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Power steering failure???

Discussion in 'A3/S3 Forum (8L Chassis)' started by bobby_southward, Dec 24, 2009.

  1. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    Hi guys and gals, happy christmas,

    Anyway, i was out tonight and all was going fine, i pulled over and had to put full lock on to get out of a space when i noticed my steering was a bit heavy, i was on snow/ice at the time so thought it might be because the wheels were pushing against the deep snow, driving is ok, car doesn't pull to the sides and driving in a straight line, but at speeds over 50-60 mph there is a vibration, also when slow or stationary on normal road conditions there is no power steering what so ever, i got out and checked under the bonnet with the engine runnig, and noticed the auxillary belt isn't turning? the air con was off at the time, engine not over heating and no warning lights came on? i'm at abit of a loss? at first i though the pump had gone, but with the belt in tact and nothing turning what else could it be?? any ideas are welcome, going to spen christmas day under the car anyway lol.

    thanks. bobby.
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  2. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    Ok had a good look at it in the light, the pully that was'nt turning was for the air con, and othe auxillary belt running ok.
    there appeared to be traces of power steering fluid around the unions on the pump but not loads? also a strange thing is there is also traces of the same fluid on the back of the radiator cowling, but no signs of where it could have come from? i'm thinking that the unions may have leaked while under pressure and sprayed fluid onto the back of the radiator? there are no other visible traces of fluid from around the rack or pipes, also got the front off the ground and went through the proces to bleed the system, and a load of bubbles emerged, i topped up the system put it back under load and stillthe same? so i'm thinking its the pump? has anyone had one just go like that? or do they normally have the tell tale whining before they go? mine was fine one min then gone the next
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  3. golf
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    golf ***** rent boy

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    This snowy weather has meant my steering rack has just died, and pushed out all its power steering fluid in the process. I was hoping it was the pump, as this is much less time consuming and a lot cheaper to fix, but I've had a proper look today and I can see that it's all leaking out from the rubber boot/gaitor on the rack.

    Take another look and see whether you can locate the leak, as if it's the steering rack it's gonna be costly.
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 1, 2010
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  4. swatchuk
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    swatchuk Member

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    Mine only seems to not be working when the car is on tickover. as soon as i rev it it works. Mine started playin up in the snowy weather too. Why does the weather effect the power steering. I havnt had a chance to see whats up with mine yet, but lookin at a few things on here the rack is sounding like the cause. Dont like the sound of that though
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  5. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    I looked round the full system on mine and no visible leaks. i topped up the resevoir and have run it for a few days with the level staying constant so fingers crossed it's not the rack, and as "swatchuk" its only when the car is stationary and on idle, once moving it seems to start working, albeit not 100% so thinking its just the pump, as its a vane type pump so thinking the vanes are worn or damaged and not getting the system upto pressure on idle. ive ordered a new pump and will see how it goes once fitted, if anyone interested i ordered the pump from http://powersteeringracks.co.uk/zencart/ at £122 all in.
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  6. swatchuk
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    swatchuk Member

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    Sounds prety similar to my problem. Nightmare pulling out of junctions etc untill i rev the car that little bit more. I still havent had chance to look at mine yet as the weather is crap here. Can you keep me posted and let me know how you get on with the pump??
    Thanx alot, Mark
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  7. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    i will do mark, it does sound exactly like the problems i'm having. once the part has arrived and i've fitted it i'll drop a post to let you know how i got on. bobby.
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  8. ian bleakley
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    ian bleakley New Member

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    hi, i have a a4 and got the same problem!!! does anyone know yet if its the pump or the rack? that will teach me to do doughnuts in the snow lol
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  9. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    t had chance to fit it yet with the weather, waiting for a new brake caliper to arrive too and will set about replacing both, so will hopefully have the answer by the end of the weekend. does anyone know the fluid capacity of the power steering system? i got 2 liters but not sure if it'll be enough.
    cheers
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  10. bobby_southward
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    bobby_southward Member

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    Right guys, all parts arrived so i took the day off work to get it done, replaced the steering pump and refilled the fluid. and it was the pump that was knackered, with the replacement one fitted its back to normal. was quite an easy job to do too. took about 2-3 hours to do both the pump and the rear caliper. no specialist tools are required just a 13mm socket and spanner for the securing bolts on the pump, and a short 22mm spanner for the banjo bolt (hydraulic pipe bolt to the pump outlet) and for sensor/sender and once the plastic splash guards are off and out the way access to the pump is really good.
    I took off the turbo outlet pipe (just the front connection and pushed it out the way) to make it easier to get a bar onto the top of the belt tensioner. also only needed 1 litre of fluid to replenish the system.
    Hope this helps.
    bobby.
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  11. ian bleakley
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    ian bleakley New Member

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    thanks for that letting me know mate i will order a pump now and get my car running right again
    *********************THANKS**********************
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  12. chopper602
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    chopper602 3rd + overdrive

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    Sorry if this is hi-jacking the thread, but what sort of power steering fluid does an A6 use. Can't find any in Halfrauds and my local factors didn't know if was something special - of course the manual manages to not actually mention what is required. :huh:
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  13. Lemon S3
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    Lemon S3 Alex

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    I think 1 litre would be enough.
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  14. ian bleakley
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    ian bleakley New Member

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    hi, fisrt check what colour the fluid is i.g red or green. i think it will be green if this is the case you can use (chf11s) you can get this in 1l bottles if its red normal power steering fluid would be ok. hope this is a help
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  15. chopper602
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    chopper602 3rd + overdrive

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    Thanks, I popped down to my local dealers and the only fluid they sold was the green one. 1 litre was cheaper (£6.90) than I had been quoted at my local factors, so a bit of a result! Topped up the reservoir and see how it goes now
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  16. fran-s3
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    fran-s3 Active Member

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    So does anyone know if it's officially green or red the colour of the fluid?

    Cheers
    Fran
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  17. ian bleakley
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    ian bleakley New Member

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    hi, there is no official colour just depends what was put in when it was made i.e red or green
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