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Oil Pressure light

Oil pressure warning light came on about 50 miles into a trip. After sitting for about an hour. The car started with a little clatter and no warning light lit. Seemed to run smoothly. Should I be concerned about a recurrence or consider it to be one of those odd things. 2.7 liter engine, 150,000 miles.

You might be looking at the beginnings of worn rod/main bearings in the engine.

What you want to do is substitute the oil pressure sending unit with accurate oil pressure gauge. Start the engine and let it idle and watch the gauge. If the oil pressure drops to near 0 PSI, I wouldn’t plan any trips with this vehicle.


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The oil pressure warning light should never come on while driving. If it does, you should immediately pull over and shut off the engine. Continuing to drive with the oil pressure warning light on is a prescription for disaster.

It’s possible that the oil pressure sender is faulty. You, or your mechanic, should test the ACTUAL oil pressure with a gauge. It’s the only way to know for sure.

Don’t delay on this. Have it tested ASAP. This is critical. You really need to know if the engine has insufficient oil pressure.

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Did you raise the hood and check the oil level?


We did check the oil level and it apeared good. Shop said they were checking the crank sensor. I was not sure how that applied but will try to understand in the morning when I can gauge the oil pressure.

See if you can “google” around and see what kind of reputation the engine you have has. Perhaps that will explain things.


Since the oil was full, likely the oil pump is failing or as Tester suggests, the bearings are beginning to wear beyond their tolerances. Another factor might be incorrect oil was used in the last oil change (you don’t mention the car but some cars are more sensitive than others).
It is not uncommon in older engines for the oil pressure light to flicker when the car is at low idle and come on full time when the car is at normal idle while stopped. Usually the light stays off until the car heats up, and then starts flickering and lighting.
Revving the car in neutral usually makes the go out. In many cases, this in itself is not going to be fatal any time soon. It just means that the oil pressure is not what it should be, and it’s time to start saving for a new car.
I would change the oil, make sure it is the correct blend, and go from there. I would not pay to replace the oil pump and screen unless I really loved the car, and then I would just go ahead and replace the engine new.

Thanks for the help, I picked up the car and drove 200 miles home without the warning light or any noticeable trouble. I guess we wait and see what happens. i had not been in the car for the past four months. The transmission is shifting slowly and laboriously at low speeds. Transmission fluid was recently changed. Could that cause the transmission issue.

I’m with Tester and McP on this one. You need to find out for sure what your oil pressure is when fully warmed up and idling. The pump creates pressure by pushing the oil against resistance, forcing the oil through the small spaces between the crank and rod bearings and their respective surfaces on the crankshaft. As the parts wear and these spaces become larger, the oil can flow through too readily and the pump can have difficulty at idle maintaining pressure. It’s analogous to trying to keep a balloon inflated that has a hole in the side.

If the pressure actually is low and the idle is correct, you might be able to get some longer life from the engine by switching to a heavier base weight of oil. That’ll keep the critical bearings suspended better.

The tranny is a whole seperate issue. Yes, if the imcorrect fluid is used it can adversely affect tranny preformance, and even destroy the tranny. If it was shifting fine before, I’d immediately go back to the place that did the flush and tell them.

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Not Enough Information ! You Forgot The Model-Year ! 99 Intrepids Have A Potential Wire Terminal / Vent Problem In The Connector At The Oil Pressure Sending Switch.

Also, a bad switch is very real possibility at 150,000 miles. You do need to have the pressure verified.

A “little clatter” at start up is different story altogether or indicates problems beyond those mentioned above.

Concerned ? Not at 150,000 miles if you’ve got one of the earlier 2.7s. Sadly, most with mediocre maintenance regimens have been recycled.

What model-year is this Intrepid ?


thanks everybody

The Intrepid is a 2004.

I will get in and get the pressure and switch tested.

These 2.7 engines are notorious for sludging anyplace where the weather gets cold. You are lucky to get 150,000 miles out of it. Many failed between70 and 80 thousand miles with owners that swore they changed their oil every 3000 miles.

Only ATF+4 should be used in this transmission. My son in law put a couple of quarts of dexron in his and had to change the fluid a couple of times to get it to drive right.

I used to have a little old Honda that would sometimes trigger the oil light when taking a hard turn-- something about the centrifugal force and the geometry of the pan or something. Since you were taking a “trip” I assume that means highway and no sharp turns, but good to ask anyway. These guys are right about taking an oil light seriously, as it is the lifeblood of the vehicle and no oil means certain irreparable engine damage (you don’t know the meaning of “catastrophic multipoint failure” until you’ve seen a thrown piston!), but that being said, an oil light that comes on briefly and never comes on again may just be a quirk of your vehicle. I advise caution, not panic. Keep an eye on it. If it comes on again or you have any other reason to suspect somethings not right with the oil system, stop immediately and have your mechanic take a look. Might also be time for an oil change-- an oil pressure problem that disappears when the engine is stopped briefly may be a clog in the system that that was forced into place by the pressure and then moved when the pressure was let off (engine being turned off and then back on again).

2004 2.7L Engines Were Very Much Better Than The Earlier Ones. You’ve Got A Good One, Smooth Running, 30 MPG, Dual Overhead Cams, 24v Machine.

My wife has really liked driving her Intrepid for the last ten years. The roads were a total disaster this A.M. (and getting worse) so she let her “new” car sit and took the trusty, tried and true Intrepid for her 50 miles one-way commute.


Not So Much With An 04 ! These Engines Were Improved.


Mine is triggered by garage door opener

I am actually amazed to hear that someone achieved such a high mileage on this POS engine. I remember back when these were being sold new, engine failure at 30,000-60,000 miles was not uncommon. I also remember when these cars came off of warranty, models equipped with the 2.7L V-6 became plentiful in junkyards with the body and interior still in near-mint condition–suggesting very low mileage.

Thank you for dragging up a 9 year old thread to tell us your garage door opener triggers your oil pressure light.


The Dodge 2.7 litre 6 is known as a very troubled engine, get this into a good mechanic quickly for a thorough check-up. If there are problems found, it probably doesn’t pay to fix it, scrap it instead.