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#464726 - 20/06/07 04:10 PM Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hey everybody,
I was washing my 05 Xterra the other day and I noticed how much dirt and debris there was under the cargo basket. I figured I would just remove the cargo basket and wind deflector to clean and wax the paint. The cargo basket came off easily enough, then I tried to remove the plastic wind deflector in front of it. I loosened the 4 torx bolts, and instead of them coming out, they just continued to spin and "pop" about every half turn or so. I figured there must be some type of nut between the roof panel and the headliner that must be slipping. I tried to tighten them again, and they just continued to "pop" about every half turn. They never actually tightened, so my wind deflector is very slightly loose up there. Any ideas on how to go about tightening those four torx bolts now. I really don't want to remove my headliner to see what's under there.
Thanks,
Adam

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#464727 - 20/06/07 04:49 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


I'm afriad you're screwed...
frown

previous attempts gone bad

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#464728 - 20/06/07 08:01 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Yep, do a search on this and you'll realize how big a problem this is. You can thank Nissan and their engineering and design prowess for this one.

I'd take it to the dealer and let them figure it out. They will most likely need to remove the head liner to get at the screws. It is by no means the end of the world, but I wouldn't wash or drive the truck in the rain until it's fixed.

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#464729 - 21/06/07 07:24 AM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Got the same problem on my ’05 – but only the far passenger side one snapped off – I pulled the headliner and the dam thing is inside of a cross support which means there is no access to the spinning nut.

So, at best I’ll be able to cut out the spinning screw with out messing up the plastic wind deflector – at worst, I cut the wind deflector off the then grind the screw out and hopefully not mess up the roof too bad and spend the $141 on a new wind deflector.
mad

www.courtesyparts.com


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#464730 - 21/06/07 04:43 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


I would drill the spinning nut until it falls then in that same hole I would uses some sort of anchor kind of like a drywall anchor or a jack screw or even a sheet metal speed nut or clip. I manged a Ace hardware for about 10 years there also sorts of blind hole solutions I would go to the local hardware store or auto parts and poke around in the nut and bolt section I am sure you can find something. Man I would use a rivot before I did all that work we use to sell aircraft rivets that where about the dia of that hole.with a push pin you drove down I have even seen black plastic ones.Heck you may not even need to drill just find one that fits.hope this helps.

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#464731 - 21/06/07 07:57 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


I am one of those who have had this problem and curse Nissans choice of rivnuts over weldnuts in a large and vocal manner as befits an idea pulled from some second-rate engineer's dark and unsanitary place. See the 'previous attempts gone bad' link that 'B.' posted on this thread for all the gory details.

Long story short, I was lucky, I got it repaired under warranty. Yes, they had to pull the headliner & demolish the fairing to replace it. I couldn't get them (because it was under warranty) to leave the fairing off so I could put it on using plenty of NeverSeize, or even wirebrush the threadlocker off the bolts before they put it on. So I have resigned myself to getting under there several times a year with the air gun and hose.

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#464732 - 24/06/07 04:02 AM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Hello everybody,
First I want to start with admitting that this is my first post on the forum. I am new here and I read all the posts with interest. I feel thankful to all the knowledgeable people sharing their experience.
Second - the roof bolts.
Sad story!!! I had the same experience ~ year ago on 6000km. So it does not depend on how old the car is. This is an engineering and factory problem from Nissan. Those threaded bushings have a plastic seal like a washer. It will deform over the time and will never be tight or water proof. At least if they had a square profile, but not round , they would not spin when you try to unscrew the bolts. Still moisture will be captured and sooner rather than later rust will rotten our roofs… If you get to the point of spinning bushing / bolt, than you scrape the anti corrosion coating around the edge of the hole on the roof. This area will start to corrode from the same day.
The he best way to fix that with the wind deflector is:
- Carefully cut the plastic around the spinning bolt. Little Dremmel drill will do a good job. Remove the wind deflector panel and all the plastic around the bolt. You will see there is a space between the head of the bolt and the neck of the bushing nut. It is easy to grab the exposed bushing with Wise Grip pliers and undo the bolt. I confirm that there is no access from inside the cabin. You have a very good point to ask Nissan to replace the wind deflector. Than you can use this guidance, to prevent the Nissan technicians from having a wrong approach to the problem and damage your roof. They can do that easy like the case with my roof. In the best case they will replace the wind def, but they will not fix your problems. My personal guide is:
1. Prepare to remove the entire roof rack.
2. Start undoing the bolts very slowly by applying gradual force to loose the blue thread lock paint and prevent spinning.
3. If you get bolt or two spinning, stop turning , drop the head liner from inside and try to access the nuts from there. Some of them are visible but many of them are not. If you have so bad luck, you may need to cut a small piece of metal covering the nuts , so you can reach them with pliers. This is a thin metal, not part of the reinforcing beams. This cut will not compromise the integrity of the roof structure. Only the 4 nuts at the very front are covered with one of the beams. They are two more, but the nuts are welded in those places (Thanks God) and they will never spin.
4. Now you have removed the whole roof rack.
5. Get 3-4 5cm or 2” bolts (if I remember correctly 6mm) the same size like the original bolts holding the base of the roof rack. Try to find hardened steel bolts but any will do. Get 3-4 washers too and nuts for those screws.
6. Take one bolt and screw the nut on it up to ½” (1cm) before the head of the bolt. Then place 2 washers on the bolt with the nut.
7. Get to the roof and screw the so prepared bolt with nut and washers 1” (2.5cm) in to one of the bushings.
This is basically a tool that you will use to compress those rivnuts even will grater force then the Nissan techs with their rivet drivers.
8. Apply a little amount of graphite (molly) grease or other suitable lubricant only on the surface of the neck of the rivnut and the 2 washers. Now you have the bolt like a stud, the 2 washers oiled on the neck of the rivnut and the nut of the 6mm bolt above them.
9. Hold the head of the 6mm bolt still with wrench and with the other hand and another wrench start to tide the bolt down to the washers. The idea is those washers to play a role of bearings.
10. Keep tighten the bolt down just before the point to strip the thread of your bolt. Repeat this with all the rivnut bushings on the roof.
11. Degrease all the bushings and area around them
12. Apply 2 layers of silicone on and around each rivnut bushings. Use industrial strength for outdoor.
13. Reposition the roof rack. Use the cross load bars to guide you how far the rails to be from each other.
14. Apply generous amount silicone all over the original Torx bolts and tighten them up well. You will notice that before even if not spinning the bushings were loose and playing a little left /right. Now they are nice and firm.

Thanks for the reading

Larry

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#464733 - 16/07/07 10:33 AM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Unfortunately, I noticed a small spot of moisture on the headliner above the driver's side visor the other day. My dad was in town and thought it would be nice to take my car through an automated car wash while he was out running some errands. That is the only time I noticed any water spots though, even when it rains. I was wondering if I could just get some household silicone and coat the topside and the area around the spinning nut under the wind deflector. It would probably help keep some water out right?? I may just have to bite the bullet and take it over to a body shop for a quote to get it repaired. It's out of warranty, but I guess a stop by the dealer to see if they might repair it wouldn't hurt. Let me know what you think.
Thanks,
Adam

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#464734 - 17/07/07 12:29 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


In my personal opinion, the body shop can not remove the plastic without cutting it or damaging the car ( or both ). This you can do yourself with more care than the body shop. Just have to cut square in the plastic around the spinning bolt. Applying silicone on the top will not help at all, because the problem is under the plastic. This area is like a pocket filling up with water on carwash or heavy rain.

Regards

Larry

p.s. I am with very strong technical inclination, but not auto mechanic. This above is just my advice, but you should look in other posts. They are many experienced and knowledgeable people here that can find better solution.

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#464735 - 17/07/07 09:32 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


I had a leak too - that's how I got Nissan to replace it under warranty.

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#464736 - 17/07/07 11:00 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Wow! I thought I was the only one that kept looking at the "mud" under the roof basket. Everytime I wash the X, it's bugged me. I was thinking about removing the basket and just leaving the wind deflector. Since reading all of your posts, I'm seriously thinking I should leave it alone! Screw the mud, now I'm worried that eventually, the bolts holding the roof rack on will come loose and the "fun" will begin. [Uh Oh !]
The information shared in the "forum" is really invaluable, thanks for sharing.lj

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#464737 - 19/07/07 09:36 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Okay, here goes ! I recently had this problem on my 05. My wonderful dealer mechanics scratched the roof attempting to " Jamb" the nut-sert while loosening the bolt....Failed !
That's why I took it to them !
Here's the quote," Our service manager feels that this is not covered by warranty since you, the owner, caused this damage."
Enough for the friggin' monkeys they call technicians !
Here's the rest of the story;
Do a google search for nut-serts or threaded inserts.
there are a few companies; I came across
AVK Industrial Products
AVKFasteners.com
They were Extremely helpful in getting me to the correct fastener and the correct tool to repair AND,,,,GET THIS; tighten the existing fasteners in your roofs.
The insert is the AL Series open-ended.
the complete repair cost me less than $25.00 parts and tool.
With AVK's insert tool, you can re-tighten your existing roof fasteners.

I was replacing my rack, hence the repairs.

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#464738 - 19/07/07 09:39 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


I must also add that Nissan used blue Lok-Tite on my roof rack, so I would reccommend using alot of penetrating oil to loosen the fasteners
Jim

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#464739 - 24/07/07 09:31 PM Re: Roof Rack Wind Deflector Problems
Anonymous
Unregistered


Thanks for all the help guys! I really appreciate it!
Adam

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