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Discussion Starter #1
Hey everyone, got another question for you gurus.

Here's the deal. My car's steering seems to work fine as long as I got some push on the pedal. The wheel turns smooth, car turns, everything's hunky dory, no strange noises coming from the engine compartment.

Well, when the car is stopped or moving very slow, the wheel is almost impossible to turn.. it really stiffens up and is much like driving without any power assist.

I can fix this if I put the car in neutral, gas it a bit and then crank the wheel. The steering will go fine. This is how I actually parallel park- I put the car in neutral, gas it and cut the wheel back and forth.

Well, I know this aint right. Doesn't sound like the power steering pump, since it works fine when I put some gas on.

What do you think?

Thanks!
 

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Low air pressure in tires (I use 30 PSI), low on power steering fluid or belt slipping would be the first choices that come to mind.

Often when people clean and detail under the hood, they spray the area with Armor All or a similar product. If any gets on the belts, they will slip.

Cover your fenders and any paint areas to protect from cleaner splash that can occur (I haven't had any problems but...).

1. Put a piece of card board or other drip catcher on the ground under the belt/pully area.

2. With the engine COOL I would carefully spray the serpentine belt from the top down, including all of the pulleys, throughly, with spray brake cleaner.

3. After allowing the area to dry and fumes to disapate (10 minutes or so) start engine and see if you feel an improvement. If so turn off, allow to COOL, and do the procedure once more.

Good luck.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
Great- I'll give that a shot on Thursday and give it a little under-hood loving. Tire pressure is at 34psi, so I know thats good there, and I've checked the fluid and it's right where it needs to be, plus the pump doesn't make any strange noises.

Again, thanks for your help!
 

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One more item I just thought of; when was the last time you lubed the front suspension and steering link system? For the Seville it is supposed to be done every 6,000 miles.

This if often forgotten on newer cars.
 

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banstyle said:
Any ideas?
This is a longshot, but Allantes have a power steering pressure sensor. The purpose is to detect a load on the PS system and bump up the idle to overcome the HP draw of the increased load.

Normally, a malfunctioning sensor would cause the car to stall or idle poorly when turning the wheel. However, it seems possible that this could cause your symptoms, although I'd conur that its likely a mechanical issue.

The steering gear could have bad seals in it, causing the pressure to bypass and rendering the pump ineffective. Ditto on the pump. The greatest need for assist is turning the wheels when the car isn't moving. Usually, in my experience, a failing pump will make a lot of noise. If you have a service manual, there may be diagnostics, possibly including some way to monitor the pressure that might indicate the source of the problem.

On the Allante, you can monitor the PS pump pressure switch values via the DIC. I don't know if your car has this capability, or if it even has the pressure sensor.

FWIW...
 
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