Powerless steering

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Powerless steering

Post by Jshodgson » 10 Nov 2004, 05:13

My Xantia's power steering comes on and off when I start the car and run it for the first couple of miles. As this is the time I am pulling out of my drive etc it is more noticable I suppose. The steering becomes so heavy I cannot turn the wheel with one hand, it feels like it has lost all power.
I will be working on the car this weekend changing the plugs aswell as a couple of bits underneath. Does anyone have any suggestions of the possible causes and checks I could do myself?
Thanks in advance, James

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Post by Dave Burns » 10 Nov 2004, 06:06

Check the LHM level, the pump drive belt and look for any leaks in the supply pipe from the LHM reservoir.

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Post by RichardW » 10 Nov 2004, 13:58

If this is a pre-anti-sink car (it probably is) then it will have the same single output pump and flow divided as the BX and XM - both of which are well known for PAS problems at higher mileages. Make the checks Dave suggests, but also change the LHM (preferably for hydraflush) and clean the filters. If this doesn't improve it after you change back to LHM (after a couple of 000 miles) then you need to look at cleaning out / overhauling the flow distributor.

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Post by Jshodgson » 15 Nov 2004, 05:59

The LHM tank seems to be a bit leaky, I cleaned the top of it a couple of weeks ago and it now has a thin layer of fluid coating it again. The inspection chamber shows the orange gauge at the top of the chamber still so I'm not sure if it losing lots..

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Post by jeremy » 15 Nov 2004, 14:30

LHM tanks tend to get messy especially if they are overfilled. Overfilling won't affect the performance of the system, underfilling will. Have you done the checks Dave Burns recommends - the pipe he is referring to is the pipe from the reservoir to the pump, and as its the only one under suction it can admit air and show no leak. If this happens then all manner of problems can arise.
If all these points are satisfactory then either the FDV is playing up or the pump is weak. The steering needs a high volume of LHM and a weak pump may well be able to maintain suspension and brake pressure with the aid of the accumulator but cannot provide the necessary volume for the steering.

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Post by davethewheel » 15 Nov 2004, 18:37

it's normal for the tank to be messy around the top, i had exactly the same problem with my xantia could hardly move steering when first started even worse if the weather was realy cold, changed lhm and cleaned filters and all is well now.

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Post by Jshodgson » 17 Nov 2004, 05:24

how long does it take to change the LHM fluid and filters and is the guide in Haynes any good?
Will I need any special tools?