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A collection of helpful articles based on reader submissions
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Below is a collection of Jim Grant's Tech Tips sorted by Vehicle Make. These Tech Tips were answers to questions submitted to Jim by users over the course of many years.
If you have any questions, please feel free to email us.



Lincoln - Mercury
  Jim Grant's Tech Tips

'91 Mercury Crown Vic, Low Oil Pressure

Q: I have a '91 Crown Vic with 122k on it. Lately the oil pressure light comes on, but only when the car is FULLY warmed up and idling while stopped. I'm pretty sure the pressure is low because I can hear a little rattling in the lifter department. It seems like the problem may be what controls the idle at high operating temperature. For example, if I take all load off the engine: turn off A/C and put transmission in park, the idle pops right back to a level which provides adequate pressure. It will even stall out while idling at a red light as the idle speed gets too low. Do you have any ideas?...Jay

A: There are a couple of items you should have checked. The idle speed is computer controlled and should not be dropping to the level that would create a stalling condition. The likely cause is a failed idle air control valve. It doesn’t take long to diagnose a failed idle air control valve. Too low of an engine idle speed on a vehicle of the age/mileage could allow oil pressure to drop to the warning level. If the problem remains after the idle speed is corrected then have a mechanical oil gauge installed to check the engine oil pressure readings. This would aid in determining if your problem is a serious one or just age showing up. Also, don’t be afraid to change the oil from a 5w-30 to a 10w-30 or 40. A little heavier oil can make a difference in preventing metal to metal contact in older engines.

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