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Power Steering woes... can I get some advice?


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12 replies to this topic

#1 syphon

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Posted 17 July 2004 - 09:02 PM

So lately my car ('93 Turbo Legacy) has had a significant whine at idle. Also, when I'm driving in parking lots (or slow speed situations) the steering shudders, and I can feel the steering labor away.

I'm pretty sure it's my power steering pump. At first, it would only whine after the car had been driven a while, but now, the car has a horrible whine right when I first start it up. Also, I get an occasional odd smell coming from my car when I start out (at a stop sign or light or whatever) that smells faintly of burning plastic, or rubber, not sure exactly what.

I went to a dealership to check out the price on a new pump, and was quoted $390. This is way too much to pay, so I was going to check out used pumps.

Do you guys know any places that would have a new pump for cheaper, or should I just get a used one? Would the build quality in a used one hold up to a new one? Do you guys know where I can find a used one?

Anyway, I greatly appreciate your help and advice!

#2 brus brother

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 03:22 AM

Did tou try addiing some ps (dextron?) fluid. While my reservoir seemed to have fluid, I was able to add enough fluid to eliminate symptoms. Is the ps belt tight and clean of grease and oil?

#3 Legacy777

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 10:30 AM

You can try taking the belt off the pump. Then spin the pump by hand. If it's loose, or you can feel it grind, it needs to be replaced.

Yeah you can try a junkyard for a pump, or a local parts store may have one cheaper.

#4 syphon

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 01:29 PM

The fluid seems at a perfectly fine level, and as best I can tell, the belt looks good too. It's tight enough and doesnt look like it'd have anything which would cause it to slip.

Does anyone know exactly what PS pumps will work? Are they the same on any 90-94 Legacy? Are they the same on Turbo and N/A ones?

#5 Legacy777

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Posted 18 July 2004 - 08:33 PM

yeah.....the 90-94 legacies are all the same, and I'm pretty sure there's no difference between turbo and non-turbo cars.

#6 Olnick

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Posted 19 July 2004 - 01:26 AM

For years I've heard that terrible squeal from other cars--now it's happened to me ('95 Legacy L Wagon, MT, 100k miles)!

Changed p/s drive belt 4 or 5 months ago. Now I have the squeal for 5 to 10 seconds on startup and then on-and-off for the first few minutes of driving.

Changed p/s fluid. Took belt off and checked the pully and shaft--turns smoothly, no odd noises. But when my son started the car and cranked the steering full to one side and then the other, we heard the "juddering" sound and I noticed rapid little stop-and-go hesitations in the p/s pump pully. That scared me!

What does it mean? Does the sqeal come from the belt or the pump? Do I need a new pump? Could it be gunk in the lines? Is it--heaven forbid--a problem in the rack & pinion?

Appreciate any insights, gang.

#7 jcniest5

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Posted 19 July 2004 - 02:22 AM

I think it may not be the PS pump. It's the thing down there (for now I just totally forgot the name!). Arggg....watchmacallit? It's the part that actually steers your car when you turn the steering column. And that part! Wow, it's expensive to replace. And it's also much, much harder than replacing the pump.

FYI: If anyone wants a good used pump, I can sell one for $25.00 (or BO) plus shipping. It's working perfectly. You will need a new o-ring that goes in between the pump and reservoir.

#8 Olnick

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Posted 19 July 2004 - 02:55 AM

Ooops! Sorry Syphon. Didn't mean to hijack your thread. Was hoping that we'd both benefit from any responses. Then I re-read what I wrote and it sure was "I-me-my!"

Please forgive.

#9 shortlid

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Posted 09 May 2005 - 10:57 AM

My Mom's new '03 Legacy GT Sedan, with AT, and 24k makes a whiling noise at idle from the power steering pump? The fluid level as seen through the clear resivoir is good. If you are in N or Park, not moving or touching teh steering wheel it makes the whirling sound. If you turn the wheel or put it in gear it stops??

#10 syphon

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Posted 09 May 2005 - 09:37 PM

This is my second thread that's over 8 months old that was bumped recently. Weird.

#11 shortlid

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 07:39 AM

This is my second thread that's over 8 months old that was bumped recently. Weird.


Better to Bump than start a new thread on the same topic, means people are using the search feature. Now, am I correct that the '03 Legacy GT should have speed sensative steering?

#12 The Dude

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 08:56 AM

[quote name='jcniest5']I think it may not be the PS pump. It's the thing down there (for now I just totally forgot the name!). Arggg....watchmacallit? It's the part that actually steers your car when you turn the steering column. And that part! Wow, it's expensive to replace. And it's also much, much harder than replacing the pump.

The steering rack? And yes, it is expensive and difficult to replace. Fortunately, it seems to seldom require replacement on Subarus. The steering pump is a good bet, and much, much easier to replace.

#13 shortlid

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Posted 10 May 2005 - 11:12 AM

[quote name='The Dude'][quote name='jcniest5']I think it may not be the PS pump. It's the thing down there (for now I just totally forgot the name!). Arggg....watchmacallit? It's the part that actually steers your car when you turn the steering column. And that part! Wow, it's expensive to replace. And it's also much, much harder than replacing the pump.

The steering rack? And yes, it is expensive and difficult to replace. Fortunately, it seems to seldom require replacement on Subarus. The steering pump is a good bet, and much, much easier to replace.[/QUOTE]

Well the car is still under warrenty, the sounds does seem to come from the TOP of the motor not under neath near the RACK!! So have any of you heard of P/S pumps going bad on '03 Legacy GT's. DOES THIS CAR HAVE SPEED SENSITIVE STEERING??




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