Low Oil Level Light Question

Discussion in '80-Series Tech' started by turbocruiser, Jun 18, 2005.

  1. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    28
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    Hi all, the last time we went wheeling i noticed that on super steep declines (particularly shelf-like drop-offs) that my low oil level light would come on. Sometimes while slowly working the rig over the terrain the low oil level light would stay on for some thirty seconds. At no time did the oil pressure drop any at all and at no time did the motor make any sounds such as rattles or rocks like you would expect with oil starvation. BUT, this really made me wonder what was going on, how much sooner (based on the height of the sensor vs. the height of the oil pump pickup tube) will the low oil level light come on vs. when the oil pump pickup tube is really out of oil? I can see the position of the sensor but it is hard to see where the oil pump pickup tube would start sucking from. Also, is it one pickup tube in the 1FZFE or are there two tubes so that whether you are tilting up or down you are assured oil??? If it is only one ( I should just look in the FSM) and if that light is really indicating that the pickup tube might be burping air up instead of oil, what is the right thing to do when navigating this steep terrain? I can't imagine physically being able to climb or descend something so steep that the tube is out of oil but i'm not sure so i thought i'd ask, and yes I searched. Thanks. :cheers:
     
  2. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    28
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    bump, any thoughts about this???
     
  3. reffug

    reffug

    Messages:
    3,925
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    May 28, 2004
    Location:
    'in dat der briar patch'
    Turbo,

    I personally have never experienced this and don't have my FSM handy at the moment. Hopefully someone else can chime in with some info, however I do know that any time an oil light comes on I don't like it. That would make me truly paranoid.
     
  4. Zen Dude

    Zen Dude

    Messages:
    36
    Likes Received:
    0
    Joined:
    Feb 10, 2005
    Location:
    Washington state
    my oil light comes on when im a 1/2 quart low, seems very sensitive. with 7.5 quarts in your pan your probably ok but thats a great question.
    I looked in my service manual and its showing 1 oil pickup tube at the bottom of the oil pan.
     
  5. tarbe

    tarbe

    Messages:
    1,490
    Likes Received:
    37
    Joined:
    Aug 6, 2004
    Location:
    Houston, Texas for now - Romance, MO soon!
    I have to be more than two quarts low for my light to come on (long story, don't ask...it was an experiment, honest!).

    I have had my rig on some pretty steep stuff and never had the light come on. Even on long steep climbs and descents.
     
  6. Arya Ebrahimi

    Arya Ebrahimi

    Messages:
    3,398
    Likes Received:
    106
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Rockville, MD
    When my oil light comes on it means I need to add oil ;p Happens once every 2 weeks or so. No need to check the oil, 'cause I just add a quart every 2-3 weeks. :doh:
     
  7. reffug

    reffug

    Messages:
    3,925
    Likes Received:
    11
    Joined:
    May 28, 2004
    Location:
    'in dat der briar patch'

    Ary are you really adding oil that frequently to your rig? :confused: That would seem like rather excessive consumption to me. :frown:
     
  8. Arya Ebrahimi

    Arya Ebrahimi

    Messages:
    3,398
    Likes Received:
    106
    Joined:
    Dec 2, 2003
    Location:
    Rockville, MD
    When I drive it daily I add oil every 2-3 weeks. Since it's been sitting a lot lately I'm down to every 4-5 weeks. Some of it is lost through leakage, some of it is burned. I haven't really spent any time investigating the leakage or the burning. For all I know it could be the valve cover gasket and a bad PCV valve. Could also be bad valve seals and the rear main. I have no idea. I keep telling myself I'll make time one of these days...
     
  9. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    28
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    Thanks fellas for the responses. I should have stated that my oil level on that terrific trip was perfectly placed at the top . As some of you offered, from time to time when its slightly slightly low, the light will come on momentarily (usually less than three seconds as i go over hilltops and stuff at speed). The light is super sensitive and although i absolutely always stop right away and check it whenever it works itself on, i've never found it to be lower than the mid mark on the stick. This trip, after the light lit, i also checked right away (as soon as i cleared that obstacle) and it was still perfectly placed even with the top mark.

    In this scenario the rear of the rig was so much higher than the front I think all the oil in the pan was flooding forward. Although I had normal oil pressure the whole time, that light made me nervous and I started wondering whether the oil pump pickup tube was out of oil with that decline. It really comes down to how much oil remains in the pan when the engine is running (1/2 total amount???) and how far forward, or backward, you can tilt before the tube is out of oil??? I'm hoping Toyota designed such a vehicle in such a way so as to never allow the tube to run out of oil but I was wondering what you fine fellas thought of this.

    I'll include a shot of one of the obstacles where the light lit. Its hard to see, as with any wheeling picture (why is that pics always look so tame compared to the terrain?), how steep the drop was and even harder to see how deep the mud was but needless to say my seatbelt kept me suspended mid air until I rolled through. Any other thoughts out there??? Thanks again, I appreciate it. :cheers:
    MudHole.jpg
     
  10. nakman

    nakman addict.

    Messages:
    2,305
    Likes Received:
    480
    Joined:
    Jul 30, 2003
    Location:
    Broomfield, Colorado
    Turbo, this has come up for me as well, there are a few other posts about it as well. What I've found is that if I hit the gas the oil light goes off immediately. This is so completely counter-intuitive and wrong that it's allowed me to just dismiss this as a funky sensor. I mean, if I'm low on oil in the pan then circulating more oil in the system should make that worse, not better right?

    Check out this post for more, including pictures of the sensor and the FSM. I ended up taking my sensor out, literally bending it down a couple degrees, and reinstalling it. The light still comes on from time to time, usually while wheeling and idling for long periods of time, on a downhill incline. But there are a few places my cruiser has never ever been under my care: under water, completely airborne, over 5000rpm's, and low on oil. hth...
     
  11. IdahoDoug

    IdahoDoug

    Messages:
    8,864
    Likes Received:
    264
    Joined:
    Aug 9, 2003
    Turbo,

    FYI, The LandCruiser's oil system has some features designed to avoid oil starvation. Most importantly, it has a double oil pan so the engine will not starve on extreme angles in any dimension. The inner oil pan retains oil at the pickup no matter the angle. Kind of a neat feature that connects the 80 to the older generations in terms of surprising features designed for offroad conditions.

    DougM
     
  12. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    28
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003

    Nak, thanks for the response and for the link to that thread. I agree this is totally counter intuitive, perhaps what you were seeing was the oil pump not only pulling more oil out of the pan under acceleration ( intuitively making light go on or stay on), but also more oil returning to the pan at the same time ( making the light go off quicker). Perhaps the oil returning to the pan did so with some force enough to rock or float the sensor and extinguish the light?

    That is strange though and I bet the first time you gave it gas you were wondering whether that was the right thing to do or the worst thing to do!!! Hell, even after it worked, i'd be wondering whether it was the right thing to do. I think the take home message here is that the oil level light is super sensitive and prolly not much to worry with assuming your oil level is right. Thanks again for the response man. :cheers:
     
  13. turbocruiser

    turbocruiser SILVER Star

    Messages:
    3,562
    Likes Received:
    28
    Joined:
    Dec 24, 2003
    Wow!!! Exactly what i was hoping for. Thank you so much, makes perfect sense, and makes me not worry with this. Thanks again. :cheers:
     
  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.