Everyone loves an oil pressure thread

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Sep 27, 2011
Truckee, CA
I read em as they come up. "I have 1/4 on oil pressure! Too low?" PANIC! I've never been worried. I read on here that our oil pressure gauge is wildly inaccurate and as long as you HAVE pressure, you're good.

What if I have none?
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This is cruising @50mph on flat highway. Cruise control on. Looking out the windows. Looking at my mirrors. Look down at my gauges. Do a cartoonish double take. Pull over immediately. Temperature is fine. No warning lights. No sounds, shimmies, or smells. Pop the hood. Oil level is where I left it 5k miles ago when I filled it. Cap is tight. Continued to drive. Watching carefully. Back to 1/4-1/2 (business as usual).

Fluke gauge reading and Problem solved? ...Then it happened again yesterday. Still nothing wrong that I can tell other than my dashboard having me panic. Am I another paranoid owner or do I have a problem?

She's my only truck and I gotta get to town again. I'll keep an eye on everything...

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Would be astonishingly rare to actually lose all oil pressure without a major engine failure before hand. My guess would be sending unit. Changed mine a few years ago just to see if it would have any impact on my low pressure reading and it has read what would be considered normal ever since; 1/4 or more at idle, 1/2 or more driving.
That would not be fun but I've seen the same behavior on other vehicles that I've owned over the years. I prefer mechanical gauges to electronic but not enough to actually use one :D
I had problems with my sending unit on the TLC. Swapped it and problem gone. Start with that.
Have you removed the gauge panel recently? I removed mine to replace the lights with colored LED's and when I re-installed the panel, the screw that tightens the wire plug connector on the right side wasn't tight enough so the connection was poor causing a couple gauges to read low, scary readings. That one made my oil pressure look too low. I tightened it a little until I felt it was snug and the problem was gone. Just a suggestion.
Funny u posted this today, I took a pic of mine goin 75 on the hwy and sent it to my Buddy that manages a Toyota Svc dept. he never wrote back yet. What do y'all think? Normal??
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close to 3/4ths
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Well it happened again. I accelerated and still nothing. I let off the accelerator and it went up to just above 1/4. It's a funky gauge for sure. My moms 88 fj62 did a thing where temperature and fuel gauges would go to MAX together and then come back to normal - together. It's just... What it did. I don't want this to be "normal." Id like to fix it. I've never taken the dash or gauge panel apart on my truck, so let's try the sending unit. Anyone have a useful link?

Searching. So. Difficult.

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If you have something clogging your oil pump screen that can happen. For example: older Chevy's had plastic timing chain teeth and they would break off in small pieces once they got brittle and old and they would sit in bottom of the oil pan. Higher rpm would suck them into the screen, clogging it causing the pressure to decrease until you let off the gas, then they would fall off back to the bottom of the pan again. Just an idea, obviously Toyota didn't do anything stupid like plastic timing chain teeth but its something to ponder. I have had cars that use a lot of oil and they do the same thing yours did today when they run really low. When I would turn corners and the oil would slosh to the side and the pump would go dry for a second. Same principal as you accelerating, the oil goes the the back of the pan, However, I would think that's where the pump pick-up is at so that wouldn't be it, but if its up front and the oil is low that could cause it. Just ideas from experience, probably not any of these but it might help with alternative thoughts.
Ignored the problem until I got a second red flag. Changed my oil. Old oil looked fine. Old, but fine. New oil went in with a watery sound. Checked oil level. Milky oil. Wtf? Between a funky gauge and funky oil... Maybe something IS wrong. Switched out bad royal purple for good mobile1. Then I changed my oil pressure sending unit. Everything seems fine. No knocking, no smells, no shimmies, no warning lights. But with both a bad gauge and coincidentally bad oil, I'm gonna keep a close eye on things. Hoping problem is solved as I have no desire to be a Toyota land cruiser statistical anomaly by having a blown head gasket at 120k.

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My oil pressure was pegged for 8 years. Never fixed it. It was reading zero pressure and I smacked the dash and it went all the way up.
Nick , buy another 100s already...
Has your coolant level dropped? The milky oil is a bad sign.
I don't check my fluids often enough to know if my coolant has dropped. I have coolant. It's something I'll be keeping a close eye on for the next couple weeks. New oil still looks new(clean) on dipstick. I'm pretty sure I just put in bad oil. Like I said, it didn't even sound right when I was pouring it in. This is what the inside of the "fresh" oil container had left in it.
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