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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Last week the power steering failed in my 2001 Disco 2. There was a leak in the system. I narrowed the leak down to the pump and found that the main gasket had failed. I used the $39.00 gasket kit and installed a new reservoir to pump hose, and O-Ring on the high pressure line. I put everything back together and no more leaks.

I flushed the the system with 2 quarts of power steering fluid and the fluid is now clear and swirling well in the reservoir. I followed the directions on bleeding the system, including turning the wheel side to side while at idle while loosening the bleed screw on the steering box, but the steering has not improved. It is still hard to turn the wheel.

Am I doing something wrong? Is there something else I should do? I went through the posts on here, but didn't find additional suggestions. Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
 

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Did you have any steering issues prior to the seal failure?
The only thing I can think of is the pump was damaged and or the gear box is failing.
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Mike,

No issues prior to the leak. Power Steering always worked fine. I am worried about condition of the pump/steering box. If the car is revved, the steering becomes easier, which would seem to indicate to me that the pump might not be applying enough hydraulic pressure to the steering box at idle and that the issue may only be with the pump. What do you think?

I suppose the best option is to purchase a new power steering pump, install it and see if I still have the same issue. Its probably easier to spend the money than go through the hassle of trying to read the pressure output of the pump, based on the RAVE manual instructions. If that doesn't fix it, then I'll replace the steering box and high pressure line altogether.

If you have any other suggestions, let me know.
 

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Before you do that consider using a bottle of Lucas p/s additive to free up the valving. It will take a couple days of driving after wards, if better great, if not, you are only out a few dollars.
 

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In my case, I replaced the gasket, the bearing, and the seal on my power steering pump and it improved the steering 100 percent. I took great care to make sure all the parts went in the same way they got out and do a clean job with as little contaminants as possible. I ended up with absolutely no play anywhere, very tight assembly. My power steering is now pretty solid, no whine at all, not even when cold, and no play on the pulley.

I also have a new steering box so maybe that's your next step. It depends on how careful you were when replacing the gasket and seal and if the pump impeller was damaged to begin with, I guess.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Mike,

I added the Lucas power steering additive to a low reservoir level of PS fluid, filling most of the reservoir with the Lucas additive (as it says on the bottle). The steering immediately returned to normal and operated freely for about 5 min. Then it went back to stiff. I tried bleeding again, this time running a tube from the bleed valve back to the top of the reservoir, and had no air, bubbles, foam, etc.

Think its time to replace the PS parts? If so, should I try the pump first, then the box, or just go ahead with a complete replacement of both and the high pressure hose? I'm stumped with the intermittent operation, unless its a mechanical failure.

Lowest Bidder - There was no visible damage (warping, scratches, dents, discoloration, etc.) to any parts in the PS pump. Pump remained clean and free of contaminants and all parts went back together smoothly. I replaced the main gasket, internal metal gasket, shaft seal, and O-Rings. The PS fluid is rapidly swirling in the reservoir, so I'm assuming good flow from the pump. There is still a whine noise. Any idea if its from the pump or steering box and which to replace?
 

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In my case, the steering box developed kind of a backlash before it leaked, and that backlash I could not get rid of when I tried to adjust the rack and pinion. Then soon after that it began to leak so I took it out. When I opened it up I found that something hard had passed through the internals and damaged the metal surfaces inside. A cousin of mine said he had contacts to have the surfaces of the shaft and gear rebuilt at almost no cost, so I ordered the seal kit and did a full rebuilt. The rebuilt shaft looked good, but It did not last long. So I was forced to buy a new steering box. I lost about 100$ in the process so it wasn't that bad and I learned something.

I am in no way a professional, so my advice is worth just about nothing so proceed accordingly. What I would try in this case is jack the front up, disconnect the Pitman arm from the drag link and try steering without running the engine. The movement should be smooth without perceptible binding or grinding. You can almost turn the input shaft of a new steering box with your fingers so with the steering wheel it should be quite easy to turn. The pitman arm should have absolutely no play, and there should be no backlash between the input shaft and the pitman arm. Then I would clean the steering box thoroughly with some cleaner (I use diesel fuel usually) then wipe it dry, and then run the engine and turn the steering wheel completely from stop to stop, to build up pressure inside the system and see if there are leaks. I would go from there I guess...

Now I can replace a steering box in about two hours. Sorry I can't help more than that and good luck!
 

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Mike,

I added the Lucas power steering additive to a low reservoir level of PS fluid, filling most of the reservoir with the Lucas additive (as it says on the bottle). The steering immediately returned to normal and operated freely for about 5 min. Then it went back to stiff. I tried bleeding again, this time running a tube from the bleed valve back to the top of the reservoir, and had no air, bubbles, foam, etc.

Think its time to replace the PS parts? If so, should I try the pump first, then the box, or just go ahead with a complete replacement of both and the high pressure hose? I'm stumped with the intermittent operation, unless its a mechanical failure.

Lowest Bidder - There was no visible damage (warping, scratches, dents, discoloration, etc.) to any parts in the PS pump. Pump remained clean and free of contaminants and all parts went back together smoothly. I replaced the main gasket, internal metal gasket, shaft seal, and O-Rings. The PS fluid is rapidly swirling in the reservoir, so I'm assuming good flow from the pump. There is still a whine noise. Any idea if its from the pump or steering box and which to replace?
Might want to send me your number, may have some ideas for you.
 
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