Everyone knows the importance to steer freely while driving. It is unwise to drive long distances if your steering wheel is hard, or you can hear eerie noises while turning. Better to park the car at a safe place and examine the issue, rather than waiting till the problem evolves into something utterly dangerous. Attempting to drive with the problem has alarming chances of an accident. Hence, undermining steering issues can be a big mistake.
It can be either a faulty hydraulic pump or steering fluids that need replacing. Whatever the reason, it will make your car more difficult to navigate around curves and corners. This guide will explore 5 common steering problems and discuss how one can identify them.
Power Steering Fluid is Leaking or Contaminated
The secret behind power steering’s efficiency is the liquid fluid which transfers the pressure and makes it easier to maneuver. Steering issues will arise if the fluid is contaminated or leaking because it will intercept the system’s ability to build pressure. If you are wrestling with the wheel for a simple turn, it is a telltale sign that something is wrong with the steering fluid.
Examine underneath your car and check for any dripping liquid from your vehicle. Another way is to check for any grinding noise when taking a turn, indicating an unnecessary pressure build-up on the steering pump. If not handled timely, it will cause a system burnout.
Slipped Hose Coupling
Hose coupling connects a car’s tubes and is essential for steering. Over a passage of time, like other vehicle components, the couplings may begin to loosen and slip. Other reasons for loose couplings can be vibrations, sudden extreme bumps, and excessive pressure on the system. This problem can be identified easily but requires an expert to repair the steering system properly. Find out more about where you should get your car maintenance and repaired.
A car’s power steering unit is engineered with the assistance of a belt. It turns like a pulley on the crankshaft, pumping the fluid into the hydraulic system. If you observe steering to feel heavy and jerky, it could be the belt is worn down or damaged.
The wearing and aging of the belt should be expected due to constant stretching and fraying. Check the condition of the belt on every maintenance service. Sometimes, the belt can be sorted by tightening it up, but it is preferred to replace it when the signs of damage and tear are apparent.
Faulty Rack Mount
Rack mounting bushings are responsible to absorb impact when the car goes over a bump. It helps direct the vibration from the suspension away from the steering system. If the steering rack is damaged or faulty, the car will start to jerk and stumble more. It will also lead to inconsistent steering and will hinder smooth maneuvering for the driver. Keep your ears sharp for any “clucking” sound coming from the steering column, which is another symptom of a broken rack mount.
Worn Out Steering Pump
While steering pumps are known to be durable, they can still fall victim to constant grinding. The seals and internal parts of the pump can break down and lead to fluid pressure leakage. Pump experiencing too much strain can cause them to fail prematurely. You can examine the pumps by the sound you hear while turning the wheel. If it is a loud squealing sound, then the pump is on the verge of failure.