Q: Car overheating, battery light on, and can't steer my wheel properly. 2001 Pontiac Grand Am

asked by on January 29, 2017

The car battery light came on, the car was overheating badly, was smoking, and I can't properly steer my wheel. Had almost $1,000 worth of work put into the power steering and the pump and some other work associated with the power steering.

My car has 160000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

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Hi there - your symptoms could indicate a failure of the serpentine belt - aka accessory belt - which drives the alternator, power steering and water pump. If the power steering pump seized or caused excessive drag on the belt, it could also reduce the efficiency of the water pump, leading to overheating. It is also possible these behaviors are unrelated, and the radiator is clogged or the thermostat is stuck closed. I recommend an overheating inspection performed by a mobile, professional mechanic, such as one from YourMechanic, who will come to your location, diagnose this problem, give you an accurate assessment of damage and cost estimate for repairs.

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