Oil pressure drop - Team Camaro Tech
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post #1 of 7 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 01, 02:21 PM Thread Starter
Join Date: Oct 2000
Location: Dover, DE
Posts: 10

Hey everyone. I've got a problem that I think I know what's going on, but I'm not sure how to fix it.

'89 IROC 305 TPI. Stock oil pan, high volume oil pump that's less than a year old. What's happening is that when I come to a stop the oil pressure drops. If I have to come to a moderate-to-hard stop, it'll drop almost completely down to 0, then slowly come back up. Doesn't do it so bad when the engine (and oil) are cold, but gets worse as the engine warms up (thus, the oil thinning out).

My theory is that the oil is rushing forward in the pan away from the pickup and because it's a high volume pump, there's none left in the pan for it to pick up - it's all up top.

First mistake was probably to put that oil pump in there - should have kept it stock. But, it's already in there. I've heard I could add a little extra oil to help the problem. Do you all think this would be a good idea, and if so, any idea how much extra I should try? I've also read about some sort of baffolds (sp?) that can be put in the pan, but I'd rather not have to drop the pan as it involves pulling off my Y-pipe from the headers.

Thanks in advance for any opinions!

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post #2 of 7 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 01, 04:08 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: slaughters ky 42456
Posts: 238

sounds like your pickup tube has fell off the oil pump,Ihave had the same problem before with the same symptom you have If so this trick may help you.Put the pickup tube in a freezer for about an hour before installing,it will go into the oil pump easier, then spot weld the pickup to the pump.This works for me evertime.

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post #3 of 7 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 01, 04:22 PM
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Concord Cal. USA
Posts: 2,664

A high volume pump will put alot more oil in the upper end of the motor but I haven't ever ran across one that does what yours does. The motor in my 79 Vette has a high volume oil pump {thats the only way the builder would warranty it}I argued to no avail so its there. It has the pass car oil pan and it doesn't do anything like what is happening to you. I think the previous post is right the pickup has fallen off.

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post #4 of 7 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 01, 04:55 PM
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Join Date: Apr 1999
Location: Fortuna, CA
Posts: 26,529

I have seen this when the engine is 2 or more qts low. I don't mean this as an insult but have you checked the oil level?

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post #5 of 7 (permalink) Old May 3rd, 01, 06:08 PM
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Join Date: Mar 2001
Location: Wingate NC
Posts: 77

Here is something we all forget to check.
The oil sending unit.
I would get a new one.
You may be surprised at how many good bad.
Plus it is only a few $ to get one and see.
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post #6 of 7 (permalink) Old May 4th, 01, 09:32 AM
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Join Date: Sep 2000
Location: Washington, Michigan USA
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"All the oil going up top and sucking the pan dry" with high-volume oil pumps is an old wives' tale - another "urban legend", if you will (unless your drainback holes are plugged, of course). The worst thing they do is to put excessive load on the distributor drive gear, which can cause high-rpm spark scatter with point ignition if the drive gear-to-housing gap isn't properly shimmed.

Either your pickup is too far above the bottom of the pan (should be about 3/8"), or it has fallen off. Previous post is right on - get it properly positioned and secured(check clearance to pan with modeling clay and hit it with a spot of MIG).

'69 Z28 Fathom Green
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post #7 of 7 (permalink) Old May 4th, 01, 10:35 AM
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Join Date: Feb 2001
Location: Concord Cal. USA
Posts: 2,664

I don't want to argue with you JohnZ but a BB with a 4 quart oil pan and a HV. pump will pump the pan dry enough to cause a loss of oil pressure. I have not had a small block do it but they pump a lot less oil.

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