Five signs your steering pump is failing

Friday, January 05, 2018

It’s always an important part of driving, ensuring that when you turn the wheel, you have trust in the direction it will turn your car. To put your mind at ease, we’ve put together a list of the biggest and earliest signs that there are any issues with your steering pump. 

Keep an ear out

The most important sense to use to monitor issues with your steering pump is your ears. Various different noises, such as squealing, whining, indicating the fluid level is low, or groaning could be the first signs that the pump is failing and will start to impact the feel of the power steering. 

Lack of responsiveness in steering

While sounds may be the first symptoms, the most obvious early sign of an issue is the feel your vehicle’s steering. If the car becomes unresponsive to your inputs or the steering wheel starts to feel heavy. If the steering of your vehicle starts to deteriorate, the steering pump is the first place to look when identifying the issue. 

Vibrating steering wheel

Feel is key when it comes to steering. While responsiveness and heavy steering are some symptoms, another sign is a vibrating steering wheel, as the pump causes reverberations up the steering column. 

Grey power steering fluid

If you do decide to investigate further, check the colour of the fluid. New steering fluid is red but over time it can oxidate, which turns it to a grey colour, potentially with flakes of chrome, and impacts its effectiveness in the pump.  

Bearing is out of position

The main issue with a steering pump is likely to be with the bearing. If it is knocked out of position, it will cause a grinding noise when the wheel is turning as the contact loses effectiveness. 

These are the five key symptoms to be aware of if you are concerned by your steering pump. If your pump does reach end of life, we are the team to talk to. We are global leaders in the core industry, with an experienced team in a variety of areas. If you have a stock of steering pumps, or other parts, please get in touch and we can arrange a buyer visit to provide you with a quote for your core. For more information, please get in touch by emailing


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