What Causes Low Oil Pressure in a Ford 5.4 Engine?

Every Ford 5.4 engine owner is luckiest; sadly, they face low oil pressure. You may experience Ford 5.4 engine with low oil pressure when on the road. Low oil pressure is a severe condition for every car. This problem can be dreadful if prompt action is not taken.

Several causes include low oil pressure, such as inept oil filters, bad oil pressure sensors, poor oil pumping, etc.

I shared my experience in this comprehensive guide on what causes low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine. Keep on reading.

what causes low oil pressure in a ford 5.4 engine

What is the Normal Oil Pressure of Ford 5.4 Engine?

The normal oil pressure of the Ford 5.4 engine is 15 PSI, engine at operating temperature, idle speed, and transmission in neutral.

Your car engine will perform inefficiently if the oil pressure is inaccurate. Moreover, engine parts will not be well-lubricated, forcing the engine to work. As a result, the lifespan of your car engine will be reduced. For this reason, maintaining the normal oil pressure of the Ford 5.4 engine is significantly essential.

What Causes Low Oil Pressure in a Ford 5.4 Engine?

As stated earlier, several reasons are responsible for Ford’s 5.4 engine’s low oil pressure. In this section, I shared the most common reasons.

Clogged Oil Filter

The engine and oil health rely a lot on an optimal oil filter. The responsibility of an oil filter is to remove deposits, metals, dust, or other harmful components from oil. Often, scrap clogs the oil filter and causes low oil pressure.

Don’t be late to check your oil filter when you experience low oil pressure. In the case of a damaged oil filter, replace it with a new one.

Clogged air filters are also the prime reason for Ford 5.8 low oil pressure.

Damaged Oil Pressure Sensor

Worn out or damaged oil pressure sensor is also responsible for showing inaccurate oil pressure levels. You may get a notification from the light, but no errors are there.

During such situations, inspect the oil pressure sensor, replace it and see the result.

Wrong Oil

Every car company specifies the best oil for their engine, and it is no exception for the Ford 5.4. Also, a viscosity rating is recommended for Ford 5.4. Due to low viscosity, the engine will experience low oil pressure.

Selecting the wrong viscosity rating is one of the common mistakes most people make when switching oil to a different one. So, make sure to buy the right and recommended oil from the manufacturers. Otherwise, your Ford may stop working on the road.

If you are looking for a Ford 5.4 engine compatible oil, I suggest you buy the Motorcraft SAE 5W – 20 Synthetic Oil.

Inefficient Oil Pump

The oil pump lubricates different engine components. Due to the pressure created by the oil pump, oil runs toward all engine parts to lubricate. You will surely face low oil pressure when an oil pump performs inefficiently. 

Old Oil

Many Ford owners leave the oil for several days in the engine. They don’t change the oil when required. As a result, it loses its normal viscosity rating. Thus, the old oil will become thick, creating a low oil pressure problem.

So, changing the oil is mandatory for regular maintenance. In order to learn the oil changing schedule, read the owner’s manual. 

What are the Symptoms of Low Oil Pressure in a Ford 5.4?

Low oil pressure shows some symptoms in Ford 5.4. Learning about these signs will help you identify the low oil pressure problem. Let’s read the symptoms below.

  • Engine Noise: Lubrication of the oil parts becomes improper because of low oil pressure. This way, you may hear your engine grinding, clunking, or ticking noise. 
  • Burning Oil Smell: You will smell burning oil for oil leakage issues. Due to the oil leakage, the engine oil level will reduce. A low oil level creates low oil pressure.
  • Poor Engine Performance: Ever experienced frequent problems like a dirty filter, faulty oil pump, engine noise, etc.? Be sure that these repeated complications lead your Ford to poor engine performance.   

How to Solve Low Pressure in a Ford 5.4 Engine?

You will need to identify the reasons for Ford 5.4 engine’s low oil pressure before fixing it. So, identify the problem first and take prompt action accordingly. Read the below points to solve low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine.

  • Inspect your vehicle. Fill the engine with the manufacturer’s recommended oil type for low oil levels.
  • Using the suggested oil viscosity rating is crucial. The right viscosity rating can help you solve low oil pressure and prolong your 5.4 engine performance.
  • Periodically clean the oil filter. This will eliminate dust and deposit formation. Remember to change it if needed.
  • In the case of a burning smell, you must consult a professional mechanic.
  • If you find any complications in the oil pressure sensor, replace it immediately.
  • Unfortunately, you mayn’t find exact reasons for low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine. Call a professional technician to fix the low-pressure engine flaws.


Why does my Ford say low oil pressure?

Because of low oil pressure, your Ford engine oil pressure warning light will come on. Low pressure can happen for a faulty oil sensor, jammed oil filter, or using the wrong oil in your Ford car.

Can I fix the low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine?

Yes, fixing low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine is pretty effortless. The key is regular maintenance and using the manufacturer-recommended oil. By ensuring periodic maintenance, you can easily identify the reasons for low oil pressure, and solving will become easy. Also, using oil with the right viscosity rating will guarantee the optimum performance of your Ford 5.4 engine.

Is it driving safe with low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine?

You mustn’t drive a Ford car with low oil pressure. Your Ford 5.4 engine and its components will severely damage for sure.

How long can my Ford car run with low oil pressure?

Your Ford car will run for not more than 30 minutes with low oil pressure. However, I recommend you not to run even 5 minutes if your Ford 5.4 engine oil pressure is low. If you plan to drive, be ready for costly repairs.

Final Notes

Every car owner should maintain scheduled maintenance to avoid Ford 5.4 low oil pressure. I believe after reading this guide on what causes low oil pressure in a Ford 5.4 engine will help you solve the complications as well.

I recommend you become serious about low oil pressure. Identify the problem first just after noticing low oil pressure. If identifying the problem becomes difficult, don’t hesitate to take your Ford car to a reputable mechanic shop.

Dan Jones is a car enthusiast and has been involved in the automotive industry for the last 10 years. He has a practical knowledge of vehicles and vehicle parts. Besides, he spends most of his time in the garage and deals with various car problems.