P0520 is a common OBD2 fault code. It is generic, meaning it has the same meaning for the Dodge Durango as it does for any other vehicle. P0520 indicates that the oil pressure sensor is operating outside of its normal “range.” It is usually caused by a bad oil pressure sensor switch or a wiring problem.
The oil pressure sensor in your Durango measures oil pressure mechanically and converts that reading into a voltage signal that the ECM (computer) converts into an oil pressure reading. This signal is what you see on your oil pressure gauge and activates the oil warning light.
If the red oil warning light is on, there may be a serious problem. Don’t assume the oil pressure sensor is bad. P0520 can occur when there is no oil pressure at all.
P0520 Fast Data
- The most common cause is the oil pressure sensor.
- The cause may be low oil pressure.
- If you hear knocking or have a low oil pressure light, do not drive until P0520 is diagnosed.
- Related to P0521
P0520 Symptoms: Dodge Durango
Often there are no symptoms (other than the check engine light). If you notice that the engine sounds different (clacky, metallic, etc.) you may not have enough oil pressure.
Causes of P0520: Dodge Durango
- Oil pressure sensor- The oil pressure sensor itself is likely the cause of P0520, but it would be wise to look at the oil level and quality, as well as the wiring, first.
- Oil pressure sensor wiring- P0520 indicates that the oil pressure sensor signal has a circuit malfunction. This could indicate a wiring problem.
- Low or no oil- The first thing you should do is check if there is oil in your vehicle’s engine. If the crankcase is empty or has very little oil, it may return the P0520 code. If this is the case, refill the oil, clear the code and that may fix the problem.
- Low oil pressure- If the oil pressure level is too low, this code will appear. It should appear with the oil light, or with a low oil pressure gauge reading
- Dirty or incorrect oil If the oil in your Durango has not been changed for a long enough period of time, it can interfere with the oil pressure sensor, even if there is still oil pressure.
Durango P0520 Diagnostic
These are the steps a mechanic would follow to manually diagnose P0520 on your Dodge Durango.
1. Check the oil
The first thing you should do is check the oil level. If it is full, make sure it looks healthy. If it appears black or dirty, it may be interfering with the oil pressure sensor. If the vehicle is past its oil change due date (regardless of what the oil looks like), it would be a good idea to change the oil.
2. Inspect the wiring harness
Next, you should inspect the wiring harness that runs from the oil pressure sensor to the ECM. If you have any damaged wiring, it could be causing P0520. Don’t forget to ensure that the wiring harness is still connected to the sending unit and is not damaged.
Wiring problems are one of the most common reasons this code occurs. The wiring is near the Durango’s exhaust pipe and can become brittle over time.
3. Manually check oil pressure
Assuming the oil level and wiring seem fine, the next would be to manually check the oil pressure. You can use a manual oil pressure gauge to see if it is where it should be. They are easy to use. Here is a great YouTube video that will show you exactly how to use this meter to check.
If the oil pressure on the gauge is correct, you will need to replace the oil pressure sending/sensor unit. If your oil pressure is low or non-existent, you’ll need to find out why.
Conclusion: P0520 Dodge Durango
Diagnosing P0520 is simple. Be sure to check that you have oil pressure if the oil light is on. Good luck repairing your Durango!