Dipstick refers to a calibrated rod the measures the oil level in vehicles. Those are calibrated specifically to the vehicle and can't be interchanged with other models. In some cases, dipsticks are used for other fluid applications as well.
- The common example of the oil level dipstick is the one found on most internal combustion engines.
- To determine the oil level, pull out the dipstick and see how high the oil reaches on the dipstick. Markings usually, indicate FULL or ADD oil. The dipstick tube seals at the top when the dipstick is in place. This prevents unfiltered air from entering the crankcase and the crankcase from escaping.
- Some cars with an electronic instrument cluster have a digital oil pressure gauge. The number displayed tells the oil pressure in pounds per square inch (psi) or kilopascals [kPa]
- A digital meter is usually of high impedance, that provides a numerical display instead of using a pointer or needle