Your vehicle’s oil pump plays a crucial role in ensuring the engine runs properly. A bad oil pump can severely damage your car’s engine, so it’s important to replace it at the first sign of trouble.
But, how much will it cost to replace your vehicle’s oil pump?
Generally, replacing your car’s engine oil pump will cost anywhere between $300-$1,000. The exact price will vary based on several factors, such as the make and model of your car, the mechanic you take it to, and where you live.
Keep reading to learn more about the cost of replacing an oil pump, as well as ways to tell when you need to have this job done.
- What is the Average Cost of Oil Pump Replacement?
- What Does an Oil Pump Do?
- What Should I Do if My Oil Pump isn’t Working Properly?
- How Can I Tell if I Need a New Oil Pump?
- What Are Common Signs of a Bad Oil Pump?
- How is an Oil Pump Replaced?
- Related Guides
- Final Thoughts
What is the Average Cost of Oil Pump Replacement?
Depending on several factors, the cost of your oil pump replacement will likely range between $300-$1,000. In some cases, however, it can cost as much as $1,300.
You’ll typically have to pay somewhere between $100-$400 for the pump itself, while the cost of labor will make up the rest of the total price.
Unless you have a high-performance or racing engine, you will most likely need a standard oil pump. If you do have a higher-performance engine, however, you may need either a high-volume or high-performance oil pump instead.
Standard, High-Pressure, and High-Volume Oil Pumps
Before you purchase a new oil pump, you’ll first need to figure out which type you need. The type of engine oil pump you need depends on how your engine is used.
Here are a few characteristics of standard, high-pressure, and high-volume oil pumps.
|Type of Pump||Characteristics|
|Standard Oil Pump||● Good choice for most engines
● Enough flow and pressure for moderate/average performance engines
● Meets or exceeds OEM standards
|High-Pressure Oil Pump||
● Allow more pressure to build before the oil is pushed back into the oil pan
● Has a stiffer spring in its bypass valve
● Good choice for vehicles that have high RPM-turning, high-performance engines
|High-Volume Oil Pump||● Uses larger gears to push more oil through the system per revolution
● Good choice for performance engines that have large bearing clearances
● Extra oil helps to maintain the vehicle’s engine pressure and carries more heat away from the engine
● May be required if you have add-on engine parts, like a supercharger or turbocharger
You only need a high-pressure or high-volume oil pump if you have a high-performance or racing engine. While you should always research what type of oil pump your engine requires, standard oil pumps will be appropriate for most vehicles.
What Does an Oil Pump Do?
If you think you may need a new engine oil pump, it’s important to understand just how vital of a role it plays in your car’s operation.
The oil pump pumps oil into your engine, which then moves the pressurized oil into all the different components that need it.
The oil you put into your vehicle is stored in the engine oil pan. After the oil pump takes the oil from this pan and pumps it into the engine, the engine allows it to pass through the oil passages and builds up pressure.
These oil passages then send the oil to the different parts that need it.
Oil is essential to your vehicle’s operation because it creates a barrier between certain engine components to ensure they don’t rub up against one another.
The oil pump works continuously to ensure each part is always getting enough.
What Should I Do if My Oil Pump isn’t Working Properly?
When your oil pump is not doing its job, it won’t be able to get oil to every part of the engine that needs it. This can cause a myriad of operational problems, and you might not be able to even start your car.
If your car won’t start, you should not continue to try and get it to start. This will only put a strain on the engine and may cause it to seize if you keep on trying.
The best thing to do in this situation is to get the vehicle to a mechanic as soon as possible so the problem can be diagnosed and repaired.
How Can I Tell if I Need a New Oil Pump?
In the best-case scenario, your engine oil pump will never need to be replaced. However, it is often difficult to predict how long one will last.
This depends on several factors, such as the type of car you have, how durable your pump is, and what you do to maintain your vehicle.
You can extend the life of your oil pump by properly maintaining your car. This includes changing your oil regularly and replacing the filter at the same time and taking your car to the mechanic at the first sign of trouble.
What Are Common Signs of a Bad Oil Pump?
Your car will not be able to run properly with a bad oil pump, so if it starts to go you will probably notice as soon as you turn your car on.
Here are some telltale signs that your engine oil pump will need to be replaced.
The Check Engine Light Will Come On
Your car’s check engine light may light up if you need your oil pump replaced. Some cars are also equipped with an oil pressure light, which will tell you more definitively that the oil pump is causing the problem. You should take your vehicle to the mechanic any time the check engine light comes on so they can diagnose the issue properly.
Your Car May Drop into Reduced Power Mode
When your car’s powertrain control module (PCM) detects a system failure of any kind, it sometimes drops into reduced power mode.
The reduced power mode is a “fail-safe” mechanism that limits your vehicle’s performance in the event of a failure.
Reduced power mode may inhibit your car’s ability to accelerate, or it may cut off fuel delivery altogether.
You will not be able to drive as fast or accelerate easily, and if it cuts off fuel delivery, your car will be undrivable. This fail-safe mechanism protects your engine and other vital components from seizing or failing while you’re driving.
The reduced power mode is meant to keep both you and your vehicle safe. You’ll typically see a message on your dashboard that tells you when your car has dropped into reduced power mode, and a bad oil pump may be the cause.
Your Engine May Stall
Your vehicle’s engine can stall for many reasons, including a poorly functioning oil pump. When your engine stalls, it means it has died.
If the engine stalls while you’re driving, you’ll lose control of your power steering as well as your power brakes.
The first thing to do after your engine has stalled is put your hazard lights on, try to pump your brakes, and move the car over to the side of the road where you can safely stop. You can try to restart your car, but it may not be able to turn on again.
If you cannot get your car going again after it has stalled, you should have it towed to a reputable mechanic as soon as possible. The professionals will be able to properly diagnose the issue.
Increased Engine Temperature
The oil in your vehicle acts as a lubricant for the moving metal components inside your engine. If there’s not enough oil, these components can rub together.
The resulting friction produces heat and may cause your engine to overheat.
While there are several reasons why your engine may be overheating, a bad oil pump is one of the common causes. If your coolant levels are normal, it may be time to ask a mechanic if the oil pump needs to be replaced.
How is an Oil Pump Replaced?
If your oil pump is not functioning properly, a mechanic will be able to repair it. An oil pump replacement is not an easy fix, so it should always be performed by a professional unless you have significant experience working on cars.
To replace your oil pump, the mechanic will take the following steps.
First, they’ll park the vehicle and set the emergency brake. Then, the front wheels will be removed to allow access to the area.
Next, the mechanic will disconnect the negative battery cable and drain any engine oil that’s currently in your vehicle. Once the oil has been drained, the oil pan and oil pan bolts can be removed. Some vehicles will require other components, such as the starter or exhaust pipe, to be removed, as well.
The oil pan gasket will be removed next, and then the oil pump itself will be removed along with the extension shaft.
The mechanic will then install the new oil pump in its place, then put the drive shaft extension into the drive. The pump-to-rear bearing cap bolt will be installed and tightened to secure it.
In the final steps, the new oil pan will be installed and the engine will be refilled with oil. Then, the wheels can be replaced and the jack can be taken off.
Your oil pump is a critical component of your vehicle, and replacing it is not an easy task. The cost of repair by a professional mechanic generally ranges anywhere from $300 to $1,000 after all is said and done.
It’s not a cheap repair, but a necessary one if you’d like to continue safely driving your car.