SaabCentral Forums banner

1 - 7 of 7 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I have a 1999 9-5 Wagon with a V6. The car has 243,000 miles on it and it still runs great. I am pretty relgious oil changer with Valvoline 5W-30 every 3000-6000 miles. On Friday after the car had been driven and was hot I was sitting in the drive thru at the bank and the oil light started to flicker, then the warning light sounded. If I pushed the rpms a little, the light went off and the warning went away . This happened a couple times in the next few minutes and since the light went off at higher rpms I drove it home. The engine doesn't sound any different that it did last week; a bit of clatter but nothing that I would characterize as loud. Once home I called a couple mechanics including one at my Saab dealer in Flint, MI (Trio Motors). They both guessed Oil Pressure switch. Saab dealer told me that they sometimes seep and cause the light to come on or just fail after that many miles. It's easy to change, as it is right behind the passenger wheel and did show some seepage. When I drained the oil in it that had about 3000 miles on it I noticed it was it's usual dirty and a bit thin from use. I also read that it is best to clean the oil pickup which has never been done. I am confident doing my own brakes, water pump, oil changes, but am not a master mechanic.
Questions:
1. What are the normal PSI ranges for hot and cold oil pressure?
2. How hard is it to drop the oil pan to clean the oil pickup?
3. Can I clean the oil pick up or should I replace it?
4. When I put a mechanical gauge on it, do I have to do anything to disable the idiot light?
5. I did have to special order an adapter to fit the block for the cheap guage, is there a gauge that you recommend?
6. What other things should I consider? I really need this car to stay running, we have medical bills and a new car payment is not an option.
7. Will using a heavier oil such as 15W-20 during the "warmer months" be helpful?

Your help and advice is really really appreciated.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,030 Posts
The V6 is not known to be prone to sludge so very little point in dropping the pan. If its definately not the pressure sensor i'd be inclined to go with a slightly heavier oil to combat the wear in the engine.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
I am currently using 5W-30 Valvoline (non-synthetic) oil. Would you recommend a 5W-40 or a 15W-40 or another?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
9 Posts
Discussion Starter #5
New Information:

I put in new oil, Valvoline 15W-40 Max Life. I was not able to find 5W-40 anywhere except Amoil (Euro oil) for $7 a quart. There is some 5W-50 but it is $6 a quart at a local store.
I installed an inexpensive Sunpro Oil Pressure Gauge last evening. Here are the Oil Pressure readings:
On cold start: 63 psi
2000 RPM Hot: 50 psi
Highway speeds, 60 - 70 mph, 2300 rpm: 37 psi
900 RPM Hot (at idle): approx 15 psi

I happy to report that on my first drive to the office (47 miles) which is 25 miles highway speeds and 15 miles traffic, 5 miles stop lights, the Oil Pressure never dropped below 15 psi at a stop in traffic on the highway or at a stop light.

Do I still have an oil pressure issue or was it my Oil Pressure Switch malfunctioning?

What are the Saab specifications for oil pressure at the standard RPM levels?

Is the 15 psi at idle (hot) ok?

Should I try the 5W-40 or 15W-50 anyways?

The oil pressure connection at the adapter between the special engine block adapter (straight metric outside - pipe inside), and the oil pressure hose end have a drip leak. Anything I can put on it to stop the leak? Should I be worried about over tightening?

Thanks!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
192 Posts
1. What are the normal PSI ranges for hot and cold oil pressure? - Don't know
2. How hard is it to drop the oil pan to clean the oil pickup? not that hard, just messy.
3. Can I clean the oil pick up or should I replace it? you can clean it - no need to replace unless it is damaged, and this would be unusual.
4. When I put a mechanical gauge on it, do I have to do anything to disable the idiot light? - don't know.
5. I did have to special order an adapter to fit the block for the cheap guage, is there a gauge that you recommend? - don't know.
6. What other things should I consider? I really need this car to stay running, we have medical bills and a new car payment is not an option. - if oil pressure checks out then you are left with the sensor which can be replaced. Also be mindful that in an older engine bearings and clearances are worn. This can act to lower the resistance to oil flow. Since the oil pump is a positive displacement pump the output pressure may be slightly lower even if the flow is the same due to the increased effective flow area of the worn portions of the motor.
7. Will using a heavier oil such as 15W-20 during the "warmer months" be helpful?
Very possibly, but I would hesitate to change the oil much on a vehicle with those miles - even on a v6 there will be buildups and deposits, radical changes in oil viscosity or composition at high mileages can break these deposits free and kill the motor by blocking oilflow paths. In my experience we would run into this in Nuclear power plant coolant systems as well, but the consequences of "Chemical Shock" are much greater than a bad motor. BTW, the technical names of the deposits in a Nuke plant are Sludge (secondary steam systems) and Crud (primary coolant system). I know that a motor's oil system is much different but in a nuke plant the coolant lubricates the pumps much like oil does in an engine so we had to keep an eye on these things. Sorry to go OT, but some context helps.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
5,000 Posts
philmeup007 said:
New Information:

I put in new oil, Valvoline 15W-40 Max Life. I was not able to find 5W-40 anywhere except Amoil (Euro oil) for $7 a quart. There is some 5W-50 but it is $6 a quart at a local store.
I installed an inexpensive Sunpro Oil Pressure Gauge last evening. Here are the Oil Pressure readings:
On cold start: 63 psi
2000 RPM Hot: 50 psi
Highway speeds, 60 - 70 mph, 2300 rpm: 37 psi
900 RPM Hot (at idle): approx 15 psi

I happy to report that on my first drive to the office (47 miles) which is 25 miles highway speeds and 15 miles traffic, 5 miles stop lights, the Oil Pressure never dropped below 15 psi at a stop in traffic on the highway or at a stop light.

Do I still have an oil pressure issue or was it my Oil Pressure Switch malfunctioning?

What are the Saab specifications for oil pressure at the standard RPM levels?

Is the 15 psi at idle (hot) ok?

Should I try the 5W-40 or 15W-50 anyways?

The oil pressure connection at the adapter between the special engine block adapter (straight metric outside - pipe inside), and the oil pressure hose end have a drip leak. Anything I can put on it to stop the leak? Should I be worried about over tightening?

Thanks!
Your oil pressures sound just fine. A rule of thumb for oil pressure is not less than 10psi for each 1000rpm. You've got way more than that. Probably your sensor was bad, as they aren't supposed to turn on the light unless you're below 5psi or so (the oil light is more or less an "Engine damage has already occurred" indicator....).

You can use some teflon tape or pipe joint compound on your connections. They're probably brass fittings and easy to strip if you make them too tight.

5w-30 non-synthetic oil will get thin at high temps. You DO have a turbo engine and it will run hot. xw-40 synthetic would be a good choice (the lower number is really only significant for winter starts if you live somewhere that it gets cold out).
 
1 - 7 of 7 Posts
Top