Q: NVIS (Immobilizer System) in my Pathfinder Armada is rejecting my key; I know its correct key.

asked by on September 10, 2016

I own a 2004 Nissan Pathfinder Armada. Had it for 6 years, great truck. Then the battery died. Its been dead for quite some time and we can't recharge it. That is not the problem, however. The problem is that we used to jumpstart it using another vehicle and it started up just fine. Then one time we tried to jumpstart it and the NVIS system kicked in and cut the engine. It was the correct key, as i use the same every time. I never got a new one or copied it, so i know its the correct key. And i know the truck had power. every electrical system was working except the ones required for the engine to be running. I did some research and found one lady with an Armada and she took it to the mechanic and they found that there was a wire in the Immobilizer that was causing interference with the Key. She said they added insulation and it started up just fine. What should I do?
My car has an automatic transmission.

Operating a modern computer controlled vehicle with a dead battery can damage the Powertrain Control Module due to the voltage instability, particularty voltage excursions on the high side (above 14 volts), that occur when the alternator has no buffer to offset electrical loads that normally drop in and out. Given your history of running the vehicle without a functioning battery, that could in fact be in part what is in play here. The first goal should be to repair the electrical system such that you have a functioning battery and charging system. Once that is accomplished, it will be easier to diagnosis any no start condition. Given the history, you might have to, at some point, substitute a known good PCM programmed to your vehicle. As far as the key, if it is a chip key, such do go bad from time to time. An initial quick test would be to use a known good key (that you might have stored as a spare) and see if it works with that key. Basically, without a functioning battery and charging system, you are trying to re-invent the vehicle as something it was not designed to be. YourMechanic would be pleased to help you to restore the car to its original, intended working condition. Please note that for legal and liability reasons we cannot help you defeat, or work around, intended and mandatory equipment, such as vehicle storage batteries, charging systems, and anti-theft equipment. But we absolutely can return your car to the condition it was in when it was running properly and we would be happy to help you in that regard.

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