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Oil light confusion

My 2004 Chrysler Concorde 2.7L V6 automatic has an oil light issue. After the car has been driven 15-20 minutes, the oil light will come on when I come to a stop. The moment I press the accelerator to move away from the stop, the oil light goes off. The oil level is never low when I check it and an independent shop could not find the reason for the light to come on. Any suggestions? Thanks.

The oil light could be coming on because of a defective oil pressure sending unit. Try replacing this inexpensive component to see if the light stays off.


You need to find a different, competent mechanic a.s.a.p., because what you are observing could be an indication of dangerously low oil pressure, NOT a low oil level.

For some reason, a huge number of people are under the impression that merely having the correct level of oil in their crankcase will prevent engine damage. However, if your oil pump is failing and is unable to provide the correct pressure to deliver that oil to the bearings at all times, catastrophic damage is the likely result. In your own body, you might have enough blood in your arteries, but if your heart is unable to pump the blood to the brain, you will suffer brain damage. Consider the car’s oil pump to be its equivalent of your heart.

If you are lucky, the problem will be only a bad oil pressure sensor, and this can be replaced cheaply. However, the problem could also be a bad oil pump, or even excessive sludge in the engine as a result of not changing the oil frequently enough. Until you get the car to a competent mechanic, who will check the output of your oil pump, you are courting disaster if you continue to drive the car.

Good luck!
Please come back to this same thread to report your new mechanic’s findings.

The low oil pressure warning light comes on when the engine oil pressure indication (either real, or not) falls to about 8 psi oil pressure. 8 psi may even be too low for safe engine operation, even at idle. Anyway, it’s definitely marginal.
A direct oil pressure test gauge, when the engine is at normal running temperature, is the way to check engine oil pressure.

Did the independent shop put a manual pressure guage on the car. Cross your fingers for a bad switch. The Dodge 2.7L is a sludge monster and flicking oil light indicates sludge sometimes.

A little knowledge is like a little dynamite: either one can get your head blown off (even, if just met a four I kal lee).
Oil level low enough can [cause low oil pressure and] turn on the warning light on. Most people know the parts outside the brackets. What they don’t know is that oil pressure can be low even if the oil level is ok.

Just from reading about Chryslers 2.7 on this Forum I get a bad impression about this engine. Is it a problematic engine?

Stephen, Relax. Before These Well-Meaning Automotive Alarmist Experts Scare You . . .
. . . , let me explain. The earlier, 1998-2002 Chrysler 2.7L engines were apparently more susceptible to oil sludge problems, as are certain engines from VW, Toyota, Lexus, Saab, etcetera. Improper maintenance is not tolerated well in certain engines sold by these companies.

Your 2004 is not one of those that is an endangered species. A little bit of knowledge can be dangerous!

I might add that current and even earlier 2.7s are smooth running, efficient, reliable powerplants that I have experience with, directly.

Follow Hello Kit’s advice and have a guage applied to the engine and determine whether or not the engine even has a problem with pressure. That way, you’ll know for sure. Chances are that you just need a new pressure sensor installed.

You could also just replace the sender (sensor) as suggested by Tester. Be sure to get the exact replacement part.

You don’t say how many miles are on the car or how the car has been maintained. I suppose the bearings can be worn out if either situation is extreme. You have not told us the oil change history or miles on the vehicle.

Get it checked out and enjoy that Concorde for many more miles!


Oil lights may indicate low oil level or they may indicate low oil pressure. It sounds to me your light is trying to tell you that you have low oil pressure. The only way of checking this is to have someone hook up a real pressure gauge.

I would not let it go.

When the manufacture says “we have the problem fixed and everything made since date X is good” I am still suspicious that they didn’t really get it fixed. These car companies look at money aspect in putting out a fix or design revision or just dealing with the problem buy letting it be and paying more warranty but less re-design. So when Chrysler says “no more sludging” I am suspicous, espically since it is Chrysler.

What weight oil are you using and how many miles on the car?? As a rule of thumb, you need 10psi oil pressure for every 1000 RPM of engine speed…

Thanks for all of the replies and advice. I had the car serviced and the oil pressure tested. The oil pressure sending unit was faulty and leaking. Had it replaced. Engine oil pressure was fine. I hope that that issue is now resolved. Thanks again.