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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have recently purchased a 2003 Altima SL 2.5L. It had a few issues when I purchased it, but most of them were very easy fixes. Door handles, brakes, struts/shocks.
The last issue I have is with the wipers. They will not shut off. Ever. I have to pull the battery negative to get them to shut off. The previous owners "mechanic" installed a switch in the dash that disconnects the ground path for the wiper motor. I like to fix things properly, so that won't do. Plus it only has low speed.

Here are the symptoms:
-Wiper motor stays on low at all times. Even with ignition off
-Only low speed is available. No high speed or intermittant.
-Turning the ignition on, the wipers continue to run, but they stop every 12 or 13 cycles for approx 10 to 15 seconds and then start again. This is the only change I can get to happen.
-When ignition is off, they run continuously on low

Here's what I have replaced so far:
-Wiper motor (thinking the stop mechanism was messed up)
-IPDM (thinking the relay was stuck closed)
-Combination Switch (thinking switch was stuck on low)
-Wiring harness has been checked and re-checked - seems good
-Grounds have been verified according to procedure in the FSM

None of these changed the behavior of the wipers.

I have checked all the fuses and circuits and everything seems to be correct. Following the Factory Service Manual, I have went through the wiring circuits and everything seems to check out.

My best guess is that the BCM is not getting the signal when the motor is in the stop position. That seems to be a reason the motor would continue to run without the ignition switch on. Another possibility could be that the BCM is getting a "wash" signal continuously? But that shouldn't make them wipe for 12 or 13 cycles? Maybe 3 or 4 at most I would guess. Lastly, the BCM could be getting a false signal from somewhere to run the wipers. But that should stop with the ignition off according to the explanation in the FSM.

I think my next step is to break down and go to the dealer and get them to tell me where the "run" signal is coming from. I do not want to have to go back to the switch on the dash....That's the easy way out!

Any thoughts,
Thanks for reading my long post,
Moore-D
 

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2010 2.5 SL
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588 Posts
No real thoughts other than troubleshooting. I'd start pulling the various fuses to locate the exact issue. (You said you "checked" them, but not that you pulled things out until something stopped)

The short of it is that the wiper motor cannot run without power (unless your car is magical; in which case, congrats), so start trying different things to remove the power from it until you locate the issue. Pretty sure that's only a couple fuses and a relay or two.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for the reply MRR,
I can pull the fuse that powers the wipers and get them to stop. However the relay that switches that power supply on and off is non-serviceable and hard wired into the IPDM. I changed the whole IPDM with the thought that the relay might be stuck on but it did not help. Luckily I was able to score a good working IPDM from a buddy at a local wrecking yard. We tested the IPDM on the donor car before taking it out and the wiper circuit worked fine.

So, I think it comes down to BCM sending some kind of a "run" signal to the IPDM that makes the wipers turn on, or the signal that comes from the wiper motor to the IPDM for the "stop" position is not working.

In looking at the factory wiring diagrams, it seems that the "stop" signal is controlled internally in the wiper motor itself, and it just switches the ground off when the wiper motor comes to the stop position.

As far as the signal from the BCM to the IPDM goes, does anyone know if that is a 12vdc signal or part of the CAN system?

Moore-D
 

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It might as well be the wiper motor itself , can be a short somehow or some corrosion on some connactions.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
I have changed the wiper motor. It also came from the donor car at the wrecking yard which was working well before I pulled it out. It does have some mechanical contacts inside the motor that send the signal for the stop position. That's why I changed it as well, thinking the same thing as you......but unfortunately....same thing.
Sometimes just talking through these problems with a fresh set of eyes and ears helps a lot. I keep going back to the darn "stop" position signal.
Moore-D
 

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Gee that sucks mate , any pinched wies ! Might have issue with donnor wiper motor also , never know .

I would get back to your procedures that you did another time , might solve your issue here , we never know , an overlooked thing here & there , happnend before .

Hope that you ll fix it !
 

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2010 2.5 SL
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588 Posts
The main thing that I cannot wrap my head around is...
-Only low speed is available. No high speed or intermittant.
-Turning the ignition on, the wipers continue to run, but they stop every 12 or 13 cycles for approx 10 to 15 seconds and then start again.
The first makes me think that there is a direct feed of power that is bypassing any sort of switch.

But, the second implies that there is some sort of other signal that gets to the motor. That second signal must be overriding the first one, or there would be no momentary pause. (By "must", I mean "I have no idea what I'm talking about".)

Since I cannot grasp it at all, I assume it's an electronic problem instead of just electrical.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here is a bit of an update on this:
I am lucky to have a buddy whose family owns a wrecking yard so I can try lots of parts when I am stumped. On the weekend, I went to the wrecking yard and grabbed the following parts off a 2002 Altima that had just been brought in on the truck. They were going to crush it, so I got to it before they even stripped it for crushing.
I checked the wiper system on the car at the yard and everything functioned normally. So I thought I will take as many parts as I can off this car and put them on to mine one at a time to see if I could find the problem.
I grabbed:
-Wiper motor with wiring harness pigtail
-BCM Body Control Module - same part number as mine
-All the pigtails that come out of the BCM
-IPDM E/R (Relay and CPU box that controls various relays for body functions. This is controlled by the BCM and the ECU using the CAN system
-All the pigtails that come out of the IPDM E/R
-Combination Switch

I started off by changing each part one at a time. No change in the system!!!!! Still doing the exact same as described above. I painstakingly went through every circuit check I could find in the Factory Service Manual and everything checked out perfectly. I started doing a bit of checking with my multimeter and found that:

The wiper motor has 4 wires going into it.
One is a ground.
One is 12vdc+ for low speed
One is 12vdc+ for high speed
Last one is hooked to the stop system. I think I understand it as: when the wiper gets to the "stop position", it sends a signal back to the IPDM to tell it to switch off the 12vdc+ low speed power.
But it never does? I have now tried 3 different wiper motors (2 of which were confirmed by me as working properly) and it hasn't changed anything.

I have completed the circuit check for all 4 wires from the IPDM to the wiper motor and from the IPDM to the BCM and they have all checked out according to the FSM.
But I still think there has to be a break in the wire or a bad connection at one of the units: Wiper motor, IPDM, or BCM.
I have to take the car for a safety check son and I would like to get this problem fixed. I think I may have to bite the bullet and take it to the dealer and hook up the Consult system to it to check that the CAN system is functioning as it is supposed to. I believe the Consult will tell me what signal path is missing to tell the wipers to give it up and stop!!!
This has been a very frustrating job.
As MRR stated above " I assume it's an electronic problem instead of just electrical."
I agree.....
Moore-D
 

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09 Altima 3.5SE 6MT Sedan
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6,365 Posts
There is usually a mechanical limit switch which opens when the wipers return to rest. That way, the wipers operate non-stop when switched on, but will only operate long enough to complete the cycle when power is turned off...such as when the combi switch is turned off, or after a delay wipe pulse ends. If this switch, which is part of the wiper transmission unit assembly and not just the motor is stuck in the on position...then so long as power is available to the wipers, it will operate continuously.

The only other thing I have seen that causes this is if the wiper arms are misaligned so that they cannot ever reach their normal rest position, but simply flex with the torque until the motor restarts the next cycle and then they continue. To test this theory, remove both arms from their splined posts (remove caps at base of wiper arms..remove 14mm? nut...then wiggle arm off the splined shaft). Engage wiper system and see if it shuts off and/or if the delay/pulse wipe system works properly.
 

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Hi everyone,
I am new to this forum. I have 2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 , I have the same exact problem as Moore-d and I tried the same exact things to help my problem. Does anyone have any ideas to solving this problem? Thanks.
 

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09 Altima 3.5SE 6MT Sedan
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6,365 Posts
Hi everyone,
I am new to this forum. I have 2003 Nissan Altima 2.5 , I have the same exact problem as Moore-d and I tried the same exact things to help my problem. Does anyone have any ideas to solving this problem? Thanks.
Remove both wiper arms at the pivot points (14mm). Does it continue to cycle when wipers are switched on and then off?
 

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09 Altima 3.5SE 6MT Sedan
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6,365 Posts
Ok, I haven't looked at your wiring diagrams, but I know that normally, once the ignition is off, the wipers will stop. I also know that the wipers will continue to run, even with the ignition off, until they are back at their 'at rest' state. So, if the wipers are running all the time, even with the ignition off, you have a fault in the mechanical switches that are part of the wiper transmission assembly. You'll need to replace at least the switch assembly, but that's probably the whole motor unit.
 

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Thanks for reply, I put the motor from my frends car he have the same car and he let me use and I tried still no changes, when I put parts from my car to he's works no problem I just don't know what to do next Thanks again .
 

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09 Altima 3.5SE 6MT Sedan
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6,365 Posts
Thanks for reply, I put the motor from my frends car he have the same car and he let me use and I tried still no changes, when I put parts from my car to he's works no problem I just don't know what to do next Thanks again .
OK, that test was good enough to diagnose the problem as your wiper relay located in the IPDM. See page WW-11 for more detail. You may be able to switch your wiper relay with the highspeed wiper relay for testing. You will need to source used parts or a complete new IPDM as Nissan does not sell the relays individually.
 

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Here is a bit of an update on this:
I am lucky to have a buddy whose family owns a wrecking yard so I can try lots of parts when I am stumped. On the weekend, I went to the wrecking yard and grabbed the following parts off a 2002 Altima that had just been brought in on the truck. They were going to crush it, so I got to it before they even stripped it for crushing.
I checked the wiper system on the car at the yard and everything functioned normally. So I thought I will take as many parts as I can off this car and put them on to mine one at a time to see if I could find the problem.
I grabbed:
-Wiper motor with wiring harness pigtail
-BCM Body Control Module - same part number as mine
-All the pigtails that come out of the BCM
-IPDM E/R (Relay and CPU box that controls various relays for body functions. This is controlled by the BCM and the ECU using the CAN system
-All the pigtails that come out of the IPDM E/R
-Combination Switch

I started off by changing each part one at a time. No change in the system!!!!! Still doing the exact same as described above. I painstakingly went through every circuit check I could find in the Factory Service Manual and everything checked out perfectly. I started doing a bit of checking with my multimeter and found that:

The wiper motor has 4 wires going into it.
One is a ground.
One is 12vdc+ for low speed
One is 12vdc+ for high speed
Last one is hooked to the stop system. I think I understand it as: when the wiper gets to the "stop position", it sends a signal back to the IPDM to tell it to switch off the 12vdc+ low speed power.
But it never does? I have now tried 3 different wiper motors (2 of which were confirmed by me as working properly) and it hasn't changed anything.

I have completed the circuit check for all 4 wires from the IPDM to the wiper motor and from the IPDM to the BCM and they have all checked out according to the FSM.
But I still think there has to be a break in the wire or a bad connection at one of the units: Wiper motor, IPDM, or BCM.
I have to take the car for a safety check son and I would like to get this problem fixed. I think I may have to bite the bullet and take it to the dealer and hook up the Consult system to it to check that the CAN system is functioning as it is supposed to. I believe the Consult will tell me what signal path is missing to tell the wipers to give it up and stop!!!
This has been a very frustrating job.
As MRR stated above " I assume it's an electronic problem instead of just electrical."
I agree.....
Moore-D
It may very well may be the switch on the steering wheel... I have a 2001 Nissan Maxima and I'm having problems with the wipers on full speed and the washer motor won't shut off... So I ordered that switch but I haven't got it yet.
 

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Here is a bit of an update on this:
I am lucky to have a buddy whose family owns a wrecking yard so I can try lots of parts when I am stumped. On the weekend, I went to the wrecking yard and grabbed the following parts off a 2002 Altima that had just been brought in on the truck. They were going to crush it, so I got to it before they even stripped it for crushing.
I checked the wiper system on the car at the yard and everything functioned normally. So I thought I will take as many parts as I can off this car and put them on to mine one at a time to see if I could find the problem.
I grabbed:
-Wiper motor with wiring harness pigtail
-BCM Body Control Module - same part number as mine
-All the pigtails that come out of the BCM
-IPDM E/R (Relay and CPU box that controls various relays for body functions. This is controlled by the BCM and the ECU using the CAN system
-All the pigtails that come out of the IPDM E/R
-Combination Switch

I started off by changing each part one at a time. No change in the system!!!!! Still doing the exact same as described above. I painstakingly went through every circuit check I could find in the Factory Service Manual and everything checked out perfectly. I started doing a bit of checking with my multimeter and found that:

The wiper motor has 4 wires going into it.
One is a ground.
One is 12vdc+ for low speed
One is 12vdc+ for high speed
Last one is hooked to the stop system. I think I understand it as: when the wiper gets to the "stop position", it sends a signal back to the IPDM to tell it to switch off the 12vdc+ low speed power.
But it never does? I have now tried 3 different wiper motors (2 of which were confirmed by me as working properly) and it hasn't changed anything.

I have completed the circuit check for all 4 wires from the IPDM to the wiper motor and from the IPDM to the BCM and they have all checked out according to the FSM.
But I still think there has to be a break in the wire or a bad connection at one of the units: Wiper motor, IPDM, or BCM.
I have to take the car for a safety check son and I would like to get this problem fixed. I think I may have to bite the bullet and take it to the dealer and hook up the Consult system to it to check that the CAN system is functioning as it is supposed to. I believe the Consult will tell me what signal path is missing to tell the wipers to give it up and stop!!!
This has been a very frustrating job.
As MRR stated above " I assume it's an electronic problem instead of just electrical."
I agree.....
Moore-D
Hello Moore-D and Everyone,

I apologize for bringing up this old topic again, but I am having the same exact issue with a Frontier 06 and I would like to know if it was ever fixed, so you guys can share what you did to fix it? This is driving me crazy as well...

Thanks in advance!
 
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