mine and placed the jack under the leading edge of the bell housing to lift the engine and support the weight while pulling one engine mount at a time and replacing them. The stock drivers side mount is prone to failure especially if the truck is wheeled. The rubber separates from the metal making it a two piece mount and allowing the movement you are seeing. Mounts will need to be re-tightened after you drive it a 150 miles or so once everything finds its center.

Big bonus of the Rugged Rocks mounts are they are much smaller than the OEM and allow a ton more room when changing the alternator. The space around the alternator is practically cavernous with the RR mounts compared to OEM.
Thanks i will look into Rugged Rocks mounts and will look for the spot you mentioned to put the jack under, i am planning an offroad trip in the following weeks so i need this done asap. Thanks
 

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That in mind I have Rugged Rocks engine mounts on mine and placed the jack under the leading edge of the bell housing to lift the engine and support the weight while pulling one engine mount at a time and replacing them.
Sorry for reviving an old thread but when you say leading edge, you mean the section that is closest to the engine? I looked underneath my X and it looks like there’s a cross member in the way with some space to fit a Jack. Do you remember if you removed the crossmember?

I didn’t try fitting in a jack when I looked but I’m guessing I’ll have to play around with positioning if I don’t want to remove the cross member.
 
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