Engine failure

Phil Williams

Newbie
E51 Owner
#1
Hi, I'm new to posting on the forum. I was driving my elgrand this morning and bought it in September 2017. It cut out at the traffic lights and when I restarted the engine I could hear it rattling and knocking. I think it's either the crank or camshaft failure.
I've had the rear cats removed and I had the car converted to LPG. It's currently in the garage and proper diagnosis will be done on Friday. I am just wondering if anyone else has had any similar issues and what could have caused this failure. The import company I bought it from won't take any responsibility. Does anyone have any advice on where I may be able to source parts from. Many thanks phil.
 

Karl

Founder
Staff member
E50 Owner
Premium Member
E50 Expert
#4
Very rare for these engines to fail if the cats have been sorted.

The damage may have been done before the cats were removed. Were both cats definitely sorted? We had a case where another member had engine failure following de-core of rear cats, to find that only one had been done. The one left, got blocked, and knackered the engine.
 

Phil Williams

Newbie
E51 Owner
#5
Hi Karl, yes I have removed both rear cats and replaced them with stainless steel pipes. The 2 front cats are still on the vehicle. I was under the impression these didn't need to be removed. I haven't had proper diagnosis yet as they can't look at until Friday for me but it seems like top end to me maybe camshaft and it's misfiring. Im wondering if the timing chain has slipped causing damage maybe.
 

Phil

Here for life
Premium Member
E51 Owner
#6
Apart from rear cat blockage I can think of 2 other mentions of engine failure reported on the forum.

One member thought his Elgrand had been losing oil without him noticing & he'd carried on driving it. Other members have also commented that their Elgrands use quite a bit of oil & have to check the level more regularly.

And there was a report that valve saver flash lube from a lpg system had possibly knackered another.

As I said I'm not good on mechanics & if I haven't got it right somebody will hopefully come along & correct me.
 

MrRob_in

Part of the furniture (please de-cat your e51/2)
Staff member
Premium Member
E51 Expert
E51 Owner
#7
My old e51 has died (I think) because it ran out of oil with a subsequent owner. It needed topping up every 500-1000 miles for 80k miles. Oil was always fresh though...
 

Phil Williams

Newbie
E51 Owner
#8
I think mine maybe oil related. When I heard the noise I checked the oil and had to top it up with about 2 litres of oil. But I didn't think that would be enough to cause damage. I've only had it 3 months though so didn't realise it would loose it that quickly. Do you know what damage was caused to your engine Rob and did you repair or source a new engine. Thanks for all your advice.
 

nobby62

Well-Known Member
E51 Owner
#11
Surely there is a “low oil” warning light that should illuminate well before the level drops to a critical point..... ?
 

stevemen

Here for life
Premium Member
E51 Owner
#15
I think mine maybe oil related. When I heard the noise I checked the oil and had to top it up with about 2 litres of oil. But I didn't think that would be enough to cause damage. I've only had it 3 months though so didn't realise it would loose it that quickly. Do you know what damage was caused to your engine Rob and did you repair or source a new engine. Thanks for all your advice.
2litres of oil since September? It must of either been leaking oil or burning it badly? Only 2 ways to lose that much oil.
Was it smoking? Or was it leaking?
From what you said iniially it sounds like one of your camchains has gone ( well known on the vq35 , a lot of the 350z lads have that issue due to the high tensions involved in racing the engine) if so yours could be due to oil starvation would effect the vvt too.
You must of been losing or burning oil, which in turn would lead to other issues.
 
#16
2litres of oil since September? It must of either been leaking oil or burning it badly? Only 2 ways to lose that much oil.
Was it smoking? Or was it leaking?
From what you said iniially it sounds like one of your camchains has gone ( well known on the vq35 , a lot of the 350z lads have that issue due to the high tensions involved in racing the engine) if so yours could be due to oil starvation would effect the vvt too.
You must of been losing or burning oil, which in turn would lead to other issues.

Hi thanks for your reply. I'm pretty sure there is no leak. I haven't noticed anything on the drive. I also hadn't noticed any smoke or loud engine noises until the critical point when it went. It did sound more top end to me rather than bottom.
Any idea if it is the camchains if this can be repaired or am I best off looking for an engine. Thanks for your help.
 

stevemen

Here for life
Premium Member
E51 Owner
#17
How many miles had you done since it was between oil top ups? I'm guessing not that many in 3 months
Oil has to either leak or burn
If it's not leaking then its burning.... is the tailpipe oily inside at all?
Snap camchains could end up a rebuild and that can run into thousands depending on damage. Certainly not a quick easy fix if that the case.
We supply and fit vq35de engines if you go down that road
Steve
Elgrandcarparts.co.uk
 
#18
Hi, I'm guessing no more than 3 thousand miles. It was serviced by the garage I bought it off before collection. Car is in the garage at the moment so can't check the tail pipes. They are hopefully looking at it Friday.
Where are you based if I was to get the car to you. Could you give me a rough estimate of supplying and fitting another engine please. Thanks for you help really appreciate it.
 

stevemen

Here for life
Premium Member
E51 Owner
#19
Hi, I'm guessing no more than 3 thousand miles. It was serviced by the garage I bought it off before collection. Car is in the garage at the moment so can't check the tail pipes. They are hopefully looking at it Friday.
Where are you based if I was to get the car to you. Could you give me a rough estimate of supplying and fitting another engine please. Thanks for you help really appreciate it.
Have inboxed you phil