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Twice in the last two weeks, I started my 2004 dodge dakota with 3.7 and looked down and the "check gauges" light was on. Upon inspection the oil pressure gauge was at Zero. Both times I shut the truck off and started it back and both times the oil pressure came back. It started going up pretty slow like about 5 or 10 seconds to reach full pressure. It has only done it twice while starting and never during driving. I wonder if I have a gauge or a pump problem. Truck has 276000 miles on it. it's probably time. How hard is it to pull the pan on this model. Do you have to pull the motor to replace the oil pump?
 

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You don't have to pull the motor, but according to the FSM it's a pretty big job. You have to remove the front cross member and raise the engine slightly to get clearance to remove the pan. The oil pump is on the front of the crankshaft and removing it requires removal of the timing cover and the timing chains and tensioners. If you don't have an FSM, strongly recommend getting one before you tackle this job.
 
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