I have a 2000 Toyota Rav4 that just had an oil change and air filter replacement a little over a week ago. Today I was driving when the oil light suddenly came on (for the first time ever) followed by the check engine light. The car would not accelerate with pressing the gas and slowly came to rest on the side of the road. I tried to restart it and it made some noise but didn’t start. As no mechanics are open where I live on the weekends I thought I would check here for some expert advice on the potential problem! I did check the oil and it is showing that its full.
From what you describe it is very difficult to offer a precise diagnosis. HOWEVER, an oil light coming on means you stop the car IMMEDIATELY and call for help. It means you have low, or no oil pressure that can be caused by low oil or no oil or a failed oil pump.
Where did you have your oil changed? We often hear this after an oil change and it ususally means the shop did not put any oil in or not enough or did not tighten the oil plug or oil filter, and the oil leaked out… So I strongly suspect the oil change place is at fault. This exact thing happened to my father-in-law years ago after a Woolco oil change. In his case, a Buick, the engi9ne seized up after 7 miles.
You have a strong case, if you first check how much oil, if any is still in the engine. Have no work done, but you can get a good mechanic to act as an expert witness if no oil was in the engine.
The bad news is that your engine may be toast and the shop will have to spring for a repalcemnt engine.
Autumn Said, " I did check the oil and it is showing that its full. "
@csa Did OP check the engine oil? Oil pump failures are rather rare, and a timing belt failure (if car has a V6) is a possibility. But that would not light up the oil light. We need more info. But the shop likely screwed up.
It sounds like the engine stalled for some reason. If the engine quit running for any reason, the oil and check engine light should come on but only just as it would whenever the key is turned to the “run” position and the engine isn’t running. It doesn’t necessarily mean you have an oil problem. So if I read the problem correctly, your engine quit, dash lights came on and you coasted to a stop by the side of the road. It could be a bad fuel pump or a lot of other things.
“I tried to restart it and it made some noise but didn’t start.” What kind of noise? Since we can’t hear it, you’ll have to describe it a bit better. Did it crank but not start or did something else happen?
If the OP says he/she checked the oil, I will take that a face value. I’m not in the position of saying it’s not an oil related failure but from the description given it could be other things as well.
Best not to try to start this car until this issue is resolved. This could be caused by the oil being overfilled as well as underfilled. OP should verify oil level is at the mark, neither over or under. There’s a slight possiblity the filter used was defective or clogged with debris or a misplaced rag. Could also be caused if the oil added was compatible with your car, or wasn’t even engine oil. In any event, best to have the car towed to a near-by mechanic.
If the oil pump is driven by one of the cams and the timing belt for that side broke I could see this kind of scenario happening. If this is really the case then perhaps the engine design is an interference type and the noise that was heard was the valves hitting the pistons on that side of the engine. This would be a sad thing sorry to say.
The verdict is in: it was a snapped timing belt that was replaced. Thanks for the feedback!
Thanks for the update Autumn. Apparently the engine is a non-interference type and you got off with a relatively small repair bill as to what could have happened otherwise. Good deal.