TechTalk oil pressure warning light

Published on September 28th, 2023 | by Daniel Sherman Fernandez


Please Do Not Ignore This Oil Warning Light On Your Dashboard

What to Do When the Oil Warning Light Is Shining Bright

There are still many car drivers who do not understand the need to take notice of warning lights in their car instrument cluster, especially the oil warning light.

So, if you see this warning light on your instrument cluster alight, please do not ignore it as it is alerting you that there is an issue with your car engine oil pressure. Oil in your engine, is like blood running in your veins. When it is low, there will be big problems.

So, the warning light will come on if you are running low on engine oil (also known as lubricant) or your engine oil pump is not circulating enough of the oil (fluid) to properly lubricate the surfaces inside your vehicle engine.

engine oil

If you see this light come on, please immediately take note to try and stop your vehicle safely and get a tow truck or mechanic to come over. This is not a warning light to ignore for a few kilometers.

Both low oil level and low oil pressure can cause catastrophic (expensive) damage to your vehicle engine. If the low oil pressure light comes on, immediately pull over. Allow the car to sit for at least 15 to 30 minutes (let the engine cool down) before checking the oil level while parked in a safe location.

Turn off the engine and remove the keys from the ignition.

Make sure the engine is cool before opening the hood to check the engine oil dipstick (if you don’t know what this is then just wait for a mechanic or tow truck to come over).


Meanwhile, here is how you can check the engine oil level and condition with a dipstick test:

Look for the dipstick and pull it out. It usually has a yellow/orange rubber handle at the end. (Please refer to the owner’s manual if unsure where it is.)

Wipe the dipstick clean with a cloth/newspaper, tissue, then re-insert it into the tube.

Pull it out again and read the oil level along the dipstick.

  • There are two markers on the dipstick, the one near the end, or “L,” means low oil level, while the higher one, or “F,” means it’s full.
  • Observe where the oil level is located between the two.
  • Top it off if the oil level is lower than the required level.

Observe the oil color.

  • Clean engine oil should be clear dark yellow, or amber in color.
  • If it’s dark brown or black, milky, or shiny with hints of metal, you will need to replace your engine oil immediately.

Check the low oil pressure light again.

  • If your oil light is already off, you can continue driving.
  • If it is still shining bright after refilling the oil, you must take your car to your mechanic to check further.

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