Power Steering Fluid Leak
In regular maintenance of your vehicle it’s important to check the fluid level every time. In an automotive system, the fluid leak can have a great impact on the function of your car. Power steering systems help to steer the vehicle with less power required from the steering wheel. Because of the steering fluid, it becomes easier and faster to run your car. This fluid undergoes compression and reduces the effort you will need to apply on the steering wheel. If you have a power steering fluid leak, and the fluid level goes down, that can bring your steering to work tougher, or you can hear a whirring noise coming from the steering pump . Even in easy turning, you will need more power to turn your car than you usually do. And it’s definitely a sign that you have a steering fluid leak. It’s easy to understand the cases of the fluid leakage and to learn how to fix it to make your vehicle to run correctly.
Why is my power steering fluid leaking?
The steering fluid runs through the hoses to the steering pump and then to the steering gear . And most probably one of these parts can leak in case of the steering fluid leak. Or it can be cooler because some steering systems include coolers. This cooler is located in front of the vehicle and can quickly get damaged. Or the power steering pump leak, which actually compresses the fluid. It can be because of bad seals or natural wear and tear. The seals can be worn out because of unclean, unfiltered steering fluid. The color of the power steering fluid needs to be pink, red or bright. If it has a brown or black color, then it means that it is contaminated. If a pump works with less fluid, then it will let metal particles in it to enter other steering parts such as the rack and gear which will cause damage.
The steering hoses which run the fluid to the rack or gear can leak also. The area where the high-pressure hoses connect to the metal fittings are highly susceptible to developing cracks and can thereby leak power steering fluid. The steering rack or gear seals can get worn out as well which can be a reason for leaking.
How to fix a power steering leak?
One of the most common symptoms of power steering parts leaking is a small hole or crack in them. Sometimes people mix up the power steering fluid leaks and the engine oil leaks because they are located close to each other. But every driver needs to know that the steering fluids color, odor, and texture is totally different from the engine oil.
If you have noticed the leaking, it’s important to fix it immediately and to refill the right type of the power steering fluid. In the manufacturer’s manual, it’s written what kind of fluid is recommended for your vehicle. Some people even pour automatic transmission fluid instead of the steering fluid which can cause several problems and will cost you a lot of money to fix.
The power steering leak is usually fixed by using a stop leak agent, which can help you to fix the leak and to prevent from future leaks. Anyway, if there is a leak, you will need to replace the leaking part with a new one. You will need a professional mechanic to fix this leaking and to replace power steering parts.
Power steering leak repair costs
The labor cost with the part itself will depend on your vehicle make, model and year.
One of the most expensive repairs of the power steering system can be the power steering rack seals leak because it requires disassembling parts in the rack. A power steering rack repair can vary between $600 and $1000, including the part and the labor cost. A power steering pump repair can cost you around $200, including both labor and part costs as well.