What are the signs of a failed Power-Steering pump? - Toyota Nation Forum : Toyota Car and Truck Forums

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post #1 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 11:02 AM Thread Starter
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What are the signs of a failed Power-Steering pump?

Guten Tag everyone,

with 240k on mah Camry it seems my PS pump is failing -- despite pwining many high-mileage gems, I am unfamiliar with PS pump failure. At a stand still the steering is heavy, and when you turn the wheel I don't get that characteristic power-steering pump 'huummm' that most cars have when you work the wheel back and forth while parked... checked the belt, belt is good and has proper tension... fluid level is good and proper fluid..

so my question - for those who have experience with PS pump failure, do my symptoms relate to your experences with failed PS pumps? I wanna get some feedback before I swap out the pump... Thanks!




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1995 2.2L Camry 5sfe engine
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post #2 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 11:19 AM
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From experienced from people, bad pump can get noisy either with a loud whine or knocking while idle (bearing) failure while still working. If your getting no assist, I hope the pump isn't throwing debris in the PS line and causing a block somewhere.

I would too find out what the signs of a failing PS is since none of my pumps died yet *knock on wood*

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post #3 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 11:31 AM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by Kingdom934 View Post
From experienced from people, bad pump can get noisy either with a loud whine or knocking while idle (bearing) failure while still working. If your getting no assist, I hope the pump isn't throwing debris in the PS line and causing a block somewhere.

I would too find out what the signs of a failing PS is since none of my pumps died yet *knock on wood*

I had a squeal like a loose belt for months before this happened... wonder if the belt glazed over and can't make grip anymore? That belt is in a stinker location.. hard to check from above... but yeah, Im getting to assist and no powersteering pump 'hummm' sound when you jog the wheel...




experienced stories appreciated..



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post #4 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 11:52 AM
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The PS pump in my Avy is making a loud whine when turning the wheels. It's worse when its cold, and goes away in a few miles. I've got a rebuilt pump on my workbench waiting for a warmer day to swap it out.

They'll whine loudly if the fluid is low, so check it to be sure it's not just low on fluid.

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post #5 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 01:10 PM
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Originally Posted by BMR View Post
The PS pump in my Avy is making a loud whine when turning the wheels. It's worse when its cold, and goes away in a few miles. I've got a rebuilt pump on my workbench waiting for a warmer day to swap it out.

They'll whine loudly if the fluid is low, so check it to be sure it's not just low on fluid.
My 2004 SE I4 makes a whine all the time and it's pretty loud. Assist is fine though and I can feel the 'whine' in the wheel. Probably just the pump then, eh?
I think the Gen5 pumps in general are noisey and more if it is going bad. My 2004 XLE V6 always whined when cold.

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post #6 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 01:13 PM Thread Starter
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I got no noise, and little/choppy assist while parked... oh well... I'll double check the belt for glazing and play it by ear.. right now its not too bad, as once you get going over 7mph it feels fine...

thanks for input all

Guten Tag!



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post #7 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 01:33 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Blackness View Post
I got no noise, and little/choppy assist while parked... oh well... I'll double check the belt for glazing and play it by ear.. right now its not too bad, as once you get going over 7mph it feels fine...

thanks for input all

Guten Tag!


The only time I got choppy steering was when the fluid was low, air in line, or fluid blockage/restriction = lack of fluid. All while it whining quite a bit. Never had an issue with air in the line since if the the fluid was low, simply by refilling the PS and driving around the block a few times cleared it up fine.

Hmm....this is intersting.

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post #8 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 04:11 PM
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Choppy when parked? I know you tensioned the belt and all, but 5S-FE PS belts are really annoying to tension (properly). I got squeal and choppy steering on both of mine until the belt warmed up and contracted...ended up using a long prybar to lever the pump while a buddy tightened the holding bolt.

What you're describing is exactly what happened with mine, down to the lack of whining. Oh, if you do re-tension it, don't lever against the timing belt cover (did that to begin with and didn't notice until I heard a SNAP and cracked it).

Wish they'd just put in a tensioner like on the alternator.
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post #9 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 04:27 PM
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Oil or grease on belt, maybe?
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post #10 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 05:12 PM Thread Starter
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Originally Posted by insightbrewery View Post
Choppy when parked? I know you tensioned the belt and all, but 5S-FE PS belts are really annoying to tension (properly). I got squeal and choppy steering on both of mine until the belt warmed up and contracted...ended up using a long prybar to lever the pump while a buddy tightened the holding bolt.

What you're describing is exactly what happened with mine, down to the lack of whining. Oh, if you do re-tension it, don't lever against the timing belt cover (did that to begin with and didn't notice until I heard a SNAP and cracked it).

Wish they'd just put in a tensioner like on the alternator.

Kewl..thanx.... I'll double check the tension/belt condition one mo' 'gin...





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post #11 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 06:20 PM
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My experience with Toyota PS pumps is its rare for the pump to go bad, but common for everything else to go bad!

You already covered belts and tension. If its covered in grease, that belt is junk. Dont forget to thoroughly clean the pulleys before installing another one.

Fluid- If it doesnt look clear and new, flush it out. Even red Dexron has some transparency. The fluid I took out of my car had a green cast. I think someone poured coolant in the reservoir by mistake. Also there is usually a screen at the bottom of the reservoir. If this screen is clogged, you will have a whiney pump from fluid starvation.

Hoses- If you have a car over 10 years old, there will be a LOT of dissolved hose in the system. Replace the hoses. Second thing is the pressure hoses start leaking at the rubber/steel interface.

-SP
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post #12 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 10:28 PM
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I've had to do the high pressure hose on 3 different generation of the V6 Camry...yes...got better each time with less swearing and less soaked dretch clothes from oil and atf.


95 V6
98 V6
04 V6


The 95/98 is similar except the 95 has two vacuum lines on the top of the pump *Take note where it goes* and the 98 has a plug. The 04 is the same but the 04 is a lot of a bitch to get out due to the tigher engine bay.

Drop the pump with the high pressure line and the dealer only rubber hose attach to the pump (try disconnect the line on the resevor side instead), never mind trying to replace the high pressure hose with it mount on the engine block. You won't be able to get anything on it to remove it and if you do, you'll break something. All the hoses will start leaking on the rubber line towards the pump to the middle metal line. The 95 that I did was leaking from 4 ends - each side of the rubber line to the pump and both ends of the rubber line going to the metal line to the rack. It leaked so much that it was burning on the exhaust and left puddles.

I'm not sure if you'll be able to replace the PS pump only and leave the high pressure line and resevior line for the 4 cylinder, but if it was me with the 6...just disconnect everything. It's not worth the trouble having no space.


Tension this p/s belt is an absolute bitch...

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Last edited by Kingdom934; 01-19-2017 at 10:30 PM.
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post #13 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 10:29 PM
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I'd agree with others to check belt tension first. But I'd also make sure the crank pulley and the PS pulley are clean and dry. Use an old toothbrush and alcohol to clean the pulley grooves and allow to dry.

Yeah, these manually tensioned systems suck. Worse if it doesn't use a jackscrew like the alternator.

I'd use this tool, about $20: https://www.amazon.com/Gates-91132-B.../dp/B000CRDLZM
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post #14 of 24 Old 01-19-2017, 11:00 PM
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Tightening down the PS pump is easy put a screwdriver between the bolt and the slot.
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post #15 of 24 Old 01-20-2017, 04:37 AM
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Okay, I kind of just went through this.

I had my engine out over the summer for replacement. It might be noteworthy to add that I replaced the high pressure hose while everything was out, it was leaking - but you didn't mention any leaks. Anyway, all these months later during cold Winter temps, she started squealing and would sometimes have choppy steering if I had my foot off of the gas while turning. It too, got better once warmed up. I was convinced the pump finally let go. But, having faith in her at 150k miles, I poked around.

First, the fluid was a little low. With the car cold, I topped it off to the COLD line on the reservoir. It helped a little, but she was still screamin'.

Second, I checked the drive belt tension (trying to avoid adjusting the P/S belt). My drive belt was a bit loose. Tightened that, and it was about 50% better! However, it still squeaked at idle in drive, and it still made the sound of a pterodactyl when turned to full lock.

Third, (ugh) I checked the power steering belt. Yep, it was loose too - and worse than the drive belt. This part is a pain, and hopefully I can save you a bit of trouble. You have some members that say you only need to loosen the lower adjuster bolt to adjust the tension, and you have some that say you need to loosen both the lower adjuster bolt AND the pivot point bolt at the top of the pump. In my case, oooooof course, I had to loosen the top pivot point bolt, which sucks to get to.

(At this point in time, I wonder if leaving the top bolt slightly loosened would make this easier down the road, but I can't remember if there are other bolts holding the pump in place).

Okay, so.. to continue on the P/S belt adjustment - before I continue, let me say that if you are planning to replace the power steering belt, you will need to remove the drive belt first, as the power steering belt is behind the drive belt on the water pump pulley. Jack up the front right side of the car, enough to remove the tire once you set the car safely on jack stands. You're going to need to be under the car for some of this, so put the car on stands and the jack next to it as a failsafe. Remove the front right wheel, set it aside with your lugs. At the bottom right of your pump you will see the adjusted bolt, it's kind of in between the bottom of the pump and timing cover, I think it's a 10mm. Loosen that, see if you can adjust the pump. If not, you have to remove the pivot point bolt above that.

Pivot Point Bolt AKA the son of a b!*ch pain in the a#$ bolt - This bolt is just about directly above the adjuster bolt, and a little to the left. If you look up there with a flashlight, you will see a 12mm bolt for an engine bracket almost directly up from the adjuster bolt. To the LEFT of that bolt is the 12mm bolt you are looking to loosen on the pump. I tried laying down lengthwise along the car and reaching up, but it was a pain. I found the easiest way was to sit on the floor facing the front right wheelwell, and reaching up with my hand in a vertical "high five" position to feel around for the right bolt. The problem here, for me at least, were my craftsman sockets. The regular 3/8 drive sockets weren't deep enough to reach the bolt without the wrench getting stopped short by the power steering belt. The 3/8 drive deep sockets were too big to even get the socket and wrench up there. I grabbed my 1/2" drive 12mm socket, which is just in between the sizes of the 3/8" standard and deep sockets - perfect! Feeling up there for the bolt with my left hand, and guiding the socket with my right, I got it on the bolt and broke it loose. Then I grabbed the pry bar (the longest one out of my 3 piece set) and was able to get it in a good position near the lower adjuster bolt. Still holding the socket on the higher pivot point bolt, I switched it to tighten, laid my shoulder into the prybar and tightened down the bolt. Twisting the belt by hand, it would go about 1/4 turn, which is good tension for me! Tighten the lower adjustment bolt, put the wheel back on and that's it.

Somehow my posts tend to end up as novels, but hopefully the extra detail will save you the hour headache of trying every socket, drive, and angle to get at that gem of a bolt.

-Brian
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Last edited by evilws6; 01-20-2017 at 04:40 AM.
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