Issues with oil pressure on a SAAB 9-5ng TTID

When we bought our SAAB 9-5ng I knew it has an oil pressure issue, but it was told me that it has to do with the sensor. Well it has nothing to do with the sensor, since the oil pressure is just too low. Starting cold the oil pressure is less than 1 bar and when you add some gas it raises to 1 bar. Above 1 bar it is ok for the sensor, but it should be more.

What part do you need to replace

It is necessary to replace an o-ring with the number GM 55589549.

O-ring - Photo credits Augustinas Urbas
O-ring – Photo credits Augustinas Urbas

It is not a SAAB number, so be sure you order an o-ring. This o-ring is placed where the oil suction pipe goes into the motor. So it is not an easy replacement since you will have to lower the sump. As I did not do it myself, I have no experience what you need to dismantle to replace the o-ring.

Is it solving the oil pressure issue

Yes it is solving the oil pressure issue. After replacing the o-ring the dealer measured the oil pressure at cold start and immediately it was at 5 bar! You can also feel that the old part is hardened.

At what interval the o-ring has to replaced

At latest you will have to replace the part immediately if you have a warning when you start the car. According to others there seems an interval from Opel where they say every 120.000km. But I have also read from people they are only at 60.000km. So it depends alo on the kilometer or miles you drive per year. For myself I will use the interval 120.000km or 5 years. So mine was replaced in January 2016 at 192.500km and I plan a replacement at 300.000km since we drive around 27.500km a year. (Then I also need to replace the timing-belt, so it will be a big operation at once).

There are risks when you do not solve an oil pressure issue

The previous owner already had replaced the Turbo on our car. And driving with this continue low oil pressure can ruin your engine totally!

Which oil is used

According to Beherman (ex SAAB importer for The Netherlands and Belgium) it needs 0w40. Mine is now running on Mobil 1 New Life 0w40 (fully synthetic). Maybe next time I will use Mobil 1 ESP which might be better for driving the car a long time.

Since I wrote this article I got some comments from people who said that there are better oils available today. It seems that Dexos2 0w30 or 5w30 has the high shear module as a modern diesel need, but it has also a lower friction. I have no experience with an Dexos2 oil, but I will take a look and will write here my experience.

Which engines this issue involved

For SAAB the only engine is the 2.0TTID which can be found in the 9-5 from 2010 and later. There are other GM products like the Opel Insignia which has the same engine and this issue.


As mentioned in the start of this post our 9-5ng had this issue when we bought it. For all the details about our 9-5ng, see the post Our SAAB 9-5ng and why did we bought this specific one.

19 thoughts on “Issues with oil pressure on a SAAB 9-5ng TTID

  1. Hi;
    I’ve got the same problem: i ordered the o-ring. I have got a question: how much can it cost the work of repleacement?? 2 months ago I changed timing belt and I payd lot of money..
    Hope it could be an easy work to do.
    Let me know,
    Thank you,

    1. Unfortunately it isn’t cheap. As said in the post you will have to lower the sump to replace the o-ring. But without replacement you will get much more costs. How much kilometers do you have on the odometer?

      1. Hi, at the end I solved the problem replacing the o ring last month. It costed withe new oil and filters 380 euro.
        Now everything is perfect and I am happy. I have got 180000 Km.
        Thank you for your guide

        1. Great to hear! It did cost me a lot more, so for the next time I have to shop.
          With the kilometers you have I would say replace the o-ring at 300.000km again if you still drive this car at that time.
          Enjoy your ride!

          1. Hi I have a 93 saab this 160 hp I have the same problem.. Oil light comes on on start up for about five seconds. Then goes out.. do you think it’s the o ring that’s away in mine.. I have 175.000 miles on the clock

          2. Hi and sorry for my late reply. It could be that it is the o-ring. The engines are not that different. However I should try to get information on the 1.9 engine.
            At least try to drive as minimum as possible. The oil pressure message you get is when the pressure is really low, but it could be that the pressure is still to low after the message is gone. At least that was on ours; it should be 5 bar, but it was around 2 bar when the message was gone.

  2. Dear Maarten!

    I have a 2008 93 TTiD, the o-ring was replaced, but unfortunately the oil ligt still comes up after cold starts. The oil was changed from 0-40 to 5-50, as it may help the engine to pick up the oil quicker.
    Isn’t there really no solution for this problem.
    The Saab dealers said, it’s only the change of the engine that would bring a solution.

    Thanks for your answer ín advance

    1. Hello Csaba,

      Apologize for the delay. My knowledge is limited, but changing the oil type is not a long term solution. My dealer was able to connect a meter to really measure the pressure. I don’t know if your dealer have that already done? After you know the pressure at cold start (and at other moments) you can look for a solution.
      Hope you get it solved!

      Kind regards,

    2. have seen on other posts the oil pump can be at fault , you have tried the O ring so am guessing the pump is not performing by producing the correct pressure?

  3. Thanks for your quick answer.
    They must have measured the oil pressure, after changing the seal, but I will make them measure again.
    They needed to change almost all types of bearings, after they dissambled the engine, and they said, engines like this in Opel Insignias are thrown away immediately without replacing the bearings. In some of the engines they cannot even be changed because they dont fit in anymore.

    Thanks again

    1. I did not know there was done already so much. Hope things can be sorted out soon.

  4. This is also an interesting / useful link

    I have a 9-5 NG TID4 with the oil warnings coming on after a cold-weather start for a few seconds. Saab main dealer in Germany says oil pump failure is a known weakness with this engine. Cost = about Euros 1,800 to fix. They have checked the oil pressure independently when running and confirmed it is definitely too low. Car has done about 215,000km. I shall take it home to the UK (hopefully getting there ok despite oil pressure and Covid!) and see what the UK cost is to replace the pump (and O ring!)…

    1. Interesting article and yes it is really bad engineering. On mine the oil pump wasn’t the problem, although the previous owner had already replaced the turbo. After replacing the o-ring there was 5 bar of pressure again.
      Hope you get it all sorted out soon.

      1. Fear Maarten!

        I wanted to come back to you, because we measured the oil pressure and it was almost 5 bar, so the pressure is OK and I still see the oil light flickering for about 1 sec after cold starts and sometines the oil pressure low signal. At the Saab service they said the engine was worn and the oil pressure was therefore not enough anymore. The question would be if this is true, after the bearings have been replaced, where can the wear in the engine be.
        I contacted an independent mechanic, he said, the ECU is to sensitive, therefore the software should be modified.
        Anyu sugestions?

        1. Dear Csaba,

          Glad to hear the oil pressure is OK. But still you get the message. I don’t know much people who can help you sort this out. In the Netherlands I know Dion Hillebrink from DionHPT. Perhaps the best way to get help in your area is to ask on local SAAB Facebook groups or local forums.

    2. Please let us know how much the job was to do here in the UK. I hope you made it back to the UK without further difficulty

  5. We had same issue .but got correct part from freinds in sweden. .but in last 8 months of use its started again.
    Oil light on one second max .only when cold .
    Ttid 2008 manual .
    Any help appreiciated

    1. Sad you have a warning again already. First of all I would check if the pressure is indeed too low, but perhaps others have more suggestions.

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