Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lines?

Posts specific to the 3.0 litre NA H6 engine

Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lines?

Postby Daytona » Fri May 29, 2015 9:56 am

Hey,

MY QUESTION
What's the best way to replace a power steering pump, the reservoir and flush completely?
And also - should I have the engine on whilst doing any part of it?

WHAT HAPPENED
Ever since I bought my car (3 years ago) whenever I have the steering at hard lock left or right on a cold start, it's always had this whine in the pump. When the car warms up, whine goes away. I've been reading up on it and I kinda thought replacing the O ring in the power steering pump would fix it. Last weekend I replaced the O ring - but - the one I replaced it was slightly different. The one that came out had flat sides whereas the one I put in was quite circular. The original had a slight kink in the O ring.

When I replaced the O ring, I had the car up on the jacks and over 8 or 9 hours of moving the steering to the left and right and hardly any bubbles in the reservoir and the fluid level not moving, I was happy and started the engine (new fluid at the same time). However there was more noticable whine from the pump but kinda went away.

I then got a bit worried about the difference in O rings and decided to put the original back in by taking the line off the pump, put the original O ring back in and put the line back on.

But.

Stupid me decided that starting the engine would push the fluidthrough and sort everything out. What it ended up doing is aerating the fluid something wicked. Fluid spilt out of the reservoir. Made a mess.

WHAT I'VE TRIED SO FAR
Now this is at work (200km from home) and I had to get some jacks and power steering fluid. I got the car up on jacks and sucked the existing fluid in the reservoid out and put new stuff in. I then moved the wheels to the left and right and repeat a lot of times. Lot of waiting. Then started the car, but more frothy fluid came out. So got the car towed to the mechanics.

After the mechanic looked at it for a day, still couldn't fix it and now the power steering pump sounds like crap.
The fluid in the reservoir looks seriously funky. There is fluid at the bottom, but then what looks like an air gap and then more fluid (bottom to top).
Fluid is seriously frothy. Like strawberry milkshake.

WHAT I'M DOING RIGHT NOW
I've ordered a new pump, reservoir and pipe from pump to reservoir.

WHAT I'M THINKING OF DOING
What I want to do is basically get as much of the aerated fluid out of the system as I can and not sure on the best way to do this. What I'm thinking of doing:

1 ) Get car up on jacks
2 ) Remove old pump, remove old reservoir and pipe
3 ) Install new pump (leave drive belt off)
4 ) Install new reservoir and pipe
5 ) Keep return line off to the reservoir
6 ) Pour new fluid in up to cold max level
7 ) Rotate pump by hand or drill at low speed
8 ) Pour new fluid in as needed
9 ) Old fluid is drained out to a container and not back into system
10 ) Once I see new fluid from return line, hook return line back into reservoir
11 ) Move steering wheel to left and right, topping up reservoir as needed

After I hook the return line back, there will be air introduced again, but I'm pretty sure as long as I don't start the car and let the air come out it'll be fine.

That's what I was thinking of doing. For those that have replaced a pump or flushed the system, would the above procedure do the job?
And does anyone know how the piston works in relation to the steering wheel?
For example, when I rotate the pump by hand, is this flushing all the fluid? Or does the the steering wheel have to be rotated whilst putting new fluid in?

And does anyone know the risk of starting the engine to pump the fluid?

I've read conflicting items on this - some things say it's OK to start the engine, others say do not.
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby sheppo9 » Fri May 29, 2015 12:14 pm

What I did after I replaced that o-ring (was round like you said - figured they would go flat from the pipe squashing/sealing it) and swapped those shitting compression hose clamps for actual hose clamps was;
1. jack front of the car up.
2. remove return hose at the reservoir, block to reservoir end and run a long piece of hose into a container on the ground.
3. fill reservoir to the top.
4. start the car - the fluid will go down quickly.
5. stop the car, fill the reservoir back up.
6 .Repeat numbers 4 & 5 till the fluid was as clean as straight out of the bottle.
7. reconnect the return hose.
8. check level and start the car, turning the wheel slowly side to side for a few minutes.
9. if it still won't bleed or has a whine all the time, leave it for an hour or so, then repeat number 8.
10. if it still won't bleed or has a whine all the time, you've probably fucked up something - check the o-ring and the return hose and all hose clamps.
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Brunsy3.0 » Fri May 29, 2015 6:01 pm

First time i flushed mine i did same as sheppo but found it hard to keep the fluid up when the car started as it sucks through so quickly. Second time i jacked the car up and turned the wheel to pump the fluid. I put the return hose into an empty coke bottle until fluid was clear as it only takes about a litre to flush and top up. Had a tiny bit of air in the system and couldn't shake it for days. Then one day in a rush i left the car parked with wheel turned hard and next day all was well besides fluid dropping as the air escaped
....THE WHITEWASH....
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Daytona » Sat May 30, 2015 12:06 pm

Awesome, thanks very much for the replies!

I'll have another attempt next week with trying. Got some hose clamps (thanks for that tip) and will be chucking them on. Brakes are much easier to bleed!
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Daytona » Wed Jun 03, 2015 8:59 pm

And a quick update. Had some dramas along the way.

I thought I'd actually take the car to the mechanic for once, so went down to pick the car up and the bloody mechanic was working on the car in real windy conditions. He left the bonnet up. Looks like the bonnet got pushed back and the two pointy edges towards the windshield have been bent in. :-(

I queried him on this and although he said it was really windy, did not admit liability. And also charged me $180 for doing shit all. So a pretty shit mechanic I'd say. Was pretty pissed off, tried to keep my cool though and didn't get upset on the spot. Problem is I can't prove that the bonnet was like that when it went to the shop really. The dude knows, so karma will get him in the end.

Anyways, dramas aside.

Got the new pump and reservoir. Had a work mate very kindly offer me to tow the car to their house (I don't really have a house to work on the car when I'm away from home) and worked on it with them. What we ended up doing:

1. Before the car got towed, took drive belt off.
2. Drove car just to get it on the trailer.
3. Once in garage, undid the bolts holding the pump to the bracket lightly.
4. Pulled bracket off along with pump.
5. Removed pump from bracket.
6. Removed reservoir.
7. Put new pump in bracket (easy to hold bracket in vise with wood blocks around now).
8. Put bracket in engine.
9. Put new reservoir and new line from reservoir to pump in (using hose clamps)
10. Blocked off return line on reservoir.
11. Hooked up bottle to return line.
12. Turned pump by hand, keeping fluid topped up.
13. Did this until used about 1 litre of fluid.
14. Hooked return line back to reservoir.
15. Drive belt back on.
16. Filled to cold max.
17. With car on ground still, moved wheels left to right.
18. Filled reservoir as needed to cold max.
19. Started engine for about 30 seconds, made sure no foaming and level stayed high.
20. Stopped engine.
21. Topped up fluid as needed.
22. Started engine.
23. Moved wheels left to right slowly and not full lock.
24. Stopped engine then started.
25. Moved wheels left to right lock.

And that's about it. There was whine present when car first started, but no whine now.
I think I may have missed a couple steps, but the ones listed are probably the bigger ones.

Hope this helps anyone else looking to do something similar - why the mechanic couldn't do this in the first place, dunno.
I'll leave the steering at hard lock over long periods to see if that helps get any remaining air out, but looking wayyyy better.

Thanks to the previous responses - was a huge help!
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Anfernee0525 » Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:02 pm

Can you tell me how much did you pay for the new pump and where did u get it ?
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Daytona » Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:18 pm

Pump was about $600NZD from Japan.
A second hand one in NZ is just shy of that same amount.

A lot of people seem to get parts from PartSouq, so for the H6 specifically:
https://partsouq.com/en/search/search?q=34430AG0119L

Note that number changed from 34430AG011 to 34430AG0119L (reservoir changed as well).

You might want to use something like www.opposedforces.com to get your exact part number.

Personally I get my parts from a dude called Derek at www.avojdm.com.
There's a contact button on that then an email address there.
Usually pretty quick to reply and helps out with more unusual requests.
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby mitchel009 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 12:09 pm

Glad to see im not the only one
i hav a my06 3L r-b
im replacing mine today, will repost if anything odd occurs
my fluid smells burnt and the pump is whining so what else could it be
my mechanic found a new pump for 280au
and im using dexronIII
but thats all we have ordered, is there anything else that might be worth my time getting so i dont get stuck?? , o-rings, mt gaskets ect?
p.s just replaced the alternator as the rear bearing sounded bad = 475incl for a jaylec made in japan from peps
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby sheppo9 » Fri Jun 05, 2015 3:21 pm

If the oil smells burnt - it's been in there for a long, long time - it's probably black or very dark brown too?

Change the top o-ring (get a genuine one, part #34439FG000), change the compression/spring clamps for actual hose clamps, change the drive belt and the tensioner/idler bearings (press/hit them out, can get bearings separately from bearing shops).
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby Daytona » Mon Jun 08, 2015 9:48 am

sheppo9 wrote:If the oil smells burnt - it's been in there for a long, long time - it's probably black or very dark brown too?

Change the top o-ring (get a genuine one, part #34439FG000), change the compression/spring clamps for actual hose clamps, change the drive belt and the tensioner/idler bearings (press/hit them out, can get bearings separately from bearing shops).


I definitely recommend this.
My power steering fluid did have a burnt smell. I replaced the drive belt/tensioner/idler about a month back as well.

Have done about 400km on the fixed/upgraded parts and car running a lot better.
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby mitchel009 » Mon Jun 22, 2015 8:30 am

i've replaced both idler bearings as well but not the belt nor anything else
im getting a ticking noise now from the same area, my mechanic thinks the return hose to reservoir will fix it so im ordering one today
will repost the result later on this week
thanks for the replys ;-)
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby jp928 » Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:08 pm

My pump gas gradually got noisier, and now is pretty bad. I found the pdf about orings and flushing, so I thought lets give that a go.

Its a bit out of date, or LHD is very different from RHD cars. In the guts it says to pull the HARD return line off the reservoir,run it into catch can, loosen pulley so you can hand turn the pump, turn pump and add to tank until output looks clean, top up tank to cold max, turn steering lock to lock until clean, top up tank, reassemble. Put new O ring under inlet adaptor on pump.

Well....return line entering my tank is rubber, its at least 30mm UNDER cold max level, so pulling that off is going to be MESSY. By the time I managed to siphon out enough fluid there was only 20mm tops in there. So flushing old out was a bit slow, having to add to tank frequently. Certainly wasnt enough in the tank to allow running the steering wheel from lock-to-lock so I skipped that part. When I had run several 100 ml through and outlet looked clean I though O-ring time, while level is low. My inlet is a plastic part - no O rings that I could see under that.
Reassembled all, topped up tank to cold max, started engine, no noises from pump under load. Maybe thats a win, lets see how it goes.

jp 08 gtb 6mt wagon
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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby BillyCorgi » Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:20 pm

jp928 wrote:O-ring time, while level is low. My inlet is a plastic part - no O rings that I could see under that.
Reassembled all, topped up tank to cold max, started engine, no noises from pump under load. Maybe thats a win, lets see how it goes.

jp 08 gtb 6mt wagon


Your Pump is a Gen4 GT Turbo Pump with black plastic inlet barb fitting.
There is a 13mm I.D x 1.5mm section O-Ring under the black plastic fitting between the fitting and the alloy pump body.

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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby jp928 » Mon Aug 08, 2016 5:59 pm

bugger. dont have one that size. Any suggestion as to best way to get fluid level down low again please ?

Does the O ring tend to sit on the plastic stem that goes into the pump, or in the cavity in the pump? The fluid was pretty dark there, and tending to flow out, messy again.

Turkey baster here I come.

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Re: Power steering - how to replace pump and fully flush lin

Postby zoliberty » Fri Aug 12, 2016 3:21 pm

Was it this kind of sound?
https://youtu.be/5vyuDi97mWE
I have to take my 3l back to the dealer to sort it out.

My mech said that the top PS hose is sucking in air which aerates the oil which causes the noise. Really noisy in the mornings depending on how cold it is. Hopefully the PS pump is not shagged.
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