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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
On a 1996 police caprice (with a real oil pressure gauge), I see the oil level low warning light. I suspect the sensor and would like to replace it.

When I drain the oil, do I then unscrew the giant nut that goes into the oil pan above the drain plug to swap out the oil level sensor, or can I just unclip the wire connector and unscrew and replace the sensor without worrying about the big bolt-shaped thing that holds it in place?

What tools do I need for this?

Also, on a car with an oil pressure sensor, is the level sensor redundant, and is there a simple way to disable it if so (other than removing the warning light).

Many thanks.
 

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Also, on a car with an oil pressure sensor, is the level sensor redundant, and is there a simple way to disable it if so (other than removing the warning light).
I believe you unscrew the nut, then the switch will come out.

Oil level and oil pressure are 2 different things. Back in the day, when people would check their oil level, a dummy light was unnecessary. Today, its cheap insurance.
 

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The big bolt thing is the sender! To unplug the sender you have to use a smaller flathead screwdriver, like one of those precision ones, to reach into the space to "lift" up the locking tab so it can be unplugged. The socket size is 1 1/8". Its GM Part # 12603782 and still available new from GM from any dealer. The GM list price is around $23 dollars. An aftermarket one should be available from AutoZone, Advance Auto, OReilly's for about $35 but Advance Auto does list having the AC Delco version for about $25 D8055 but isn't in stock at every store(can check their website to see what stores near you have it in stock). Takes about a minute or two to change out, but I recommend replacing it when you change the oil so the oil pan is already empty.

As Cletus said, the oil level and oil pressure senders are two different things. It maybe worthwhile to replace the oil pressure sender as well, especially if the oil pressure gauge bounces around a lot instead of moving smoothly. If the oil pressure gauge is fine the leave the sender for it alone. And you can still have oil pressure even though you are low on oil, get the oil level down to far and you will loose oil pressure and when that happens bad things happen to the engine. Of course should always do regular checks of the oil level since you shouldn't rely on indicators as they can read incorrectly. - Peter
 

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Be careful when releasing the connector tab as well. They get pretty brittle and break off easily. I had this happen once. Luckily I found that the connector for the reverse lights on a Roadmaster was the same plug, so I stole one off my parts car...
 

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I have to replace mine also has a slight leak around it.
 

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I figure you might already know this but for what it's worth you can do the pressure sender at any time since oil isn't up there when the car is off.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thank you everyone for the advice. Replacing the sender was a snap. The Kragen part is made out of what looks like plastic, where the AC Delco one is metal.

The bolt size is 1 1/8" as mentioned in the thread, and the only tricky part to the swap is disconnecting the wires from the sensor, which I had to do blind using a narrow flathead. A small mechanic's mirror and a bright light might make this easier for others.

Now, the sad part. I swapped the sensor out and the low oil level light is still on. D'Oh!

Can someone tell me where the far end of the sensor wire runs to, so I can check the connection?

If that's not the issue, am I looking at replacing the entire wire pair, or is there any other likely cause of an intermittent low oil warning?

Besides low oil cwm1
 

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Might not be the sender. It might be the cluster. The stock cluster in my 95 has a similar issue with the low washer fluid light however the lights are controlled differently(the low oil light is controlled directly by the PCM and the low washer fluid is controlled by circuitry in the cluster). For the oil level sender it is "open" when the oil is low and closed when the oil is at proper level. You can try unplugging the sensor and shorting the 2 terminals of the connector together and try grounding out the brown wire(use a jumper wire between the connector pin with the brown wire and a good ground). However the light itself is controlled by the computer, so you MAY have an issue with the computer or a broken wire in the wiring harness somewhere. As far as the routing of the wires it runs up the side of the block and straight to the computer though the engine harness(Pin 27 in the black connector a brown wire and the other side goes straight to ground. Taking a look at the factory service manual will help see what I am talking about. - Peter
 

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if it just has a leak...replace the gasket or use a dab of RTV
Just noticed mine leaking today from inside the metal part where the electrical connector is. Can i get just the gasket for it? No lights ON, on the dash, just noticed about 20 drops of oil in a puddle when i was changing the oil today.
 

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Just noticed mine leaking today from inside the metal part where the electrical connector is. Can i get just the gasket for it? No lights ON, on the dash, just noticed about 20 drops of oil in a puddle when i was changing the oil today.
Anyone know? I'd rather not buy the sensor if i can just get the gasket.
 

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Senders leak

I've replaced mine once and when the 2nd started to leak I decided to just remove it. They will leak internally and nothing you can do but to replace it. That clip is a little tricky so follow the instructions mentioned earlier here.

Instead of replaceing a 3rd time I decided to just remove it all together. I put a brass plug in there with a magnetic backside to pick up any stray metal particles. I also saw a nice plug that was brass and had a clear glass site hole in it but opted for the magnetic plug. I then just shorted the 2 wire terminals together, wrapped it with tape and tucked it out of the way.

Just got tired of these leaking and I try to check my oil thru the dip stick method which is a little more accurate.
 

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I've replaced mine once and when the 2nd started to leak I decided to just remove it. They will leak internally and nothing you can do but to replace it. That clip is a little tricky so follow the instructions mentioned earlier here.

Instead of replaceing a 3rd time I decided to just remove it all together. I put a brass plug in there with a magnetic backside to pick up any stray metal particles. I also saw a nice plug that was brass and had a clear glass site hole in it but opted for the magnetic plug. I then just shorted the 2 wire terminals together, wrapped it with tape and tucked it out of the way.

Just got tired of these leaking and I try to check my oil thru the dip stick method which is a little more accurate.
Where did you get the magnetic brass plug? Also do you remember the size? I have the same issue with my sensor leaking and the light turning on and off occasionally since I bought my car... If replacing the sensor doesn't work for me I might go your route, so thats why I ask..
 

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Where did you get the magnetic brass plug? Also do you remember the size? I have the same issue with my sensor leaking and the light turning on and off occasionally since I bought my car... If replacing the sensor doesn't work for me I might go your route, so thats why I ask..
I can't believe I found the link. Check this post, Karl has both the plugs listed that I was talking about.

http://www.ls1lt1.com/forum/showthread.php?p=170992
 

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JW Winco Company
#200XRF4 Magnetic plug.
http://www.jwwinco.com/products/sect...8.1/index.html



Any other "plug" options? That plug looks nice but are there any other options besides welding it shut or putting a new sensor in? Mine is leaking from the inside center part, is there a seal in there that can be replaced or resealed?
 

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I just bought a new Delco sensor at Advance auto for $25. It is solid plastic and has an o ring seal. This eliminates oil wicking through the sensor. It also has a slot to make plug removal very easy.
 

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......and, if you want to do the cheapest way, get Dorman 65221 AutoGrade Oil Drain Plug from amazon ($4.60) or wherever. 20mm x 1.5 thread pitch. comes with washer sealer.
 
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