Brand New: Lost Power Steering - Nissan Frontier Forum
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post #1 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 07:20 PM Thread Starter
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Brand New: Lost Power Steering

Hey folks,

Yes, I'm new, so sorry if this was discussed before. I tried a search on the topic but mainly found references to a more gradual situation than I am in. I am (was, kinda am, not sure at the moment) a proud owner of a brand new 2016 CC SV 4x4. I bought it 2 weeks and 1 day ago and I have had no issues or complaints. I went to my nephew's soccer game tonight and had to park in a tiny school parking lot. I'm still getting used to the wheelbase on my truck vs my old elantra and had some trouble turning into a spot. I had to turn the steering wheel, very briefly, to full lock to the right to try to turn into a space, rolled like 5 ft. I realized I wasn't going to fit, so I backed up a few feet and straightened her out a bit. But when I went to pull in, it felt like I had no power steering and it was really difficult to turn the wheel. No noises, no popping, not anything but a heavy steering wheel.

Anyways, I was running late, so I just put it in park and walked over to the game. An hour later, after the game, I came back and there was what looked like an EXPLOSION of power steering fluid under my truck. I popped the hood and the reservoir was bone dry. Luckily, I was only 3 miles from the dealership and it's only like 4 turns so I was able to get it there with manual steering. It's staying the night (at least) and they gave me a loaner.

I've owned the truck for 2 weeks, garage kept, no off-roading, no crazy driving, it has 434 miles on it and I can only assume either a hose clamp popped loose or the pump sprang an immense leak. The whole system drained. Anyone have any inference as to what could have happened? The entire underside of the front differential/radiator skid was covered in power steering fluid. It was still dripping at the dealership. Thanks for any insight.
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post #2 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 07:38 PM
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I had a huge leak like once and it was a bad steering rack. It's under warranty so don't sweat it. Make sure they clean the undercarriage to your satisfaction.

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post #3 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 09:38 PM Thread Starter
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Since you mentioned the rack, I thought about it and that's right where it was leaking. Front more on the driver's side. I didn't get a great look at it since I was in a hurry to get it in before the shop closed. Hopefully they can get it fixed pretty quickly. I've got an out of state wedding to go to this weekend and they already told me I can't take the loaner out of state. Might be missing the wedding.
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post #4 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-27-2016, 11:49 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Archer22 View Post
I've got an out of state wedding to go to this weekend and they already told me I can't take the loaner out of state.
"No problem - Just comp me for a rental car that CAN be taken out of the state - Something big, with a nice ride, and leather."

"Note that I'm trying to be reasonable here - I could have asked you to comp me for a chartered jet..."

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post #5 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 12:28 AM
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Rental/loaner cars can go out of state but not to Mexico.

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post #6 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 08:45 AM Thread Starter
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Well, on the loaner agreement I signed and I followed up and asked about it, they said I can't take the loaner out of state. But I did say, "Well, I have to go so what can you do for me?" They said if the truck isn't going to be out of the shop by Friday they'll figure something out for me. I'm in Oklahoma and the wedding is in Kansas, about a 4 hour drive. Presumably they were referring to a rental. Anyways, I'm more eager just to find out what the problem is. I can't believe that went out so early on. Maybe their QA in Canton, MS isn't too great. I'm lucky I wasn't on the highway when that happened.
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post #7 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 11:00 AM
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When you turn the steering wheel full lock and hold it against the stops, you build up large amounts of pressure. There should be a relief valve or bypass of some kind. You can normally hear the pump change sound. You built up enough pressure to blow a hose. It shouldn't have happened, but, a weak hose or clamp or faulty bypass valve and you got what you have here.

What you should do when you need to turn sharp like this is turn the wheel to full stop and then turn the wheel back just enough so the pump quits making noise. This is true for all vehicles with power steering.

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Last edited by shizzy; 09-28-2016 at 11:03 AM.
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post #8 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 11:34 AM Thread Starter
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Quote:
Originally Posted by shizzy View Post
When you turn the steering wheel full lock and hold it against the stops, you build up large amounts of pressure. There should be a relief valve or bypass of some kind. You can normally hear the pump change sound. You built up enough pressure to blow a hose. It shouldn't have happened, but, a weak hose or clamp or faulty bypass valve and you got what you have here.

What you should do when you need to turn sharp like this is turn the wheel to full stop and then turn the wheel back just enough so the pump quits making noise. This is true for all vehicles with power steering.
Well, I'm familiar with what you are describing. I've tried in every vehicle I've owned to not make turns with the wheel all the way for the exact reason you described. This is my 5th vehicle and I've actually never had a power steering problem EVER. I only had the wheel at full lock for a brief moment. When the wheel came to full lock and I realized I wasn't going to make the turn, I stopped and backed up to adjust. Also, the vehicle was barely rolling, it wasn't any kind of high speed maneuver. The weird thing is there was no noise, no change other than a heavy steering wheel, and also a hemorrhaging of power steering fluid all over the parking lot.

The tech at the shop tried to insinuate that I was abusing the car and was offroading and that's why the power steering went out. I was stabbing him with imaginary daggers. I was livid! I've babied the crap out of it and my wife has accused me of driving miss daisy. lol. I'm gonna call this afternoon if I don't hear anything and attempt to find out what's going on.
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post #9 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 11:48 AM
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After he said that I'd DEMAND the service director and let him know what his moronic tech accused a customer of and that the spotless truck has just over 400 miles. I'd make another demand that this d*ck apologize for even implying it.
If he was a real MECHANIC he'd realize is was a component failure and nothing else.

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post #10 of 25 (permalink) Old 09-28-2016, 11:55 AM Thread Starter
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Well, I glared at him and told him he can feel free to grab a flashlight and crawl under the truck and I dared him to find a single speck of dirt under it. He just laughed and said he was only joking.

It was one of the service advisers who said that when I was checking the truck in.
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