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Old 11-21-2011, 08:47 AM   #1 (permalink)
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Lose oil pressure when start-up

Hello ppl, I'm having issue with my oil pressure. My truck is 2003 2500 5.9 Cummings with a standard trans. Once I start my truck a minute goes by the light check gauges come on, then my oil pressure gauge drops for 2 to 5 seconds then goes back up. Wondering what I can look at? I have really good oil pressure! 3/4 ways up on my gauge.
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Old 11-21-2011, 09:51 AM   #2 (permalink)
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I would change the oil and filter first. Have the oil sampled to be safe.
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Old 11-21-2011, 04:22 PM   #3 (permalink)
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The in dash oil pressure guage is a fake. It is controlled by the computer. It will indicate that you have oil pressure at startup even though there is no pressure. If there is at least 6 psi the guage will show what the computer thinks the pressure is based on temp of the engine and RPM. Most engines will not have any pressure for 3 to 4 seconds after the engine starts. The in dash guage will indicate that there is pressure because the computer knows that there is none but will lie to you to keep you from worry. If there is no pressure for about 30 seconds then the check engine light will come on and the oil pressure gauge will drop.

You need to get a real guage and check your actual pressure at start up. You can attach the guage to the port on top of the oil filter base. Use a grease gun hose to move the guage to where it can be easily seen. A cold engine should have 40-60psi at idle in 3 to 4 seconds and can go to 80psi when the engine is revved. Most hot engines at idle will have around 15 to 20psi.

After you make sure you have good pressure, it would be good to add a guage so it can be seen while driving. If you do not have pressure in a few seconds then you have a real problem and you must determine the cause of the lack of pressure.
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:27 AM   #4 (permalink)
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The guages are real haha idk about them being fake they might be but a buddy of mine dumped his oil filter while going down the road and the guage dropped all the way to the bottom therfore it is a real guage to be able to tell that. He has an 03 3500, but thats besides the point. What oil are you running? and what weight?
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Old 11-22-2011, 09:36 AM   #5 (permalink)
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They are fake in the sense of they will read the same within a large parameter. I don't know exactly but it's about 20 psi of normal operating pressure and it does not change. However if it spikes high or spikes low it's probably correct in saying you have a problem.
It's no substitute for a decent capillary tube mechanical gauge.
I would change the filter and oil then you have a baseline and test with a mechanical gauge if possible.
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Old 11-22-2011, 10:49 AM   #6 (permalink)
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my truck has done the same thing 2 or 3 times. I havent figured it out. The first time it happend I changed oil and filter, just because it scared me. It didnt do it again. It happend again about a month ago. When I fire it up it drops lights come on. I shut it off fire it back up and acts like nothing happend? I havent let it sit and keep running to see if it comes back on its own. I have good pressure I think the gauge is working i stomp on it and pressure goes up let off goes down to normal idle temp.
the gauge being a fake for the first few seconds or whatever makes sence could the gauge be failing and not lying?
I am running Rotella 15 40 and get the carquest oil filter 84620 i think. I may switch to a diffrent filter and see what happens.
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Old 11-22-2011, 05:07 PM   #7 (permalink)
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oil pressure switch or it's wiring failing.
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Old 12-13-2011, 10:47 AM   #8 (permalink)
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My 2005 does the same thing since the engine rebuild. i replaced the oil sending unit with no change. If I bring the idle up to about 1,000 RPM when I first start the truck, it won't do it.

My concern is that the valves are quite noisy at first start-up, then get quiet, indicating no oil pressure at start-up for 5 to 10 seconds.

I use the Rotella 15 40 and O'reilley's filters. I just bought a box of Fram filters off of eBay but I haven't changed the oil yet.

I am going to adjust the valves, and see if there is any change at start-up.

I was worried that there may be some kind of restriction or maybe some part is worn causing this.
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Old 12-13-2011, 10:36 PM   #9 (permalink)
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Curby 73 View Post
My 2005 does the same thing since the engine rebuild. i replaced the oil sending unit with no change. If I bring the idle up to about 1,000 RPM when I first start the truck, it won't do it.

My concern is that the valves are quite noisy at first start-up, then get quiet, indicating no oil pressure at start-up for 5 to 10 seconds.

I use the Rotella 15 40 and O'reilley's filters. I just bought a box of Fram filters off of eBay but I haven't changed the oil yet.

I am going to adjust the valves, and see if there is any change at start-up.

I was worried that there may be some kind of restriction or maybe some part is worn causing this.
Dump the Fram filters!!!

You need a real pressure guage to tell what is actually happening with the oil pressure. Adjusting the valves will not stop the rattle if you have no oil pressure. All the engines will actually have no oil pressure for about 3 to 4 seconds but will then come up quickly on a cold engines to about 50 to 65 psi.
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Old 12-14-2011, 03:29 AM   #10 (permalink)
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on a cold Cummins 5.9, takes at least 5>10 seconds to build up enough oil pressure and flow to quiet those far up the oil flow gallery lifters, fill the push rods and pump oil up to the rockers and cover/lube them.
NORMAL operation in winter cold temps.
get used to the cold start rattle. lots of reciprocating, pumping up and down iron.

can help things by going to a 5w40 or even better 0w40 low winter temp viscosity diesel rated CJ-4 oil. John Deere, Esso in Canada make a great cold winter 0w40 diesel oil. seen CATS start on it at -50d F and below.

always use the block heater for cold starts below 20d F and an oil pan heater for below 0d F.
speeds up initial oil flow.

nothing wrong with the Fram diesel filters. millions of miles on them, just not the quality of Donaldson, Cummins, etc. Everyone has their price point, we all don't shop at Neiman Markus or Walmart

DON'T push the idle up until the oil pressure gauge comes off zero and moves up. Let the bearing get some oil before you start running up the crankshaft speed.

Cummins valve train/lifters/rockers are noisy. this is not a piece of German engineering, a Mercedes you don't even hear drive up behind you.

did you replace the oil pump and pickup gaskets when you did the rebuild. always a good idea.

the Cummins gerotor oil pump is good for 300k >500k miles if not run with diesel in the oil.

always recheck the valve lash measure 2k>5k miles after a rebuild. too loose, no real problem just noisy.
too tight and a valve smacks a piston top...disastrous in a diesel


Quote:
Originally Posted by Curby 73 View Post
My 2005 does the same thing since the engine rebuild. i replaced the oil sending unit with no change. If I bring the idle up to about 1,000 RPM when I first start the truck, it won't do it.

My concern is that the valves are quite noisy at first start-up, then get quiet, indicating no oil pressure at start-up for 5 to 10 seconds.

I use the Rotella 15 40 and O'reilley's filters. I just bought a box of Fram filters off of eBay but I haven't changed the oil yet.

I am going to adjust the valves, and see if there is any change at start-up.

I was worried that there may be some kind of restriction or maybe some part is worn causing this.
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Last edited by steelhead01; 12-14-2011 at 03:41 AM.
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Old 12-14-2011, 08:09 PM   #11 (permalink)
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My oil pressure guage will randomly go to zero and check guages light will come on after start up. I can't get the guage to work again unless I turn the truck off and restart it. Typically happens when it is very cold out.
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Old 12-17-2011, 09:55 AM   #12 (permalink)
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I'm thinkikng the valves need adjusting. I'm going to tackle that this weekend. I also added a jug of Lucas oil stabilizer to the crankcase when I added some to the power steering reservoir yesterday.

If I don't raise the idle to about 1200 RPM, it will not build oil pressure. Once I raise the idle to 1200 from 800, it builds pressure in about 10 seconds and the valves get quiet.

If i do nothing and let it idle at 800 it will stayt at zero. I don't know how long, but I let it alone for 50 seconds on Thursday morning before I couldn't stand it any more and raised the idle.
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