Flashing Oil Light Honda: The Possible Causes And Steps Towards Solutions

Τhe low oil pressure indicator light is alarming for every car once it comes on. One of the most frequently asked questions, nonetheless, is how common this situation is among Honda models. 

The answer is that it happens, regardless. It occurs in models such as the Honda Accord, the Honda Civic, the Honda Pilot, CRV, and Odyssey for the same exact reasons.

The following article is an informational guide on what causes the low oil pressure indicator, what are the immediate steps you need to take and how to handle the challenge in the long term. 

So without further ado, let’s get straight to the analysis! 

How does the “Low oil pressure indicator” light flashing come up on my Honda?

When looking at the Honda car guide and all the indicators for your engine, the low oil pressure is a peculiar one. You have to be alert. The only thing that should never happen is for the ‘low oil pressure indicator’ to start flashing when the engine runs. 

If that occurs it’s because of its oil pressure. It’s probably dropping low for this specific moment. If it flashes for a while and the light goes out, the engine has recovered. 

Nevertheless, if the light doesn’t go off, the engine has lost the mandatory oil pressure and the situation starts becoming more alarming. 

What should you do if the “Low oil pressure indicator” light comes on?

Continuing to run the engine with external oil pressure can cause severe mechanical damage immediately and permanently. When that happens:

  • Take precautionary safety measures while on the road, safely stop the car, and shut off the engine. 
  • Once you have pulled over and shut the engine, you should let your car sit for a minute. 
  • Try opening the hood and then check the oil level. 
  • Please be reminded that the oil level and the oil pressure aren’t directly connected. Nonetheless, the former might cause the latter during maneuvers and cornering. 
  • You might deem it necessary to add oil and bring the oil level back to the full mark. That wouldn’t be an unreasonable way to fix the issue on the spot. 
  • Nevertheless, you will have to start the engine again and see how it behaves. 

When you turn the engine back on, and the light is still there, wait for ten seconds. If it doesn’t go out after that time, shut the engine off again. It’s indicative that the oil level wasn’t the issue. A mechanical problem needs to be repaired before turning the machine on again.

Flashing Oil Light on Honda: Causes and How to Fix

In order for one to identify whether it’s a mechanical issue or a low oil level problem on the spot, it’s crucial to study the following in-depth section. It includes every possible causation for the case and what the different outcomes can bring when trying to solve it. 

Low Oil Level

The most common causation has been already mentioned and quickly explained. Although it might not be connected to the low pressure directly, the low oil level might have a severe impact. 

How to Check if the Oil Level Caused the Issue? 

Although it was generally explained before, now one must understand how to check the oil level. It will help identify when the car needs more oil and whether this caused the oil light to flash. 

You apply the parking brake and open the hood when the vehicle is parked. Then, you’ll need to remove the dipstick. The oil level might be at the lowest point of the dipstick, which is below average. 

How to Fix the Issue if the Oil Level is the Cause?

Then you’ll have to add oil to the engine. Preferably at the moderate normal range. Do not overfill because it will generate bubbles spill over, the oil pump not adsorb enough oil and issues like oil oxidation.  

Therefore, that’s how to fix the common issue of low oil levels. 

Wrong Viscosity Engine Oil

The wrong viscosity of engine oil isn’t as standard as the low oil level causation but can even be more severe. We are talking about the lower density than recommended for your own car. 

How to Check if the Wrong Viscosity Engine Oil Caused the Issue? 

The wrong viscosity of engine oil triggers the low oil pressure indicator. How? It produces less resistance to flow and leads to a drop in the oil pressure. This can also be an issue with a higher viscosity oil. The latter isn’t too frequent, but it still can create resistance to flow and lead to poor engine lubrication. 

How to Fix the Issue?

The simple way to fix this issue is always abided by your manufacturer’s direction and the recommended levels.

Bad Oil Pump

What is the definition of an oil pump in simple terms? The oil pump refers to the critical role of distributing the oil to your engine’s components evenly. Therefore, a bad oil pump causes severe damage to other machine parts. A bad oil pump can contaminate your oil, the damaged and clogged oil pickup tube, and improper installation. 

How to Check if a Bad Oil Pump Caused the Issue? 

The best thing to do, in the first place, is to check in with your technician to see whether your pump is failing due to factors such as age or if it has been contaminated and will continue to result in poor oil maintenance. If it proves to be problematic, you will need to replace your oil pump. 

How to Fix the Issue?

A new oil pump will cost you $300 to $600. That’s the total price you will have to expect because the pump costs around $150-$300 and the installation by a mechanic from $200-$300. 

Faulty Oil Pressure Sensor or Loosed Wiring

Most new cars have an oil pressure sensor fitted on the engine block. It allows the vehicle’s ECU to determine the running pressure of the engine’s oil. It passively monitors whether the system applies or loses pressure. 

How to Check if Faulty Oil Pressure Sensor or Loosed Wiring Caused the Issue? 

But how would one be able to realize that the oil pressure sensor is faulty, let alone identify that it causes low pressure? It’s pretty simple. You just need to know precisely the sensor’s correct measurements. The sensor often has just one or two pins. They help it apply specific resistance to the ground. Check the repair manual to know the exact resistance you need at a given oil pressure.

Loosed wiring will also indicate a low oil pressure. When the oil pressure drops, the chain tensioners, which are oil-fed, slacken off and leave you with a loose chain. It can even transform into a sound you hear coming from the engine block. 

How to Fix the Issue?

Nonetheless, check in with your technician if you aren’t confident this is the problem. Should you need to replace it, be ready to pay between $30-$100 for the pressure sensor and $20-$150 for the labor costs. It always depends on your car model and the labor you choose. 

Bad Oil Pressure Sending Unit

The oil pressure sending unit is enormous on the list of the essential components. The position of the sending unit is a bit above the oil filter on the back of the engine block. 

How to Check if Bad Oil Pressure Sending Unit Caused the Issue? 

It’s designed in a way that’s not complex to realize whether it’s malfunctioning or not working. However, you still have to pay attention and seek the oil pressure warning light. When the oil pressure light is always on, you know that there’s an issue. With this specific circumstance, the light is inconsistently blinking. 

How to Fix the Issue?

To fix this issue, you would have to disconnect the vehicle’s battery cables from their terminals. After also disconnecting the wire with the mechanical oil pressure of the sending unit to the electric oil one, you’d have to fix it on the sending unit or loosen it.

The socket would help you thread the new oil sending unit into its spot and reconnect the oil pressure unit with the wire. If the light is off after turning the engine, you’re good to go.

Partly Clogged Oil Pan and Screen

How to Check if a Partly Clogged Oil Pan Caused the Issue? 

When it comes to the partly clogged oil pan, the low oil pressure is indicative of some severe leaks. Although they don’t just happen spontaneously and might lead to a different issue, it is a problem that isn’t solved so easily. 

How to Fix the Issue?

If the oil pan is damaged, the leak is severe. Therefore, one would need a tow to an auto shop. 

How to Check if a Partly Clogged Screen Caused the Issue? 

On the other hand, it has to pass through an oil filter screen for the oil to reach the oil pressure sensor. If the screen becomes damaged, it prevents enough oil from reaching the sensor. That happened because if it’s clogged with debris or sludge, it will block the oil, lowering the pressure. 

How to Fix the Issue?

The good thing is that once the screen is cleaned, there will be no more debris preventing oil from having enough pressure.

Dirty Particles

How to Check if a Partly Clogged Oil Pan Caused the Issue? 

When the low oil pressure warning light comes on and you witness a dirty oil filler tube, it’s your lucky day. All you need to do to save your engine is use either a toothbrush or scrub the tube’s dirty particles. 

How to Fix the Issue?

Put some kerosene in the tube at the end of the day. In the morning of the next day, dump the kerosene from the tube. You will see grit, dirt particles, and small debris, which were previously blocking the oil. 

Can you drive with the “Low oil pressure indicator” light coming on?

No, you cannot and you should not. 

As stated in the section above, the low oil pressure indicator light comes on after a handful of reasons and causations. Regardless, not only do you have to pull over and shut the engine once the light comes on, but you will have severe and permanent oil engine damage if you don’t immediately. 

Driving with a low oil pressure system can ruin the vehicle’s engine and ultimately break the motor. Even if you don’t know what to do after opening the hood, you should never turn on the machine again if the light has stayed there. 

How to reset the “Low oil pressure indicator” light?

If you are entirely sure that you have fixed the problem, either by yourself or with the help of a technician, then you will need to reset the light itself. 

  • First, you need to turn your ignition. 
  • Then, press the button until you see the engine oil indicator. 
  • You continue to press the button until you see the same indicator blinking. 
  • Before you reset, you must have seen the indicator light getting back to 100. 

Once it reaches that limit, you will know whether the problem has been fixed or persists. 

Final Thoughts

Seeing the low oil pressure indicator going on is nothing less of an unfortunate event. If you have read our analysis closely, you will know exactly what to do since you will be capable of identifying what’s wrong.

Such well-rounded analyses are not only rare but non-existent even. This is why we aimed to cover every circumstance you might come across. When it happens, you know exactly what’s the issue. 

Feel free to look back at our informational guide and study additional research we have conducted so that you are fully aware of how to protect your vehicle!

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