Why Noisy Steering Could Signify Pump Failure

Does the steering system on your car or truck sing to you when you manoeuvre through a tight space? If you've noticed a peculiar whining noise as you try to turn the wheel, you should pay close attention, as the power steering pump may be on its way out. What could be going wrong here, and how can you avoid this type of problem in the future?

Power Steering in Action

Your vehicle is equipped with a sophisticated power steering system to make it as easy as possible for you to turn the steering wheel. More often than not, this is hydraulic, but sometimes it can be electrically operated.

In a hydraulic system, a special type of fluid is pressurised and forced through a network of pipes to the steering rack. This makes it a lot easier for you to turn the wheel without meeting a lot of resistance caused by friction and makes reverse parking a breeze.

How the Pump Works

At the heart of the system is the pump which is connected to the engine crankshaft through a belt and pulley. As the engine turns, it provides energy to the pump, which spins at high speed to pressurise the fluid.

A typical power steering pump is engineered to last a long time, but it can nevertheless suffer from wear and tear. Crucially, it must always have a supply of clean power steering fluid, and if you're experiencing issues now, this may be the root of the problem.

Contaminated or Low Fluid

When was the last time that you checked the fluid to see if it was present in sufficient quantity and clean? If it has a dirty grey appearance, it will need to be replaced, and the entire system has to be flushed out too. If the fluid level is very low, you likely have a leak, so look underneath the vehicle to locate the problem area.

If the fluid is contaminated, then it can cause premature pump failure. Alternatively, if it is not present in sufficient quantity, the pump will likely overheat and, once again, start to degrade.

Next Action

Take your vehicle to a mechanic and tell them about that whining noise. They may well need to replace the steering pump, but make sure that you always get a high-quality item in its place. In the future, it may pay to keep a closer eye on the fluid and ensure that the system is serviced regularly.

For more information about power steering pumps, contact a local mechanic.

About Me

Audrey's Auto Advice

Welcome ladies and gentlemen to my fabulous new blog. This blog is designed to give you all the info you will need to buy new or second-hand auto parts for your car. When I first had to visit the auto repair shop to buy replacement parts for my car, I didn't know what I was doing. However, rather than just letting the mechanic deal with everything, I decided I would learn about things myself. I asked the mechanic to explain everything I needed to know about auto parts. I have learnt a great deal so I decided to start a new blog.

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