Car Steering: Power Steering Repair and Maintenance Guide
The value of power car steering can only be appreciated to its full extent by someone who has driven the vehicle without it. Only that person can describe how wonderful this discovery had been for all the drivers around the world. They will tell you how smoothly power steering assists in handling the car. This type of car steering is especially useful in slow drives and while parking the car.
This advanced system of car steering has led to the revolutionising of the modern cars that we see on our roads today. So many reluctant drivers have been aided by this feature as it helps in making sharp turns in tight corners. When we say the words “power steering”, it really means that you have power behind your steering to turn the wheels.
When we compare the power steering with the normal car steering, we will learn that drivers have to put so much effort and force for taking even a simple turn. This can even lead you to dangerous situations. Let’s talk all about this in detail.
Meaning of Power Steering
Power Steering is an advanced car steering system that is designed for converting gentle force into a strong force. In normal car steering, there is no hydraulic or electrical assistance to reduce the efforts of the driver. Apart from that, there is not much difference between the components of the two.
There are three main types of power steering:
Hydraulic Power Steering:
This type of power steering assists the driver with the help of a hydraulic pump. The hydraulic pump draws power from the car engine and then pumps the hydraulic fluid into the system.
Electric Power Steering:
In the electric power steering system, the turn of the car steering is read by sensors and then sent to the Electronic Control Unit (ECU) of the car. The electric motor provides torque to turn the wheels.
Hybrid Power Steering:
The hybrid kind of power steering is pretty much similar to hydraulic power steering. The only difference between the two is that instead of drawing power from the car engine, the hybrid power steering draws from an electric pump.
Importance & Advantages of Power Steering
As discussed before, power steering is very useful for drivers today. Mostly, all the modern cars are equipped with this technology. The way it assists the drivers have revolutionised the way we look at the car steering.
I don’t think there’s anyone out there who doesn’t want their vehicle to be as efficient as possible. The power steering of a car not only assists in handling but improves the overall health of the car. It helps in making the rides smoother and easier.
Power steering when compared to normal car steering, makes it safer for the driver in making sharp cuts and turns. When it comes to parking a car in a limited space, power steering is immensely helpful and safe.
Power steering helps in reducing the fatigue of the drivers as it makes the ride easier.
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When to Repair Power Steering?
There are various signs that you will notice when your power steering is wearing down. The primary signs that you will not be able to overlook are as follows:
One of the most obvious signs for the repair would the slow response of the steering wheel. If your power steering is really slow, then go for the steering repair.
Another sign that there is something wrong with your car steering is when the wheel is very stiff and hard to move.
When you hear a squeaking noise while turning your car, there is a need for it to get checked. Apart from that, if your power steering system is groaning or making a weird noise, it calls for a repair too.
It is important to remember that the power steering system is completely dependant on hydraulic fluid. So, if your car’s rack cylinder or pinion unit has any kind of crack, then a fluid leak is imminent. Apart from that, places like rack seals, fluid lines, and the pump can leak the fluid too.
As mentioned before, the power steering pump is powered by the car’s engine. There is a belt that runs from the crankshaft to the pump, and if that belt is cracked, then you need to repair it quickly.
How to Maintain Power Steering?
It can be very dangerous if your power steering suddenly goes out. The driver might not have an idea about how much force they have to apply to turn the wheel without the power steering. So, these are some pointers that you have to keep in mind while maintaining the power steering.
Power Steering Fluid:
Power steering fluid is very important for the pump and the whole car system. So, it is essential to keep the fluid in check. See if there is any kind of leak or crack developed. Apart from that, keep your fluid contamination-free for the power steering to work properly.
There is a strong possibility that you may not even have heard about this filter. This power steering fluid filter helps in keeping the fluid clean and contamination-free. So, it is important to change this fluid filter once every year. It will also reduce the wearing down of the pump.
The pump is vital in keeping the steering in check. So, if you hear any kind of noise or if your fluid is dirty and contaminated, then you need to get the pump changed.
It is quite common that the two hoses that are present may develop a crack. The power steering fluid is transferred to these two hoses. Hence, they should be inspected regularly for any sign of a crack or leak.