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Discussion Starter #1
Hey y'all!

My truck has developed an appetite for power steering fluid. I can't tell where the fluid is going, as there are no leaks on my driveway, on any lines or on the pump or anything like that. I was curious if this is a common issue or if I have failing power steering pump. Does anyone have any recommendations on how to find this leak and or how to fix it?


Thanks!
 

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If you're constantly adding PS fluid, it has to be leaking out somewhere.

Unlike motor oil, engine coolant or ATF, there is no route for PS fluid to be consumed by the engine.
 
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My 2001 had a loose clamp on the hose under the plastic tank that is mounted to the truck.
I tightened clamp. Perhaps a mechanic (or prior owner) forgot to tighten the clamp.

I would appreciate tips on finding such leaks, as my wife's old Ford leaks power steering fluid.
 

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If you're constantly adding PS fluid, it has to be leaking out somewhere.

Unlike motor oil, engine coolant or ATF, there is no route for PS fluid to be consumed by the engine.
That's true. I meant is there any way for the pump to consume it.?
 

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Clean off all the stuff real well, then drive a little and look for leaks. There is UV dye that can be added to the PS fluid, then one needs UV light and special goggles to help find the leak.

Pretty much leak areas are the seal under the pulley in the PS pump, seals on the PS gearbox, or in the lines (especially at metal crimps to rubber).

My own 1998 Frontier (4-cylinder) has leaked PS fluid for a decade, I just check its level every 2 months and add as necessary. My 2004 Frontier doesn't leak PS fluid.
 
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If you are adding fluid and not seeing anything drip out anywhere it may be leaking out of the end seals of the rack assembly and into the inner tie rod boots where it can accumulate unnoticed for some time. Try taking a small pick and poking a pinhole in The bottom of the inner tie rod boots as far inboard (as close to the rack housing) as possible. A small amount of fluid is considered acceptable but if you get a good drip or a steady stream of fluid coming out of the pinhole you almost certainly have failed outer seals and the rack should be replaced
 

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Valvoline, Prestone, Lucas, Blue Devil and other manufacturers sell power steering fluid with "leak stop" - Typically, they have ingredients to make old, hard seals flexible again.
 
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Slide underneath your truck with a flashlight, remove splash guard and have a look. I'm pretty sure you'll see all the leaked fluid.
Then clean it up with some engine degreaser and blast the engine clean at a carwash then it'll be easier to see where the freshly leaked fluid comes from.
 

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I just realized you have the KA engine. When I had a PS pump leak, it soaked the bypass hose and the alternator...causing both to fail prematurely.
 

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It's possible that the alternator on my own '98 with KA engine went bad because of leaked power steering fluid. Or at least that's what I've always figured.
 
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