The Turn Toward Power Steering Maintenance

Power Steering

The power steering fluid for your car is part of a hydraulic and electric system that makes spinning the wheel a breeze. If you have ever driven a classic vehicle from the 1960s or earlier, before power steering was standard, you know they had giant steering wheels and you needed strong arms to turn the wheel, especially when parked.

Steering has been effortless for decades now, unless your system begins to fail. In which case, you will begin to experience increased resistance or hear groans or squeals when turning. Eventually, it can start to feel like you’re in a classic car with a boat-sized steering wheel. By then, though, it might be too late for maintenance.

Our recommendation

At EuroCar Service in Seattle, we are very conservative about recommending services. You have enough demands on your time and money. We have built a loyal base of customers since 1981 because we never “sell” you anything. Ever.

That said, though we haven’t always recommended power steering maintenance, we do so now. After a while, sludge and grit build up in power steering fluid. It begins to work its way into the pump and rack and pinion seals, slowly destroying them. It’s the reason that we have been seeing late-model vehicles show up leaking with significant damage. We recommend power steering maintenance because it is a relatively low-cost way to ensure your system lasts as long as possible.

Here are some signs you should come in sooner, rather than later, for power steering service:

  • Squealing—If your car makes a squealing noise when the car starts up or when it is being driven at low speeds, it suggests there is something wrong with the belt that is driving the power steering pump, or the pump itself has worn down.
  • Groaning—When you hear groaning when you turn, it is often an indication that the pump is failing.
  • Loose or stiff steering wheel—Any increased difficulty turning your wheel could indicate that something is wrong with your power steering system. More often than not, it simply requires more power steering fluid. However, because this is a closed system, low fluid means there is a leak somewhere in the system that requires attention.
  • Slippage —Erratic function of your power steering is the surest sign of trouble. Though this can be minor or major, it poses a serious risk to yourself, your passengers, and other drivers in Seattle and should be looked at immediately!

Though engineers continue to make longer-lasting systems and fluids, there’s no such thing as a lifetime fluid and this includes power steering fluid. Power steering service includes a thorough cleaning of the system and inspection of all the parts. Your steering system and suspension system work together. So that you don’t have to worry about either, our alignment service also includes an inspection of steering components.

We’ll never steer you wrong at EuroCar Service. As Seattle’s most dependable, accurate, and honest European automobile service facility, we have repaired and maintained Audi, BMW, Fiat, Land Rover, Jaguar, Mercedes, MINI, Saab, Smart Car, Volkswagen, or Volvo vehicles for nearly 40 years! We are committed to cutting edge maintenance and repair and are ready, willing, and able to keep you and your car headed in the right direction. Call 206-527-8828 or schedule your appointment online today!