Advice needed... - Dakota Durango Forum
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post #1 of 10 Old 06-05-2017, 02:20 AM Thread Starter
xochil.hedtcke
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Advice needed...

I have a 91 dodge dakota 5.2 thats having a couple of issues. One is a flickering oil light on the dash and it tends to overheat if i let it sit at idle too long. I was thinking maybe the oil pump is going. Then also my son notice the rear main seal is leaking. I dont know if that is contributing to the issue or if it's the cause. Also im debating having rear main seal changed or just find another motor. Any suggestions? Thank you in advance.

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post #2 of 10 Old 06-05-2017, 03:56 AM
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TBH, before I worried about the rear seal, I'd replace the sending unit - if it's failing due to age, it could be leaking and it'll look a LOT like a rear main seal blown.

After that, if it doesn't fix the flickering light (BTW, how is the oil pressure sitting? If above the bar above the "L" it's got enough pressure,according to that - and it's the same unit with a split sender inside!) then I'd look at a new rear seal and oil pump.

I'd also consider a new motor; one thing to CONSIDER (!!) is to pick up a Magnum 5.2, freshen it, put LA-drilled heads on it, and bolt on your LA intake and throttle body, with the LA exhaust manifolds; that should yield a nice kick over a straight LA 5.2 (but not as much as if you actually did a Magnum transplant).

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post #3 of 10 Old 06-07-2017, 12:19 PM Thread Starter
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TBH, before I worried about the rear seal, I'd replace the sending unit - if it's failing due to age, it could be leaking and it'll look a LOT like a rear main seal blown.

After that, if it doesn't fix the flickering light (BTW, how is the oil pressure sitting? If above the bar above the "L" it's got enough pressure,according to that - and it's the same unit with a split sender inside!) then I'd look at a new rear seal and oil pump.

I'd also consider a new motor; one thing to CONSIDER (!!) is to pick up a Magnum 5.2, freshen it, put LA-drilled heads on it, and bolt on your LA intake and throttle body, with the LA exhaust manifolds; that should yield a nice kick over a straight LA 5.2 (but not as much as if you actually did a Magnum transplant).

RwP
Im new to all this. So please excuse my questions. Did you mean the fuel sending unit? Or is there one for oil? Thanks in advance.

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post #4 of 10 Old 06-07-2017, 12:26 PM
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Im new to all this. So please excuse my questions. Did you mean the fuel sending unit? Or is there one for oil? Thanks in advance.

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Well, the gauge and the light don't get their signals by magic ... Yes, there's a sending unit on the back of the block, right above the bell housing.

Before you tackle any of this, locate a copy of the factory service manual (such as on Ebay for a used one, or a PDF).

The sending unit is hard to see, being down on the block, right in front of the bell housing, behind the intake. But there's one there.

Do you also have a gauge, or just the idiot light?

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post #5 of 10 Old 06-07-2017, 01:42 PM Thread Starter
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Theres a gauge and a light on dash

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post #6 of 10 Old 06-07-2017, 11:04 PM
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I agree with Ralph's assessment that the sending unit is old and could be leaking…. But I'd add this, before you assume the engine is in need of replacement, have the oil analyzed and do a compression test. This will determine if your engine is due for a rebuild or replacement.


Next, never trust a factory gauge, especially one which doesn't have accurate numerical markings. Gauges that aren't calibrated and don not tell you anything other than "Normal" or aren't calibrated (like a factory gauge) are as useless as an idiot light. I would suggest you get a good quality oil pressure gauge (and a good quality temp gauge) This way you have the most accurate information about your engine as possible.

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post #7 of 10 Old 06-08-2017, 03:17 AM
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There's one more choice, but with the leakage at the back, I'd do the sending unit FIRST.

My connector is failing; my gauge will drop to "L" when the "LOW OIL" light is still off; and the LOW OIL light does light until I start the motor, so it's a safe bet it's not actually THAT low. And I can bump the connector and it comes and goes. And it's my third sending unit inside of two months ... so.

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post #8 of 10 Old 06-08-2017, 08:57 PM Thread Starter
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Hmmmm ok i will check that because the guage is just all over the place. It will stay above the L while im driving...but at an idle it drops way below it and the light starts to flicker.

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post #9 of 10 Old 06-13-2017, 11:17 AM
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Hmmmm ok i will check that because the guage is just all over the place. It will stay above the L while im driving...but at an idle it drops way below it and the light starts to flicker.

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With the light also flickering, I'd more be inclined that you've got oil system problems; using 0W5 oil, worn bearings, bad oil pump, etc.

Time to not even worry about the sensor, and put a mechanical gauge in that spot instead long enough to find out what your oil pressure really IS.

And while doing this, save up for a motor replacement/overhaul.

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post #10 of 10 Old 06-13-2017, 05:00 PM Thread Starter
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Yup just decided on that

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