Question about 2004 Dodge Neon
U are on the correct rack suspecting a clogged oil screen or a pump that is below average at low engine speeds.
Posted on Apr 30, 2017
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Posted on Jan 02, 2017
SOURCE: oil pressure light at low RPM
Before you have major repair done on your car because of the "oil pressure light", review the list and see if any of these might be the source. Some of the things on this list are things you can do yourself, some only done by a mechanic (inexpensively), and others require the aid of a mechanic.
1. Check to see if you have a leak. Low oil levels can make the oil sensor light come one. Check your oil level following the manufacturers recommended procedure or use the information listed here http://autorepair.about.com/od/regularmaintenance/a/checkoil.htm. If you do not have a low oil level, but still suspect a leak, place a drip pan under the oil plug overnight. If you have a leak, you'll see signs of it there. Then take the vehicle to a trustworthy mechanic and let them trace the leak. It is possible for your engine to only leak when it is hot, so make sure you get the engine nice and warm before you put the car away for the evening and place the drip pan under your vehicle. Other signs of an oil leak are listed below as well as an "oily" exhaust that leaves it mark on your bumper or "blue smoke" as you drive/idle.
2. Check the coolant levels. If the coolant is low, the oil will heat up faster and cause a viscosity breakdown. When the oil viscosity is low (= thin oil), the oil sensor light can come on. If the coolant is low, add more. Keep in mind that an engine running hot will heat the engine oil to the point that it thins out and burns off in the cylinders. If the coolant level is fine, have the coolant (water) pump checked. If the coolant is not circulating well through the engine, you'll probably have coolant boiling over, too.
3. If you can afford to do it, change your oil to a higher or lower viscosity. Refer to your maintenance manual and your trusted mechanic. I say this because, if your oil is thinning out too much because the viscosity is too low, your "check oil" light will come on. If your engine oil is too thick, you engine will need added internal pressure to get it to circulate. At lower RPM (just like thin oil), your engine oil light will come one.
4. Have the oil pressure checked by other than an electronic means. Your trusted mechanic can place an oil gage between your oil filter and the rest of the engine or on the oil fill cap of the engine. If you are having an oil pressure problem that is seal-related, that should narrow it down. If you can't afford to do that, when you get your next oil change, replace: the oil fill cap, PCV valve, and air filter. All these contribute to the measurement of engine oil pressure by that picky little oil pressure sensor.
5. Have the oil pressure sensor checked. You may need some weird add-on to make it behave. Do a search for the following part and read and you should have a better understanding: "part # 05017800AA a terminal/wire/vent to the oil pressure switch connector". Never forget that sensor are usually engineered to report a problem well before a catastrophic failure can occur.
6. If you're driving a high-milege car, make sure you are up to date on all of the engine-specific services. For some vehicles, it is recommended that the head gaskets are replaced. If you have internal engine leaks because of it, this will solve most of those issues. Signs of this include: coolant visible in the crankshaft area (you can see this with the oil cap off), oil fouling your coolant (you can see this in the coolant reservoir), or smokey exhaust. Expect your trusted mechanic to recommend that you change your spark plugs, timing belt, and cam shaft gasket at the same time.
7. See if the oil pump needs to be replaced. A faulty oil pump can contribute to low oil pressure as it fails (but hasn't failed, yet).
8. Do all of the above BEFORE you take to recommendation to have your engine replaced.
I have a 1998 Chrysler Cirrus (I know it's not a minivan, but hear me out). I've been the single owner and have learned more about how engineering oversights or over-cautiousness can send you to the mechanic for just about everything.
Hope this helps!
Posted on Jan 20, 2009
SOURCE: oil light is on
I had the same issue on my '01. I hoped the issue would just go away, but when it didn't I took it into the dealership. They found a sensor that had gone bad and replaced it. Fortunately, it was not engine-threatening. As I understand it, oil lights are not designed to tell you if your oil is low, it usually means your pressure is low, which could mean a compression issue. Better get it checked out soon if you haven't already. You may want to find a good auto repair shop (I found one on cartalk.com) rather than taking to the dealer.
Posted on Aug 22, 2008
Most likely the oil pressure switch may be damaged. This is a simple procedure. Change and observe the results
Posted on Jan 23, 2009
In my experience with neon's the sending unit is most likely not the problem. I feel that you will find that the oil pressure is actually low and that the oil pump is going out. If you change the sending unit and it doesn't change then you will know for sure. The sending unit is located on the side of the block near the oil filter. It has one wire and simply unscrews and the new one screws back in and re-attach the wire. Hope this helps. Good luck.
Posted on Dec 03, 2009
If there is really a problem, resetting the computer won't fix it...if there is not a problem, you can reset and the light will stay off. After reset, you may have to drive the car a couple of hours before the light would come back on, because the computer...for lack of a better term..."re-learns" before giving proper readings. If your oil pressure is actually dropping, and it is not a computer glitch or a sending unit problem, then you likely have a problem with your oil pump. Good Luck! I hope you find this to be very helpful!
Posted on Dec 13, 2009
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