Intermittent P/S

Bernie Benz b.benz at
Sat Dec 28 07:13:08 EST 2002


If the fluid level is down, you have a leak. pump, hose, or rack.  Find it!
Wash the system down such that you can look and feel for newly wetted areas.

The 99% rack failure mode is the high pressure rod seal, which is under high
pressure only on assisted right turns.  NEVER hold the wheel against the
right stop for this reason.  Leakage from this seal will be visable at the
center of the rack, in the area where the tie rods attach to the rack, and
is useally either nonexistant or chatastrophic.


> From: Scalmanini Steve <sscalmanini at>
> Date: Sat, 28 Dec 2002 03:17:21 -0800 (PST)
> To: 200q20v at
> Subject: Intermittent P/S
> Does anyone know what the likely problem is for power
> steering that has been intermittent starting five days
> ago.  Sometimes it seems fine, but most of the time
> it's very hard to turn.
> No pentosin leaks are visible, although the fluid is
> down to the "min" mark so the warning lamp started
> flashing sporadically a few days ago, but since then
> it hasn't gone to solid on so I assume no more has
> leaked out in the last few days, and regardless, the
> min level is plenty for the system to still operate
> normally.
> The steering rack is original, with 180K miles, so I
> wouldn't be surprised if it died after all these
> years, but I don't know what their failure mode(s) are
> so I don't know if intermittency is one of them or if
> something else is likely causing the problem.
> ' anyone have any ideas?
> TIA,
> Steve
> Ukiah, CA
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