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The red warning lamp of death. Game over?


mk2
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You probably know which one I mean. The little oil can symbol. Flashing and beeping away while I was driving earlier. To be investigated, but I'm hoping it's the oil pressure switch. Else I've driven a few miles with NO oil pressure. 

Yeah, I pulled over straight away, with a lump in my throat. And a fair bit of cursing. Oil level perfect. No oil leaking anywhere. Oil filler cap covered in a good layer of oil- not dry. There's no quick way to know if there's any oil pressure. Oil and filter change only about 1500 miles ago.

But the wierd thing, is that once I switched off, and then restarted, the oil light went out. i let it idle for a minute or so, no light. All good. So drove off again. As soon as I hit about 1600rpm light came on again. And repeatable. So i drove with the engine revving under 1500 just in case.

So my hunch is either a dodgy pressure switch (hopefully) or maybe a stuck oil pump pressure relief valve. The oil going through the pump and relief valve is unfiltered, so it 'is' possible...

Thoughts?

 

 

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  • 2 weeks later...

Yeah, one of my SDIs. 100k miles. Just run in...

Not the oil pressure sensor. Swapped it over with one from the other car. Same.

Exact same symptoms. Start, run, idle. No problem. All smooth and quiet, as normal. Rev the engine up to about 1600 then the oil light starts flashing and beeping. Back to idle, still flashing. Keeps flashing until switch off. Engine sounds the same when driving- no extra noise or smoke or anything. Everything feels and sounds normal.

But...

Yesterday, it stopped flashing and now everything is normal. No oil light at any RPM. What??? Can't get the oil light to come on again now, except when the engine is not running. Very strange. I have a feeling it was the oil pump pressure release valve. When oil pressure release valves open, they sometimes stay open and don't properly close until the oil flow completely stops. Same can happen with power steering pumps.

Question- if there is no oil pressure, how long does it take for the hydraulic tappets to start making a noise? They leak away slowly when you switch off, but if there is no pressure when running, they must slowly empty? I don't know. When the engine is hot, the oil is more runny, so maybe they empty quickly. But i didn't hear any tappet noise. I wonder if it is an electrical problem? Instruments? Loom? Main engine connector? Instrument connector?

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  • 7 months later...

I had a similar issue a couple of months back with my SDI. Restarted, light + buzzer returned initially, but now nothing.  Nothing logged on a basic OBD2 tool.

I understand it’s a single wire on/off switch system that doesn’t go through the CPU.  Initial light on and off is apparently a systems check (how?).  

Potentially could be either an actual low pressure issue (mechanical) or the system thinks so (electrical).  

Methinks oil pressure relief valve should open when the oil is cold (despite being, say, 10/40) but closes and stays closed once warmed up with the oil thinning.  Mine had been run a number of hours before light came on so hopefully would have already been closed for a while.  Suggest if it sticks open it would show symptoms when partially warmed up.

Tappets - would have thought the valve spring pushing against the cam will try and empty the bucket when there is no oil pressure and the engine turning, so as a total guess maybe within a minute or so, say by the time you’ve pulled up.

Contamination fleckles on the oil side of the switch (or in the gallery) can apparently cause switch malfunction.  

Wiring - loss of signal is a potential.  The loom underneath the battery tray is apparently a place to look, but I would have thought any of the connections in a hot engine bay also.   Has been suggested to run direct from switch to dashboard if needs be.  

Agreed the first port of call would be to change the switch and see if that sorts the issue.  Should go out with extra rpm potentially.

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I like the analysis. Hmm. Yeah, I think the same, that it's (was) just electrical gremlins. Hasn't happened since. A least I hope that's what it was.

The oil pressure relief valve on all engines opens as soon as running oil pressure is reached, and stays in a state of partially open depending on temp and RPM. 

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  • 2 weeks later...

I had it beep once or twice on my SDI. Usually right on starting the car for some reason (oil was never low). Never stayed on though.

@mattarosahad a Lupo 1.0 which had it intermittently for a while without engine failure. Maybe a dodgy design?

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  • 6 months later...

My other SDI has now the exact same thing! What is going on? Scares the cr@p out of me.

Here's what happens- So start hot engine, gradually rev it up in Neutral. When you hit about 1700RPM, all the warnings start going off. Exact same when driving- hit 1700, in any gear and all the whistles and bells and flashy things go off.

After lots of investigation in the first SDI, I couldn't find anything. It just went away after about a week.

I don't like it. What's the point of a warning indicator if you just ignore it?

Conjecture- I wonder if a failing alternator causes spikes to be induced on the oil sensor wire? On my first SDI with this fault, the alternator light started doing its thing about two months after the oil pressure warning thing (the alternator is close to failing IMO). They all fail in every vdub/audi/seat/skoda at around 125k miles. Usually the brushes have worn out.

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Hi. Im new to this forum and to owning a car in general....


I have the same issue with my Lupo 1.4... Funny thing about mine is, if the engine is cold i can drive for long stretches no issues, no light and no alarms, but as soon as my engine gets really hot throughout and I'm going under 60km/h then it starts beeping and blinking the red light. It scares me.... I just got this car and I really dont wanna scrap it already ... My oil level is perfect and I don't really know what could be wrong I'm new to messing around with cars but very interested in learning! :)

 

If you find a solution I would be grateful to hear about it. I'm thinking about ordering a new oil pump cause it wouldn't hurt to change it to a fresh one I feel... From reading this post I also think a new sensor and valve could be good aswell. But I can't fix it on my own so I wanna be 100% sure what to get before I buy anything :)

 

Thanks in advance.

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Yeah, with you- only when low revs and properly hot, does actually sound like low oil pressure. Try a thicker grade of oil by 10 points when you do the next oil & filter change. So if you used 5w30, use 15W40 or something like that. Might help. How many km has the car done? Pic?

Welcome to club Lupo :)

 

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I had a scirocco many years ago that screamed and oil light flashing but noisy tappets. Bought new set of tappets at lotsa money but it wasn’t that. Eventually found the problem, it was the sump pickup that was blocked and when clap cold the crap dropped down worked until it just was warming up the the shite probably was going back up to block the oil. 

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7 minutes ago, mk2 said:

Yeah, with you- only when low revs and properly hot, does actually sound like low oil pressure. Try a thicker grade of oil by 10 points when you do the next oil & filter change. So if you used 5w30, use 15W40 or something like that. Might help. How many km has the car done? Pic?

Welcome to club Lupo :)

 

Thank you :)I'm currently using 5W40 oil, it's supposed to have 30 but I accidentally bought 5W40 I changed the oil and filter right after getting the car
😛
It has just hit 212.000km I got it in January right after passing my driving test :)

20240427_123924.jpg

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  • 2 weeks later...

You need to go to the mechanic to check the oil pressure with a pressure gauge (to rule out the sensor). If the pressure is really low then there are two causes: the easiest - worn pump, the most expensive - engine wear.
The viscosity of the oil you bought is ok and I don't think you can solve anything by changing the viscosity.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Hello again to mk2 and others,

I am posting in this thread because my question is engine/oil related. Somebody re-did the top part of the engine for me (16V) a year or so ago. He said that that was all that was required. Then this year oil started seeping into the spark plug chamber. A different guy fixed it for me... but it won't last. The car is burning a lot of oil. I have to keep it topped-up regularly. I have had the car from new so know its history. Its a VW Lupo Sport 16V (September 2002). The car does around 30 miles/ gallon now in city driving. Ideally I would like an enthusiast/mechanic to look at it and hopefully do the necessary repairs. I intend to keep the car always... for my sons... etc. I live in South -East London.

Any recommendations please? Much appreciated. Many thanks

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  • 5 weeks later...

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