How to fix leaking power steering fluid

Updated March 23, 2017

Nearly all new cars have power steering. In order to make a power steering system work, fluid, called power steering fluid, is pumped from a reservoir through hoses that help turn the steering mechanism. If any of the hoses or the pump is leaking, the system will fail. Without power steering, you would find it very difficult to turn the steering wheel at low speeds. If you do experience a loss of power steering, there are a few ways that you can fix the system.

Open the bonnet. Check the power steering pump to verify that there are no leaks around the seals. The pump is belt-driven and near the alternator. A leak may happen at the pump, but unless you are driving automobiles with known power steering problems, this is unlikely the case.

Check the hosing in the engine bay coming out from the power steering pump.

Jack up the car and place jack stands under the pinch welds.

Visually inspect the power steering hoses that run in the engine bay that you cannot see from the top of the vehicle. To help you locate the leak, you may want to have an assistant momentarily turn on the vehicle (not while you are under it) and watch for power steering fluid to leak out. Note the source.

Cut the section of faulty hosing with the hose cutters or pipe cutters. Make sure you make a clean cut.

Place a hose clamp over one end of the broken power steering line. Fit the new hose over that end and secure it with the hose clamp. Be sure that you fit the hose over at least 6 inches of the broken line. Tighten the hose clamp with the screwdriver. Do not to clamp the hose so tightly that you damage the original line.

Repeat this process for the other side of the broken line. Once the connections are secure, check your power steering fluid and top it off. Then check the system by turning the vehicle on and making sure that no power steering fluid is leaking. If it is still leaking, find the other leak and repeat the process in steps 5 and 6 until there are no more leaks. If everything is OK, lower your vehicle to the ground.

Things You'll Need

  • New hosing
  • Hose clamp
  • Screwdriver
  • Needle-nosed piers
  • Jack with jack stands
  • Exacto-knife or hose cutters or pipe cutters
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About the Author

I am a Registered Financial Consultant with 6 years experience in the financial services industry. I am trained in the financial planning process, with an emphasis in life insurance and annuity contracts. I have written for Demand Studios since 2009.