5 Causes of a “Low Oil Pressure Warning Light” Coming On

Whenever you start the internal combustion engine of your vehicle, there are several different processes and systems activating within the vehicle at the same time. However, the engine is like the heart of all these systems. Inside the engine, there is a steady flow of oil circulating through its moving components in order to lubricate and cool them. This requires a certain amount of pressure to keep the oil flowing at a consistent rate. The oil pump is responsible for sustaining this oil flow by helping to create the necessary pressure for the oil. As long as the oil pressure stays consistent, the engine components will continue to run smoothly and stay lubricated.

5 Common Causes

When you experience any kind of oil problem in your vehicle, especially low oil pressure, there are several symptoms which will show themselves. You might see a low oil pressure warning light illuminate on your dashboard or experience a totally weak engine performance. If you want to solve these kinds of issues appropriately, then you’ll need to figure out the root cause of the problem and then make sure it does not happen again.

Below are the top 5 causes of a low oil pressure warning light coming on.

1) Bad Oil Pump

The oil pump creates the pressure in which the oil needs to keep flowing steadily in the engine. Obviously, if you have a bad oil pump which fails at its job, then you will have low oil pressure in your engine. As a result, the low oil pressure warning light will illuminate. You must replace your oil pump immediately in this circumstance because your engine is ultimately in jeopardy until you do.

2) Oil Passages are Clogged

Engine oil is stored in a crankcase or oil pan. Up to six quarts of oil can usually be stored in them. As the oil becomes pressurized by the pump, it starts to leave the crankcase. From there, the oil flows through various passageways inside of the crankshaft. That is how the oil reaches the crucial areas of the engine which need lubrication. Sadly, it is possible for the passages to get clogged and restrict the flow of oil. This results in the low oil pressure warning light activating on the dashboard.

3) Oil Filter is Clogged

Engine oil passes through an oil filter regularly. Any solid contaminants, such as dirt, metal particles, and carbon particles, are picked up by the oil as it circulates through the engine. Once the oil reaches the filter, these contaminants are blocked from passing through. This is what keeps the engine and its oil clean. Unfortunately, the oil filter will end up getting clogged as more of these contaminants accumulate on it. This ends up slowing down the oil pressure, which then causes the warning light to come on.

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4) Oil Leak

Do you have an oil leak somewhere? A low level of engine oil will always cause low oil pressure because there needs to be a certain amount of oil in the engine to sustain the pressure. If you don’t figure out where the leak is and then fix it, you’ll end up losing more oil each day. Let the low oil pressure warning light give you a reason to check around your vehicle and look for oil leakage.

5) Old Oil

If you don’t get regular oil changes at your local lube shop or perform the oil changes yourself, then your engine will be stuck with old oil. The longer you go without changing your oil, the less effective it is going to be for your engine. It may even get to a point where the oil can no longer be pressurized as adequately as before. Therefore, make sure you change your oil at the recommended time intervals.

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