Common Nissan Sentra Problems – and How California Lemon Law Protects You

If you’ve been sold a defective Nissan Sentra, you’ll be relieved to know that you have the right to seek justice. Nissan Sentra problems have been seen by our lemon law office in many owners and lessees across California. Working with a specialized California lemon law attorney can be instrumental in earning compensation from the globally-renowned automaker.

In this post, we want to discuss several of the biggest problems with Nissan Sentra models that we have seen. Many of these problems equate to a lemon. We will explain what you can do to get a refund or compensation from the manufacturer.

Let’s get moving.

Substantial Nissan Sentra Issues

No vehicle is completely immune to issues. Generally speaking, the Nissan Sentra is known for reliability. However, we have seen certain Nissan Sentra issues that cannot be overlooked. We want to discuss the most substantial defects we’ve seen in this model over the past decade.

  • Nissan Sentra Engine Problems

Nissan Sentra problems with the engine can be the most severe. We’ve seen several issues from stalling and rough riding all the way to overheating.

  • Nissan Sentra Transmission Problems

These issues are characterized by surges, issues accelerating, delayed shifting, and/or lack of power.

  • Nissan Sentra Electrical Problems

Electrical problems with Nissan Sentra models that we have seen include failing to illuminate airbag warning signs, power steering failure, and more.

At our office the most impacted Nissan Sentra models are the years 2013-2017. Fortunately, for consumers who purchased these models used, California lemon law may have them covered.

The state of California has some of the most consumer-friendly lemon laws in the country. If your Nissan Sentra is exhibiting the issues noted above – or any other problem that impairs the use, value, or safety of the vehicle to you, get in touch with a California lemon law attorney and learn more about your rights.

When Is Your Defective Nissan Considered a Lemon?

Nissan Sentra problems do not necessarily mean you have a lemon. There are several qualifications in California that a defective vehicle must meet to be deemed a lemon. These include:

  • The defect must have been reported to the manufacturer while covered under the terms of the warranty; and
  • The defect is substantial in that it impairs the use, value, or safety of the vehicle to a reasonable person in your specific situation; and
  • The manufacturer has been given a reasonable number of attempts to fix the defect (usually no less than two), or
  • The vehicle has been out of service for 30 or more days (consecutive or not) for repairs; and
  • The defect was not caused by driver abuse.

Now, if you’re experiencing Nissan Sentra problems, you are likely doing so for the first time. You may have never even heard of lemon law before. The most important thing to remember is there are no stupid questions in lemon law, just quick uninformed decisions that lead to bad results.

Big-name automakers know that most consumers have minimal knowledge of the state’s lemon law, and they have no problem steering you in the wrong direction. In a lemon law case, the attorney you hire is the only party truly on your side.

Even if your Nissan doesn’t qualify as a lemon, it never hurts to get some guidance from an attorney. Most are more than happy to tell you about the process and what the next moves are.

California Lemon Law Tips to Earn Maximum Refund

The early stages of the California lemon law process are the most critical. As California lemon law lawyers, we want to provide the most important advice to avoid compromising your settlement. Keep in mind, car manufacturers have the most expensive legal defense money can buy. They will use any error you make in the process against you.

Tip #1 – Don’t Wait!

As soon as you notice any Nissan Sentra problems, the first thing you need to do is check the terms of the warranty. Most basic Nissan warranties are good for three years after the purchase date or before 36,000 miles accrue on the odometer, or longer if the defective part is part of the drivetrain. For drivetrain components the warranty is usually 5 years or 60,000 miles.

If the vehicle is covered, get in touch with the manufacturer as soon as possible. If you wait until the warranty expires to report the issue, your claim may not be valid. Even if the warranty expires after you report the problems, the vehicle can still qualify as a lemon – and you will be eligible for benefits.

Tip #2 – Don’t Take Your Nissan to the Family Mechanic

It may seem like a good idea to take your Nissan Sentra issues to your trusted mechanic. This is one of the worst things you can do. All warranty repairs MUST be performed by a manufacturer-certified repair facility. Having your own mechanic work on the vehicle can void the warranty – and invalidate your lemon claim.

Tip #3 – Keep ALL Documentation

Documentation is the most important piece of the puzzle in building a lemon claim for Nissan Sentra problems. There are two categories of documentation you need to build your case.

  1. The repair documentation.

The repair documentation – or repair invoices – from the manufacturer-certified repair facility is what will qualify your vehicle as a lemon. These repair invoices should include:

  • Name of the technician working on the vehicle.
  • The date/mileage you brought the vehicle in.
  • The Nissan Sentra problems they found.
  • What they did to attempt to fix it.
  • Indication the repair order has been officially closed.
  1. The expenses incurred as a result of the lemon.

The goal in every lemon law claim is to get reimbursed for every single penny you spent due to your Nissan Sentra problems. This should include:

  • Costs of the vehicle (down payment, monthly payments made, remaining balance on the loan, etc.).
  • All official costs related to the vehicle (sales tax, registration, etc.).
  • All court costs/legal expenses,
  • All incidental costs associated with the vehicle (towing fees, cab fares, hotel stays, meals, etc.)

Keep in mind, your attorney fees will be paid for by Nissan after the car is repurchased or replaced. Most lemon law attorneys work on a contingent fee agreement. But, unlike other contingency fee arrangements, the lemon law requires the defendant [Nissan] to pay your attorneys’ fees, costs and expenses, in addition to the lemon law buyback– the attorneys’ fees and costs should not be a percentage of the total settlement. You shouldn’t have to pay a penny out of lemon law buyback or replacement.

Can Nissan Sentra Problems on a Used Vehicle Qualify as a Lemon?

Yes. Fortunately, California is one of the states that has lemon laws protecting consumers from buying defective used vehicles. Dealerships may sell their vehicles with a dealer warranty. These are much shorter than the original manufacturer’s warranty. Most are good for 30 days after the purchase date or before 1,000 miles accrue on the odometer.

If you’re experiencing Nissan Sentra problems and report it to the dealer within the terms of the warranty, it will be processed like a new vehicle.

On the contrary, if the Nissan was sold “as is” – which is the case in most private sales – you may not be eligible for benefits under lemon law California. Dealerships MUST specify on the buyer’s guide that the vehicle is being sold “as is”.

Hiring a Lemon Lawyer for Your Nissan Sentra Problems

Your Nissan Sentra issues pose a threat to both you and other drivers on the road. Nissan should take responsibility for their mistake. For this to happen – and you to receive compensation – hiring a California lemon law attorney is the best thing you can do.At Cline APC, we’ve handled many, many lemon cases involving Nissan’s vehicles. We’re happy to guide you to earning full compensation. Give us a call at 888-982-6915, send an email to, or fill out a free case evaluation.

Share this post
Table of Contents