Power steering assists the driver of a car to steer and control the vehicle, allowing the driver to turn and steer the wheel with ease. With power steering very little force or effort is required by the driver, the power is provided by the power steering system. Power steering is a useful feature for many drivers as it can ease fatigue brought on by driving and can offer additional control of the vehicle.
The power steering pump is attached to the engine of the car by a serpentine belt.
The power steering pump plays an important part in the power steering process by harnessing power from the engine, to pump the steering fluid through the system to the steering rack. When the driver turns the steering wheel the pressurised fluid inside the power steering pump moves the piston that controls the gears that steer the car. The power steering pump adjusts the amount of steering fluid it pumps to the steering rack based on the speed the car is moving.
If there is a fault with the power steering pump the warning light will illuminate on the dashboard. If it is difficult to steer the car and the wheels of the car are stiff and increasingly tough to turn it is likely to be an indication of a fault with the power steering. The power steering pump, if defective, can leak causing the steering fluid to drain away and the whole system will cease to function properly. It is very important to get the power steering system inspected by a professional as a failure with the power steering could result in an accident if the steering wheel locks. When replacing the power steering pump it is vital to source a power steering pump that will be compatible with the make and model of your car.