Most drivers are aware and keep up with their miles for oil changes fairly well. However, most individuals aren't entirely sure when they should replace the power steering fluid. In fact, the power steering fluid is sometimes ignored completely, even though it's such a vital feature of a strong steering wheel.
The power steering fluid is a hydraulic fluid that essentially powers the steering system. However, it doesn't combust as motor oil does; instead, it gets dirty and contaminated over time. Polluted power steering fluid can heavily strain the power steering pump, causing the system to overwork itself until it stops working completely. Below are three symptoms to tell if it's time to change out the power steering fluid:
After leaving your vehicle on for a couple of minutes, open the hood and draw out the dipstick. Most of the time, the power steering fluid should be red and clean. If the fluid looks dark, dingy, or has a charred smell, it usually means there's a problem. Worst case scenario, you may need to have the system flushed out and replaced with fresh power steering fluid.
Filthy power steering fluid will make it more challenging for the pump to do its job. As the pump struggles to do its job, it will progressively make a louder and noisier sound. At this point, you should definitely make an appointment to get the fluid changed.
STIFF STEERING WHEEL
The power steering fluid is probably the culprit if your steering wheel is too firm and becomes tough to turn. A steering wheel that no longer allows smooth turns can be annoying and hazardous. The fluid is probably running low or dirty, so it's best to have it inspected.
If you notice any signs of low or dirty power steering fluid, do not wait any longer. Please schedule a time to bring your vehicle to Honest Wrenches for a proper inspection. We welcome you to give us a call or visit today! We have two convenient locations in Des Moines, IA.