Power Steering Problems: How to Diagnose a Fault

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Are you breaking into a sweat trying to turn your wheel or has it completely locked up? If so you may have a fault with your power steering system. We've put this guide together to help diagnose some of the more common power steering problems which you can check for yourself on the driveway or with the assistance of a professional in a garage or workshop.

Check your power steering fluid levels

The first port of call when trying to diagnose a power steering problem is to check your power steering fluid levels. If your levels are low this may indicate a leak or problem with your power steering pump. Pop some more fluid in and keep an eye on the levels over the next few days to ensure that there isn't a leak present.

Check your steering pump belt

Slippage in your steering belt may be causing you to have handling issues with your vehicle so it's worth checking to see if this has happened. In order to check this you will need to call on a friend or mechanic depending upon how well you know your way around a car. First you'll need to pop the car up using a jack and get your friend to turn your wheel from left to right a couple of times. If there is belt slippage you will hear a screeching or whining noise coming from the underside of your car. If these sounds are present switch off your engine and adjust the steering pump belt.

Have a look at your power steering assembly

If you've been unable to hear a problem you might be able to see it instead. As above repeat the same process with your friend turning the wheel but this time look for anything untoward such as worn parts or even parts that have become loose. Either of these could be the root cause of your power steering problems.
Okay, you've filled your fluids, checked your belt and inspected your power steering assembly and still you are yet to find the problem. There are still a few more checks you can do...

Check your hoses

Ensure that all of the hoses are connected to the power steering pump. You'll need to also look for any leaks or excessive wear and tear in the hoses as this may be causing your power steering problems.

Rack and pinion system check

Not all vehicles have a rack and pinion steering system but if yours does give it a once over and check the seals. If the seals are loose or damaged this could be causing your steering problems.

Buy used power steering parts

If you are in need of a replacement power steering part let us help! We are one of the UK's leading providers of quality used steering parts for all makes and models. Every part we sell is genuine and comes tested and with a 90 day warranty as standard. Buying a used power steering part from us can save you up to 90% vs new! Visit our  online store now to see what's available and get it delivered to your door fast.
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