Power steering sure makes driving your European automobile easy, doesn’t it? Can you imagine the days of old when power steering wasn’t available? If you’ve ever driven a classic automobile, you’ve felt how tight the steering is and how difficult it is to control the vehicle. What makes a hydraulic power steering system easy to control is the power steering pump. This pump circulates the power steering fluid through the system. Whether you drive a Lexus or other European automobile, Lucas Auto Care advises that the following signs point to a problem with the power steering pump.
Whining noises are a common indication that the power steering pump is struggling. You will hear the sounds amplify the tighter you turn your steering wheel. These sounds can also be an indication that you have low power steering fluid in the system. Check your power steering fluid to see if it is too low. If it isn’t, chances are your power steering pump is going out and needs to be replaced.
A more common sound that comes from a faulty power steering pump is groaning noises. These sounds amplify as you turn the wheel tighter, as well. The groaning sounds make you think your car, truck, or utility vehicle is complaining about having to turn. Unfortunately, the groaning noises will not go away until you replace the malfunctioning power steering pump in the power steering system.
Stiff Steering Wheel
When the pump goes out, your steering wheel will feel stiff. In fact, again, if you’ve driven an older automobile with manual steering, this is how your power steering will feel. This definitely indicates that power steering fluid is not being circulated through the system. Consequently, it’s safe to assume that the power steering pump is dying and, as such, cannot move the power steering fluid where it needs to go.
Another problem that occurs with the power steering pump that is going out is non-responsiveness when you turn the steering wheel. This, obviously, creates a huge problem in terms of controlling your automobile. In fact, it can make driving your vehicle dangerous.
Finally, aside from the whining and groaning noises we discussed above, your vehicle may also squeal if the power steering pump is going out. In this case, the squealing sound can be attributed to a faulty accessory belt, which, in part, powers the pump. Your power steering pump will have problems operating if the accessory belt is malfunctioning. A vacuum leak can also affect its operation.
Lucas Auto Care in Cypress, TX, would be happy to inspect your Lexus or other European automobile’s power steering pump. We can replace it if necessary.