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Old 12-26-2012, 07:11 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Default 00 Duratec Oil Light of Death

I've got a 2000 Sable with the Duratec that has an oil light at low hot idle. No rod knock (i come from SHOs), regular oil changes, and no other issues to speak of. Basically at an idle in neutral the light barely flickers, but shift into gear and it comes on pretty steady until the revs come up 200rpm. What do I get to replace?
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Old 12-26-2012, 07:27 AM   #2 (permalink)
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Try a new sending unit first, since they're cheap. If the car has been abused and neglected, it may very well have low pressure. Hope for the best.
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Old 12-26-2012, 10:38 AM   #3 (permalink)
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No signs of abuse. Quite the contrary, actually. It appears to.have been well loved. There isn't even any caramelization on the camshaft under the oil cap. It's pristine.
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Old 12-26-2012, 11:07 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Move up to a thicker oil.

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Old 12-26-2012, 11:37 AM   #5 (permalink)
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Do not move to a thicker oil. Just replace the sender. If the issue goes away, the sender was the problem (common problem.) If it persists with a new sender, then the oil pump may be struggling to pick up oil. Replace the filter with a good one (not Fram) and even though its a task, see if you can't check the pickup screen on the pump. I'm not sure how accessible it is on a 'Tec but its probably a bear to get to.

Running a thicker oil will not solve a real low pressure problem, and it will cause oil starvation and decreased lubrication to the cam and lifters.
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Old 12-26-2012, 12:04 PM   #6 (permalink)
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If you know it has the specified viscosity oil in it & its not fuel diluted, doesn't smell strongly of fuel, maybe consider changing the oil filter.

Daughter had the same oil pressure warning light at idle problem when against my advice she had me use the specified Fram oil filter on her Saturn 4banger.
Fixed the flickering oil pressure light at idle problem by changing to the specified Purolator oil filter.
SO, maybe consider beginning with a check of the oil filter on there now, or just change it to the specified Motorcraft, in case the one on there now has a problem, won't be more than $4 bucks for the filter & maybe 1/2 qt oil to fill it.

More thoughts for consideration, let us know what you find.
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Old 12-26-2012, 12:31 PM   #7 (permalink)
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I have no idea what filter is on there. It's my stepdaughter's car and she gets free oil changes at some place locally. I'll go with her next time and see what they use.
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Old 12-26-2012, 02:11 PM   #8 (permalink)
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To help their bottom line they likely use the least expensive oil & filter they can come by, so imo both the filter & oil belong on your suspect list.
You should be able to get down to look underneath & see & ID the filter mfg & filter type number to see if its the correct one for the engine.
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Old 12-26-2012, 03:35 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by KhanTyranitar View Post
Running a thicker oil will not solve a real low pressure problem, and it will cause oil starvation and decreased lubrication to the cam and lifters.
What if the REAL problem is increased gap between cam bearings due to wear? Then you really need more viscosity to limit the flow in the bigger gap and maintain static pressure in the bearings. Main and cam bearings that is...
Thicker oil (like 5W40) is then the ONLY answer. Besides rebuilding the engine.
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Old 12-26-2012, 06:27 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Agree it's probably because of a bad or clogged oil filter. I highly recommend you change it out for a Motorcraft filter or better (Purolator, WIX, etc). Engine should also have 5W30 oil (is it possible they put in 5W20?). Don't increase the oil viscosity until you've ruled out the oil filter and the pressure switch. Khan is right about a thicker oil decreasing lubrication to the top-end of the engine.
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