Question about 1999 Ford Taurus

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Power steering quits after warmup

My 1999 Seville STS power steering works great when the car is cold, but after 10 minutes of driving, the steering responds almost as if the engine has stalled. There are no leaks, no squealing, no fluid loss, nothing. I replaced the pressure switch, the ball joints are fine, etc. When I jack the front wheels off the ground, the car steers just fine, hot or cold, engine on or off. Why would the steering behave correctly when the car is cold, but dead after warmup? It's driving me crazy (and putting my life at risk around corners....). Please help!

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  • mhwarrak May 23, 2009

    Yes, fluid level is perfect. One thing I noticed, though: When I jack up front end, both wheels off the ground, I can turn the steering wheel back and forth easily. But after I let it sit a couple of minutes, then turn the wheel again, I see bubbles/foam coming up through the reserve fluid (I'm guessing its coming through the return line). I traced both lines (high pressure and return line), and find no leaking whatsoever. There is a slight oil drip/leak in the area behind the engine, right about where the power steering assembly is, but it looks like engine oil. I would think there is a leak (with the air bubbles in the resevoir), but there is no fluid loss at all. I've been watching this now for at least 6 months; no fluid loss. It's driving me crazy. Or is it normal to have foam in the reservoir? If not, then the air that is somehow getting into the system might be the problem, but why wouldn't it affect performance when it's cold? Or perhaps you're right about the steering pump going bad; it may have seal problems of some sort and is sucking some air, but not losing fluid. Perhaps fluid tight, but not airtight?

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  • Master
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When the pump heats up it will quit working cause the pump on the inside is not pumping fluid to the rack pinion or your racket pinion is going bad. Have you checked the fluid level?

Posted on May 22, 2009

  • johnny wyatt
    johnny wyatt May 25, 2009

    I know if you take it in to a shop it will cost a good penny to get it fixed. But if you take it to a dealer they have to give it a 3 year warranty. Or you good do it yourself but front wheel drive racket pinions are hard to take out and install.

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