Home » Blog » How to Unstick Oil Pressure Relief Valve?: 2 Simple Ways

How to Unstick Oil Pressure Relief Valve?: 2 Simple Ways

The oil Pressure Relief Valve is unquestionably one of the most important components of your vehicle. It helps to regulate the proper amount of oil all over the engine. Because of the PRV, there is correct oil pressure and the engine is protected. 

But because of debris and corrosion, it is often found that the PRV is stuck. And trust me, you don’t want to face the outcomes of it. So the common question arises, how to unstick oil pressure relief valve?

Well, for unsticking an oil pressure relief valve, locating the valve at first is necessary. Then inspect it for any debris or contaminants, use penetrating oil to loosen it, if it doesn’t work then replace the valve if needed, and test the valve to ensure proper function.

Here, I’ll show you an easy step by step DIY process of unsticking the PRV. You will also get to know about the reasons for a PRV getting stuck and measures to prevent the oil pressure relief valve. Let’s Jump IN! 

symptoms of stuck oil pressure relief valve

6 Steps on How to Unstick Oil Pressure Relief Valve : A Complete DIY Guide 

Unsticking the oil pressure relief valve is a DIY Job. So read the steps carefully and I believe you’ll be able to pull it off. 

Things You’ll Need
1. A Replacement Spring
2. Owner’s Manual 
3. A Cloth or Brush
4. A Wrench
5. Replacement Spring (If Necessary) 
6. Penetrating Oil

Step 1: Locate the valve

The first step in unsticking an oil pressure relief valve is to locate it.

In most engines, you can find  the valve near the oil filter on the side of the engine block. So, you’ll find it there.

However, one of my friends had trouble locating it. I asked him to check the oil pressure line. He followed it and easily located the PRV as it is connected with the oil pressure line.

One more thing. It may be obscured by other engine components, so do not get confused, and you may need to remove some parts to access it. You can always check the owner’s manual to get an idea of it.

Step 2: Inspect the valve

Once you have located the valve, you should inspect it to determine the cause of the sticking.

Look for any debris or contaminants that may have clogged the valve, such as dirt or sludge. These are often the most common reasons for the valve to get stuck. I personally faced it twice.

If you find any debris, use a clean cloth to wipe it away.

Step 3: Use penetrating oil.

If the valve is still stuck, you can try using penetrating oil to loosen it up.

Spray the penetrating oil directly on the valve and wait for a couple of minutes. Then, use a wrench to turn the valve back and forth to help loosen it up.

Step 4: Removing or Replacing

Even after using penetrating oil, if it doesn’t work, you need to look for the cause of the problem. In most cases, there are two reasons:

  • Trouble with the Spring
  • Clogged Seat

If you have a problem with the spring, then you don’t have to worry that much. It is a simple problem. Replacing just the spring will solve the problem, and you don’t have to think about removing the entire valve.

On the other hand, if it is a case of a clogged seat, unfortunately, the valve needs to be removed. It needs to be cleaned and reassembled.

When it is like this, many people take it to a mechanic. So, if you have trouble doing it, then it is always safe to go to a mechanic.

Step 5: Reinstallation

You are almost done here.

You can reinstall it after assembling the pressure regulator. So firstly, make sure the spring is in its perfect place.

Remember where the PRV is located? Yes, on the side of the engine block. So slowly put it in place, and always remember not to over-tighten it.

Step 6: Test the valve

After the valve is replaced, you should test it to ensure that it is working properly.

Start the engine and let it run for a few minutes while monitoring the oil pressure gauge.

If the gauge is reading correctly, then the valve has been successfully unstuck. You have successfully done the job!

Reasons Why Oil PRV Get Stuck

Here are a bunch of reasons why your PRV might get stuck. Sometimes you might need to identify the cause in order to solve the problem. So have a good look: 

1. Debris buildup

Like I said earlier, this is one of the most common reasons. 

Over time, debris and contaminants can accumulate in the valve, causing it to stick in the closed position. My very own Honda vehicle faced this problem. 

Also, when there is a large amount of debris buildup it can lead to big problems as well. 

That’s why, try to make sure there isn’t any kind of buildup. 

2. Lack of lubrication

This is another major reason. 

If the valve does not receive enough lubrication, the moving parts can become sticky, causing the valve to stick in the closed position. Because of the failings of lubrication, your entire engine might even get damaged.

Oil is used to lubricate the valve and its internal components, and if there is not enough oil present, the valve may become hard to move. 

So, a good oil and a proper lubrication needs to be maintained. 

3. Pressure

When there is excessive pressure, the valve cannot open properly and it might get stuck. So, oil pressure in the engine system must maintain a good balance. 

4. Wear Problem

If you have a really old engine, then the valve can be worn. 

Then it won’t function properly and might get stuck as well. 

5. Damaged Spring or Seal

Spring is an important element. It is responsible for providing the force needed to open the valve, and if it becomes damaged, it may not be able to provide enough force. So, you need to take good care of the spring. 

What about the damaged seal? Well, it is kind of similar. A damaged seal can prevent the valve from sealing properly, allowing oil to leak out.

6. Improper installation

There’s one more big reason. If the valve is not installed correctly, it may not function properly, resulting in a stuck valve. 

Improper installation can cause the valve to be installed in the wrong position or at the wrong angle, preventing it from functioning properly. 

So during the installation process, make sure you do everything perfectly. And remember, if you are confused or if you are not able to do it properly, your car can always visit her mechanic. 

How to prevent the Pressure Relief Valve from getting stuck

Preventing an oil pressure relief valve from getting stuck is important in order to maintain the proper oil pressure within the engine and prevent potential damage.

Here are some tips on how to prevent the pressure relief valve from getting stuck:

1. Regularly change the oil

One of the main causes of a stuck pressure relief valve is dirty or contaminated oil. I found a lot of people who faced this problem because they did not change their oils regularly.

Also, not changing the oil regularly can lead to severe, major problems with the engine as well.

By regularly changing the oil and using a good oil filter, you can help prevent debris and contaminants from clogging the valve.

2. Use a high-quality oil

Using a high-quality oil that is specifically formulated for your engine can help prevent the buildup of sludge and other contaminants.

So, check your owners manual or consult with an expert, then get the best possible oil for your vehicle.

3. Monitor the oil level

You should try to monitor the oil level from time to time. Why? 

Because keeping a close eye on the oil level and adding oil as needed can help prevent the valve from sticking due to low oil pressure.

4. Avoid over-revving the engine

Over-revving the engine can cause the oil pressure to spike, which can put extra stress on the valve and cause it to stick. That is why, try to avoid it as much as you can.

5. Regularly inspect the valve

Regularly inspecting the valve for any signs of debris or damage can help you address any issues before they become a problem.

And of course, regular maintenance will always help keep the car’s engine in the best possible shape. Not just that, the efficiency and performance level will always be high with regular maintenance.

It is important to keep in mind that even with proper maintenance, the pressure relief valve may still become stuck.

However, by following these preventative measures, you can greatly reduce the risk of the valve becoming stuck and prolong the lifespan of your engine.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

1. What would happen when an oil pressure relief valve is stuck open?

Answer: A lot of oil will bleed off. Then what? Well, you will get less oil pressure and slowly the engine will be damaged.

2. What should I do if my oil pressure relief valve is stuck and cannot be unstuck?

Answer: Worst case scenario. If it is damaged beyond repair, it should be replaced.

3. Should I drive my vehicle with a stuck oil pressure relief valve?

Answer: No, clearly you should not. It will surely damage the engine in the long run. 

Whether the valve is stuck in a closed or open position, there will be problems with the oil pressure. And it doesn’t matter if you are getting a low oil pressure or a high one, because it will leave your engine damaged either way. 

But if it is an emergency and you need your car badly, you can take the risk. Otherwise it’s a big no from me and you should get your car fixed ASAP.

4. How often Should Pressure Relief Valves be Replaced?

Answer: 4 to 5 Years. This will make sure that the valve is in really good shape.

Bottom Line

Oil pressure relief valve is a crucial component in any internal combustion engine and it can get stuck for various reasons.

Now that you know how to unstick oil pressure relief valve, I hope it won’t be a problem for you. Also, go through the measures again and try to prevent it in the first place.

And remember, if you are still having problems, you can always take the car to a mechanic. 

Till then, Safe Driving!

Similar Posts

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *