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Bizarre power steering issue

Posted: Wed May 15, 2019 5:16 pm
by Sharky
Hi

Can anyone help me with this ?

I have a 2008 Bluemotion 1.4 diesel Polo, the power steering had been intermittent for a couple of months at start up, when it doesn't fire up straight away it will often come on when I have turned a corner or braked to a standstill.

The bizarre thing is if I park in exactly the same place it will always work from start up, I presumed that the fluid was just low, as the MOT is due soon I took it to my local independent to top up the fluid as the battery needed to come out to access, they said the fluid was slightly down but should not cause the issue and topped it up.

The problem is just the same, they have advised a new pump is needed at a cost of £480, but doesn't quite make sense to me as when it does come on it will never go off again until it has been parked up, are we missing something is there something else/fluid in the system that could be causing this, just reluctant to fork out the money and be left with the same issue.

Thanks

Re: Bizarre power steering issue

Posted: Wed May 15, 2019 10:28 pm
by RUM4MO
Have you or they checked the condition of the battery, and the load sense cable and the excitation cable underneath the car where it is joined in a plug and socket, sometimes, mainly with TDI engined cars, the violent engine movements cause these leads to fracture, does the charge warning light come on when the ignition is switched on but the engine is not started, and then does it go out?

What can happen is, if the battery is old and down on capacity and/or charge, when you start the car, and the electrical systems sense a lack of battery power, the car's controller will shut down any unnecessary high power users, and the power steering is the highest electrical power user - ie it draws large currents when you demand a change of direction and is not an essential power user, which means, if you lose the power steering the car can still be driven and the lower than necessary power can to used by essential users.

Now, if your battery is old/low on charge and maybe even the wires I mentioned sheared or well towards shearing through, after you get the car running you suddenly demand a change of direction of the steering wheels, maybe to get out of a parking space and you do that while the engine is running at low revs, you can very easily end up in this situation, and momentarily stopping and restarting will reset this issue if it is at all possible as the charge in the battery might be slightly "better".

Re: Bizarre power steering issue

Posted: Wed May 15, 2019 10:45 pm
by Sharky
Thank you RUM4MO

Will pass this on to them, will post back in the forum when I get an outcome from them.