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5.2L oil pressure

Discussion in 'Vans' started by NssJ, Oct 24, 2013.

  1. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    00 ram van 3500 5.2L vin Y gas.
    I did a timing cover,chain, oil pan... for leaks a few months ago. Didn't own it long enoguh to pay attention to gauge before all the engine work. Some sludge found while apart. Ran 4 changes with synthetic over 2 months to clean out.

    After putting back together, oil pressure was about 60(approx on gauge) when cold idling, or when rpms were up while driving. About 30 when warmed up & cruising rpm or idle.

    Today, oil gauge drops to 0 at idle, 30 when accellerating. Put a new gauge sensor on, no change. Driving with doghouse off, sounds fine at idle, sounds like valve chatter when accelerating. Assumed a blockage maybe.

    Changed oil & filter. Was 5w-30 regular, went up to 10W-30 high milage I had already bought for it hoping to stop minor rear main leak. Old oil had about 1500mi on it. Valve clatter reduced, but gauge is still 0idle, 30ish moving.

    Where do I begin?

    Also, crank seal has developed a small leak today it seems. Oil wasn't low, but needs fixed. I used a national redi-sleeve to fix pulley groove. Supposedly works with regular size seal, but not for long. Suggestions here?
    Thanks, Joel
     
  2. dana44

    Ad-Free Member

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    Get a mechanical oil pressure guage on it to see what the pressure is really doing. Even an aftermarket electric oil pressure gauge will give you a better idea over a stock non-numbered gauge will give you a better idea what is going on. If the sludge was as bad as you stated, there is the possibility that the oil pump pickup screen has collected junk from the bottom of the oil pan. Junk and goo settles at the bottom and as it warms up, gets sucked into the screen, you stop and it sinks again, kind of a vicious cycle of being OK then getting worse as she gets warmer. It is a possibility.
     
  3. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    Slude wasn't too bad. Coolant leak at timing cover, chain seemed to push it into lifter valley. Rest was clean. Just flushed as suggested. Oil pressure dropped a few times during synth flushes, but I took that as cue for next filter & batch of oil. Has ran great for months since then.
    Cleaned pickup tube when I had oil pan off, though shoulda probably just done a new pump then in hindsight. It didn't have much stuck on the screen anyways.

    I will have to find a mech gauge. Will post more once that's checked. Can I rent one from autozone or something?
     
  4. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES"
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    No, because the tubing will be filled with oil and not suited for resale. But they can be had for about $20.
     
  5. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    Mechanical test gauge hanging from dash vent:
    Cold start 35psi
    Cold idle 25
    Cold accel 65
    Cold cruise 45

    Warm cruise 30-18psi
    Warm accel light 35-40
    Warm full accel 62
    Warm parked idle 8
     
  6. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    Are these numbers healthy for a motor? In a safe range?
    The 8psi warm idle kinda concerns me, and am guessing that's what flagged the factory warning light...
     
  7. valiant67

    valiant67 ...

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    The general rule of thumb is 10 psi for every 100 RPMs. There may be more specific numbers in the factory manual and most engines would idle with more than 8 psi.
     
  8. Bob Lincoln

    Bob Lincoln "CHECK FAULT CODES"
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    My 4-cyl idles hot at 14 psi. Most warning lights come on around 4-6 psi.
     
  9. bguy

    bguy Well-Known Member

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    I'm pretty sure the LA engines, or at least the older ones had the oil light set to come on at 8PSI. Or maybe that was the B/RB engines?
    FWIW, I had an 86 Fifth Ave that only had 20psi at highway speeds. Ran fine but I eventually got around to swapping in my spare engine.
     
  10. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    Ok, couldn't find it in owners or factory service manual. Per Haynes, min oil pressure @ curb idle: 8psi.

    So with it hitting 8 on mechanical gauge, I'm guessing that means dash gauge is functioning properly.

    Is this 8psi gonna be something that need addressed soon, or can it be milked for a while w/o concern. I'm trying to move halfway accross the country in this, so don't want things that could strand me to go unaddressed. Though it will be traded in when I get there, so I don't wanna go over the top dumping time & money in it. Though an oil light popping on/off won't help selling it.

    I already went up from 5W30 to 10W30. Anything that can be added to oil to safely boost pressure a bit more? Or anything easier than an oil pump that can be changed to help?
     
  11. bguy

    bguy Well-Known Member

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    I ran 10 40 in that engine with no difference. Even so, the oil light would only come on (flicker) when I drove one specific route and came to one particular intersection.
    How long does it take for the oil light to go out after oil change? Your engine is still getting plenty of oil, it's just worn enough that the pressure is down. Like your garden hose without the nozzle. The biggest worry you will have is running the engine hot somewhere on your journey and having the oil thin out enough that you get bearing damage. IMO for short haul/commute you'd be fine. Going across country loaded, I think it needs work.
     
  12. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    I tried 15W-40, no change in pressure really at any time, though noisier on start up.
    I tried Mobil 1 15W-50 synthetic, still no change in pressure at all, but quiet again.
    From what I've been reading around, since pressure stays good except at warm idle, pump seems to be doing its job, so most likely bearings.

    I'm probably gonna sell or trade it in, I'm so tired of fighting to keep an abused vehicle alive when I won't get much out of it from its looks anyways. It was a pain to get the oil pan past the front xmember once. I'd hate to waste the time again for an oil pump just to find out its bearings...

    NEW QUESTION:
    What is a good asking price or trade in expectation with an oil light coming on. Google hasn't been much help, or I don't know how to word the question. I know it won't be even near blue book, but wondering whats resonable to ask for something in this situation? I'm gonna be honest about whats wrong with it, but don't have a clue on how to price it as such. Most a junk yard or buy car place has offered is $250, but I'd like to think I can get more than that with it still driving. Brand new tires alone worth $800(though may sell/trade those out from under it for used ones that roll).
    Any suggestions would help give me a starting point. Thanks.
     
  13. TWX

    TWX DO NOT FEED THE TROLLS!
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    Eesh, that's going to be a tough one.

    Having windows will make it less desirable to someone in the trades since their stuff won't be as protected in the back, and vans are definitely not very popular anymore.

    If I were you I'd list it in one of those counter-culture newspapers, maybe someone with aspirations for having a band will want it to turn it into their tour vehicle.
     
  14. NssJ

    NssJ Member

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    Yea, no windows would make it a better work van.
    I'll list it as "mechanic's special" via craigslist.
    Seems like cars that need engines around 2000 model go for $800-2500 on there. Thankfully its not a DOHC Audi motor lol, and 5.2's seem mass produced enough to be reasonable.
    The fact it still drives is good, but the body is beat up some. Maybe like $1300?
     

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