Oil is a crucial component that ensures a smooth and seamless running of the engine. It lubricates the engine thus reducing the friction that could damage the engine.
There is no way you can tell how much oil is being pumped into the engine just by looking at it, and that is where the oil pressure sensor comes in.
An oil pressure sensor is a simple electrical device used to measure oil pressure in the engine. Proper functioning of this device is crucial for the health of your engine.
YES, a bad oil pressure sensor may cause your vehicle to leak oil. An oil pressure sensor is connected to the oil sending unit which can develop leaks when it is faulty.
So, if you notice that your engine is leaking oil, chances are that the oil pressure sensor is bad and needs to be replaced. Oil pressure sensors are more prone to leaking oil when they age.
Therefore, if your vehicle has hit 100,000 miles, then the chances of oil leaking from the engine because of a bad pressure sensor are high.
Why does the oil pressure sensor leak?
1. Old age
One of the reasons that cause an oil pressure sensor to leak oil is because of old age. Just like other components in your car, oil pressure sensors usually age over time.
Most people usually experience oil pressure sensor problems when the car hits a mileage of 100,000. So, your car oil pressure sensor is more likely to leak oil when it ages.
Another reason why your oil pressure sensor is leaking oil is that the oil pressure sensor has clogged up, thus preventing this electronic device from working efficiently.
Common symptoms of a leaky oil pressure sensor
1. Continuous blinking from oil pressure light
One of the symptoms that indicate your oil pressure sensor is leaking is if the oil pressure light on the dashboard blinks continuously.
If the oil pressure light blinks non-stop, then that is an indication that there is something wrong with your oil pressure sensor. To determine if the warning is real, you should check your engine oil level manually to see if it is low or not. If it is low, then your oil pressure sensor is leaking oil.
The oil pressure gauge shows an error
Another sign that your oil pressure sensor is leaking oil is if the oil pressure gauge shows an error. If the oil pressure sensor is leaking oil, the oil pressure gauge will show an error which indicates that there is something wrong with your oil pressure sensor.
Remember that not all oil pressure gauge errors indicate that your pressure gauge oil sensor is leaking oil. You should check the dipstick manually to confirm if it is indeed leaking oil or if another issue such as a loose connection is making it show an error.
The low oil pressure light turns on on the dashboard
When the engine oil pressure gets too low, a low oil pressure light on the dashboard will turn on. The engine pressure is supposed to be between 30-45 psi when the engine is warm.
If it is lower than that, then it is an indication that there is an engine oil leak, which could be caused by a leaking oil pressure sensor.
Oil on the pavement
Another sign that could indicate your oil pressure sensor is leaking oil is if there are spots of oil leaks on the pavement. If there are signs of oil leaks on the pavement, then the leakage could be caused by a faulty oil pressure sensor that is leaking.
Can I drive with a leaking oil pressure sensor?
YES, you can drive with a leaking oil pressure sensor but it is not recommended. Although the faulty oil pressure sensor will not affect the oil pressure, the fact that your car is losing oil means that it is just a matter of time before you experience an engine problem.
Additionally, the fact that the oil pressure sensor is faulty means that you will not know when you lose pressure which could damage the engine.
Remember that it is the oil that keeps the engine lubricated and in top condition. When an oil leak is not stopped on time, then the engine could be damaged beyond repair leaving you with a hefty repair bill.
So, make sure you replace a leaking pressure sensor before it causes a huge engine problem.
Can a bad oil pressure sensor damage an engine?
It will not damage the engine immediately but over time, it will. The oil pressure sensor plays a crucial role in measuring the oil pressure in the engine.
If it is faulty, then it will not measure oil pressure in the engine, meaning you will not know when the engine has an oil pressure issue.
Oil pressure issues can damage your engine beyond repair. More so, a bad pressure oil sensor may cause an oil leak that can damage your engine over time.
So, if you notice that your oil pressure sensor is damaged, you should take it to a reputable mechanic for repair or replacement.
How long does an oil pressure sensor last?
It depends on many factors, including your driving style, car model, car age, and much more. However, most oil pressure sensors usually become faulty when the car hits a mileage of 100,000 (about 4 years).
So, if your car is above 4 years or has a mileage of above 100,000, then you may soon have to replace your oil pressure sensor.
The oil pressure sensor is a vital electrical component that measures the engine pressure. If it is faulty, then it may cause an oil leak that could damage your engine.
If there is a warning sign of a bad oil pressure sensor on the dashboard and the oil level in your engine has dropped, then that is a clear indication that the leak is caused by the faulty oil pressure sensor.