Power Steering Repairs
Today, all new vehicles come equipped with power steering
which enables the driver to turn the steering wheel with very little effort.
The power steering system consists of a power steering pump, special power
steering fluid, a belt, hoses and steering gear (known as the rack and pinion).
When the engine is running, power is transmitted to the pump, which sends fluid
to the steering gear which takes advantage of hydraulic pressure to let the
driver turn the front wheels in the direction that the driver wants to go.
Rack and pinion steering consists of a gear set enclosed
in a metal tube. The rack protrudes from the tube on either end. The attachment
at either end of the rack is adjustable and is called the tie rod end, which in
turn is attached to the steering knuckle. The inner and outer tie rods are wear
items and often need to be replaced on older cars.
If the power steering system leaks fluid or if the power
steering pump becomes inoperative or its capacity is diminished, you may hear a
groaning-like or whining noise from under your hood. Turning the steering wheel
may become difficult.
Power steering fluid should be changed according to the
manufacturer’s recommendation, perhaps every three years or 50,000 miles. The
power steering belt and hoses should be inspected annually.
Our mechanic is well versed in servicing power steering
systems and will both diagnose and provide you with an estimate for the repairs
appropriate to your vehicle.