Flickering oil light and high idle

Tiny
FANDANGO123
  • MEMBER
  • 2001 FORD ESCAPE
  • 3.0L
  • V6
  • 4WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 170,000 MILES
I have what may be two problems, but may be related.

Last week while driving around, we noticed that the oil light was coming on, or flickering when stopped at lights or idling. We took it in and they claimed it was the oil pan (It was leaking a lot, someone had stripped the drain plug) and replaced it. This has fixed the leak, but not the oil light, it still flickers or comes on at idle, mostly when the engine is at operating temp.

Second problem is that last night the check engine light came on. It had thrown the code P1506 (Idle air control over speed) It does seem to be idling high, about 1000-1400 RPM.

I'm waiting to hear back from the mechanic my wife took it to, to see if they actually did an oil pressure test. I don't have a guage, but am thinking that if the pressure is okay it is likely a bad sensor. But we are on a very tight budget right now, and any insight anyone here can offer would be greatly appreciate. I'd love to hear what everyone thinks and if anyone has had this combination of problems before.
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Thursday, November 20th, 2014 AT 7:44 PM

5 Replies

Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
I have to be honest, the idle issue is most likely the idle air control valve (IAC) or a vacuum leak. If the idle was really low, the I would say the IAC and the oil light could be related. However, that isn't the case. Tell me, do you hear any ticking or knocking from the engine when the light flickers? The engine has a lot of miles on it, but if it has been maintained, it should be okay. If there is no noise from the engine, my guess is the sensor, as you mentioned.
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Thursday, November 20th, 2014 AT 8:16 PM
Tiny
FANDANGO123
  • MEMBER
Thanks for the reply. No knock or tapping, which is a huge relief to me. Oddly enough, the idle did seem low(but smooth) to me before the code was thrown. And I wondered if that was the problem. Now it is idling high, the light is barely on. But it does come on sometimes, which is enough to make me think it is not just a low idle problem.
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Thursday, November 20th, 2014 AT 8:21 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
The only way to be 100% sure is to check the oil pressure using a mechanical gauge. Most parts stores will lend you one. Basically, you remove the electric pressure sensor and screw in the mechanical gauge. That way you will know what the actual pressure is at idle and when the light would normally flicker. As I mentioned, since there is no noise from the engine, I agree with you that it is most likely a sensor issue. But to be sure, you need to check the actual pressure.

Let me know if I can help in any way.

Joe
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Thursday, November 20th, 2014 AT 8:29 PM
Tiny
FANDANGO123
  • MEMBER
Sounds like a plan. Do you happen to know if I can get to it without removing the AC compressor?
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Thursday, November 20th, 2014 AT 8:32 PM
Tiny
JACOBANDNICKOLAS
  • EXPERT
Sorry I didn't get back to you sooner. You should be able to get it from under the vehicle. If you have access to a lift, it would make life MUCH easier.
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Friday, November 21st, 2014 AT 5:01 AM

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