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Oil Light flashes between shifts
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adam78
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 7:48 am    Post subject: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

Hello, my 1974 Bug is by every definition a beater, the body is so rotted she isnt long for this world. But I try to keep her mechanically sound with regular oil changes, valve adjustments, and overall fix any mechanical issues I come across. Well just the other day I noticed that when I shift from 1-2, and more rarely from 2-3, the oil light will flick on for a quarter of a second. The oil is right in the middle of the acceptable zone on the dip stick, and the valves were lashed about 1000 miles ago. The car isnt smoking and has plenty of power, much more than my 72 Bus. She does leak a little oil from the pushrod tubes, but not enough to need to add oil between changes. Is this normal? Should I be concerned at all? Like I said, it was a $400 rusty junker, I just enjoy the car and dont want her to die so soon lol.
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Randy in Maine
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 7:59 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

Might put a little more oil in it to start.
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bluebus86
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 8:22 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

Test oil pressure, details and limits are in the Bentley Official VW Service Manual.

Bug On!
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sjbartnik
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:26 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

This is probably not related to your issue, but you should keep the oil level as close to the top line as you can without going over. There is already not a lot of oil in the engine (2.5 quarts) and it is used as a coolant so having the max. allowable volume of oil is advisable.

For your issue I think you would want to install an oil pressure gauge in place of the sender and see what is happening to the actual oil pressure in those moments when you're seeing the light come on. Is the pressure actually falling down to near zero or is it just a failed sender responding poorly to fluctuations in pressure?
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glutamodo Premium Member
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:33 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

and I have the specs here:

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https://www.thesamba.com/vw/archives/manuals/1971withoutguesswork/10_11.jpg

Testing the pressure yourself is always a god idea. Waring light switches have always been kind of on the sketchy side. Even more so nowadays - I simply will not use China made switches, I'll pay more to get a Hella or Bosch switch that was made in Europe.
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EverettB Premium Member
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:39 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

If you don't have access to a gauge I'd replace the switch first.

I've had a couple that read wrong or were unreliable.

I agree on finding a real Hella/Bosch one
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Last edited by EverettB on Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:40 am; edited 1 time in total
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David_nc_72std
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 9:39 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

Also check to see if the insulation on the wire to the oil pressure sensor is cracked or brushing up against anything in the engine compartment - its possible the motion of the engine/transmission during the shifting is momentarily ground the wire and turning the light on.
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adam78
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PostPosted: Tue Aug 21, 2018 10:53 am    Post subject: Re: Oil Light flashes between shifts Reply with quote

Hm, it makes sense that the oil should be at the top of the stick, I have lived most my life trying to get the oil right in the middle of the safe zone as to not over fill or short my oil. But totally not thinking about oil being the coolant and how little oil these things hold seems obvious when pointed out. Also, I am getting an oil pressure and temp gauge for my Bus, I may just install it on the bug first to take a reading before doing the install on the bus.. Hmm.
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