How to Fix Power Steeringby Carl Pruit
Introduced in 1951 by Chrysler in one of its popular vehicles, power steering was invented in order to make it easier to steer your vehicle. Before the invention of power steering, turning the steering wheel was difficult. As the power steering units were installed in vehicles, it made driving and handling a vehicle much simpler and made for a more-enjoyable driving experience. Power steering has been greatly improved since the first introduction and has continued to increase the pleasure of driving a vehicle.
Locate the power steering pump and hoses on your vehicle. The power steering pump is located at the front of your engine, near the top of the motor. It will have a black fill cap on it that is labeled "power steering fluid."
Clean the outside of the pressurized power steering pump hoses and the power steering pump with clean shop rags to remove any oil deposits. Check the exterior of the lines to identify any signs of steering fluid leakage.
Start the motor and turn your steering wheel back and forth several times to cause the pressure in the steering pump to build up. Turn the engine off and recheck the hoses for fluid leaks. Examine the power steering pump for any signs of cracks or damage. If your power steering pump is damaged you need to replace it with a new pump by removing the bolts that hold the pump onto the bracket, taking the pump belt off the pulley and disconnecting the hoses. Replace the power steering pump by reattaching the hoses with a screw clamp and attaching the pump to the bracket. Place the belt around the pump pulley and apply pressure by pulling back on the pump and tightening the belt by using a socket wrench to tighten the bolt on the bracket. You can find a power steering pump for your vehicle at your local automotive supply or check the websites listed below in the resources section for a few ideas of online automotive supply websites.
Check the fittings and clamps for any signs of wear or leakage and tighten any loose clamps with a screwdriver. Inspect the hose leading from the power steering pump back into the firewall that leads to the steering wheel. If you find that a leak has developed in the power steering hose that leads to the steering column, consult a mechanic or take your vehicle to a local service center and have an inspection done.
Remove damaged power steering hoses by taking the cap off of the power steering pump and then unscrewing the clamp on the hose. Recover draining power steering fluid by placing a clean container below the hose or power steering pump when you loosen the hoses and allow the fluid to drain into the container.
Repair power steering hoses where the damaged area is close to the end of the hose by trimming off the affected area with a utility or sharp knife and reattaching the hose with a screw clamp by tightening the clamp with a screwdriver. For damage that is in the middle of the hose or near a section that can't be repaired, replace the hose with a power steering hose that can be purchased from any automotive supply store in your area or online at an automotive supply website, such as the ones listed below in the resources section, and connect the new hose to the power steering pump with a screw clamp.
Fill the power steering pump to the proper level with power steering fluid and replace the cap. Start the vehicle motor to test the system. Once you have verified that the power steering system is working properly, shut off the engine.
- close Your power steering system is under pressure. Be careful when removing or repairing any pressurized hoses.
- close * Do not work on an engine that is hot. Allow the motor to cool off before attempting any repairs.