The oil pressure sending unit tells you how much oil pressure is in your engine. Most types of oil pressure sending unit light up when the oil pressure has reached 9 pounds or less. However, there are times when the unit malfunctions so that even if the pressure has reached below the critical level, the warning lights do not light up. When this happens, you need to replace the oil pressure sending unit immediately to avoid serious problems with your car. Remember that when your car runs out of oil pressure, its engine can sustain serious damage.
Step 1 - Locate the Oil Pressure Sending Unit
Before you start working on the oil pressure sending unit in your car, make sure that your vehicle is in a safe and secure position. To do this, pop the hood of the car then prop the front of the vehicle using car jack stands.
After putting your car in a secure position, locate the oil pressure sending unit. You should be able to find the unit very close to the oil filter. The pressure unit on newer car models usually has a round black ½ inch long cylinder, with two wire connectors. Older car models usually have small round units that are 1½ inches wide.
Step 2 - Check the Oil Pressure Sending Unit
Before you decide to change the oil pressure sending unit, you need to make sure that it is no longer functional. Note that sometimes, the oil gauge fails because of some faulty electric connection and not because of defects in the oil pressure sending unit. To make sure that the problem is in the oil pressure sending unit, check the electrical connection of your car and make sure that the oil pressure sending unit is properly connected. If the electrical connections of your car are good, but the oil pressure sending unit still fails, then it is time to change the unit.
Step 3 - Remove the Old Oil Pressure Sending Unit
To remove the old oil pressure sending unit, squeeze the connector then pull it off using your gloved hand. After removing the connector, unscrew the unit then lift it out.
Install the new unit inside the place where you remove the old one. Wrap Teflon tape around the threads of the new unit and then thread it into place.. Make sure that it is not too tight or the threads may break.
Step 4 - Reinstall the Electrical Connector
After installing the new unit, attach the electrical connector to the unit. Turn on the power of your car and see if the oil gauge works. If the oil gauge does not work, check the electrical connection and make sure that it is installed properly. Once you are sure that the new oil pressure sending unit is properly connected to your car, close the hood of the vehicle and remove the car jacks.