oil light flickers at idle

Discussion in 'Dyna Models' started by 01GlideRider, Jun 9, 2015.

  1. 01GlideRider

    01GlideRider Member

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    Hi, After a 100 mile ride today I noticed when I got back home my oil light was flickering at idle, I checked the oil and it checked good and only has about 500 miles on it (syn3). The bike is a 2001 superglide. Any ideas on what to check next? .....Thanks
     
  2. BUBBIE

    BUBBIE Well-Known Member

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    Might the Idle be too Slow? Oil TOO HOT?

    The pressure NEEDS to be Verified with a Manual Gauge...

    I would install a Mechanical Pressure Gauge, Teed' off to still use the one you have ie; (IDIOT Light) :rofl

    The electric sensor, Grounding the Light to work for your stock gauge will usually come on OR wink at you a bit IF oil is too hot or Idle is TOO Slow, under 5 pounds usually it will turn on... OR that sensor is bad... IF you bring up the idle A TAD.... About 1,000 to 1200 RPM Light should Not come on.

    The manual gauge is more to show you a Pressure and may not be 100% accurate but it will show oil pressure each time the motor running on AND at Idle, IF close to "0" on a manual gauge, it will tell you have a problem.

    I would get the HD gauge with the nice chrome bracket that fits off the rear Cylinder head with a insulated line to the T to hook up under your electric sensor.

    Just My Way...........

    signed....BUBBIE
     
  3. Bodeen

    Bodeen Well-Known Member Staff Member Moderator Contributor

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    +1 on what Bubbie said. Need to verify the actual pressure.
     
  4. dolt

    dolt Senior Member Contributor

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    Agree with Bubbie and Bodeen; however, it is not uncommon for the oil light to flicker at idle on the early models. The H-D lubrication system is not a pressure based system but a volume based system. As long as the oil is getting where it is supposed to go, you probably don't have an issue.

    A manual gauge installed as Bubbie has suggested is a good idea. The installation of the Baisley pressure relief valve spring will also bump on low rpm oil pressure; a $12 fix and can be installed without removing the cam plate.:s
     
  5. 01GlideRider

    01GlideRider Member

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    Thanks guys, I'll add a gauge and today I ordered the spring and I will keep posted the results, If anyone has anymore idea"s I sure could use them...
     
  6. chief08

    chief08 Member

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    what do you mean pressure based system. explain that. I used valve spring it works good hot idle is 20psi
     
  7. dolt

    dolt Senior Member Contributor

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    The meaning should be self explanatory. The HD oiling system does not require high pressure to provide lubrication where needed. The system relies on volume.

    If you have ever adjusted lifters on a small block Chevy, you will remember how the oil squirted in your face and everywhere else. Pull the rocker box cover on a TC motor at idle and you will see the oil pumping up through the pushrods to lubricate the rocker arms but very little squirting; that should explain the difference.:s

    Of course the system requires pressure to move the oil but the HD lubrication system does not require the same pressure that a typical V8 system requires to lubricate cam bearings, rod bearings, etc.

    IMHO, you gain nothing by having 20psi at idle over having 10-12 or having 50psi at cruise over having 32.:s As a matter of fact, higher pressures can cause aeration in the oil which can negatively affect lubrication and valve train noise.:(
     
  8. chief08

    chief08 Member

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    just wondering. if you gain nothing with hire oil psi at idle why did you suggest baisley pressure relief spring same thing I have in ps.i never let the oil squirt in my face have you:rofl
     
  9. dolt

    dolt Senior Member Contributor

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    The OPs concern was a flickering oil light. Low pressure at idle could be the cause. The Baisley spring will increase oil pressure at idle and might solve the OPs problem; it has no effect on cruise oil pressure.

    When I say "you gain nothing" I am referring to the fact that increasing oil pressure at hot idle from 10-12psi to 20psi doesn't improve the effectiveness of the lubrication system. It certainly doesn't hurt and might make you feel better but there is no effect except the "feel good" effect.:s

    You take me too literally. Adjusting valves on a small block Chevy at hot idle can result in oil in your face but mostly it gets everywhere else. Have you ever pulled the rocker covers on a Harley at hot idle? If you have done both, you get my drift; if not, well, you won't.:small3d023:

    Look, I don't care how much oil pressure you want to see on the gauge; your bike, your call. I am just telling you that idle oil pressure of 8-12psi and cruise oil pressure of 30-32psi is adequate and there is no need for more.
     
  10. Dan.1977P

    Dan.1977P Active Member

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    I have on an old 78 monte carlo and distinctly remember the oil bath. I have a rocker cover oil leak on the fatty and will be replacing the gasket at my next service so it may be a fun thing to crank it up to see the difference.