How To Test a Nissan Altima Ignition Coil

How To Test a Nissan Altima Ignition Coil


When your Altima ignition coil starts to go bad you are going to have issues starting your Nissan. It can also contribute to inconsistent spark issues or even misfire in your 2.4 liter engine. This coil is a simple pass through ignition coil is very easy to test.

If you are having problems with your Altima spark plugs fouling, or your Nissan is running rich you need to test the coil. Today I will be showing you how to test your Nissan Altima ignition coil in a 1995 2.4 liter Nissan.

how to test a nissan altima ignition coil 2

In order to test the ignition coil in your 2.4 liter DOHC SR based engine, you will need an automotive multimeter. You can use this How To FAQ guide to learn what a multimeter is and how to use one to read the DC Voltage in your car.

Before you begin our How To DIY guide on testing your Altima ignition coil, you should first check to see if you have spark, You can perform this simple test by inserting a spark plug into any of the wires, and resting it against your valve cover. Because the distributor as well as your cap and rotor have big parts to play in your ignition make sure to check those points first.

If your Nissan Altima is experiencing ignition misfire, make sure to check the points on your distributor cap first. This is one of the most common problems that can contribute to misfire.

how to test a nissan altima ignition coil 3

If your ignition cap and rotor check out, eliminate your spark plug wires as the possible culprit next. This is easily done by swapping around your spark plug wires to determine if one of them has corroded or is failing.

Over time moisture and corrosion can cause your spark plug wire to fail. This causes the spark plug wire to lose its normal resistance until it cannot conduct spark properly. This will cause a loss of power and sluggish performance, and possibly contribute to engine misfire.

How to test your Altima ignition coil for power

The coil is connected by way of a two pin weatherproof connector. You will begin the test by checking for power at the ignition coil. Turn your Nissan ignition to the “ON” position to power the EFI system in your 2.4 liter engine.

Now using your automotive multimeter in the DC volts mode, put the black lead on the negative terminal of your battery. Never use a ground on your engine harness, as it can cause damage to your powertrain control module (PCM)

Gently probe PIN A for the 12 volts of DC power that’s required to drive your ignition coil. This power wire is shown below in our Nissan Altima ignition coil diagram.

how to test a nissan altima ignition coil

If you have power here make sure to inspect the wire that’s coming out of PIN A. Make sure there’s no exposed wire or insulation stripped away, which can cause a short in the wiring.

If you have tested that you have power at the coil, you can proceed to test the switching signal one of two ways. You can use a LED light to backpin WIRE B, and have a friend crank your engine. If the ignition coil is receiving the switching signal from your ECU, this means that your Altima ignition coil has gone bad.

Don’t have a LED testing light handy? no problem. Simply plug in your HEI spark plug wire directly into the ignition coil and use a spark plug tester to see if spark is being driven by the coil.

If your Altima ignition coil doesn’t check out, it’s time to replace it and clear your OBDII trouble code. Have any questions about our guide? Leave us a message below and let us know!