Q: Looks like the steering on my Lexus ES 300 2003 got locked while driving at a very low speed.

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Looks like the steering on my Lexus ES 300 2003 got locked while driving at a very low speed on a street, so I was able to stop safely. I popped the hood and saw a loosely hanging belt near the engine/alternator. The engine still runs fine but the steering stays locked when I try to drive.

I performed a throttle body cleaning and accelerated to around 6000 rpm on park gear before this happened. Please suggest.

My car has 170000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

Hi, thanks for writing in. Your vehicle should have two serpentine belts to drive the alternator, water pump, power steering, and a/c compressor. It’s possible the belt you saw hanging is the power steering belt. If the power steering pump is not turning due to the detached belt, then there will be no power steering assist. So, long as all the pulleys are good, a belt replacement may solve your issue. Since the other belt has to be removed to install a new power steering belt, it makes sense to replace both at the same time. Hope this helps and best of luck to you!

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