The power steering system aids in steering your vehicle. It takes a lot of force to turn the wheels of a car and this is why it is so difficult to turn the steering wheel when your car is turned off. When your vehicle is running, the power assisted steering system helps you generate enough force to easily turn your vehicle. Our friendly certified power steering maintenance and repair experts have the knowledge and experience to keep your steering system in good shape or to get you back on the road if it fails.
Most vehicles have power steering and the trend to front wheel drive, greater vehicle mass and wider tires means that modern vehicles would be extremely difficult to maneuver at low speeds (e.g. when parking) without assistance. The power steering fluid should be exchanged whenever a system component (pump, hose, rack & pinion, etc.) is replaced.
How Does Power Steering Work?
There are two major types of power assisted steering systems, hydraulic and electric:
In a hydraulic system, this is done by the power steering pump that sends power steering fluid to the rack and pinion steering gear as you turn your steering wheel. In the steering gear, this fluid applies the pressure that is needed to turn the wheels. This makes it so that it is easy for you to turn the steering wheel and control your vehicle.
In an electric system, sensors read the steering column as you turn the steering wheel and relay this to a computer that then applies torque generated by the engine to generate the necessary force to assist your steering.
When the power steering pump or electric steering system fails, the system cannot send fluid to the steering gear or properly redirect motor torque, and your steering will be unassisted. Driving your car with unassisted steering is not only a hassle but can also be unsafe.
Things to watch for
- Do not mix size or type (all season, performance, mud and snow) of tires on the same axle
- When replacing only two tires on front or rear drive vehicles, it is preferable to place the two new tires on the rear
- If radial tires and non-radial tires are mixed on the same vehicle, the radials must be on the rear