The oil temperature is a vital part to keeping your engine running smoothly. The oil temperature should be a few degrees warmer than the coolant. If the oil temperature is too high, problems can arise. When you first start your vehicle on cold mornings, let the car idle for about five minutes until the oil gets a chance to warm up. This way, your engine will run more efficiently and live much longer. The oil temperature sensor is an important piece to know when your oil is warmed up when working properly. There are a few symptoms to watch out for when your oil temperature sensor starts to go bad.
One way to know your oil temperature sensor is failing is if you get false readings due to the electrical signal output by the temperature sensor. These are indicated by the temperature gauge going from cool to hot in one minute. It takes a couple of minutes for the oil to heat up, so the temperature sensor should reflect that. Furthermore, if the oil temperature sensor spikes and the coolant temperature remains constant, this is another sign the oil temperature sensor is going bad. The oil temperature gauge can also have erratic readings that jump around, indicating a failing sensor.
Gauge does not move
If the oil temperature sensor does not move at all, it has most likely failed and needs to be replaced by a professional. The mechanics at YourMechanic provide an oil temperature sensor replacement service that is affordable, and will have your gauge back to normal.
Causes of failure
There are a few things that can cause the oil temperature sensor to fail, one of them is wiring damage. Over time, if the wires become worn or are shorted out, the sensor will fail and will need to be replaced along with the wiring. In addition, corrosion can cause oil temperature sensor to fail or read incorrectly. In some cases, a mechanic can remove this corrosion and save the part, but in other cases the entire sensor will need to be replaced.
Complicated electrical systems
Replacing an oil temperature sensor is best left to the professionals at YourMechanic because of the wiring and electricity involved. If the sensor is installed incorrectly and your engine runs hot without you knowing it, this can cause major damage to your engine and can eventually ruin it.
If your oil temperature sensor gauge does not move or you are getting false readings, the oil temperature sensor in your vehicle may need to be replaced. YourMechanic makes getting repairs to your oil pressure sensor easy by coming to your home or office to diagnose or fix issues. You can book a service online 24/7. YourMechanic’s qualified technicians are also available for any questions that may arise.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Symptoms of a Bad or Failing Oil Temperature Sensor and was authored by Spencer Clayton.