Why Does Your Oil Pressure Light Come on in Your Car?

Oil pressure light

There are so many things that can go wrong on a vehicle on any given day. From something small to something catastrophic, the best thing you can do when your vehicle starts acting up is turn to everyone’s trusty friend; Google.

The very first thing that many of us do when we experience vehicle problems is Google whatever symptoms or issues appear to be presenting themselves on our vehicle. This is good in a sense because it allows us to narrow down what the issue could be, which in turn, helps us decide if we should take our car to the mechanic.

However, some symptoms that you Google can bring up a long list of search results and leave you feeling more confused than you were at the onset.

That’s why it’s a good idea to not only have your vehicle looked at by a professional, but to source out a professional online when looking for potential issues on your car. One like Cash For Cars BC.

What Causes Your Oil Pressure Light to Turn On?

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We have been buying cars, trucks, SUVs, vans, and motorcycles for over 30 years, and we know a thing or two about vehicles and the issues they can have. That’s why we created relative blog posts that offer well-sourced information about what kind of issues you could be having with your vehicle, and why.

Many classic car owners turn to our website for resources on signs and symptoms of a problem with their classic car or truck. That’s because they know that we are experts when it comes to classic and vintage vehicles in nearly every regard.

Some Possible Causes for Your Oil Light to Come On:

Oil Pressure Indicator

  • Poor or malfunctioning sensor
  • Bad or worsening oil pressure
  • A clogged oil pick-up tube
  • Engine malfunctions like overheating
  • Faulty oil pressure gauge
  • Clogged air filter

When it comes to what can cause any indicator light to turn on within your vehicle, the only way to truly know what’s causing it is to get your vehicle checked at a professional mechanic, like our friends at Bond Mechanical.

Alternatively, you can purchase a code reader to check what code your vehicle is throwing on your own. This is something more suited to a person with mechanical know-how, or at the very least, who is electronic savvy. These can be purchased for under $20.00 at any Canadian Tire, Princess Auto, or even places like KMS Tools.

What Does the Oil Pressure Warning Light Mean on a Car?

Each time that you start up your car, you should see the warning indicator light come on for your oil pressure, among many other indicators.

This only lasts 1-2 seconds because the purpose of it illuminating on startup is to let you know that the indicator is in fact illuminating and working properly. Without this initial illumination on start up, you would never truly know if your indicator was or was not working.

Now, if your indicator light comes on and stays on after starting up, or worse, randomly while driving, it usually means that something more serious is going on.


It doesn’t always mean that the oil pressure itself is low or that something terrible is about to happen, but it does indicate a problem, nonetheless.

Reasons Why Your Oil Pressure Light May Be On

With so many illuminating icons flashing at one point or another on our dashboard, it can be hard to discern what means what, and more importantly, what is urgent.

If your oil pressure light is coming on, particularly on a classic car, you should be concerned. If the indicator is illuminated, there is a valid reason for it that requires prompt attention from a professional mechanic.

The Reasons Why Your Oil Pressure Light Is On:

  • Your oil is low or empty.
  • The sensor is malfunctioning for electrical reasons.
  • The light is grounding somewhere other than the sensor, also caused by electrical issues.
  • There is a major loss of oil pressure due to a leak or excessive burning of oil in your vehicle’s engine.

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Sometimes, the oil pressure light doesn’t stay on, but instead is intermittent or flickers repeatedly. This is usually a sign that your oil is not actually low, but that you are having undiagnosed electrical problems with your vehicle.

Whatever the case, your vehicle needs attention by a proper mechanic to diagnose the issue. Fortunately, for many customers of Cash For Cars BC, we offer the MOST cash for cars with mechanical issues, even classic cars with mechanical issues.

What Do You Do When Your Oil Pressure Light Comes On?

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The best thing you can to do help prevent any damage to your vehicle’s engine or other vital components that work with it, is to get your car into a mechanic a.s.a.p.

Although it sounds simple, driving your car to the local mechanic (or any nearby mechanic for that matter) could actually cause more harm than good. That’s why it would be better to call a tow truck if your oil pressure light comes on and stays on.

Here are a few tips to help you act in your car’s best interests when the oil pressure light suddenly comes on.

1. Shut Your Vehicle Off Immediately

Pull over to the side of the road and turn your car off as quickly as possible. This can be difficult when you’re stuck on Highway 1 in rush hour, or worse, on the Alex Fraser or Lions Gate Bridge. However, it’s critical that you shut your car down as soon as possible after the light comes on to prevent catastrophic damage to your car’s engine.

2.Check Your Oil Levels

Of course, if your oil pressure light is coming on, you’ll want to check your car’s oil. However, you can’t do this immediately after pulling over to the side of the road and shutting off your car.

When a vehicle drives, the oil naturally flows through your engine to prevent and reduce any friction in the moving parts of your engine.

So, if you’ve just shut your car off and try to check the oil, the levels could appear higher than they actually are. Also, the oil will be much hotter from being in use, so this will also cause your oil level to seem higher than it is.

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Allow your vehicle to cool down for a solid 10 minutes before checking your oil. Once you do, be sure to wipe the dipstick with a rag before checking the level to ensure you get an accurate reading. If your oil is low, add more and check the level again.

3. Decide If You Should Take Your Car to a Mechanic

Once you’ve checked the oil level in your car, that’s when you can decide whether or not you need to have it serviced promptly. If your oil level is not low after checking it, do not attempt to drive your car to a nearby auto mechanic.

Instead, call a tow truck and keep your vehicle turned off completely. This will help prevent further damage to your engine (or any) and will potentially save you thousands of dollars in repair bills.

Having to deal with a serious mechanical problem on any vehicle is hard enough. However, when the vehicle is a classic or vintage car, it requires a skilled technician to properly treat the issue, and certain precautions must be taken to prevent extreme engine damage, among other things.

Cash for Cars with Mechanical Issues


There are so many various problems that a vehicle can have. However, that doesn’t mean that because it is in need of repairs that it doesn’t have much value left in it. This is why we at Cash For Cars BC also offer the MOST cash for cars with mechanical issues.

Whether your vehicle broke down after many years of hard commutes, or if it was totaled after an accident in Downtown Vancouver. Our car buyers will make you the best offer on your car, trucks, SUV, van, or motorcycle, regardless of age or condition.

Plus, when you sell your car to Cash For Cars BC, we handle all the paperwork, we come to you, and NOBODY Pays More!

Get the MOST Cash for Your Classic Car in Metro Vancouver

We pride ourselves on offering the MOST cash for cars, trucks, SUVs, vans, and motorcycles. Although we make better offers on these vehicles than any other local car buyers, where we really shine is in the classic car and vintage vehicle area.

We have a deep and sincere appreciation for classic cars and vintage vehicles of every make and model. No other professional car buyer can offer as much cash for classic cars as we can. Nor can they facilitate a quick sale of your vehicle with an instant cash payment.

You could spend hours at a dealership trying to get the true value of your car from them. Or you can wait once a year for the Barrett-Jackson auction in Arizona, then fly or drive your vehicle to the U.S.A. Or, you could simply sell your classic car to Cash For Cars BC.

We buy classic and vintage vehicles

From start to finish, we can buy your classic or vintage vehicle in as little as 30 minutes. We get the details of your car over the phone beforehand, so that we can make you an instant cash offer when we arrive to see it in person.

How Much Is My Vehicle Worth?

When it comes to determining the price of a classic car (or any vehicle for that matter), it is essential that we see it in person. This is why our team of professional car buyers always come to you. We want the process of selling a car to be as convenient as possible for our customers.

Give us a call and provide us with the make, model, year, condition, and location of your vehicle. Then, we will arrange a day and time for our car buyers to come to your home, school, or even your work to view the car firsthand.

Upon seeing your vehicle, our car buyer will make you an instant cash offer on your vehicle. For all higher priced vehicles, we offer the payment method of your choice. Additionally, our services are offered 7 days a week from 8:00 AM-10:00 PM. We even appraise vehicles on most statutory holidays!

Contact Cash For Cars BC and Sell Your Car Today!

All it takes is a simple call, text, or email to get the ball rolling. We’ll offer you the MOST cash for your car, truck, SUV, van, or motorcycle, without all the hassle.

In fact, from start to finish, the entire process only takes about 30 minutes. Unlike when you sell your car to a dealership and end up spending the entire day there. And selling a classic car privately can take months just to find the right buyer who is willing to pay what you are asking.

No one knows more about buying cars than we do. So, if you want to sell your car quickly, easily, and for the MOST cash, call us today and find out what your vehicle is worth. You’ll be glad you did.

By Published On: April 10th, 2024Categories: BlogTags: , ,

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About the Author: cashforcars

Cash For Cars BC is a Vancouver based used car and truck buying service. We make the process easy to sell your vehicle. We come to you and we do all the paperwork. We always offer the most cash and pay on the spot. GIve us a call, text or email today to see how we can help you sell your car in Vancouver for the most possible money.