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Discussion Starter · #1 · (Edited)
Hey all,
This is the second time I've noticed this happening. Just recently did an oil change and used the same oil. The only difference is that when I filled, I added a bit more than the 4.5 quarts, closer to 5 quarts to get to the fill mark.

The oil is the same viscositym Valvoline Syn Blend 10w-30. I'm wondering if adding more oil would cause the oil flicker light as seen in the video or if it's some part that is on its way out. I have checked the dipstick and I do not see 'frothing' that would signal that the camshaft is splashing in the oil. So I think I'm still safe.

What is the typical problem when the oil light flickers and goes away with the throttle? Thanks!

Linked video of my 2001 SES - Vulcan Engine:


EDIT:
I just want to add this. It seems that the oil pressure switch could be the culprit here. In an attempt to document this well, I'm uploading what I have found on the Ford CD for the 2001 model. Maybe we can get this added to the topic finder when it is resolved?

So the question is, what tools do I need to properly test the oil pressure? And what time of the day (ie tempurature) should I be testing the oil pressure?

EDIT2:
The oil light flickering only comes on after the oil has been warmed up. This time I drove 60+ miles on the highway from Orlando International to Melbourne. The light did not come on while I was waiting at an intersection right off the highway. It only came on when I was making my last few miles stop/go on the rural streets home.
 

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Cake monster
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First of all, STOP DRIVING THE CAR if you still are. Figure out why the light is on first.

If the camshaft synchronizer isn't bad and it isn't electrical (doesn't sound electrical) it probably means the engine has low oil pressure form internal wear/damage. I would pull the camshaft synchronizer right away if you haven't yet.

little thought:

EDIT2:
The oil light flickering only comes on after the oil has been warmed up. This time I drove 60+ miles on the highway from Orlando International to Melbourne. The light did not come on while I was waiting at an intersection right off the highway. It only came on when I was making my last few miles stop/go on the rural streets home.
This sounds like bearing issues. The oil is thicker when it's cold and keeps pressure easier. I'm starting to wonder if it's the cam syncro or simply a bad engine. I would place my bet on a bad engine.
 

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Happens to me - always after an extended drive, so I think it's heat related. Do a search for flicker and you'll see there are ton's of posts on it.

I'll bet, if it happens to you again, that if you turn the car off and resart it, the flicker will go away, until after another 15 minutes of driving it will mysteriously come back. If you don't do a restart, it will flicker at higher rpms (get worse) until it's restarted.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
the Camshaft Synchronizer and sensor itself has never been replaced on this car. I haven't had the chirping that is notorious signal for it. However, I do not agree that the engine is going faulty. I've kept up with the oil changes since I bought it at 63,000 miles. It only has 151,000 miles.

After letting it sit for 30 mins, I drove it around. The oil light did not come on at all. No flicker, nothing. This leads me towards the Camshaft, and since I'm at the 150,000 mark, it would make sense.

On a side note, the damn starter died on me at AZ tonight. Luckily, my mechanical friend was able to come over and replace it - since I'd been returning from a flight all day.

I will get the oil pressure switch sensor off and pressure test it. I may just replace the switch and Camshaft Synchronizer and sensor while I'm at it.
 

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That course of action sounds best. FYI, O Reilys sells the Motorcraft sync at a pretty good price. Their offbrand camshaft position sensor is a Ford product with the logo scraped off lol. If you unplug the oil pressure sensor do you see any oil on the electrical leads/connector?
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Just posting on here what I found in the Ford CD. Please add if anything seems out of the ordinary.

Oil Pressure (HOT at 2500 RPM): 276-414 kPa (40-60 psi)
 

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You're not alone. My car does the same ('01 SE, Vulcan). Purchased it in June with 128,000km (~80,000 miles). Changed the oil to Castrol Syntech 5w-20 and Motorcraft filter @ 131,000km. Mechanic put in full 5 liters, instead of 4.25L. After a while I've changed cam synchronizer and oil pressure switch. Had the issue untill oil level returned to normal (I guess it burned excess oil). After a while same thing started again. Only happens when oil is warm and after high speed driving, when RPM returns to idle speed. Also cleaned throttle body and IAC valve, still no luck. I've put total 7,500km on the car since I bought it. Will try 5w-30 oil next time I change it, but I doubt it will make any difference.
 

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Cake monster
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You're not alone. My car does the same ('01 SE, Vulcan). Purchased it in June with 128,000km (~80,000 miles). Changed the oil to Castrol Syntech 5w-20 and Motorcraft filter @ 131,000km. Mechanic put in full 5 liters, instead of 4.25L. After a while I've changed cam synchronizer and oil pressure switch. Had the issue untill oil level returned to normal (I guess it burned excess oil). After a while same thing started again. Only happens when oil is warm and after high speed driving, when RPM returns to idle speed. Also cleaned throttle body and IAC valve, still no luck. I've put total 7,500km on the car since I bought it. Will try 5w-30 oil next time I change it, but I doubt it will make any difference.
For shitz n giggles, I would buy some 15w40 for the next oil change (diesel engine oil), or even 10w30 and see if the light stops.
 

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Cake monster
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I live in a snow belt, not in Florida. So, 15w-40 wont work here.
I live in Canada. I wouldn't hesitate to run it in my engine at least for a little while. If you really hate that idea, try upping it to at least 10w40 (not 10w30) for a change. It sounds like your engine has low oil pressure when it's warm, you should hook up a pressure tester if you don't try thicker oil. If the thicker oil keeps the light out, I would keep using that weight. Oil lights at warm idle with a new synchronizer is worrying.

edit: What part of Ontario do ya live in? I just noticed that was your location.
 

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The bearings are probably worn. You can check the switch to eliminate it. Oil is still flowing if the bearings are loose, so it won't die quickly, but new bearings are most likely the solution.
 

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I guess we live in the same general area.

I checked car-part and there's a vulcan with 45,000 miles for $400. Like the above person said, it'll probably last awhile before she goes.
How long is a 'while'? Maybe my car will be in a junk yard by then.
 

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Cake monster
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How long is a 'while'? Maybe my car will be in a junk yard by then.
I personally wouldn't count on it lasting more than 50,000KM. Just a guess though. Does the engine rattle or knock? It could blow next week, or next month. It's unlikely though.

What kind of shape is the car in?
 

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I personally wouldn't count on it lasting more than 50,000KM. Just a guess though. Does the engine rattle or knock? It could blow next week, or next month. It's unlikely though.

What kind of shape is the car in?
I'm the third owner. Car had 128,000km when I bought it. First year it was Hertz vehicle, then for 8 years was owned by the same owner. Car has no rust, new shocks, springs, brakes. I've changed camshaft synchronizer, oil pressure sensor, heater core, thermostat, tires, coolant, transmission fluid and 135,500km (~85,000 miles). Last owner told me that he was using Lucas Oil additive. But did not mention flickering light or that the heater does not work. I also have very minor leak in the intake gasket, but it does not affect coolant level. So, if the car lasts me another two years, I'll be happy. By then, I think, gas prices will be high enough, to consider more fuel efficient vehicle. I do have CAA and drive not more then 300km a week.
 

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Cake monster
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I'm the third owner. Car had 128,000km when I bought it. First year it was Hertz vehicle, then for 8 years was owned by the same owner. Car has no rust, new shocks, springs, brakes. I've changed camshaft synchronizer, oil pressure sensor, heater core, thermostat, tires, coolant, transmission fluid and 135,500km (~85,000 miles). Last owner told me that he was using Lucas Oil additive. But did not mention flickering light or that the heater does not work. I also have very minor leak in the intake gasket, but it does not affect coolant level. So, if the car lasts me another two years, I'll be happy. By then, I think, gas prices will be high enough, to consider more fuel efficient vehicle. I do have CAA and drive not more then 300km a week.
The last owner must of knew about it :angry:

I think it might last that long. Don't flog the engine hard or anything though. I would also try upping the oil to see if it goes away for awhile. It'll last longer if you baby it.
 
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