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Avanti Power Steering Loss

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  • Steering: Avanti Power Steering Loss

    I am hoping that someone can point me in the right direction. I was driving my '64 Avanti yesterday with power steering working fine. After driving around for a while I decided to get some gas. When I tried to make a turn into a gas station my steering became very hard (like I lost power assist) and my power steering belt started to squeal. The belt only squeals when I am trying to turn left or right, there is no noise while going straight. Otherwise I heard no other unusual noises. I assumed that my PS fluid was low but when I checked it I found it at the proper level and there are no leaks. The PS belt is proper tension and I see no visible damage to any of the steering components. Steering turns easily with wheels off the ground (engine off).

    Now, my question is, what might have happened and how do I determine if it is the pump or the control valve that is causing the problem so I can repair it?

    Any insight is very welcome.


  • #2
    If the belt has a few years on it, I'd replace it before I took on the more expensive items. Bob


    • #3
      Check that belt and the pump pulley, squealing means it can't turn because the belt is loose or the system pressure is so high it can't overcome it. Drain and flush the system and, with the top of reservoir off and fluid low enough not to splash out, the engine running, wheels off the ground, check the pump is actually pumping, watch the fluid in the reservoir after draining and refilling and see if there is a sudden rush of fluid and air bubbles while turning the steering wheel left and right. Once you have know you have fluid flow, you can look further. The pumps grind themselves up over time from the rollers wearing and produce a fine iron "dust" which clogs ports in the valve body and ram. Sometimes you'll get temporarily lucky and after flushing it out (need to remove hoses at the ram one at a time, run, drain, switch run, drain etc.) it will work for awhile. Sometimes it's just the ram piston seals, but not likely. Eventually a full teardown, cleaning and rebuilding everything will be needed. Sorry, no easy fix.
      Last edited by karterfred88; 07-06-2015, 08:09 AM.