: Service Steering System message

12-11-10, 10:10 AM

For the past 4 months I have had intermittent steering problems with my 06AWD, N*. The steering tightens up and the DIC shows "Service Steering System". Sometimes this will last for a day and just clear up on its own. Are there any things I should check first (loose connection somewhere) before taking this to the dealer so they can try to recreate the symptoms? My warranty expired, so I am not a fan of letting the dealer "guess" the problem by replacing expensive parts.

Onstar indicated that it may be a "short" somewhere. Are the electronic steering components easy to replace?



12-11-10, 03:22 PM

06-16-11, 12:46 PM
Can you please let me know what you found to fix your steering? I had the same problem with it going in and out for a couple weeks. I found that if i turned the car off and then back on it usually went away. Now it constantly says "service steering sys" and I really don't want to take it to the dealership and pay them for any and all guess work. Thanks for your help.

06-16-11, 01:17 PM

06-16-11, 05:18 PM
Like Echas3 and Krsts said it's the rack, had mines replaced by the dealer last year for the same problem.

06-16-11, 10:41 PM
Major drag!

However, this makes me all the more happy that, because of a bad tie-rod end (or whatever is on the rack connecting it to the steering linkage), the dealer replaced the entire rack, because this one part wasn't in stock.

Talk about lucky! I think that was around 65K miles, too.

Gone are the days..."that noise...hmmm...steering pump...". Now a warning message pops up.

Almost makes me wish for non-assisted steering... Almost.

07-29-11, 05:50 PM
Same Situation, 2006 STS4 V8, started with Service Steering system message showing up ocationally Steering at low speed got heavy, over several weeks condition worsened until Service steering system was on all the time and steering was heavy. Took into dealer they said electrical problem 4 butt connectors less than 2 hours labor and shop fees a little bit south of $200.00. Everything works well.

08-05-11, 10:04 AM
You got lucky.

I just picked up a 07 STS with 36k miles. 2 Days after driving off the lot got the Service Steering System message. As everyone else states. Its the Rack. I saw the bill and was close to 600 bucks. Glad the dealer ate the cost.

08-10-11, 08:52 PM
Rack went with Mine also, about 38,000 miles, Under warranty, 2 days, one overnight !

08-11-11, 12:42 PM
I never got the DIC message but my steering was very tight at low speeds and it sounded like there was no fluid in the power steering system. The dealer replaced my rack under warranty....thank goodness...

09-01-11, 07:05 PM
I have a 1999 Deville Concours. When the Steerling System Service message started a year ago, I sent it to the dealer. The manager told me it might be an expensive fix and it is not a safety issue. So, I just live with it.

At beginning, like others, it was on and off then got worsen and now the problem stays. Each time, when I start the engine, it shows me this message. Again, the problem, sometimes would fix itself but it will come back and stay longer.

Until recently, I found a way will fix it 100% sure and the problem will be back for 100% sure.

When I park the car uphill, shut the engine, with or without applying the parking brake. Next time when I start the engine, NO Steering System Service message. The steering wheel was as good as normal.

When I hit the brake hard, or turn harder. The bell rang and the message shown, the steering got tight up.

It happens everytime.

Anyone gets the idea? Can this problem be fixed? Thank you.

09-01-11, 08:08 PM
You may or may not have a different problem than what's being discussed here. Although likely a fundamentally similar system, this forum is only for the 2005+ STS. You will likely get more helpful information in the DeVille forum. There are two different ones depending on whether you have front or rear wheel drive. Perhaps try there and see what you can find. Good luck :)

09-01-11, 10:36 PM
On our STS's, we would be replacing the steering rack. I hope you don't need that. It's spendy.

11-27-15, 02:03 PM
I just became the proud owner of a 2006 STS4 , II really love the car. I have the same intermittent service steering system on the dic and the same heavy feel in the steering wheel. This last time it stayed that way for almost 5 days and today it return to normal after my 3rd start up . Today is the second day of wet weather . Could this have something to do with the sudden return of normal steering operation .Has anyone had similar circumstances. Thanks

11-27-15, 09:31 PM
I told this story before and I see everyone here says it's the rack, and it very well could be. But I had the exact same problem on my CTS and had a similar problem on my STS. On the STS the steering would groan and whine when turning at "parking lot" speeds and would occassionally get a little stiff when driving, but no warning. The CTS showed the "Service Steering" warning and would lose all steering boost until it cooled off.

My fluid was black and stinky in both so I changed the fluid in the STS with total success, but for some reason I really believed it was the pump in the CTS. I bought a new pump, tore everything off the engine to take off the pump but couldn't get the last bolt off so I put it all back together with fresh fluid and I haven't had a problem since, with either car.

Just sayin'. May be worth a try. I'd sure be curious to know if anyone else has had success changing the fluid.

05-24-17, 10:47 AM
I have a 09 STS V8 (N*) that has displayed “Service Steering Syst” on the DIC now for a couple of months. I took my vehicle to Thompson Cadillac three times for the same problem. On March 14, I paid them $193.76 they (Thompson stated – rewired cirquit from EBCM to VESS solenoid on steering gear. However, two weeks earlier, on March 14, I paid them $572.62, again Thompson stated – Loss signal from VESS tested voltage and low reference cirquit. Replaced and reprogramed EBCM. And now the message is back on the DIC. The last time I was there, they (Thompson stated the steering gear might need to be replaced (Cost -$1500). I think someone is guessing what the problem is and not diagnosing the problem.
I would hope that Cadillac would have a presence on this forum to see what is happening with their vehicles out in the field.