Here are 4 Signs You Should Look Out For (and How to Replace It)
Your vehicle’s oil pump is one of the least likely components to cross your mind daily. However, when it stops working as it should, it’s one of the most critical parts to replace as soon as possible.
How do you tell if you have an oil pump that isn't working properly? And how much should you budget to get it replaced? In this comprehensive guide, we’ll break down everything you need to know about this critical component. Let’s begin with a quick look at the signs to look for.
- Bad oil pump symptoms
- Oil pump function
- Petroleum Pump Location
- Oil Pump Replacement Prices
- Questions about the Oil Pump
Bad oil pump symptoms
A low oil pressure warning indicator light is the most obvious sign of an oil pump problem. Your engine may be noisier than normal. If you notice any metallic soundings, open the hood and listen for it.
Although there aren't many symptoms that you might notice, they could be strong indicators.
This is a detailed listing of some of the signs and symptoms that indicate a bad pump.
1. Low Oil Pressure/Oil pressure Warning Light
Your oil pump is what pressurizes your oil system, so it makes sense that as it starts to fail, your vehicle’s oil pressure will drop. Keep in mind that it’s unlikely that the entire oil pump will fail at once, so it’s more likely that you’ll have low oil pressure instead of no oil pressure.
If your engine doesn’t have an oil pressure gauge, it should have an oil pressure warning light. You should stop driving immediately after the light comes on. Engine damage can be costly and can lead to low oil pressure.
Until you fix the cause of your low oil pressure, you shouldn’t drive your vehicle – even to the mechanic’s shop. You should consider a tow.
2. Increased Engine Temperature
If your vehicle’s oil pump isn’t moving the oil around the engine as it should, one of the first things you’re going to notice is a spike in your engine’s temperature.
There should also be warning signs like engine noise and oil pressure warning light. But if the oil pump is faulty, your engine will overheat.
3. Engine Noises
If the oil pump is not working, there are many places your engine might be making loud noises. While one of the most common locations is the oil pump itself, it’s also not uncommon to hear noises coming from the valve train.
The valve train uses oil to keep everything lubricated, and without it, you’ll have metal on metal rubbing without any lubrication. It will cause severe damage and make horrible noises.
4. The Vehicle Won’t Start
Many newer model vehicles have a low oil pressure switch that’s tied directly to your vehicle’s ignition. If this switch detects that your oil pump isn’t working correctly, it might keep your engine from starting in the first place!
This acts as a way to protect your engine from damage as you struggle to figure out what’s going on. It’s a feature designed to protect you from yourself because many drivers try to limp their vehicle to the shop if it has a problem – with low oil pressure, this can create thousands of dollars in repairs.
The low oil pressure switch that prevents your engine from starting almost exclusively applies to older vehicles. So, if you’re driving something a little older, you’ll need to take precautions yourself to prevent engine damage.
You may need to replace your engine if you drive for a long time with low oil pressure, until it stops turning.
Oil pump function
Motor oil is not the only thing that has a motor. There are many functions, the oil pump’s purpose is a little more straightforward. It pulls oil from an oil pan into your engine and then pushes it around. The oil pressures the engine by pushing the oil through it.
Most oil pumps have a crankshaft drive, meaning that the pump will kick in as soon as you start your engine.
Petroleum Pump Location
Your vehicle’s oil pump is typically located inside your vehicle’s oil pan. The oil pump is usually located at the bottom of the pan. It uses a pick-up tube to pull the oil out of the pan, and then push it through your engine. Some engines have it located near the crankshaft in front.
Because of the location, you’ll need to drop the oil pan to reach it, which adds a little more time and complexity to the job. It's even more difficult to get the front cover off many vehicles. This often means reinstalling several other parts.
Oil Pump Replacement Prices
Oil pump replacement costs range from $300 to $2500 depending on car make and labor cost.. Parts and labor costs will range from 100 to 500 dollars to 200 to 2000 dollars.
There are many factors that affect the cost of replacing an oil pump. For starters, you’ll need the new oil pump, which runs anywhere from $50 to $150. However, you’ll also need a new oil pan gasket and likely a new front main gasket.
The manufacturer might have designed the front main differently so you may need to replace any gaskets. The price for all these different gaskets adds up, and you’ll probably end up spending close to $150 to $200 on gaskets alone.
From there, you’ll need a new oil and an oil filter, and if you have to remove the front main seal, you’ll need new coolant as well. You will need to purchase these fluids for an additional $100-150.
Finally, you’ll need to account for all the labor associated with this. This can vary as well since the number of components you’ll need to remove changes from vehicle to vehicle.
It will usually take four to eight hours for a mechanic to repair the damage. The repair cost can range anywhere from $200 up to $800.
Just remember that the more complicated the labor, the more you’ll save by doing it yourself, but it will also be a bigger headache.
Questions about the Oil Pump
How does an oil pump go bad?
Although a bad oil pumps will not usually cause any noises, a bad oilpump will result in a drop in oil pressure. The engine will become noisier due to a drop in oil pressure. If you notice a metallic sound, turn off the engine and get it fixed as quickly as you can.
What happens if you have a bad oil pump and drive?
Driving with an oil pump that is not working properly can lead to engine failure and complete seize. Low oil pressure can lead to engine failure, and it is possible for the pump to fail.
What is the best way to check the oil level in your car?
Connecting a manual oil pressure gauge to your car's oil pump will allow you to inspect its operation and verify the oil pressure. Visual inspection of an oil pump can often be quite difficult. Therefore, it is best to check the oil pressure.
Is there a way to tell if an oil pump is leaking?
A bad oil pump can lead to a decrease in oil pressure, which could cause engine noise. If you’re hearing a knocking noise due to a bad oil pump, chances are you’re hearing rod knocks, which could mean an expensive repair bill. You should not run your engine with an oil pump that isn't working properly.