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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground
Old 05-07-2007, 08:16 AM   #21
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground

Originally Posted by thefed
did nyou ever have an intakre problem on that caR? im pretty sure its the 3.1 that is notorius for intake problems starting as low as 50k miles
just wondering
The 3.1 had some issues, depending on the year. I had a Grand Prix with the 3100 motor, which was basically the 3800 block with smaller displacement. The car is still running around my nieghborhood with 189K on it, sold it to a noeghbor's kid.......

Consult with your own advisor or representative. My thoughts should not be construed as investment advice. Past performance is no guarantee of future results (love that one).......:)

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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground
Old 05-07-2007, 08:35 AM   #22
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground

I've had two cars that would do that same thing, having the oil light flicker at idle, when fully warmed up. The first was a 1967 Pontiac Catalina. It only came from the factory with an idiot light for the oil pressure, but there was an aftermarket gauge hooked up to it. Once it was fully warmed up, it would idle REALLY low, and the light would flicker. I think it would do it around 15 psi. Pontiacs back then were known for idling low, but I think someone messed around with the idle on this one. I bumped up the idle a bit, and my mechanic recommended running 20W50 oil in it, and never had a problem since.

My 2000 Intrepid started doing the same thing about 2 1/2 years ago. It turns out there was a TSB on it. There was some kind of issue where the sensor can get too hot and trigger a false reading. Usually at idle, fully warmed up, where it's going to be hot with no airflow to dissipate the heat. The scary thing about the Intrepid though is that it actually acted like there was a real problem. If I put it in neutral and tapped the gas to boost the revs, the oil light would turn off.

I'd say if it's only doing it at idle, you might be able to get away with putting the car in neutral when you're stopped at a traffic light or similar situation. That'll take the load of the transaxle off the engine, and it'll rev up just a bit. Maybe enough to make the light go away.

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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground
Old 05-07-2007, 08:37 AM   #23
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground

Originally Posted by TromboneAl
That is, you want to get every ounce of value out of the car, but you don't want to end up stranded on a dark, rainy highway at 1 AM.
You also want to have a month to go shopping for a new car, time to take care of the title & tags, and time to arrange the artificial-reef permits for disposal of the old vehicle...

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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground
Old 05-07-2007, 11:10 AM   #24
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground

A mechanics rule of thumb for engines is 10 psi per 1000 RPM. This is the minimum requirement for proper lubrication of the engine. Since you said the engine was delivering 17 psi at 1100 RPM probably no big deal. If you're still concerned I vote change the oil pressure sending unit, go to 20-50w oil and add STP to the oil. If you live in a moderate to warm climate the car should run fine. If you live in a cold climate use 15-40w in the winter months otherwise additional engine wear will occur during start up.
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground
Old 05-07-2007, 11:28 AM   #25
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Re: Oil light: Driving a car into the ground

Originally Posted by BigMoneyJim
It sounds like I can run this thing into the ground and have enough warning to know when I must buy another car.
There is no guaranty that the engine will fail gracefully. A major bearing could go or you could throw a rod and have catastrophic failure.

I had a fun and event filled time years ago as an engine quit on me while I was doing 70 or so. But that's another story.

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