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96 sable power steering

  #1  
Old 02-25-2010, 10:08 AM
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Default 96 sable power steering

Just had the pump replaced for the second time in less than two year. Luckily the shop warranted this one. Was leaking again at the pump.

Here's the issue. It just doesnt have that feathery turn it use to have at very low speed. Seems to be about the same on faster turns.

Also, hard turning (like in a parking lot at low speed) going nearly lock to lock still produces a whining noise.

I'm thinking maybe a valve is stuck somewhere in the steering itself. Could this also be air in the system?

Thoughts?
 
  #2  
Old 02-25-2010, 12:44 PM
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Where is the pump leaking?

Those pumps can literally go bad instantly if installed without correctly purging the air from the system.
There are a couple ways to purge the air,standard ford procedure is jack up the front (taking weight off the front suspension) and turning the wheel from lock to lock 20 times (engine running).

I personally use an adapter for my vacuum gun,that takes the place of the reservoir cap. Pull a vacuum then turn lock to lock a few times.

Not doing this leaves air in the system that can instantly kill the pump sometimes,surely over a long period.


If the pump is being damaged by air in the system,need to find out where the air is coming in at. Need to look over the lines and rack/pinion close to see if it looks like any fluid has been weeping out anywhere.
Don't need a big leak,or even a wet spot-just a dampish area,anywhere fluid gets out air can get in.

The noise at extreme lock is common,and don't do it. It is the end of travel for the rack and pinion and the pump is making noise due to the strain of trying to pump fluid through the blocked off valves.
 
  #3  
Old 02-25-2010, 01:27 PM
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It was leaking from the very bottom of the pump where the hoses come in and out from what I can tell.

Would air in the system cause the steering to be harder at slow speed?

Can I still attempt to purge the system of the air using the jack up method?

I understand the resevoir is not under pressure from the cap. What does putting it under pressure really do? Where can I get a hand vacuum pump?

Again, didnt have any problems with the first replaced pump until it started leaking again. I guess air in the first could have caused it to fail as well.

Thanks for the info.


Originally Posted by DefEddie View Post
Where is the pump leaking?

Those pumps can literally go bad instantly if installed without correctly purging the air from the system.
There are a couple ways to purge the air,standard ford procedure is jack up the front (taking weight off the front suspension) and turning the wheel from lock to lock 20 times (engine running).

I personally use an adapter for my vacuum gun,that takes the place of the reservoir cap. Pull a vacuum then turn lock to lock a few times.

Not doing this leaves air in the system that can instantly kill the pump sometimes,surely over a long period.


If the pump is being damaged by air in the system,need to find out where the air is coming in at. Need to look over the lines and rack/pinion close to see if it looks like any fluid has been weeping out anywhere.
Don't need a big leak,or even a wet spot-just a dampish area,anywhere fluid gets out air can get in.

The noise at extreme lock is common,and don't do it. It is the end of travel for the rack and pinion and the pump is making noise due to the strain of trying to pump fluid through the blocked off valves.
 
  #4  
Old 02-25-2010, 08:10 PM
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air in the system is naturally purged as the fluid fills the system (usually... sometimes small air pockets can be left). If the pump is bad it can inject air into the high pressure side and that will cause the power steering fluid to look like a milkshake and cause all hell of steering trouble (had that happen with an acura legend... acura parts are too expensive... got a vic instead of the parts). Now there could be gunk in the rack that's restricting flow and that could cause some issues. I wonder if the shop flushed the system when they installed the new pump. Most good mechanics will, but many run of the mill shops won't cause it "wastes fluid".

My hand vacuum pump I got at Sears (mightyvac hand pump) for about $40. http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_SPM201555464P
It comes with a wide opening adapter (suction cup looking part) that would work fine on anything from 92 on. The older style pumps have a larger opening on the reservoir and it's not quite big enough.
 
  #5  
Old 02-26-2010, 10:13 AM
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slymer, thanks for that info. i'm fairly sure the system was not flushed. while the local shop I use has done well for me with this 96, he's a no frills guy and wont do anything extra other than fix what is not working. that's good and bad sometimes.

i'm starting to think it may not be the pump at all rather something in the rack itself. however, the whole problem could just be the system needs a good flush.

any good tips or list to do that myself?

Thanks.

Originally Posted by slymer View Post
air in the system is naturally purged as the fluid fills the system (usually... sometimes small air pockets can be left). If the pump is bad it can inject air into the high pressure side and that will cause the power steering fluid to look like a milkshake and cause all hell of steering trouble (had that happen with an acura legend... acura parts are too expensive... got a vic instead of the parts). Now there could be gunk in the rack that's restricting flow and that could cause some issues. I wonder if the shop flushed the system when they installed the new pump. Most good mechanics will, but many run of the mill shops won't cause it "wastes fluid".

My hand vacuum pump I got at Sears (mightyvac hand pump) for about $40. http://www.sears.com/shc/s/p_10153_12605_SPM201555464P
It comes with a wide opening adapter (suction cup looking part) that would work fine on anything from 92 on. The older style pumps have a larger opening on the reservoir and it's not quite big enough.
 
  #6  
Old 02-26-2010, 11:45 PM
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the general idea of flushing the system is to dump the return line into a tank (tub, something to catch the fluid) and keep feeding the reservoir until the fluid coming out of the return line is clean. This is usually a two person job since you need to be turning the wheels left to right the whole time and it will pump fluid pretty quick through the system. 1 quart bottles will NOT be able to keep up. It's best to let someone who knows how to do this to actually do it. you could also get an in-line filter and add that to the return line and let it catch all the crap and just change that out after a while.
 
  #7  
Old 03-05-2010, 02:53 PM
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Took this thing back to the shop and he said the steering gear is probably going out. $600 to replace.
 
  #8  
Old 03-06-2010, 10:19 AM
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Yes you can jack it up to purge the air yourself,if the damage is done already though it won't help.
I have a commercial flush machine to do the power steering,but don't use it.
I use a 60ml feeding syringe (pharmacy) with a rubber hose attached and suck out all the fluid (engine off) and then refill,start engine and turn lock to lock.
I do that a few times and it generally gets all the bad fluid out,commercial machine basically does the same thing but with setup time.

I would also think about getting a mech. that will go the extra mile to fix it right the first time.
He might save you money cutting corners in the short term,but in the long term it's better to have someone that will point out and correct issues.
And from the fact he is using words like "probrably",he should know what is causing the issue and not just fish and replace till the issue is fixed.
 
  #9  
Old 03-16-2010, 09:06 AM
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If the pump is being damaged by air in the system,need to find out where the air is coming in at. Need to look over the lines and rack/pinion close to see if it looks like any fluid has been weeping out anywhere.
Don't need a big leak,or even a wet spot-just a dampish area,anywhere fluid gets out air can get in.
 
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