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Faulty Oil Level Indication

I had my clutch replaced a few years ago, and they did not get the master ground completely tight, which caused some rather weird indications and problems. As a result, the lasting problem is the the oil level indicator light comes on when the car moves.

I first thoought that it was a bad oil level sender in the pan, changed it, still have the problem. Next came a new ground wire from the sender to the pan, still have the problem. Then it was a new wire from the sender to the DME. Still have the problem. So we tested the old sender, it was ok. The wiring was connected to the old sender, and the sender was then attached to the chassis. Drove the car, slammed the gears, no light came on.

The current fix was to remove both the Master Caution and the Oil Level lights, not a good thing.

Can anyone help?????

Old 01-13-2005, 07:19 AM
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This system has a known problem with the printed circuit board in the dash. There is a technical bulletin about repairs, basically it says replace the instrument cluster printed circuit. Of course, you could just disconnect that part of the system..........which I would do..
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Old 01-13-2005, 07:41 AM
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Hmm, I presently have an issue with the oil level sending unit. I believe if you ground the wire to the sender, it will turn the light off, since mine is disconnected, and the light is on.
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Old 01-13-2005, 07:43 AM
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Circut Board tested ok, and we tried the new ground. Problem with disconnecting that system, is it also disables the Master Caution light, which is very useful when doing autocross, DE, etc...no need to constantly scan gauges.
Old 01-13-2005, 10:31 AM
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Here is another bit of information to add to the equasion, the light will only come on when the car rolls FORWARD, and if you manage to launch VERY EASILY, the light will stay out until you shift to second, or something else jars the car i.e. a bump in the road, driveway lip, etc.
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Old 01-13-2005, 10:33 AM
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How did you test the circuit board?
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Old 01-13-2005, 10:36 AM
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put in a new one
Old 01-13-2005, 10:39 AM
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I really don't know on this one. If the oil-level warning system fails it's usually the circuit board or connecters from the board. I think you could wire the sensor circuit without using the circuit board and maybe have a mutli-meter connected to see any faults. It's a simple system, but then again they are the ones that are annoying when tyring to fix.
As a matter of interest, have you tried increasing the amount of oil in the engine to see if that does anything?
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Old 01-13-2005, 06:16 PM
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sounds to me like a fault in something in the dash, not in the oil level sensor. If I'm not misunderstanding anything, the oil level sensing circuit actually only reads the oil level on initial startup - after the engine is running of course the oil level in the pan will drop and you could then get a low oil level warning. If the oil level is low *on initial startup* then the light should latch in until you turn the key off. Am I missing anything?

nate
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Old 01-13-2005, 07:24 PM
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I have the same problem with an 88 944 NA. The schematic shows the level indicator as a normally closed switch (full of oil). I added oil to where the round part of dipstick starts to be flattened ~ 1.5 quarts above full mark without solving the problem. It will idle for 1/2 hour in my drive way with no problem. However, at the first acceleration, it lights up.

Also, The indicator will not reset until the engine is turned off. Appears that a windage tray did not encompass the float.

If I just ground the yellow wire to the sender to the frame, will this disable the master alarm light or just the level portion? I don't know what all is tied into the master alarm light.

Any suggestions are appreciated. Thank you.
Old 06-10-2006, 04:11 PM
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All of your sensors (temp, voltage, abs, etc) are tied into the master caution light. Unfortunately, the oil level sender is grounded to the chassis, and if you disconnect this ground, the master caution will still remain on. Periodically, I try to fix this problem, and I will be attempting to do so again this coming weekend, I'll post the results.

Phil
89 944NA 274,103 miles with no problems (other than this pesky light), rebuilds, valve jobs, shunts, punts, or anything....and the leakdown and compression tests from two weeks ago tell me she still tight as a virgin
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Old 06-14-2006, 07:20 AM
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Yellow/white wire in the passenger footwell. Goes into an 8-pin connector. Ground that and you should be fine.
Otherwise you could ground it at the sensor itself, but that could corrode/be oily/whatever.
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Old 06-14-2006, 05:23 PM
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Ran new wire from sensor, and ran new ground...still have the same problem. This has become a very interesting problem, as everyone in the shop has made atleast one attempt to correct it. BTW, I am a mechanic in a Porsche shop....Game-Face Motorsports, La Habra, California.
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Old 06-14-2006, 07:21 PM
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Quote:
Originally posted by 89-944NA
Ran new wire from sensor, and ran new ground...still have the same problem. This has become a very interesting problem, as everyone in the shop has made atleast one attempt to correct it. BTW, I am a mechanic in a Porsche shop....Game-Face Motorsports, La Habra, California.
PUzzles........ I love puzzles.

Well at this point there is a fault in the guage cluster. Assuming the sender is not doing anything wacky.
You replaced the printed board.......... makes you wonder if something in the cluster is actually causing the grounding.
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Old 06-14-2006, 07:58 PM
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Nice try Alex, actually the only thing that hasn't been changed is the controller...wasn't one in my donor car.
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Old 06-15-2006, 07:25 AM
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Controller? What controller?
There is just the sensor, wiring, and the instrument cluster from what I understand.
Sounds like we might have the same problem, so I am very interested to see what the solution is.
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Old 06-15-2006, 02:16 PM
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I am also having this problem. Has anyone figured out a fix ? If i ground the sensor on the pan with a pair of alligator clips the light remains off while driving. Which would pinpoint an issue with the sensor.

Also, the light only illuminates in the afternoon... whens its warm out (55 F). On my drive to work at 6 in the morning when its cold (30 F) the light remains off.

I have the same symptoms... where u can idle for 5 minutes, and the light remains off. But as soon as you move the car... on goes the light.
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Old 02-13-2008, 06:20 PM
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Add me to the list of annoyed owners with this problem...
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Old 02-14-2008, 06:46 PM
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I ran into the same issue with my 89 s2. I removed the sensor and traced the signal back to the cluster. I had a buddy move the float while I was doing this so I could be sure the signal was pulling down correctly. I traced the problem back to the cluster. In the cluster is a circuit board above the speedometer. You do have to remove the speedometer to access the board. On my board I found a chip that had come loose and had fallen out. I then promptly messed up the chip attempting a hamfisted reinstall. So I just repaced the whole board with another one from a parts cluster I had laying about. Since I have done that, my oil level circuit has worked flawlessly.
Clusters are cheap, and if you can get a turbo cluster, the 180 mph speedo slips right in.

T
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Old 02-15-2008, 07:25 AM
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Well, after adding one quart of oil after reaching the top "full" mark. Only to have the light still come on, and then draining that quart of oil... to prevent bad things from happening. I decided to take the bulb out for the time being.

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Old 02-25-2008, 03:01 PM
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