Question about 1988 Oldsmobile Regency

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Steering wheel sticks

Try to turn steering wheel sticks, stiff, feels like something is binding. after warming up is ok. could it be power steering hoses or pump or rack?? do you know if general motors had any call back for this problem with there steering.

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  • Anonymous Oct 31, 2008

    1997 cutlass supreme with 219700 miles. steering gets stiff or stuck going to the right only. Had new bearing installed with recall. I also had power steering hose replaced from the pump to the rack and pinion area. Would that be the rack and pinion not the bearing recall? will go to Midas for free estimate.

  • Anonymous Mar 31, 2014

    All my fluids are in there and everything is perfect but the steering wheel is stiff

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You'll probably need to get the Rack replaced, like I did. It does cost about $800 dollars, depending on the shop you go to. For the time being, you can refill the power steering reservoir with a power steering fluid with Stop Leak (example of what I used) . That should ward off the leaks until you get it replaced. (Access to the reservoir is on the left hand side, right behind the alternator. You'll need a funnel, and be careful... That alternator can be hot.)

I should warn you, there may be a small cooler under there as well that will leak the fluid. It's most likely very corroded and also part of the problem. They add a bit to the cost to get a new or used one, but if you're comfortable with it, ask them to bypass it, it's much cheaper and easier.

Posted on Jan 08, 2009

I put power steering fluid in my car to stop the grinding noise, but it didn't work! I am still unable to drive my car because of this! What is it?

Posted on Sep 21, 2008

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  • Master
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Yes it is the Rack. Passing fluid because of cold seal problems. The call back has expired due to years gone by.

Posted on May 15, 2008

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1 Answer

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Power steering stiff - is it the pump ? or the steering rack?


If the wheel binds up or you encounter harder steering in one direction but not the other, it's your rack. Check for leaks, is it from the connecting hose or the rack itself. Can't find it? It's usually on the bottom rear of your engine,a tie rod on either side will attach to your steering knuckle. If your steering is stiff while wheel is centered or at maximum lock it's your pump.

Never worked on a mini in particular. Doing a quick google search and pumps (minus labour) seem to be 350-450$ depending where you go, unless there's some crazy book time i'm unaware of, 1300$ seems pretty steep.

Is there a noise when you turn? If there is, jack up the front end and remove the cap off your power steering resevoir. Slowly turn the wheel from lock to lock, while the engine is running, to bleed any air out of the system
If you replace one or the other, don't forget to do the above step.

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Hey. What I would do first is to raise the front end up, and check to see if the wheels turn left and right manually; engine off.
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Second, start it up and feel the P/S hoses. Feel for pressure flow when the wheels are being turned. if there is no obvious feeling of pressure change, then I would think that the rack was bypassing thru the spool valve. Replace the rack.

Actually, $890.00 ain't bad...make sure they do an alignment when they are done.

Hope this helps you out.

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