Think my PS pump is going. Thoughts? - GM Forum - Buick, Cadillac, Chev, Olds, GMC & Pontiac chat


1992-1999 Series I L27 (1992-1994 SE,SLE, SSE) & Series II L36 (1995-1999 SE, SSE, SLE) and common problems for the Series I and II L67 (all supercharged models 92-99) Including Olds 88's, Olds LSS's and Buick Lesabres Please use General Chat for non-mechanical issues, and Performance and Brainstorming for improvements.

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Old 08-16-2006, 10:19 PM   #1
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Default Think my PS pump is going. Thoughts?

Hi Guys
Been hearing a whine from one of the pulleys recently, but was not sure which one it was. I thought I had felt some variation in pressure when I turned the wheel over the last few days, but I was not really sure. Today, it became more noticeable. Steering feels ok for the first little bit, then just gets heavier. Not like no PS at all, but definately heavier than usual. The whine does not seem to be going away anymore. Can hear a litle whine all the time, even when warm. Checked my fluid level, and it was showing hi. Was on the "hot" full mark when the fluid was cold. (try getting at that thing with a hot engine!).
My car is a 95 Olds 98. Standard PS.
Thanks!
Erik
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Old 08-16-2006, 10:27 PM   #2
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigerik
Checked my fluid level, and it was showing hi.
From what I know, you don't want to be running a PS pump with lots of fluid in it. Can one of the Resident Gearheads confirm?
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Old 08-16-2006, 11:07 PM   #3
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The fluid should not be at the hot full mark when cold; try to get some of the fluid out so it is at the correct level and then lets go from there.

Ed
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Old 08-17-2006, 03:12 AM   #4
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Half the time people think their power steering is going out, they have a bad belt tensioner. And as a matter of coincidence, that was my problem on one of the cars 6 months ago. Same symptoms as a failing pump, including the squeal at full steering lock. New tensioner, no more problems. Check that belt tension first!
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Old 08-17-2006, 03:41 AM   #5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willwren
Half the time people think their power steering is going out, they have a bad belt tensioner. And as a matter of coincidence, that was my problem on one of the cars 6 months ago. Same symptoms as a failing pump, including the squeal at full steering lock. New tensioner, no more problems. Check that belt tension first!
That sounds like an excellent possibility. How should I be checking it? What should I check for?
Thanks!
Erik
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Old 08-17-2006, 04:43 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bigerik
Quote:
Originally Posted by willwren
Half the time people think their power steering is going out, they have a bad belt tensioner. And as a matter of coincidence, that was my problem on one of the cars 6 months ago. Same symptoms as a failing pump, including the squeal at full steering lock. New tensioner, no more problems. Check that belt tension first!
That sounds like an excellent possibility. How should I be checking it? What should I check for?
Thanks!
Erik
The tensioners on these cars do go out from time to time. The only way I have personally seen one fail on my old non-supercharged olds 88 was when the spring wore out and it did not keep very good tension. It was a very slow problem to get worse however.
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Old 08-17-2006, 08:40 AM   #7
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There are marks on the tensioner assembly that show you roughly how much tension is applied.
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Old 08-17-2006, 11:42 AM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BillBoost37
There are marks on the tensioner assembly that show you roughly how much tension is applied.
As I haven't gotten my FSM yet, can anyone tell me how to read these marks? What should I be looking for?
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Erik
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Old 08-17-2006, 01:17 PM   #9
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Can you take a pic of it with the belt on the car? Get up close so we can see the indicator arrow on the aluminum part, and the scale on the inner part.
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Old 08-17-2006, 10:34 PM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willwren
Half the time people think their power steering is going out, they have a bad belt tensioner. And as a matter of coincidence, that was my problem on one of the cars 6 months ago. Same symptoms as a failing pump, including the squeal at full steering lock. New tensioner, no more problems. Check that belt tension first!
Awesome call, Willwren. Took it over to my friend the mechanic tonight, played with the tensioner a little, and pronounced it to be toast. Said it is binding and not moving freely. Not keeping a constant pressure on the belt.
Will have it in this weekend and will let you guys know what happens.
Any tips for doing it, btw?
Thanks
Erik
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