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Nissan Repair/99 Altima Alarm won't turn off, car won't start

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Hi Calvin,

I'm really hoping you can help me as we are at a loss, and going through a LOT of personal issues right now (I was just laid off, our home has been deemed unfit and we have to move immediately -- this is 2 major problems of 5.) So, this is obviously the LAST thing we need right now.

We've got a 99 Altima, it's the only car we have to take my 3 yr old to her dr's appts and for my fiance to get to work and make the little income we've got coming in. Here's the need to know info:

I locked the door with the key (no remote entry). When I unlocked it this time, the alarm started to go off. It also disabled the car, so we can't start it either. Every time we open a door, etc, the alarm goes off again.

We only have a VALET key. We tried to have a master made, the key code has dropped out of the system. So that's what we're working with (if it matters.)

Many fixes contain a step for locking the car on the driver's side. For some odd reason, ever since this started, we actually CAN'T lock the car with the key -- the key won't actually turn left to lock. It only turns right (unlock.)

We've tried the following:

Pulling horn and antitheft fuses etc. Nothing. Put them back. AAA then pulled some cable on the left side of the car so the horn wouldn't be going off but we can still see the lights flashing, knowing the alarm is still activating. This helped as this happened right outside my mother's apt complex full of 800 elderly and disabled people at 9PM (I was mortified to say the least.)

Disconnecting battery, put key in start position, reconnect.

Disconnect battery, take out horn fuse, reconnect.

Disconnect battery, lock doors (done manually as we can't lock with the key anymore) reconnect battery, use key to unlock drivers side door.

Turning key to unlock a couple times, sometimes we held it, etc.

Other random stuff that I don't really think was even a solution (pulling other fuses, etc)

So -- obviously we tried a bunch of solutions we've found online to no avail. The car is fine, we just can't figure out how to turn off the stupid alarm so the car will start again. Any help you can offer is GREATLY appreciated -- we certainly can't afford a mechanic right now, and definitely don't want to spend a ton of money to fix a $800 car...especially when it's just an alarm issue.

Thanks so much!!!

Answer
Hi Alicia -

I am sorry to hear about your challenges - Hopefully things will brighten up.

Regarding your alarm issue, this happens a lot with the Altimas. To bypass the alarm, find the control box for the starter inhibit system, usually under the driver's side dash. You can locate it easily because it is clicking while the alarm is going off. If you have disconnected the horn, it is easier to hear. Pull it out and remove the wire harness connected to it. This will disable the alarm. Now go to the harness and jump the last 2 terminals with a wire. This will enable the starter when you turn the key.

That should enable the vehicle to start, but remember you will not have any alarm system.

Hope this helps -

aloha
Calvin

Nissan Repair

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Calvin Iwashita

Expertise

All general car repairs for all models of vehicles, except technicals (overhauls) on A/C systems and transmissions.

Experience

16 years as a car mechanic from 1974 to 1990, and still repair cars on the side.

Publications
TV

Education/Credentials
High School and college graduate

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