An automobile power steering pump is used to put the correct quantity of pressure to the wheels for smooth operations. An accessory drive belt spins the power steering pump to produce pressure in the high side of the power steering hose and push that pressure to the input part of the control valve. This pressure issues in the form of power steering fluid, that gets pumped from the reservoir into the steering gear as required. There are up to 5 signs of a failing or bad steering pump, so if you observe the following, have the pump checked by a professional mechanic as soon as possible:
1. Whining Noise When Turning the Wheel
A whining noise when turning the wheel of your car shows something wrong with your power steering system. It maybe be a leak in the power steering pump or the fluid level gone low. If the power steering fluid level stays this way for too long it could damage the whole power steering system. Either way, the power steering pump has to be looked at and potentially changed by a professional.
2. Steering Wheel Response slowly or is Stiff
While taking a corner, if your steering gets slow to respond to the steering wheel inputs you are making, chances are that your power steering pump is bad or failing, particularly if followed by a whining noise. The steering wheel may equally feel stiff when turning — another sign of a power steering pump failure. Steering issues periodically need a replacement power steering pump.
3. Squealing Noises When the Car Starts
A faulty power steering pump could also add to squealing noises when starting the car. Though they may also happen during sharp turns, you are more likely to hear them for a minute when your vehicle first starts. If it seems like it’s issuing from the hood of your car, it’s a symptom of a failing power steering pump making the belt to slip.
4. Groaning Sound and Noises
Groaning noises are a symptom of a lack of fluid in the power steering system and could actually damage the whole system, including the steering rack and lines. They will become increasingly worse as your power steering pump keeps failing and could result to a complete power steering system replacement.
5. Reddish-Brown Puddle under Vehicle
Although it could equally be from the lines, hoses, and other steering gears, the power steering pump could start leaking from a crack in the pump housing or reservoir. A red or red-brown puddle beneath your vehicle points toward the power steering pump. The pump will require diagnosis by a mechanic and most-likely a complete change.
The moment you notice unusual noises issuing from your car or the steering is stiff or slow to respond, have your power steering pump checked, and if required replaced. Power steering is a vital part of your car and is equally a safety issue, so it should always be taken care of by a professional the moment the fault is detected. .