2006 Impala Power Steering issue, go figure


Old 11-29-19, 09:41 AM
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2006 Impala Power Steering issue, go figure

2nd Impala I've owned, 4th power steering issue, 1st on this car xP 2006 Impala LS 3.5.

I've had it for about 2 years now and the power steering was already slightly whiny, wasn't terrible, just thought normal Chevy sounds xD about 6 months ago started getting worse, hard steering, getting louder and having to fill fluid every other week.

I live paycheck to paycheck and not good at diagnosis to begin with so I've just been trying to baby it along. One of my better half's friends is a mechanic and is helping me out this weekend. I just wanted some more opinions before he does the work on it,

Over the last 2 weeks it's gotten much worse. When i open the cap after stopping the car, the top pops and fizzes like a soda can, almost got sprayed in the eye once, and bubbles galore.

He told me to get a new PS cap cause it sounds like the vent is clogged. I got the new cap and now when i stop the car the cap halfway pops off. I see no fluid around the pump and very little on the rack. The fluid underneath is only dripping from the passenger side of the subframe and a little on the oil pan.

Not sure if its the High pressure or return hose; the hose on the bottom of the pump, snakes above the top hose, curves around the side of the engine and goes down...somewhere, has oil all over it and the biggest concentration is all over the side of the engine. Leads me to believe it would be that hose that's leaking.

Initially i was going down there to get my cat/flex pip assembly fixed and now hes offering to help with this. My dad gave me his CC so i ordered the Cat and a new power steering pump since it was decently cheap lol. Sorry for that long intro, i just like to cover all bases lmao!

If it turns out to be just a line, should i just replace the pump as well? Keep in mind, i have been driving with this problem for 2 years now and its a Chevy
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Old 11-29-19, 10:55 AM
Join Date: Aug 2015
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would probably replace it since its probably been driven very low on fluid for that long but typically they rarely go bad otherwise if you fix the leaks soon enough.
Old 12-02-19, 03:08 PM
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Air, other items

You should be able to see if it is a hose leak problem, the fittings or the hose itself would be notably wet. Also make sure the fittings are snug. Get a rag and clean things up, and the run the car and see if you can id the area of the leak.

Also make sure the belt is not loose and has good tension, loose belts slip and give noise and symptoms of a pump failure.

You can try bleeding the pump, ideally a dealer pressure bleed, but sometimes the old fashioned method will work. Jack the front wheels up, loosen the cap, turn the key but do not start the engine, and turn the steering wheel lock to lock about 15 times. Start the car, run it briefly, then stop, top up the fluid and then do another 15 times lock to lock with the car off but key on. You can do this without jacking the front wheels, but is pretty hard to turn the wheels the required number of times.

May not solve things, but thorough inspection and bleeding will at least rule out simple problems, and only costs you time.

Some other thoughts...The rack seals may be leaking, so it may be the rack and not the pump that needs replacing. Also there is steering angle sensor that can fail and give a hard power steering feel and other symptoms that people often mistake for a failing pump. Item one in this exploded diagram.


Do report back, you might get lucky and keep things going at low or no cost.
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