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Replace Power Steering Pump
The power steering pump is a critical component in your vehicle. It is designed to let you turn the steering wheel with less effort. This hydraulic system reduces the physical effort required to steer the vehicle, especially at low speeds or when maneuvering.
Most power steering pumps are driven by a belt connected to the engine's crankshaft, but some newer vehicles may use an electric motor to generate power steering assistance.
The mechanism typically consists of a pump housing, a pulley (in belt-driven systems), and an internal unit. The internal unit may be a vane, gear, or piston pump, depending on the design chosen by the manufacturer.
Vane Pump: This type of pump has vanes that slide in and out to create a vacuum and pressure, generating hydraulic force. Gear Pump: In a gear pump, two gears mesh together and create a pumping action, forcing the hydraulic fluid to flow. Piston Pump: Piston pumps use a reciprocating piston to move hydraulic fluid and create pressure.
The power steering pump circulates hydraulic fluid (power steering fluid) through the system. This fluid is typically mineral oil-based and has properties that ensure smooth operation and lubrication. Often transmission fluid is used for this purpose. As the pump operates, it creates hydraulic pressure in the fluid. This pressurized fluid is then sent to the power steering gearbox or rack
Regular maintenance of the power steering system, including checking and replacing the power steering fluid, is essential to ensure proper functioning and prevent damage to the pump and other components. If a power steering pump fails or develops issues, it can lead to difficult steering, noise, or other handling issues in the vehicle, and could even cause a crash.