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Repairing Oil Level Sensor

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I have a slow oil leak from around the Oil Level Sensor on my 89 Reatta.  Pic:

 

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Up close:

 

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I drained the oil and then removed this switch, and thought that just cleaning the threads, putting anti-seize on the threads, and screwing in real tight would solve the small oil leak:  (Its a simple 2 pin connector)

 

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After putting it back in, and making it "good-en-tight", I plugged the connector back in, filled her up with oil, and thought that problem was solved.  I came back today and found oil again leaking on the floor......."DOHHHHH!" 

 

I went to Rock Auto to see if this part was available, and it sure is (about $25).  However, the part is only the sensor, and you have to re-use the outside 6-sided metal adapter which screws into the oil pan.  Here is a pic of the replacement sensor:

 

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So, this yellow sensor screws into the larger metal "carrier" which then screws into the oil pan.  So, I guess you just take plyers and bend those 6 crimps flush, and then remove the yellow sensor and replace with a new one.  Other pics show that this yellow sensor has an O-Ring that seals it.  Has anyone every just tried to remove the old sensor and just replace the O-Ring? 

 

Any tips?

 

Thanks.

 

 

 

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This sounds cheap, but I had one that leaked and went to Gibson's and got a used one...

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Dave.....So, you did not have to bend those 6 tabs and screw-in the used one?  Im gonna give that a try, and just see if the O-Ring needs replacing.

 

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Neither my original one or the one from Gibson's had that metal tab thing you show...

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I have an '89, '90 and '95 in the garage and all of them have what looks to be approx. 1.25" size hex screwed directly into the pan with a washer between the hex and pan. I have never seen one that looks like the above.

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Dave/2Seater.......Wow, thats really interesting that none of your cars have anything like the sensor screwed into my oil pan.  I wonder where the heck this one came from.  So, I sounds like those yellow replacement sensors shown at Rock Auto would actually just screw straight into the oil pan, and not need to be incased first by that robust metal encasement.  I will take that sucker out and do an autopsy (alien autopsy), and let you know if find any Martian DNA encrusted on it. 

 

I would love to hear if anyone else has ever seen one like this before.  Maybe I can find a part number on it, and do some digging as to its origins.

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Yeah yours does look different than the one on mine too.  I actually just found a generic O ring that fit around the shaft right and then cranked it down tight. I thought for sure it would still leak, but so far it hasn't.

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PHilbo.....Mine is still going "drip, drip, drip", so I need to again drain the oil pan and tear into that sensor......maybe a new oring can be installed.

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2 minutes ago, Studebaker said:

PHilbo.....Mine is still going "drip, drip, drip", so I need to again drain the oil pan and tear into that sensor......maybe a new oring can be installed.

If you are still using this sensor you need to get a new sensor that is made for a Reatta engine and install it with a new o-ring.  The sensor in my car doesn't look like that and no photos I have ever seen of a Reatta oil level sensor looks like the one in your photo.

 

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So I do have a 98 park avenue with a series 2 motor.  The sensor it has looks exactly like the reatta's.  I don't know if it is the exact same part but it sure looks like it.  I bet you could get a junkyard sensor from any GM 3.8 engine (which is pretty much any car they made throughout the 90s and early 2000s).

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Philbo.......I bet you are right, and this oil sensor was probably for another Buick, and was probably installed by a mechanic who thought it was "close enuff".

 

I just drained the oil again, and will tear into that sensor tomorrow.  If it cant be fixed, I will take Ronnie's advice and order a Reatta sensor.

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Final update on the oil sensor:

 

I removed the old sensor and made an attempt at bending the tabs over and opening it up to get to the inner ORing. 

 

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I tried grinding those 6 tabs, and it was such a royal pain that I finally gave up and ordered a new sensor:

 

 

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Here is the new yellow one compared to the old metal one (which may have been for another Buick model):

The new yellow one has a rigid shaft, wheras the old one had a flexible one:

 

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Got it installed, and it does not leak, and appears to work:

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Now, on to other repairs.

 

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