Signs of Power Steering Failure

Signs of Power Steering Failure

March 23, 2020

Power steering allows drivers to turn the steering wheel without having to put forth nearly as much physical effort to turn the wheel, as you would have to do in older vehicles. Most of us only realize that there’s a problem when it starts getting harder to turn the wheel, but there are plenty of common power steering problems and signs in Everett, WA. Here’s how to recognize them—and get them repaired before more damage can occur.

How power steering works

Power steering relies on a hydraulic system to exert the extra effort on your behalf. When you turn the steering wheel, fluid moves within a hydraulic pump to either side of the pump, depending on the direction. This in turn makes a piston move, which directs the gears to turn the wheels in the desired direction.

If you’re used to your car effortlessly turning, experiencing a power steering failure while you’re driving can be dangerous—your reaction time will be slower, and you may either overcompensate or not be able to turn the wheels in time. It’s important that you look for signs of power steering failure and address them right away. Here are some signs to watch out for:

  • Whining or screeching while turning: If you start hearing these noises while making turns, chances are, your power steering fluid is leaking or low. The faster you fix this, the more likely your car won’t suffer any additional damage.
  • Slow or stiff turns: This is the most obvious sign of a power steering problem, and it usually means the power steering pump itself is failing. You might also hear the whining or screeching noises in addition to having difficulty turning.
  • Groaning noises during turns: Groaning noises are an indication that you need to get your car looked at now. This is a sign that your car is suffering from major steering failure, and if you don’t get it fixed, it could affect your entire steering system.
  • Screeching or squealing on startup: Have you noticed your car making odd squealing noises when you start the engine? This, especially in combination with whining turns, is an indication that there may be something wrong with your power steering that’s causing a belt to slip or otherwise malfunction.

In short, problems with your power steering aren’t something you should ignore and assume that it will just be a little harder to turn the wheel—if left unaddressed, these issues can cause serious damage.

Power steering maintenance and repair in Everett, WA

When your power steering needs maintenance in Everett, WA, you can rely on Auto Truck Service Inc. to have the skills and expertise required to fix it fast. We’ve been serving the Everett area since 1978, and our ASE-certified technicians have over 50 years’ worth of experience in solving all sorts of vehicle problems. Bring your vehicle in for regular service and maintenance, or let us solve your major repair issues as they arise—call us today to set up an appointment.

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