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Unread 07-12-2012, 02:39 PM   #1
SillyPutty
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1997 TJ Wrangler 
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Location: Iowa
Posts: 447
Wj Power steering diagnosis

For some time, the power steering in our 02 Limited 4.7 has been very heavy. It is almost impossible for my wife to turn the wheel when stopped and it's difficult for me.

I did a quick survey of the system and saw that the pressure line from the pump to the fan had the typical looseness at the pump fitting and was leaking from that location. So I replaced the hose, bled the system and topped off the reservoir. The heaviness is still there, in both directions.

The vehicle isn't running hot, so I believe that the pump is likely OK (since the fan is getting good pressure) and that points to the steering box. Am I correct that the box is likely the culprit? I hate to just throw parts at it.

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Unread 07-12-2012, 03:07 PM   #2
hamilton5
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things can leak internally, and unless you actually hook a gauge up to the hi psi line you don't really know for sure its getting 'good pressure'... also the coolant temperature wouldn't indicate weather the pump is ok or not.

no noises from either pump or gear? contaminates in the PS fluid? newer serpentine belt? (mabey slipping..)
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Unread 07-12-2012, 03:24 PM   #3
SillyPutty
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I just went out and started it again, it was much easier to turn initially but after about 5 cycles (left lock to right lock and back to left lock), it gradually became very difficult again. I'm getting some noise as I put load on the pump(perhaps may be air that still needs to be worked out?). It's source I am unsure of since I don't have a helper right now. Might the noise and gradual loss of steering boost suggest the pump isn't maintaining the pressure?
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Unread 07-12-2012, 05:35 PM   #4
specia1k
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There not expensive or hard to replace. I'd recommend replacing the Power Steering. Hardest part of the job is putting the pulley on the power steering shaft. Would recommend that you have the local auto parts store (assuming DIY) install the pulley on the power steering shaft. Hard to explain, but if you try it yourself, you'll understand.

Good luck....
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Unread 07-12-2012, 07:40 PM   #5
SillyPutty
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I always DIY. It's the only way I know it's done right. I suppose replacing the pump is easier than replacing the box. I hate replacing the box. My TJ was a bastard on that.
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Unread 06-25-2013, 08:20 AM   #6
safrantz
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Digging up an old thread... SillyPutty - did you ever figure out the reason behind the problem? I'm experience basically the same thing. However, it's only difficult to turn when stopped/just starting off... however, once I pick up speed, it seems to return to normal. I just acquired the WJ last week, so I haven't spent too much time on it yet; trying to arm myself with information to do a whole bunch of repairs at once!

Thanks
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Unread 07-16-2013, 10:56 AM   #7
SillyPutty
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Wj

Quote:
Originally Posted by safrantz View Post
Digging up an old thread... SillyPutty - did you ever figure out the reason behind the problem? I'm experience basically the same thing. However, it's only difficult to turn when stopped/just starting off... however, once I pick up speed, it seems to return to normal. I just acquired the WJ last week, so I haven't spent too much time on it yet; trying to arm myself with information to do a whole bunch of repairs at once!

Thanks
Yep. It was the pump. Did a swap, broke the pulley trying to get it off the old pump, bought a pulley too and wrapped it up.
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