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2006 STS-V, 95 Sierra Z71
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351 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
I just did an oil change in my 96 SLS, it was only 800 miles ago. So I'm out cruising on the freeway, and when I get into town, the oil pressure light comes on when the engine is idling at a stop light. Soon, the "Stop Engine, low oil pressure" message shows up. I obey, let the Caddy sit for a few hours and check the oil. Almost a full quart low in 800 miles. Didn't see any oil leaked out on the parking lot either. I really hope it's not burning that much oil. Oh, it's got 96000 miles.
 

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2010 DTS
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87,549 Posts
First off, one qt low will not cause low oil pressure. You probably have a bad oil pressure switch. It's on the oil filter adapter. Use A/C Delco only.

GM considers 1 qt per 800 miles to be the border line of acceptable. Go to the top of the page and click on Technical Archives. Read up on OIL CONSUMPTION and FULL THROTTLE ACCELERATION. This is assuming the lower end is dry and not leaking, but if that where the case, a qt in 800 miles would be leaving a puddle unless it is dripping on the exhaust and burning off, but then you'd see and smell it.
 

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2006 STS-V, 95 Sierra Z71
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351 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
The oil pressure light has always been freaky in my car. It will blink on and off, not stay lit. This is the first time I've ever seen it stay lit. And I got that message on the DIC too. When I checked the oil, it was just short of that first hash mark on the stick.
 

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2003 Cadillac Seville STS 73k Miles, '90 Chevy 1500 Reg Cab
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725 Posts
Listen to Ranger, given that you say your light has acted up in the past I would lean towards replacing the sensor and seeing what happens. Low oil pressure is one of those things I like to be working in my car so that if it comes on I know I need to do something. Are you able to park your car in a place that would allow you to notice if it was leaking oil underneath, or can you get it up on a lift/jack stands to check the lower half and see if you see any signs of a large leak?
 

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1997 Cadillac STS (BOSE w/AUX In, Massage Seats, URPAS, "Z")
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When you are 2 quarters below the normal level you will get a message on the dashboard "CHECK OIL LEVEL" that is WAY before you will se the "LOW OIL PRESSURE" message due to oil starvation.
As Ranger mentioned there are 2 DIFERENT sensors:
1. The oil level sensor (responsible for the "CHECK OIL LEVEL" message)
2. The oil Pressure sensor (responsible for the message you got).
1 and 2 are two completely different things, you have no 2.
A low oil pressure message due to low oil level will probably show up when you are bellow 2 quarts of oil (in total not bellow the normal level).
So first thing I would do is REPLACE the oil pressure sensor located on the oil filter adapter. I can honestly say this issue is almost EXCLUSIVELY for the '96 production year (just do a search on the forum and you will see what I am talking about).
DO NOT DRIVE the car before you replace the sensor, if is not the sensor but the oil pump then you WILL destroy the engine, again DO NOT DRIVE! Once the sensor ($10- $15) is replaced fire it up and check the pressure. If fine then it was the sensor if not, then stop the engine and get professional help (tow the car do not drive!).
 

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2006 STS-V, 95 Sierra Z71
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351 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
Can I get the sensor from a Cadillac dealer? And how tough is it to replace? I've driven the car since I got the message a couple days ago. It ran fine. But I guess I won't drive it again until I find a sensor.
 

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1997 Cadillac STS (BOSE w/AUX In, Massage Seats, URPAS, "Z")
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2006 STS-V, 95 Sierra Z71
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351 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
N*Caddy, that original post in the thread you linked to is exactly what happened to me. I added some oil, and it went away that last time I drove. Can I take it to a Caddy dealer to have the oil pressure checked?
 

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1997 Cadillac STS (BOSE w/AUX In, Massage Seats, URPAS, "Z")
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N*Caddy, that original post in the thread you linked to is exactly what happened to me. I added some oil, and it went away that last time I drove. Can I take it to a Caddy dealer to have the oil pressure checked?
Yeah sure, but keep in mind adding oil WILL NOT restore the pressure (unless you are dry). And not many peoples realize that too much oil might be just as bad as to little. So in a world adding oil DOES NOT SOLVE the problem.
Yes checking the oil pressure is THE FIRST thing you should do.
You can do-it yourself at a cost of <$20 and some sorrow fingers by changing the oil pressure sensor or go to a dealer and test the pressure and have a professional opinion for around $100 - $150 (not a bad solution in any case).
 

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2000 Polo Green Metallic Cadillac STS 60K
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787 Posts
Yeah like N* said you CAN take it to a dealership and have them suck $150 bucks or more out of your wallet, or you can buy the part for $10, let the nice folks here guide you through it, and have a nice story to tell your buddies. Its up to you.
 

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1997 ETC (GAVE TO STEPSON 2011), 2000 DTS (RIP)
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1,702 Posts
Those sensors on many cars I have had have always been a common (small) oil leak point after many years - I changed the one on my ETC when I did the HG job as a preventative measure - so easy to do with the engine out of the car - not so easy, but very doable ion the car. Got mine from Rock Auto for around $7.00
 
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