5.3 Oil Pressure Sensor Screen Removal

It was about 2007 when Chevrolet realized that there was a problem with their sensors. They fixed it by placing a screen around the sensor to keep sludge and debris from the sensor. That should have fixed the issue, isn’t that so? Well, it turns out that the screen only aggravated the already existing issue. Why is that? You could head to the garage owing to a problem with the sensor, only to find that the filter is full of debris.

That means that your 5.7 Vortec sensor could have a problem, but without dealing with the screen, you will not fix the issue. You thus have to fix both components at once if you wish to be free of this problem.

What happens if the sensor is bad?

When the pressure is not normal, you will get warning signs such as the warning light turning on or blinking constantly. The gauge could also read zero, an indication that something is not right.

How do you know your car has pressure problems?

The gauge can indicate how good or bad things are. It could be that it reads zero, or the check engine light is on. Without noise coming from the motor, you cannot tell what is happening in the car. That’s where scanning tools come into play, as they will indicate the error codes.

Is it OK to drive with a bad sensor? It is important to note that your car will give you adequate warnings as to the state of your vehicle. A good example would be where the message indicates that you should turn off the engine. Some people choose to ignore such messages, as they think that they are errors. While it could be the case, you should heed the message and head to the garage. You are better safe than sorry.

A diagnosis is necessary when you come across such messages. However, you can skip this and go straight to replacing the sender. Now, that’s where the difficulty begins. Ask most people to point out the GMC sierra sensor location or the Chevy 6.0 sensor location. The same goes for the 2009 Chevy Silverado 5.3 sensor location. Many people are unable to do so owing to the tight fit. It lies at the front of the transmission bell housing, and you need a special tool to access the same. With this, you can get rid of the pressure switch and make the necessary changes. The chances are high that you will use the tool in the future, so investing in it will not be a loss.

Start by removing the plastic cover that lies on the engine before disconnecting the electrical connector. When you press the lock tab, it will snap and release the lock, which you can then depress and loosen. From here, you can change the sensor at the rear portion of the engine block. For this, you will need an extension attached to a swivel head, which you can use to remove the sending unit. Replace it, and that should put an end to your problem and you can now enjoy a smooth ride devoid of noises.

What should you do with the 2009 Silverado screen? Your sensor is now out, and your problem is almost over. But there is the issue of the 2011 Chevy Silverado sensor screen, which could cause problems when clogged. Here, you pull out the screen using a pick and discard it. You should see an improvement in the dash reading after doing this.

How much pressure should a 5.3 have at idle?

If you have a 5.3 L Vortec engine, how much pressure should you have when the car is idle? It all depends on the car conditions. In most cases, the vehicle should register a value of 20 and above when idle and 50-60 when warm. If the reading is lower than this, you might need to get your car checked.

Let us look at a case example

Suppose your car has about one hundred and fifty thousand miles on it and is in good condition with regular oil changes. Drive the car for a while, and you start noticing some problems with the gauge. In a Chevy, this should show on the dash gauge. That is a cause for worry.

Test the pressure at both the switch and the filter, and you find that it is much lower than it should be. Naturally, you test the pressure relief pump, and you find that it’s not working. So you toss it and get another one, and the driving experience is as good as it once was. But what if that does not stop the problem?

What do you do when you start the car, and the gauge indicates a drop, this time with a roaring noise from the engine? You could find that when you raise the engine speed to more than 1000rpms, the pressure goes up. But when you are idle, it drops.

What could be the problem?
  • The first thing to note is that when an oil pump releases a lot of pressure, the relief valve opens to vent some out. The likelihood of this happening is high when the engine is cold, the speed is high, or the oil is thick. However, at most times, the valve will be shut, save for when there is damage to it. When the valve remains open owing to damage, it will lower the pressure, including when the car is idle. It is more noticeable when the vehicle is idle as this is when the pressure is at its lowest. So if you come across low pressure and noise from the engine, start by checking the valve.
  • f this is not the problem, look into the state of the O-ring. Sometimes, it can get damaged or worn out, such that it allows the oil pump to such air through gaps instead of clean oil from the pan. When the pump takes in air, you will not notice this when driving at high speeds as there is high flow. But in an idle state, when oil flow is low, the reduction could lower to dangerous levels. You can test for this by raising the oil level in the crankcase such that you submerge the pickup tube. Start the engine and look at the gauge reading. If it remains normal when idle, the pickup tube needs a replacement.

Can you clean a sensor?

Sometimes, the problem may lie in the state of the screen. It owes to the accumulation of debris. While you can clean the screen, it is more effective to replace it with a new one. It will not cost you much and will help you avoid future damages.

Bottom Line

This fault should not discourage you from getting a Chevy as you can always deal with the issue using a few DIY tricks. Now you know how to remove the sensor electrical connector and the screen. Once you do this, you should be free of your 2008 Chevy Silverado gauge problem. Good luck!

Editorial Staff

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