How To Respond when Your Car's Oil Light Goes On

There are other reasons besides low oil that can cause your car’s oil light to go on. It may be a leak in the oil filter or a problem in the oil pressure unit. Because of these, you should always check immediately what’s wrong with your car whenever your car’s oil light goes on or else you might be faced with a large repair bill later on. If you don’t know how you can trace the problem of your car, don’t worry. Below is the step-by-step procedure on responding to your oil light problem:

  • Pull your car over. Don’t panic if your car’s oil light suddenly goes on. The light is designed to warn you ahead of time that something is wrong with your car’s oil supply. You still have ample time to slow down on the road and look for a safe parking spot to stop your car. When you have parked your car, turn off its engine, and inspect the oil level of your car. If you’re on a highway and you’ve just stopped your car on the side, make sure to turn on your hazard lights to warn other cars that you are stopping there.
  • Check your car’s oil level. Use a dipstick or whatever measuring tool your car uses to check the oil level of your car. If using a dipstick, make sure to wipe it off first before inserting it into your car. In this way, you will have a more accurate reading of your car’s oil level. If you’re parked on a leveled ground and your car’s oil level measuring instrument confirmed that you are indeed low in oil, refill your car with oil, then start your engine to check if the light will still go on. If the light is off, continue driving; otherwise, proceed to the next step.

    Be warned, however, that it doesn’t mean that nothing’s wrong with your car if your car’s oil light turns off after filling your car with oil. Sometimes, a leak in your car causes your car to lose oil. Because of this, make it a point to watch your oil level after a few hours or days to see if you’re losing an unreasonable amount of oil. If you are, have your car inspected by a mechanic to trace where the leak is coming from.

  • Inspect your car’s oil filter and oil pan. If your car’s oil light is still on even after filling your car with oil, you may have a leak in your car’s oil filter or oil pan. Check the oil filter if it is properly sealed or if its surface has been badly damaged. Inspect also the gears of your car’s oil pan for signs of wear and tear. If you’re not sure of how to check these car parts, hire a mechanic to check it for you.

Don’t attempt to drive your car while your car’s oil light engine is on. You never know when your car will suddenly stop to a halt while you’re driving on the street. This is very dangerous as it can cause an accident. Opt to have your car towed to the nearest car mechanical shop instead to have your car checked and repaired by a professional.


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