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Old 11-04-2009, 01:45 PM   #1
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Default Low oil pressure? 97 z28

Alright.. So I had a problem breaking valve springs, so I upgraded to some high lift springs from crower. Now, before I changed springs and valve stem seals, my oil pressure was around 20 at idle (950 in drive). I was using Mobil 1 sythetic, 10w-30 and a fram filter(i know.. bad bad).

Since I changed the springs, I used castrol syntec 10w-30, and an AC delco filter. Now my oil pressure is around 10, and drops down to 0 sometimes once the car is hot, and I come to a stop. Any RPM above 1200, and the OP is always above 20 psi.

I'm just wondering if the syntec oil might have caused my OP to drop, or if some metal from the broken spring got in my bearing =\ maybe a bad sending unit?

Any help would be appreciated =)
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Old 11-04-2009, 01:51 PM   #2
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switch back to a cheap 10-40 and fram filter, see if thats it... I ran mobil 1 and my OP dropped 10psi .. I switched back to Valvoline and everything went back to normal
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Old 11-04-2009, 01:57 PM   #3
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I had another fram filter on before the AC delco, but changed it to the new one incase that was the problem.. it didn't fix it =\
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:12 PM   #4
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Well i switched bad to Mobile 1 full synthetic and changed the sending unit.. still no change =\ any ideas?
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:35 PM   #5
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I would seafoam the oil as recomended by the directions. Then use Penn. Plat. 5-30 and the acdelco pf454 filter. I think a thinner oil will boost oil pressure, I could be wrong, just my experience with different oil viscosity. But if your springs broke into little pieces you might want to check into bottom end rebuild...
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Old 11-05-2009, 08:48 PM   #6
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what is your idle when your oil pressure goes to "0"? i have a high volume oil pump in my car and my oil pressure used to be around 40-42 psi at idle (1200 rpms) running mob 1 10w30. I now have a lifter that ticks until the car is warmed up and i've noticed my oil pressure has dropped to 10 at 700 rpms sometimes lower. Do you hear a tick or a light knock on cold start? and do not put a heavy oil in it. i made that mistake once and my car would bearly run bc my oil pump couldn't pump think ass oil.
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Old 11-05-2009, 10:49 PM   #7
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what is your idle when your oil pressure goes to "0"? i have a high volume oil pump in my car and my oil pressure used to be around 40-42 psi at idle (1200 rpms) running mob 1 10w30. I now have a lifter that ticks until the car is warmed up and i've noticed my oil pressure has dropped to 10 at 700 rpms sometimes lower. Do you hear a tick or a light knock on cold start? and do not put a heavy oil in it. i made that mistake once and my car would bearly run bc my oil pump couldn't pump think ass oil.
It would be around 800-900. With the Mobile 1 I just put in it, it doesn't hit 0 anymore. And I never hear ticks or knocks, even when its sitting on zero. Strange this is, as soon as it gets past like 1200 rpm, my oil pressure is above perfect, sitting around 30.
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Old 11-06-2009, 01:26 AM   #8
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Well first of the oil really won't lead to low oil pressure. Almost every brand will yield the same oil pressure. The weight of the oil will affect oil pressure. Fram filters are junk and probably caused the oil pressure problem to begin with. Either not filtering the oil like it should or not allowing enough oil pressure.

Mobil one, purolator and delco are all good filters. Along with others.

Did you hook a manual gauge up to test the pressure? Does the pressure only drop to zero when coming to a stop? Aftermarket oil pressure sensors are almost always wrong. So if it didn't come from the stealership or is a delco part. It will more than likely be off. The rpm is a good idea but to drop low enough for 0 psi. It would idle so bad it wouldn't run.

When warm watch the gauge at 1200rpm, 3200rpms, and like 5k and tell us what it says.

One things that sounds iffy is breaking valve springs. How do you break stock ones? Unless you have a cam or something.
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Old 11-06-2009, 09:22 AM   #9
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Well first of the oil really won't lead to low oil pressure. Almost every brand will yield the same oil pressure. The weight of the oil will affect oil pressure. Fram filters are junk and probably caused the oil pressure problem to begin with. Either not filtering the oil like it should or not allowing enough oil pressure.

Mobil one, purolator and delco are all good filters. Along with others.

Did you hook a manual gauge up to test the pressure? Does the pressure only drop to zero when coming to a stop? Aftermarket oil pressure sensors are almost always wrong. So if it didn't come from the stealership or is a delco part. It will more than likely be off. The rpm is a good idea but to drop low enough for 0 psi. It would idle so bad it wouldn't run.

When warm watch the gauge at 1200rpm, 3200rpms, and like 5k and tell us what it says.

One things that sounds iffy is breaking valve springs. How do you break stock ones? Unless you have a cam or something.
Guess I should have put that in there, its a 383 stroker with a CC 306, Lt4 heads, headers, all the goodies. I bought a set of springs from a family member who claimed they were able to with stand the .54 lift of the exhaust valves, but turns out they were stock replacment LT4 springs.. decided to just dish out the money for a new set that will work perfect, and thats what is in there now. Also changed the valve stem seals while I had the springs out.
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Old 11-06-2009, 11:39 AM   #10
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I'm having a similar problem. Its a fairly stock lt1. Brand new long block. Brand new as in I just got the car back yesterday. Last night after I had been driving for about an hour and a half from various errands, I noticed the oil pressure would drop very close to zero to the point that the check gauges light would come on, every time I stopped at a light. I pulled into a parking lot and checked the oil which was fine. Let the car sit for about 20 minutes, and the problem went away after that and the idling pressure stayed around 20 psi. So from what I gather maybe its the oil and/or filter they used?
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Old 04-09-2011, 08:18 PM   #11
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Got the same thing going on with mine. 97 trans am. Start the car cold and pressure is normal. Drops quickly to zero if just an idle. Oil is fine, no knocks or anthing funny. I have sat with the car idling for an hour or so, whole time guage says zero. I have to think that it is something other than the pump. As I said, runs strong and no funny sounds. I have been reading and reading forums hoping to find the answers!
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