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Old 01-01-2018, 02:22 PM   #1
Micawber
 
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Cold temp / high pressure blows power steering hose.

Google brought me to an old but similar post but, after I added my issue, I realized it was not in the right sub-forum. I've deleted that one and copied here.

I have a 2011 Camaro SS/RS m6. During two previous winters the power steering hose has leaked and I lost steering. 1st time it was close to home and under warranty so they came and picked the car up. 2nd time was only a couple blocks from the dealership and I just drove there. That time I had to pay but they said they flushed the system and used a fluid that would flow easier in the cold. This year I've just lost steering again, only this time it was on the hiway at -40C on New Years eve so I continued driving for nearly another hour to get home and probably cooked the pump.

I just watched a video on pump replacement but can't find the bill from the last fix so I'm not sure what fluid they might have used. Any ideas or other suggestions?
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Old 01-01-2018, 03:58 PM   #2
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No suggestions on fluid, but with repeat occurences and -40 temps, I'd be looking for something to wrap those hoses/lines with.
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Old 01-01-2018, 06:00 PM   #3
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^^^^ What he said.

Get those lines insulated. Have you considered rerouting or completely replacing your lines and routing them maybe near a heat source of some kind?

Makes it kinda hard as I know our heater core hoses are on the other side, but there has to be a way to defeat this issue.
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Old 01-03-2018, 04:40 PM   #4
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I may be able to come up with some kind of plugin pre-heat for cold start mornings. Some form of insulation might help too, probably something that could be used only seasonally. Thanks for the ideas!
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Old 01-03-2018, 06:46 PM   #5
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Power steering is something I never had leak as the hoses on old chevys always had high pressure hoses with embedded cord fpr high pressure and even braided stainless for appearance and functionality maybe its a sign you should upgrade your lines. But at minus forty you may need to research aftermarket solutions like performance fluids..I get my oil from Driven Racing I am sure if you could chat with them they would know what to use.
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Old 01-03-2018, 07:03 PM   #6
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Do you have a pic? Is the actual hose bursting near the center? Or is leaking near the end fitting? It it a pin hole leak? Is there plenty of slack in the hose? Always remember hoses cannot be perfectly fitting, they must have slack in the middle to accomodate for it shortening as pressure increases. I have seen hoses that people think look great as they fit perfect, first time they pressure them they pull out of the end fitting.

do you have any data on the fluid the dealer ship used?

I would reach out to a hydraulic shop and have them make a hose for you. We carry hoses up to 6 braid that will stall your engine before they blew
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Old 01-06-2018, 12:13 PM   #7
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I finally got in to the dealership to get some fluid. The parts guy pulled up the records for my car. The fluid is labelled ACDelco "Power Steering Fluid - Cold Climate" and the part number, in Canada if it makes a difference, is "1 #10953471". I've got the car inside now so I can raise it, add fluid, and see for myself exactly where it's leaking though I haven't gotten that far yet.

Last edited by Micawber; 01-06-2018 at 04:23 PM.
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Old 01-07-2018, 12:53 AM   #8
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I used hydraulic fluid in my power steering when I was in Alaska. Never had problems after.
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Old 01-07-2018, 04:17 AM   #9
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AC Delco describes it as:
A partially synthetic power steering fluid with exceptional low-temperature properties and increased oxidation stability. This product is specifically recommended for extreme cold climate conditions with temperatures below -20°F. Excellent low-temperature fluidity. Minimizes pump squeal. Inhibits corrosion. Non-foaming. Improves power steering response in cold weather.

It would seem that should work for your application although "below -20" may not include -40.

Let us know what you find on the source of the leak.
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Old 01-09-2018, 06:47 PM   #10
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Power steering leak

Just had mine repaired today for the 4th time in 6 years.
What has consistently failed is the hose clamp (to fitting) on the low pressure return line which is located below the passenger side corner of the radiator. Last January the fail resulted in the replacement of the complete line, power steering pump and the steering rack.
Fortunately all was covered on extended warranty (which has since expired).
The fluid they now claim to be the GM recommended for extreme cold temps is actually Dexron VI Tranny fluid, part # 19329449.


Make that the 5th time in 6 years..... back to the dealership again today (Wed) power steering pump failed again.

Further update.....replacing the pump did not fix the issue....replacing the steering rack again!

Last edited by TAPSHIFT; 01-11-2018 at 04:31 PM. Reason: update
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Old 01-11-2018, 09:58 AM   #11
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I won't say I'm happy to hear I'm not the only one. I took the car into the dealership today. I was going to look at it myself but, as TAPSHIFT mentions, there's the pump and the rack involved besides just the lines and my old truck has started giving me problems too so I need to get it fixed right and quick. I walked to work yesterday and it was -30C out there this morning.

Edit: So if I replace the low pressure return line with something that will hold, where's the next weak point? Will it start blowing seals somewhere else? Maybe I just have to get fanatical about warming the car up really well before it moves when it's cold out?

Last edited by Micawber; 01-11-2018 at 10:12 AM.
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Old 01-11-2018, 10:25 AM   #12
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Question for the folks who know how this power steering works:

Will the low pressure return line see full pressure simply when the pump turns, like when the car starts, or does it not come under pressure until I move the steering wheel?

Update - dealership just called and says the power steering hose has ruptured, not just come off, and they don't have one in stock. They're looking for a replacement but said it might take weeks.

Edit: Found the answer myself. http://www.agcoauto.com/content/news/p2_articleid/214 It looks like the return line will be under pressure as soon as the car starts. Warming the car up by running it won't fix this, it needs pre-heat or strengthening the weak points.

Last edited by Micawber; 01-11-2018 at 10:50 AM. Reason: Answered my own question.
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