Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution?

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Hdao
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Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution?

Postby Hdao » Sun Jul 09, 2006 8:29 am

I have 1999 Maxima. It currently stalls sometimes (not always) when I stop at traffic. I have just changed a new set of same Nissan original spark plugs but still. I guess that the Mass Air Flow sensor may be coated or need to be cleaned up. Since I just changed a new MAF about two years that costed me $450 for this year model. In addition, the Service Engine Soon light has not lighted up despite of engine stalling. Any other advices will be appreciated to hungtdao@yahoo.com.


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maxhopper
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Postby maxhopper » Mon Jul 17, 2006 5:42 am

The only thing I would use is electrical contact cleaner.

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Postby IvoryJ30t » Sat Jul 22, 2006 4:18 am

i used the small can of CRC QD contact cleaner.

i used the entire can cleaning the maf wires, the inside of the maf case, and the harness contacts.

DO NOT touch the maf elements with ANYTHING.

i noticed a marked improvement with throttle response and power.

let the maf sit for 20 minutes or so after cleaning to allow moisture to dry.

[the QD cleaner will dry rapidly, causing the maf to get cold, and condense moisture out of the air. let it dry]

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (Hdao)

Postby Beancooker » Tue Jul 25, 2006 6:25 am

Stalling in traffic... maybe your PCV valve. At schucks auto they sell a MAF cleaner, but as posted before, Nissan MAF's are very sensitive so I WOULD NOT spray ANYTHING on the element itself, despite whatever any instructions may say. Also if you replace the MAF again get the most updated model you can get, a MAF for an 01 is the toughest Nissan made but the replacement for the 02/03 is suppose to have been upgraded to surpass the 01. Don't buy the whole MAF assembaly either, just buy the element and a security bit and it will save you a few hundred bucks.

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Re: (IvoryJ30t)

Postby CharlesMax03 » Wed Sep 20, 2006 11:45 am

I have 2003 maxima should i clean MAF. If yes where is it located, how and what do i use to clean it.

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Re: (CharlesMax03)

Postby IvoryJ30t » Thu Sep 21, 2006 4:26 pm

CharlesMax03 wrote:I have 2003 maxima should i clean MAF. If yes where is it located, how and what do i use to clean it.
you might need to clean it in a few years.

changing your air filter frequently [use oem] keeps the maf clean.

dont mess with it for the hell of it. its expensive.

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Re: (CharlesMax03)

Postby Sentientbydesign » Sat Oct 14, 2006 10:03 am

The only time I'd clean a newer maf is if you use a k&n type filter or a ram air/Cold Air Intake. The oil can "evaporate" off the filter and land on your MAF element.

Just to answer you question, the MAF (Mass Air-flow) sensor is between your intake box (black rectangular box where your air filter is) and the throttle body. On the 4 gens its a 3 or 4 in diameter black tube with a couple of wire plugged into it.

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maik21
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Postby maik21 » Sat Oct 14, 2006 10:21 am

i always use carb cleaner ... at $3 on autozone !! it work fine for me ....

try to dont spry to close of the maff element.. the presure is high !! i spry at 1-2 inches from element !!!

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (Hdao)

Postby dr-rjp » Sat Nov 04, 2006 3:08 am

Hdao wrote:I have 1999 Maxima. It currently stalls sometimes (not always) when I stop at traffic. I have just changed a new set of same Nissan original spark plugs but still. I guess that the Mass Air Flow sensor may be coated or need to be cleaned up. Since I just changed a new MAF about two years that costed me $450 for this year model. In addition, the Service Engine Soon light has not lighted up despite of engine stalling. Any other advices will be appreciated to hungtdao@yahoo.com.
Clean your MAF with a spray product called "Mass Air Flow Cleaner" (how original, yes?)

I use it on my car. BTW, I am making a video of how to use it. But, it is really easy to do. You remove the MAF from the air box cover and that triangular-shaped vacuum box. Spray the fluid towards the MAF sensor from both sides. Let it dry for about 30 seconds (the spray dires rapidly), reassemble, and you're good-to-go.

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dr-rjp
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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (dr-rjp)

Postby dr-rjp » Sun Nov 05, 2006 8:53 am

HERE IT IS! MY NEW MAF CLEANER VIDEO.

Click here to see Video

There will be a high quality version online very soon.

Modified by dr-rjp at 2:15 PM 11/5/2006
Modified by dr-rjp at 2:16 PM 11/5/2006

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (dr-rjp)

Postby RS12Turbo » Tue Mar 06, 2007 8:03 am

I looked for that air flow meter cleaner at my local Advanced Auto, and they didn't carry it. He said he always uses brake cleaner on his......but I don't know......that seems kinda harsh, doesn't it?I'm wondering if I need to clean mine.........it's a '95 and I've had a K&N panel filter in there since 1996.

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (RS12Turbo)

Postby Rembrandt1881 » Tue May 01, 2007 3:51 pm

man i'm loving this site. I know for a fact need to do this.

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (RS12Turbo)

Postby Sentientbydesign » Sat May 05, 2007 1:17 pm

I would clean it. Someone on here was ranting about the AEM dri-flow, because there was no oil on it.

I'd like to look into that when I have the money.

You should use the MAF cleaner. The first time I cleaned mine, I used rubbing alcohol and a cotton swab and VERY GENTLY rubbed it. Carb or brake cleaner could work, but they WILL melt the plastic.

How about electrical contact cleaner? That would be a logical choice to me.

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (Sentientbydesign)

Postby pae9132 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 7:49 pm

I've read in other places that the MAF should not be cleaned with anything because it is so sensitive but I did try the new MAF cleaner which is pretty new and it seemed to have a small improvement. I would not try anything else.

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (pae9132)

Postby RS12Turbo » Tue Jun 05, 2007 5:58 am

I used some of that maf cleaner on mine........did fine for 2 months or so........then one day while driving the engine just shut off. I was able to crank it back, and drive another 10 miles or so, then it shut off again. Finally limped it back home, and since the check engine had come on.....I checked for codes.....and the only thing that popped up was the maf code. I cleaned the maf again with the same cleaner, and haven't had another problem with it .......I've put about 500 miles on it since it crapped out on me. So I don't know if the cleaner caused the problem or not......

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (beancooker)

Postby RS12Turbo » Thu Jun 07, 2007 12:54 pm

beancooker wrote:Also if you replace the MAF again get the most updated model you can get, a MAF for an 01 is the toughest Nissan made but the replacement for the 02/03 is suppose to have been upgraded to surpass the 01. Don't buy the whole MAF assembaly either, just buy the element and a security bit and it will save you a few hundred bucks.
So, does the 02/03 MAF work on the 95's? Direct "plug-n-play"? Also, where can I buy just the element, and security bit? I've only seen the whole Maf unit for sale.Mine crapped out again.....time to bite the bullet and buy a new one .......thanks

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Postby MaXimaSE » Sat Aug 25, 2007 6:09 am

I blasted mine lightly a few times with some carb cleaner, allowed a half hour for it to dry and reassembled. No problems at all, just be nice about it.

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Re: (MaXimaSE)

Postby blkonblki30 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 6:37 pm

Yea i gotta clean mine, carbcleaner is strait on it?

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution? (Hdao)

Postby blkonblki30 » Fri Jan 04, 2008 6:38 pm

how does it idle? i had problems with a coil pack and a misfire on the i30.

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Re: (MaXimaSE)

Postby robertl30 » Sun Aug 17, 2008 12:21 pm

Just wanted to thank folks on this thread and others that have saved me a lot of frustration (though, I found this too late to save me many dollars). I'll definitely come here first for answers in the future.

OK, first, the saga:

I have a 2001 I30 which I've loved since I bought it new in 2000. Around 100,000 miles I noticed a hesitation when I stomped on the gas. Annoying. Brought it to the dealer and reported it and he cleaned the throttle body. Didn't fix it. I lived with it.

At 103,000 miles I'm in a Firestone for tires and he mentions its time for a tune up. Car was dealer maintained up til now, but it's out of warranty and I figure it's new belts and plugs and what not. Sure why not. I mention the hesitation thing. He tunes it up, changes oil filter/air filter of course... I get it back and maybe it feels a little more responsive... but not much.

107,000 miles. I get home from work, pull into the garage. Park. And the engine stalls. That's odd. Then it did it at a traffic light several days later. Embarrasing. This gets worse and worse. A few weeks later I'm revving the engine at traffic stops to keep the engine from stalling. I take it back to Firestone (cue ominous music).

They say it's the fuel injectors. They clean them (what that means exactly I don't know-- I'm not much of a car guy). I pick up the car and make it about a half mile when it starts bucking and stalling. It's 10 times worse now than when I brought it in. I coax it back to them and say try again. (I know. I'm an idiot. But it seemed smart at the time).

Now it's a new fuel filter, fuel pump, and, oh, we need to drop your gas tank and wash it out. Uh... ok... A couple days (and several hundred dollars) later I get it back. Drives better (a bit). They put a splash of gas in the tank just to get me to a station.

I start to fill up and the pump keeps kicking off. I can't get gas to go in at more than a trickle. <sigh> Back and forth we go and they can't figure out the problem. I'm off to the dealer.

I describe the whole saga to him and get nothing but grief about this is what I get for not letting the dealer maintain it and how they doubt they can fix whatever firestone did and... bottom line I need a new gas tank. $900. Um... no thanks. I'll just gas up slowly.

Oh, and the car still occassionaly stalls. It still has the hesitation. It's grown worse now. Now, when I try to hard accelerate the car doesn't shift up. The RPMs wind up at almost 6000 and just stick there. Sometimes it shifts. Usually I have to let up on the gas before it will shift. It sounds very ill and I feel like I have no power.

Dealer troubleshoots this and says I need a new Mass Air Flow Meter. $500 installed. Yeesh. Guess I'll live with crappy perforance too. I drive home and actually start shopping for a new car on the way home. Figuring this one is about done.

Something yesterday prompted me to google "Mass Air Flow Meter (Sensor)". I had no idea what this part was for. Oh, I do now.

I read the couple dozen posts here about how to clean it and/or replace it. I shopped the sensor up on ebay and amazon ($80). I popped the hood of my car (yeah, about the first time in 5 years or so). Had no idea what to look for. Went to you tube and found a video on cleaning the MAF. Ah, there it is.

It has funky tamper-proof torx screws. Annoying. Oh, well. I went to Autozone today. Found the Torx bits I needed. Found the CRC electric part cleaner stuff. Went home. With much care I reoved the MAF. Two screws, then I had to use a flat blade screwdriver to gently pry the sensor loose. Took it into the sunlight. The wire is caked with black crud.

I held it out at arms length and sprayed it with the cleaner. Waved it gently in the air to get all the liquid out. Wire is bright and shiny. Plugged it back in. And I'm off on a test drive.

Night & Day!! Wow. It's like a new car again. No matter how abusive I am with the accelerator the car just behaves like I'd expect. I actually squealed the tires doing a full accel fro stop. 0 to 60 in about 9 seconds. This car has not behaved like this in years.

So again. Thank you whoever is running this forum. What a wonderful resource. I've actually done my first engine repair in my life with the help of this site.

I've spent around $1,600 trying to get the car right. All of it was apparantly fairly useless. And in fact I now really need a new fuel tank... I don't suppose there's an easy fix for that issue? Eh, I'll live with it. At least the car goes now.

Cost of the actual repair: Torx bits & Cleaner $14. My time: 20 minutes.

<sigh>

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Re: (robertl30)

Postby RS12Turbo » Mon Aug 18, 2008 3:54 am

robertl30 wrote: And in fact I now really need a new fuel tank... I don't suppose there's an easy fix for that issue? Eh, I'll live with it. At least the car goes now.
Take it back to Firestone and make them fix it, or demand a refund....and don't let them talk you into any other repairs.....Firestone is notorious for doing that, along with Sears. Dateline did a show about how shady they are several years ago.

Glad the problem was something simple as cleaning the maf.....I cleaned mine a couple of years ago, and about 2 months later the maf crapped out, and I had to get a new one......hopefully this won't happen to you

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Re: (RS12Turbo)

Postby robertl30 » Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:05 am

Well, even if it does fail completely, at least now I know it's just a $100 part that's user servicable.

I'm not sure what to do with Firestone. So pissed at them. We've already fought over them damaging the fuel tank. They won't take any ownership over that. The dealer was no help either. I took it to them so they could "prove" Firestone wrecked it. But all they'd write up was the fuel tank needs to be replaced. They don't know how it's damaged or why. Argh!

I was thinking of writing a letter to Firestone, Inc. Not sure that will really get me anywhere. I may just chalk this up to a life-lesson learned: Google first.

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Re: (robertl30)

Postby RS12Turbo » Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:24 am

Yeah, I'm sure it was a coincidence with my maf....because I sprayed my other Nissan's maf at the same time, and haven't had any problems with it over a year running....knock on wood.You might be able to get a hold of the Firestone Regional Manager for your area, and get him/ her involved, and see what happens

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Re: (RS12Turbo)

Postby robertl30 » Mon Aug 18, 2008 4:58 am

What I really don't get after all this. And again, I'm not a "car guy" I'm an IT geek.... Is why it's just not part of routine maintenance, like during an oil change or whatever, to pop this sucker out and hit it with some cleaner. Or dunk it in a solution or whatever. It was SUCH an easy fix and it makes such a huge difference. I wonder what else I've got going on in here that I could tune up myself... ?

I found the FSMs on this site. What another wonderful resource. I haven't changed my own oil in many years... but sheesh, this site may just turn me into a car guy. I didn't realize so much of this stuff was so easy. Heck, these sensor things aren't so much car parts as IT parts. I fix computers for a living... I think I can handle these electronic bits.

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Re: NEW MAF feels like a new car

Postby rhamdas » Fri May 08, 2009 6:03 am

I have a 2000 I30 with 117,000 miles on it. It began hesitating and idling roughly a week ago. This soon became worse. Acceleration was extremely poor. The check engine light came on and I took it to Pepboys where they downloaded the code for free. It was P0171, my system was running to lean. They printed out a paper for me stating it could have been one of about seven things. After researching on this website I went out bought some MAF cleaner and tried that with little to no result. My car was shifting hard, when I pushed on the gas pedal the RPM's would go up to roughly 5500, yet my car was not accelerating. Idling in the morning was also rough. The dealer wanted $500 to install a new MAF ($375 for the part). I found an aftermarket MAF for $125, installed it in 10 minutes and the car runs like new. I cannot thank all of those who contribute to this website. Saved some coin and was able to fix the car myself. Thank you.

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Re: NEW MAF feels like a new car (rhamdas)

Postby robertl30 » Sat May 16, 2009 7:22 am

I'm baaacckkk...

Cleaning the MAF held up for 9 months. SES light is back on. Car stalled a couple times at red lights. At least now I know what to do. Autozone pulled code P0171 (Too Lean) and mentioned about O2 sensors and MAF. I pulled out the MAF. Hit it with the electronic parts cleaner. Put it back in. Car is running well again. But... I don't want to keep doing this. So I ordered a replacement MAF.

Now, First it looks a bit different than what I took out. There seems to be an extra metal sensor bit in a air flow slot above the bottom slot. On my original, the upper slot is empty. New has a green o-ring, old had a black ring. Part # on the new part is PBT-GF30 or 027291. Old one had no numbers on it. The general form looks right and it fit.

On the new sensor engine idles at 1200 instead of normal 700. At full throttle RPM goes to 4000 and sticks. No shifting. I couldn't get the car to go faster than 60 mph. When I came back to idle the engine sputtered and stalled.

I swapped back to my old MAF and everything is back to normal. So, did I just get the wrong part? I've found some threads that talk about getting the computer reprogrammed. And others that say it can take a week of driving for the computer to adjust to a new sensor. What's the right thing to do here? Should I go to the dealer for a reprogram? Can any shop do the reprogram? The dealer is a bit inconvenient for me to get to.

Thanks.

topheri30
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Re: (robertl30)

Postby topheri30 » Fri Sep 04, 2009 3:42 pm

Thank you robertI30,

A couple days ago my car started acting up and behaving exactly as you describe. I was about to take it into a shop until a friend told me to check the maf..

After some googling I found your post and this thread. After a few hours and 20 bucks I was able to find maf cleaner and the starbit needed to remove the maf.

The job took 30 minutes and after everything was done I took the car for a test drive. WOW.. I don't know how long it will last but its made a huge difference.

Thanks again.

Hdao
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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution

Postby Hdao » Sat Jun 28, 2014 3:39 am

It has been a long time until I revisiting this page. My problem has been resolved a long time ago but I wanted to share here. My problem turned out that I have multiple failed ignition coils. That was why it did not throw out a code. Since I originally changed only 1 ignition coil Now I changed the rest of five. Everything is normal and running smooth now. Yes, MAF can be cleaned with MAF cleaner that you can buy from Walmart. DO NOT clean with anything well such as carburetor cleaner. It may damage and this part is not cheap. Once for a while cleaning MAF and use carburetor cleaning the throttle body will also help rough idle.

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Re: Is it ok to clean the mass air flow? which what solution

Postby NutriaforBreakfast » Fri Aug 01, 2014 10:20 am

Have bought cleaner for computer related items at Radio Shack
supposedly "better"-might be

I think the first thing to address is to keep the air clean going to
the MAF (and throttle body)

After several years the plastic duct work on the air cleaner is not as tight as it should be. I have used electric tape on the dust joints as well as plumbers
putty in some areas. I actually found some large gaskets and o rings to use
also. Just make sure these items can take heat and won't catch on fire.


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