Stiff gear changes - hard to change gear

Hi all, I've been having this problem with my 2000 1.0L Micra S as it's gear changes are really stiff and hard to change when driving and not. However 3rd and 4th aren't as stiff compared to 1st 2nd 5th and reverse which are really stiff. It's not that the car doesn't go in gear it's just that it requires alot of effort to change gear.

So I was wondering if anyone knows why this problem may be occurring.

Any help is appreciated

Thanks!
 
There's a couple of things you could check out:
Firstly check out the gear linkage underneath the gearstick as I believe this can wear or just need a good clean and a light grease in areas.

The other option I can think of off the top of my head is that your clutch cable might be out of adjustment and need tightening up. It means that the clutch is not completely disengaging making it harder to select gears... there's a hand screw adjustment and 10mm locking nut on the cable above the gearbox.

A third might be the clutch release bearing acting up but you would generally hear a whine or rumble with your foot on the clutch. (less likely I think as the gear change would probably not be effected).

Other than that it could be gear synchromesh related but usually that accompanied by crunching gears and means a gearbox rebuild.
 
There's a couple of things you could check out:
Firstly check out the gear linkage underneath the gearstick as I believe this can wear or just need a good clean and a light grease in areas.

The other option I can think of off the top of my head is that your clutch cable might be out of adjustment and need tightening up. It means that the clutch is not completely disengaging making it harder to select gears... there's a hand screw adjustment and 10mm locking nut on the cable above the gearbox.

A third might be the clutch release bearing acting up but you would generally hear a whine or rumble with your foot on the clutch. (less likely I think as the gear change would probably not be effected).

Other than that it could be gear synchromesh related but usually that accompanied by crunching gears and means a gearbox rebuild.
I've read alot on forums about the linkage needing a clean so would I have to disassemble it?
 
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I've read alot on forums about the linkage needing a clean so would I have to disassemble it?
Yes, it's up under the exhaust, there's a tin exhaust shield you can remove from around the 2nd catalytic converter, you don't need to take that section of the exhaust off then you can get to the bolts from underneath. Easier if you can get it up on stands or even just one side on a gutter.
 
Yes, it's up under the exhaust, there's a tin exhaust shield you can remove from around the 2nd catalytic converter, you don't need to take that section of the exhaust off then you can get to the bolts from underneath. Easier if you can get it up on stands or even just one side on a gutter.
Ok I'll have a look when I get back, I'll take pics just to see if I'm doing things right as I'm a newbie.

Thanks in advance
 
Yes, it's up under the exhaust, there's a tin exhaust shield you can remove from around the 2nd catalytic converter, you don't need to take that section of the exhaust off then you can get to the bolts from underneath. Easier if you can get it up on stands or even just one side on a gutter.
Hi, is there any chance you have a pic of where the linkage is located?
 
This youtube by another member on here might give you an idea, just beware it's installing a short shifter so things will look a bit different.
 
posted this a while back having the same exact issue and got some good answers: https://www.micra.org.uk/threads/gearbox-oil-etc.71312/

What I did with mine was just lubricate underneath the gearstick surround from the top, since it was easy to get to

It didn't completely fix the issue, but I'll have to live with it for now because life is too stressful at the moment for me
Ok that could work for me, what type of lubricant did you use
 

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Just done a check on the correct gear oil as i am experiencing exactly the same issues with difficult gear changes.
My owners manual states 'NISSAN XZ gear oil or the exact equivalent. Nissan xz is a 75w85 GL-4 gear oil, Not the more common 75w90 which is a fair bit cheaper. The viscosity 75w85 is a fair bit thinner making for easier gear changes. Apparently a lot of the older Nissans suffered from stiff,notchy gear changes and Nissan put it down to garages using the wrong weight gear oil , i.e 75w90.
 
Just done a check on the correct gear oil as i am experiencing exactly the same issues with difficult gear changes.
My owners manual states 'NISSAN XZ gear oil or the exact equivalent. Nissan xz is a 75w85 GL-4 gear oil, Not the more common 75w90 which is a fair bit cheaper. The viscosity 75w85 is a fair bit thinner making for easier gear changes. Apparently a lot of the older Nissans suffered from stiff,notchy gear changes and Nissan put it down to garages using the wrong weight gear oil , i.e 75w90.
So it could be the oil, is that oil available in like any car parts store like halfords or euro car parts
 
So it could be the oil, is that oil available in like any car parts store like halfords or euro car parts
You can get it on ebay for £23.99 for 5 litres ,which is cheaper than buying it in 1 litre bottles. Your problem could be a mixture of stiff linkages,wrong/old gear oil and clutch needing adjustment. I went to the breakers and bought a good full linkage with gearstick for £20 last week in preparation for trying to sort the problem. It is a PITA to change the linkages as you need to drop the exhaust or remove it and remove the heatsheild.
You refill the gearbox oil through the speedo drive. You need a Haynes manual to guide you through it. Try oiling all the linkages first before going any further.
 
You can get it on ebay for £23.99 for 5 litres ,which is cheaper than buying it in 1 litre bottles. Your problem could be a mixture of stiff linkages,wrong/old gear oil and clutch needing adjustment. I went to the breakers and bought a good full linkage with gearstick for £20 last week in preparation for trying to sort the problem. It is a PITA to change the linkages as you need to drop the exhaust or remove it and remove the heatsheild.
You refill the gearbox oil through the speedo drive. You need a Haynes manual to guide you through it. Try oiling all the linkages first before going any further.
Ok I'll look at the linkages tomorrow, but what would you use to oil the linkages. Appreciate the help!

Thanks
 
You can get it on ebay for £23.99 for 5 litres ,which is cheaper than buying it in 1 litre bottles. Your problem could be a mixture of stiff linkages,wrong/old gear oil and clutch needing adjustment. I went to the breakers and bought a good full linkage with gearstick for £20 last week in preparation for trying to sort the problem. It is a PITA to change the linkages as you need to drop the exhaust or remove it and remove the heatsheild.
You refill the gearbox oil through the speedo drive. You need a Haynes manual to guide you through it. Try oiling all the linkages first before going any further.

Will this do for the gear oil it's 75W-85, thinking about getting this.
 
Do you mean to put lubricant hear
Yep, I sprayed it with wd40 from a straw, used kitchen paper to remove the dirt and soak back up the wd40, and then I put lithium grease on it and just tried to smudge it down there with my fingers as best I could (I had a glove on), wobbled the gear stick around a bit, smudged some more grease down there, then put it back together

I'd say it's maybe 50% easier to change gear now. Still a problem in some situations but half as bad as it was.
 
Yep, I sprayed it with wd40 from a straw, used kitchen paper to remove the dirt and soak back up the wd40, and then I put lithium grease on it and just tried to smudge it down there with my fingers as best I could (I had a glove on), wobbled the gear stick around a bit, smudged some more grease down there, then put it back together

I'd say it's maybe 50% easier to change gear now. Still a problem in some situations but half as bad as it was.
Ok that's great I'll get some lithuim grease and give it a go. Thanks a lot for the help (y)
 
Yep, I sprayed it with wd40 from a straw, used kitchen paper to remove the dirt and soak back up the wd40, and then I put lithium grease on it and just tried to smudge it down there with my fingers as best I could (I had a glove on), wobbled the gear stick around a bit, smudged some more grease down there, then put it back together

I'd say it's maybe 50% easier to change gear now. Still a problem in some situations but half as bad as it was.

Is this the type of grease you were talking about?
 
As said above you don't need to take out the exhaust it's not the easiest to get the shifter out but not too bad, that way you can inspect the pivots clean it properly and get it nice.
 
Ok thanks a lot for the help, I'll try greasing the shifter first to see if there's any improvements and I'll get back to you (y)
 
UPDATE: Hi all, I've put grease on the shifter yesterday and it feels much better than before, but still does feel stiff when moving neutral left and right so I think cleaning the linkages may fix this. Any ideas what do use on cleaning the linkages? WD40?

Any help is appreciated

Thanks!
 
Yeah I reckon, very low demand for a grease in my opinion you could just about use any sort of grease.
UPDATE: Hi all, I've put grease on the shifter yesterday and it feels much better than before, but still does feel stiff when moving neutral left and right so I think cleaning the linkages may fix this. Any ideas what do use on cleaning the linkages? WD40?

Any help is appreciated

Thanks!
 
It's unlikely I'd say there's anything whole with them, you could put a little bit of grease in there and just check there's not too much play or excess movement in them. I think the greatest friction comes from the ball and socket joint but to do the job effectively I'd be pulling it out and cleaning it then grease it up on assembly.
 
Some of them have a rod moving inside some sort of casing, which was designed to stop the grease attracting dirt, which other than rust is the main reason they go stiff in the first place

I want to get mine sorted but I have no way to access the bottom of the car now, I used to make do with a jack and jackstands but with not having a driveway any more there's no way I trust people walking/driving past while I'm lay underneath a ton of car
 
It's unlikely I'd say there's anything whole with them, you could put a little bit of grease in there and just check there's not too much play or excess movement in them. I think the greatest friction comes from the ball and socket joint but to do the job effectively I'd be pulling it out and cleaning it then grease it up on assembly.
Some of them have a rod moving inside some sort of casing, which was designed to stop the grease attracting dirt, which other than rust is the main reason they go stiff in the first place

I want to get mine sorted but I have no way to access the bottom of the car now, I used to make do with a jack and jackstands but with not having a driveway any more there's no way I trust people walking/driving past while I'm lay underneath a ton of car
Ok, thanks for the reply, I'll give it a go tomorrow and see if it further fixes the issue

Thanks
 
Some of them have a rod moving inside some sort of casing, which was designed to stop the grease attracting dirt, which other than rust is the main reason they go stiff in the first place

I want to get mine sorted but I have no way to access the bottom of the car now, I used to make do with a jack and jackstands but with not having a driveway any more there's no way I trust people walking/driving past while I'm lay underneath a ton of car
UPDATE: Hi all, I know it's been long but I was busy so I couldn't get the linkage done, so I decided to get a gear knob that's much heavier than the stock one and it seemed to fix the issue through shifting gears. It feels much lighter now, So I think I'll leave it at this point. However, if it does go bad again I will have a look at cleaning the linkage.

Thanks
 

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