In May we replaced the p/s pump and have driven about 2000mi since then without trouble. About two weeks ago the steering went, suddenly no p/s. We assumed a bad pump but upon inspection noticed slight leakage at the steering gear box. Otherwise the fluid is full and not burnt, foamy etc. How do I tell if the loss of p/s is from the gear box or something else?
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Re: 89 G20 steering gear box question
Best way is to dry off everything in that area and place a piece of cardboard down under it. Either wait a day...or a few hours (depending on how bad it is leaking) or start the vehicle and turn the steering wheel from side to side. This should be able to pinpoint WHERE the leak is originating....then you can fix what is leaking. The steering gear box is actually easy to replace.
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sounds like you need to replace the power steering pump,of not overheating or loosing coolant,would check water pump,if no power steering sonds like the pump is bad,mechanic depepnding on their ability could change for you,up to you if you want to pay a shop to replace pump.
With the hood open and the engine running, have someone turn the wheel so you can spot the power steering gear box. There will be two lines from that box leading up to the power steering pump. That pump is driven by the serpentine belt. Atop that pump there will be the filler cap you are looking for.
Cannister is your steering box...arm is the pitman arm. check to see if there is a thick alignment spline on either the arm or box. This locates the arm in the correct position. If not center the steering wheel(turn all the way to one side and count turns all the way to other side and divide in half for example, three turns from one side to the other side = 1 1/2 turns to center) and put both front wheels straight ahead, then install arm onto box. It is far easier to put it back than it was to remove.
Before you do this procedure, check the rubber or universal joint connector between steering column and the steering gear. If it's worn it will cause looseness and there's your problem. Otherwise, there is a threaded screw with a lock nut on the top of steering gear. Clean threads first. Put a large flat screwdriver on the screw and loosen the lock nut. Back it off several turns. Now, screw the screw down into the gear box. Not too tight though. Your actually jamming the gears back together. Back it off a 1/2 turn or so and run it back in lightly. Hold the screwdriver and tighten the lock nut. This is usually effective.
The problem is your intermediate steering shaft. It runs from the bottom of your steering column to the steering gearbox. While you are in the shop, though, now may be a good time to replace both the steering gear box and pump as a precautionary maintenance measure. It truly isn't necessary if you aren't having issues, but sometimes replacing one old part will open up the blinds to see another worn out part that needs replaced. It's cheaper to have the mechanic replace them while they have everything apart, than to have them take it apart on 3 separate occasions.
Does your van have the serpentine belt? If so maybe I can help, I replaced the Power steering pump on my 90 G20 a couple of weeks ago. The trick is that you need to pull the pump pulley which is pressed on to access the mounting bolts which attach the pump to the engine. Harbor Freight tools sells a great tool designed for this job for $20.00. Once you have the correct tools, remove the serpentine drive belt. You may also need to remove the fan shroud. the pump shaft looks like it has an allen socket in the center, but this is for use in the manufacturing process, and will not come out. Place the puller tool on the pulley following tthe instruction that come with the tool, and remove the pulley. loosen, but do not remove the nut on the high pressure hose connection. use a pair of **** pliers to cut and remove the crimp clamp on the low pressure hose. If your pump has the remote reservour loosen the clamp on the reservour hose also. Remove the three mounting bolts, place a large pan under the pump to catch drips, and remove the prevously loosened hoses. there will be fluid leaking all over and the pump should come free, There are two types of replacement pump sold. With and without reservour. This reservour is a metal cover that fits over the back of the pump, and should not be confused with the reomte revervour found on some newer models which is next to the battery. This reservour is held in place be two throught the pump bolts which are removed at the back of the pump. If your new pump has a reservour you will probably still need to remove these bolts and put them in the replacement pump as most are shiped without these bolts. If you replacement pump comes without a reservour pull the bolts, the reservour should pull off of the old pump and slide onto the new one. check the o rings and replace the through the pump bolts. Installation is the reverse of removal execpt that 1/2" hose clamps replace the crimp clamps on the low pressure hose, and the puller tool is set up differently to replace the pulley. Finally if you don't flush contaminants out of the system your repair will last maybe a week. www.cardone.com has a great article about power steering flushing, read it before you start Good luck.