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MX5 Miata Tech Forum

2006 touring NC oil pressure problem or not

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hheadman Craig C
New Orleans, LA, USA   USA
I am looking to purchase a used 2006 NC with 78K miles. When I went to test drive it I noticed the oil gauge fluctuates along side of the tach. In other words when its idling its down one line from Low and as I give it gas it moves up to slightly past mid way and then comes down with the idle and tach. I was told this is normal and that its not really an oil gauge. "Fake Gauge" I want to feel comfortable buying this making sure that it is not an actual oil pressure problem in the engine.Ii have never heard of a gauge functioning in this way. Can anyone tell me their thoughts on this issue? I really like the car and believe the owner but just want a better comfort level from someone who can back up what the owner is saying.


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leesmx5 Lee Oberg
Bay Saint Louis, MS, USA   USA
My 2007 MX-5 does the same. I'm guessing its OK

MarioO Avatar
MarioO Silver Member Mario Ordonez
Fort Myers, FL, USA   USA
All Miata NC started out using synthetic oil 5-10 or 5-20 it is normal that at idle the 2 litre engine oil pressure is very low, but as you accelerate and the engine warms up to running temperature the oil pressure increases to it appropriate pressure.

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TRGT673 Avatar
TRGT673 Keith Bay
West Allis, WI, USA   USA
You've heard the term 'idiot light' for an idicator of some status in a car that is displayed as a light; on is bad, off is good, or vice versa as appropriate. The Miata oil gauge is an 'idiot gauge'. it is driven by the car's computer and displays what it thinks would be the oil pressure if it, the gauge, actually measured and displayed a real pressure. Ignore it for the most part, key an eye on your oil level, and don't worry. That is the way it works.

Edited 2 time(s). Last edit at 2018-06-25 04:02 PM by TRGT673.

1Hilltopmike Avatar
1Hilltopmike Michael Adams
Abilene, TX, USA   USA
I think I'd take it to a mechanic and have him tell me what the oil pressure actually is. The mechanic should be able to just open the hood and hook up an oil pressure gage to it & tell you.

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Pc484848 Phil Christie
St.Thomas, ON, Canada   CAN
I have your year and model of MX-5. It too will have the oil pressure gauge fluctuate as r.p.m. varies.
Keep an eye on oil level, and change as per manual's suggestions.
The oil dip stick is a little weird to read.
I use synthetic and it seems to take some time for oil to return to the pan.

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