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Old 03-15-2012, 01:52 PM   #1 (permalink)
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oil pressure sensor question

Hi All,

I just want to get some input from anyone on my findings. I think the oil pressure sensor/sender is leaking on my 2003 3.4L.

Back story: about 2 weeks ago I was taking a road trip and I noticed white smoke following me. I pulled over, popped the hood and there was oil everywhere. I mean EVERYWHERE! I also noticed it squirting out the front of the engine. However, it was dusk so I was losing light quickly.

I towed the car home and that's where it sat until today. I started the car in daylight and noticed the oil streaming from behind the starter. I removed the starter and once it was out of the way, I saw the pressure sensor. So I figure it's the oil thing there has pressurized oil right there, so it has to be the culprit.

I just want some input. Also, if anyone knows what size socket or wrench fits, it would be great.

Thanks for any responses.

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Old 03-15-2012, 02:48 PM   #2 (permalink)
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The part is fairly cheap, I can't recall off hand the size, but its a big one, maybe 24mm? With the amount of oil loss you describe, thats probably what it is, but I would see if its just loose first, you never know.

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Old 03-15-2012, 06:53 PM   #3 (permalink)
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Thanks for the reply Kingnutin. The socket is 1 1/16" - apparently there is an actual socket dedicated for this purpose and it has both 1" and 1 1/16" - the 3.4 uses the bigger size. It was $10 at Autozone.

Anyway, by the time I got back to my car tonight, it was dark so all I was able to do was remove the old one. Upon inspection, it is physically intact. The teflon tape appeared gone, but I suppose with almost 200,000 miles that should be a normal thing. I bought a replacement sender ($11 at Autozone). In the AM, I will resume working and see if this fixes the problem.

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Old 03-16-2012, 10:25 AM   #4 (permalink)
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Keep us posted.

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1978 Caprice Classic Landau
350 2-bolt, stock 4bbl
Stock rebuilt TH350
Edelbrock performer cam + intake
Dual 2 1/2" Flowmaster exhuast (waiting to be installed)
Edelbrock IAS Classic shocks
95 9C1 3.08 posi
4 wheel disc brakes!
16x8 American Racing Baja's with 225/60/16 Pirelli P4's

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Old 03-16-2012, 07:21 PM   #5 (permalink)
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Success! :) I installed it this morning and took it for a drive tonight. All appears well.

The only issue now is cleaning the engine and engine bay. It's not only unsightly, but it still smokes and stinks a bit from all the oil that got sprayed everywhere.

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Old 03-16-2012, 07:29 PM   #6 (permalink)
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To clean up the engine bay, warm the engine up a little, not ridiculously hot, just warm to the touch, and spray it down with this stuff called simple green. It is some good stuff. Let that soak for a bit, then hose it down with a garden hose. Just don't spray the computer or any ignition components for that matter. And to be safe, disconnect the negative battery terminal and wrap it in a plastic bag to keep it from shorting when you are spraying water.

Funny story about simple green, I use an old febreeze bottle that I refill from a gallon jug. In.high school, my mom.didn't know that I was doing it, and got it mixed up with her bottle of actual febreeze. She thought I would enjoy a fresh smelling bed one night, and sprayed my bed down....with an industrial degreaser. I woke up the next morning and asked her if she sprayed my bed with febreeze, and then informed her that it wasn't febreeze in the bottle. She thought it smelled good though. And at least it was non toxic.

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Old 03-16-2012, 07:33 PM   #7 (permalink)
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For those interested, here are a few shots I took of the part and tool.





Last edited by Lady McBeth; 03-16-2012 at 07:43 PM..
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Old 03-16-2012, 07:46 PM   #8 (permalink)
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so the old one was allowing oil to pass by the threads and leak out?

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Old 03-17-2012, 12:54 AM   #9 (permalink)
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Maybe through the center? The only part wet with oil is the plug.

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1978 Caprice Classic Landau
350 2-bolt, stock 4bbl
Stock rebuilt TH350
Edelbrock performer cam + intake
Dual 2 1/2" Flowmaster exhuast (waiting to be installed)
Edelbrock IAS Classic shocks
95 9C1 3.08 posi
4 wheel disc brakes!
16x8 American Racing Baja's with 225/60/16 Pirelli P4's

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Old 03-17-2012, 12:17 PM   #10 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kingnutin View Post
Maybe through the center? The only part wet with oil is the plug.
yeah i see what your sayin, i wonder what caused it to do that? just wear?

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Old 03-18-2012, 01:25 PM   #11 (permalink)
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No clue, but if it fixed it, great!

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1978 Caprice Classic Landau
350 2-bolt, stock 4bbl
Stock rebuilt TH350
Edelbrock performer cam + intake
Dual 2 1/2" Flowmaster exhuast (waiting to be installed)
Edelbrock IAS Classic shocks
95 9C1 3.08 posi
4 wheel disc brakes!
16x8 American Racing Baja's with 225/60/16 Pirelli P4's

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Old 03-18-2012, 01:31 PM   #12 (permalink)
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I fixed the car that day and my Internet decided to crap out that night. It seems everything in my life can't function simultaneously. LOL :D

Anyway, yeah, I am kind of stumped as to the mechanism of the leak. Because I really can't imagine the deterioration of the thread sealant to make oil jetisson the way it was. I figure something else inside the sensor had to break or something. I will check it out at my leisure. If I find anything, I will be sure to dig up this thread and post it. At any rate, the new sensor fixed the problem and so far (knock on wood) all is as perfect as it was a few weeks ago.

On a sidenote, there are 2 or 3 more photos that I'd like to post, but I can't seem to figure out how to get them to post as thumbnails. So if anyone can help before I can figure it out ... by all means let me know.

Thanks for the posts and views.

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Old 03-18-2012, 01:33 PM   #13 (permalink)
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C.E. Divine ~

It's funny you mention the Simple Green because as much as my fiancee uses it on the engines that he builds, I somehow never thought of using it on my engine bay. Thank you. I will try that when I get around to cleaning it.

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