As a Subaru car owner, you may wonder what it means when the oil light comes on. Oil is an essential component of your car’s engine and is responsible for lubricating its moving parts. Therefore, running low on oil or having dirty oil could cause severe damage to your engine. So, it is essential to understand the warning signs that your Subaru car gives and how to interpret them.
In this article, we will provide you with a comprehensive guide on when the Subaru oil light comes on, what it means, and the steps that car owners should take when it illuminates.
Understanding the Subaru Oil Light
The oil light is a critical dashboard warning light that alerts drivers that their car’s engine oil is running low or has lost its pressure. The light may appear as a single red circle or as a cluster of circles with an exclamation mark in the center.
When the oil light comes on, it means that the car’s oil pressure has fallen below the recommended level or that the oil level is insufficient to maintain the engine’s optimal performance. Driving with low oil levels or insufficient oil pressure can cause permanent damage to the engine.
What Causes the Subaru Oil Light to Come On?
Several issues can cause the oil light to turn on, including:
- Low oil levels due to oil leaks or burning oil
- Dirty or contaminated oil causing blockages in the engine’s oil passages
- Clogged oil filters, preventing oil from flowing freely
- Failing oil pressure sensors or oil pressure gauges
If you notice the oil light come on, don’t ignore it or presume it’s a minor issue as it could result in significant engine damage.
Steps to Take When the Subaru Oil Light Comes On
If the Subaru oil light comes on while you’re driving, take the following steps:
Pull over immediately, turn off the engine, and wait for it to cool down. Running a hot engine without the proper oil levels or oil pressure can cause permanent engine damage.
Check the oil level using the dipstick, and if it’s low, add more oil until it reaches the recommended level.
If the oil levels are normal, have your car towed to the nearest repair shop for further inspection. Don’t attempt to drive your car if the oil light remains on, as it is a sign the engine isn’t receiving enough oil pressure, which can lead to critical engine damage.
Have your mechanic carry out a thorough inspection of the car’s oil system to diagnose any potential issues.
The Importance of Regular Oil Changes
One of the most effective ways to avoid issues with your car’s oil system is to ensure you follow the manufacturer’s recommended oil change schedule. Regular oil changes help prevent oil leaks, keep oil passages and filters clean, and maintain oil pressure sensors.
Most Subaru models require an oil change every 7,500 miles or every six months, whichever comes first. Failing to change your oil regularly can cause the oil to become dirty, reducing its lubricating properties, which can damage the engine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Will driving with the oil light on damage my engine?
Yes, driving with the oil light on can damage your engine significantly. The oil light indicates low oil levels or insufficient oil pressure, which can cause critical engine damage.
How often should I change my oil in my Subaru car?
Subaru recommends oil changes at least every 7,500 miles or six months, whichever comes first. However, depending on your driving habits, you may require more frequent oil changes.
Can I drive my car if the oil light comes on?
No, it’s not advisable to continue driving your car if the oil light comes on. Pull over immediately, turn off the engine, and wait for it to cool down, then check the oil level and add more oil if necessary. If the oil light remains on, it’s an indication of a significant problem that needs attention from a professional mechanic.
What should I do if my Subaru oil light flickers or flashes?
If your oil light flickers or flashes, it indicates a more serious problem that requires immediate attention. Pull over and stop the engine immediately, and have your car towed to the nearest Subaru service center for further inspection.
In summary, the Subaru oil light is a critical warning sign that indicates low oil levels or insufficient oil pressure in your engine. If the light turns on, pull over immediately, check the oil level, and add more oil if necessary. If the light remains on, have your car towed to a reliable mechanic for further inspection.
Regular oil changes are essential to maintain your Subaru’s engine and prevent issues with the oil system. Follow the recommended oil change schedule to prevent dirty oil, oil leaks, or clogged oil filters.