Power steering is a standard feature found in most vehicles today, so you probably don’t even notice it or know what it would be like to drive without it. The power steering system is extremely important to help you handle curves and turns more efficiently. If the power steering is on the fritz, it can seem almost impossible to drive your car. Read on to learn more about this important part of your vehicle and what some of the most common issues with power steering problems are so you can fix them.
How Power Steering Works
Most new vehicles use electric power steering systems. This system is found in almost every car today from big trucks and SUVs to sedans and minivans. The electric power steering system uses a three-phase electric motor that provides faster, more precise torque at lower RPMs. What does that mean for you? It means that it’s much easier and smoother for you to steer and turn your car, even at a low speed. A rotational sensor inside the motor of the power steering system is attached to the steering rack or column. This motor helps to move the steering wheel from side-to-side in a smooth, seamless fashion. The system also requires power steering fluid to work correctly.
Common Power Steering Repairs
Whether it’s electrical, mechanical, or fluid-related, any issues with your power steering should be addressed by an experienced, professional mechanic. A proper diagnosis requires a deep understanding of how these systems work. Modules, sensors, motors, and more all work together to create the power steering system. This means that there could be any number of problems related to the steering if it’s acting strangely or not working at all. Leaks in the system are the most common, and you may just need to fix the leak and add more fluid.
Another common problem is that the drive belt is slipping, which can cause your steering to feel off-kilter. A cracked, worn, or peeling hose is another typical issue. When the hose is worn out or cracked, it can no longer deliver the power steering fluid properly. The coupling on the hose could be loose or coming off, too. You should ask for a thorough fluid flush and hose inspection when you encounter issues with your power steering. Those simple procedures are the first, best way to repair any problems. If the steering is making noise, it could be a complete failure or just a minor issue. Leave it to your mechanic to diagnose the problem so they can get you back on the road safely.