In this article, I will be discussing the bad oil pressure sensor symptoms, along with their potential causes and solutions.
If your engine doesn't give the right amount of oil, most likely it will go through some serious damages. The different systems in your vehicle are created with the purpose of maintaining the right level and pressure of engine oil.
To make sure that the computer of the engine regulates the right oil flow, it is very important for the oil pressure sensor to do its job.
This sensor is directly connected to the oil pressure gauge located on the device cluster. If it detects that the oil pressure is lower than what is considered normal, the change will be reflected in the car gauge. This, along with a number of other bad oil pressure sensor symptoms, should be given immediate attention in order to more serious problems.
Five Symptoms of Bad Oil Pressure Sensor
When the system of your car detects that the oil pressure becomes lower than normal, it could pose some problems. Before reaching that point, it is important to pay attention to any symptom that can appear. These symptoms may not look too serious at the start, but could eventually worsen when unattended. Avoid taking them lightly, or else it could be too late.
Here are some of the most common bad oil pressure sensor symptoms that you can look into:
1. Oil Pressure Light Turned On
This is one of the most common faulty oil pressure switch symptoms, and the most noticeable. If you noticed that the light in the gauge for the oil pressure inside your car comes on, and after checking the oil level in the engine it is enough, then most likely that the oil pressure sensor is faulty.
When this happens, you may expect inaccuracy in the readings. When these readings fail, you will notice the warning light turning on. The moment that you notice this, it is best to replace the sensor right away in order to avoid the stress that is usually associated with oil level issues in your vehicle.
2. Constant Blinking of the Oil Pressure Light
In certain situations, the Low Oil indicator will continue to blink constantly. This usually happens if the oil pressure sensor goes out. This could pose some problems because it could result in damages to the engine.
Checking constantly is possible, but time-consuming and stressful. Instead of having to do so manually, it might be helpful to replace the oil pressure sensor right away.
3. Wrong Reading on the Gauge
If your vehicle is somewhat older, it may come with a mechanical gauge that provides oil pressure calculation. When the level of oil is normal,but the gauge shows zero, this could only mean that the oil pressure sensor has to be replaced right away because it has some problems. It could also be an indication of a connection issue.
On the other hand, if you are driving a newer car, it is most likely equipped with an electronic oil pressure gauge, transmitting an electronic signal for the reading. If there is a problem with the engine oil pressure location, it may cause the oil pressure gauge to reflect inaccurate readings, even showing zero or full. Make sure to look into the sensor wiring, replacing if needed.
It is never a good practice to assume that the level of the engine oil is low without checking its dipstick physically. This could result in having more engine oil than necessary, which in turn could result in more issues.
4. Hotter (Than the Usual) Engine
True, the engine of your car could become hot while running. However, hotter than the usual engine is an indication of a bad oil pressure sensor.
Oil pressure is required in order to keep the coolness of the engine consistent. If there is a problem with the sensor, the engine will become hotter since the oil pressure is already too low.
If this goes on, the gauge will show that the temperature continues to rise.
5. Warning Light On for Check Engine
Aside from the Oil Pressure Light turning on, the Check Engine Light will also serve as one of the most noticeable bad oil pressure sensor symptoms. The engine control unit serves as the monitor for the oil pressure sensor. If it notices a problem with the oil pressure sensor, it will illuminate the warning light for the Check Engine on the dashboard.
Whenever there is an issue that affects the function of the engine, the Check Engine warning light will automatically turn on. This means that you need to check the different possible causes, including checking the oil pressure sensor, especially when this goes with the other bad oil pressure sensor symptoms mentioned earlier.
The Oil Pressure Sensor Replacement Cost
The oil switch replacement cost is relatively cheaper when replacing on an average vehicle.
This component is also inexpensive, which means that a mechanic will not have a hard time accessing this part of the vehicle. Even the labor cost involved in replacing a bad oil pressure sensor is reasonable, playing around $50 to $70. The cost for the parts is usually ranging from $50 to $60. As such, the overall replacement cost is expected at $100 to $130.
Replacing a bad oil pressure sensor the moment that an issue is detected is not just cheap but recommended.
It is never recommended driving with a bad oil pressure sensor. Since you will not have an idea of the oil level of your car, some dangerous consequences could happen.
To avoid these, paying attention to the above mentioned bad oil pressure sensor symptoms is the best way to go. As mentioned, these symptoms may appear as non-serious in the beginning, but could get worsen when unattended. If there is a need to replace your oil pressure sensor, a technician would be more than willing to help you out. Make sure to address this issue as promptly as possible.
Simon graduated with a Mechanical and Electrical Engineering Degree. He has over 20 years of servicing experience in both Japanese and German car dealerships. He now acts as a freelance mechanic’s instructor for local schools.