Question about 2006 Ford Focus

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Power steering fluid DARK in color and buzzing when turning

I've had my Focus since 2006, the power steering originally started buzzing on 5/23/09, and at the recommendation of a friend, I replaced the power steering fluid (MY Focus Manuals states that Mercron should be used, so i did).

Well, it started buzzing again today, on every turn that I made, left or right at speeds from a few MPH all the way up to 40 or 50 MPH. I popped the hood again and took a sample of the fluid and compared it to a smaple out of the botttle:

http://www.freewebs.com/lionman/imgs/IMG_0453.JPG

What came out of my Focus is the stuff on the left, the light red is the bottle sample. I also noticed that it seemed to be collecting some extra "Crud" on one of the belts with the spring clip on it that runs to or from the pump.

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  • Cheetahboy Jun 02, 2009

    It did smell a little, but not too bad. How would I go about removing the power steering fluid from the rack?

    I did it by "cycling", siphoning out the stuff that was in the reservoir then refilling it with the "good" stuff, then turning the wheel to the left and right for a few minutes, then siphoning it out again till the fluid was the color of the good sample from the bottle. That took between 4-6 times to do completely.

    Is the pump bad now, or is it the pump and the Rack and Pinion steering that are going to need to be replaced?



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The fluid does look bad. It should smell pretty awful also. I sounds to me that the pump is going bad. How much of the fluid did you change? The majority is held in the rack and pinion. If you want to try to squeeze a little more life out of it try mobil 1 synthetic fluid. Should bring the pump temps down a bunch.

Posted on Jun 02, 2009

  • Eulogy Jun 02, 2009

    Actually your method is good. That basically how I do it with ou A fluid exchanger. Often the whining comes from air getting in the system between the pump and the rack. That can be fixed by elevating the car and turning the wheel back and forth with the motor running. Be carfull not to hold the wheel at the stops too hard and stress the pump. This is never good. It sounds as if the shaft seal is leaking on the pump also. At low temps this could alow air to enter the system and at high temps allow the lighter weight fluid to ecape. If the steering has not gotten harder or is not binding at any time then your rack is most likely fine for now. If it were mine I would try the air bleeding. Then replace the pump and fluid with synthetic. But thats just my two cents. Good Luck!

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