Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak: How Cars are Affected
How Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak Affects Cars
It is important that a vehicle user should not ignore a Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak because if the problem becomes serious, the vehicle may have to be scrapped. This is because the cost of the replacement rack can be very high. In Japanese vehicles, the typical cost of replacement will be approximately $500 or more. In European cars, the replacement cost will be even higher at $1300. This repair cost can be similar to the cost of second hand car in good working condition. Hence it is important to find out the cause of the leak and fix it at the earliest.
Unless the vehicle user is inspecting the vehicle closely daily, he will realize that there is a Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak only if the performance of the vehicle is affected. If there is a leak, the level of the fluid in the steering system will reduce, and it will be difficult to steer the vehicle in the direction required both at high speeds and low speeds. In some cases, the vehicle driver will have to apply more force to move the car in the desired direction. In other cases, the steering may make a noise, or the wheels may not move, though the steering wheel is being used.
Detecting the Leak
Since the power steering has a number of sections and components, it is important to detect the Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak correctly so that the right component is fixed or replaced. Else the vehicle owner may spend time and money replacing a component which is not defective, and the problem will continue. So first all the fluid should be drained from the power steering and the surface should be cleaned. Then fluid should be added to the system, the vehicle used, and the entire system should be examined carefully to detect if there is any kind of leakage. The location of the leak will indicate where the faulty component is located.
Seals, Gaskets, Rubber Part
If the vehicle user finds that the Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak is slow, it is most likely because of a problem with the rubber components like the gaskets and seals. Most of the leakage is observed in cars which have a mileage of tens of thousands of miles and in these vehicles, the rubber components will also shrink and become dry. This results in gaps in the rack, through which the fluid will leak. It is comparatively inexpensive to fix this problem, using a stop leak product, or replacing the seals in the rack which are damaged or have larger holes.
Metal Fittings and Other Parts
If the Power Steering Rack and Pinion Leak is not fixed immediately, there will be increased friction and heating due to the lack of fluid. This can damage the metal parts and fittings due to increased wear and tear. The alignment of the system could be adversely affected, and some hardware may become lose and fall off. Unlike rubber parts which can be easily replaced, if the metal parts are misaligned, it is more expensive to repair the system. In some cases, the entire rack may have to be replaced, or the vehicle owner will find it cheaper to exchange the vehicle for another used vehicle, without any problems.
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