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Dbrisky 01-09-2013 07:12 PM

03 GT Intermittent oil light
I noticed my oil light coming on for a few seconds and then off for a couple mins and then it was back on for a couple seconds. Not going to lie, it started after I was doing some donuts on a snow covered parking lot. I wasn't beating on it too bad, I beat my last one ten times worse than this and I rolled 318k with it.
The light did not follow RPMS at all, meaning it didn't come on at idle and go away with a bump of the throttle.

I hooked up a pressure gauge and I am getting the following readings with warm oil.
5-8 at idle
Slowly increasing rpms it will climb to 20 and fall back to around 10-15
Rapid acceleration it will also jump to 20 and fall back to 10 -15
At no point did it go over 20psi.

I haven't pulled the pan yet or took the pump apart but I'm hoping it is something other than worn Internals. It only has 115k on it. It had a head-gasket replacement this summer, I also did a timing belt kit and resealed the oil pump.

Any thoughts??

octain11 01-09-2013 07:23 PM

idle should be at around 20 psi, can be a clogged oil pump, or the sending unit (pressure switch) did you try cleaning the sensor on the oil pump? if you did and light still comes up try resetting the ecu see if it comes up again, if it does try swapping out the pressure switch. other possibilities if its turning on and off is, pressure valve sticking open, cracked oil pick up tube, rotor cover screws coming loose, pick up tube o-ring, pump o-ring.

Dbrisky 01-09-2013 07:40 PM

I'll have to look but I don't remember a sensor on the oil pump. I put a tee in under the alternator and hooked the pressure gauge up there

Dbrisky 01-10-2013 04:39 AM

Update: Cold start this morning at 20 degrees.
30 Psi and wouldn't change with rpms. I didn't rev it up real high because it was cold still.
One other thing I discovered is the oil pressure was zero right after starting and took about 3 or 4 seconds to register and build up to 30. As soon as it built pressure I heard quite a whine from the oil pump area. It sounds almost exactly like a power steering pump whine (which is unhooked at the moment)
I had been hearing it for a couple weeks and assumed it was the p/s pump and didn't think much of it.

Is it normal for the oil pressure to take a few seconds to build?
Also does the whine in the pump mean its sucking air from somewhere?

octain11 01-10-2013 07:37 AM

it might be clogged, did you check if it was?

Dbrisky 01-10-2013 08:15 AM

No, I am going to pull it apart tonight and see what I find. But its looking less like worn engine internals I think which is nice.

octain11 01-10-2013 08:31 AM

do a compression test first, if you have one of those wire cameras you can take a look at the internals

Dbrisky 01-10-2013 08:39 AM

Engine was apart for head gasket over the summer and cylinder walls were cross hatched still. I'll check compression too

johnegg 01-10-2013 12:55 PM

how's the oil level?

earlier years had an issue with the backing plate screws on the oil pump loosening up and causing low issues. i haven't heard of it much in the 00- 04 cars, but maybe.

Dbrisky 01-10-2013 01:27 PM

My 96 2.2 had the screws come loose but I will check these for sure. I did try and torque them when I had the pump out last time and it was good and tight

johnegg 01-11-2013 06:32 AM

then that is probably not the issue.

search over at or lots of experience there. if the search does not reveal anything then ask, no need to ask at both.

octain11 01-11-2013 07:10 AM

+1, those two forums have very good information

Dbrisky 01-12-2013 10:30 AM

Oil pump looks good. All within spec. And relief is good. Gotta be pickup tube leaking or cracked

johnegg 01-12-2013 11:37 AM

or a bad wire / connection.

Dbrisky 01-12-2013 12:12 PM

What would be a bad connection. I don't understand. The pump is only putting out 20 psi max warm and whining like a power steering pump out of fluid

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