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Power Steering Very Heavy When Stationary


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A bit of an odd one this. The power steering on my 1991 LS400 is fine when I first start the car from cold and fine all the time over about 3mph. But once the engine had got a little bit of warmth in it the powersteering is VERY heavy if the car is stationary. Once moving though, even only at walking pase, it's really light.

I'm thinking this is due the revs of the engine at idle being too low (the engine idles perfectly though). Maybe my PAS pump is on it's way out?

Any ideas?

Thanks in advance.

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I've just been out and tried the powersteering. Above 1000rpm it's fine. Below 1000rpm it starts to get heavier and at a warm idle of around 650rpm it's very similar to trying to turn the wheel with the engine switched off. The fluid level is fine so I guess I need a new PAS pump :tsktsk:

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Hi,

It might be worth changing the Power steering fluid for new stuff first in case its pasted its best and its lost its viscosity.Its the same fluid type as the auto gearbox.

I had thought that may be worth a try (it does look a little thin). Is there an recommended way to drain the old fluid and refill?

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wait wait....

there are couple things to check. the infamous idle air control valve under the pump, which controls the idle speed of the car when turning the wheel. this WILL leak and cause problems.

second is the almost as infamous screen on the rack that needs to be cleaned. it's subjected to high pressure, which is why it's a metal screen. it gets clogged, causing very high pressure and restricted fluid, thereby limiting p/s boost.

this is written about here and in the us lexus forums. very very common. should be checked before buying a $500 pump.

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wait wait....

there are couple things to check. the infamous idle air control valve under the pump, which controls the idle speed of the car when turning the wheel. this WILL leak and cause problems.

second is the almost as infamous screen on the rack that needs to be cleaned. it's subjected to high pressure, which is why it's a metal screen. it gets clogged, causing very high pressure and restricted fluid, thereby limiting p/s boost.

this is written about here and in the us lexus forums. very very common. should be checked before buying a $500 pump.

Has anyone for any more info or a link to how to check these. Both seem to be a possible cause.

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http://us.lexusownersclub.com/forums/index.php?showforum=4

i'd try here or in this forum. can't remember, but there are posts to find and even pics of the solenoid/rack screen and how to clean. also, info on the valve. problem is if it's the screen and you've seen high pressure, it' s already caused leaks in the lines, pump, etc.. that will be hard to fix w/o replacing... sorry if this is the case.

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  • 2 months later...
  • 1 month later...
Is this the infamous PAS soloniod? If so how do you remove it to get at the screen?

PAS.jpg

HI, did you get your power steering sorted mate , as mine is doing the same,

I was just goimg to buy a new pump, until i saw your post.

Please let me know how you sorted it.

Regards

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