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Q: Steering wheel is hard to turn at random intervals

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I just purchased this 2007 Honda CR-V about 4 months ago. A month after I purchased it I noticed that the steering wheel would get really stiff when trying to turn. At first it seldom happened, but it is happening more frequently now. I took it to the Honda dealership and they told me that they could not replicate the issue, so they did nothing. Here is what I have noticed so far: 1) It seems to happen more often in the mornings or a few minutes after starting to drive the car. 2) There are constant bubbles in the power steering reservoir when the car is running. 3) I do not see any leaks in the power steering system. 4) When the problem happens, the power steering fluid gets all white and foamy, and after a few minutes it goes back to having just a few bubbles. Could this be a power steering pump problem? It appears as if the power steering pump was replaced recently, but I have no way of knowing. Could it be that the reservoir has no original Honda fluid?

My car has 127000 miles.
My car has an automatic transmission.

A: It sounds like you have a small leak in the...

It sounds like you have a small leak in the power steering system, allowing air into the system to cause the symptoms you described. You should have no bubbles in the fluid reservoir. Check the inlet hose to the pump to make sure it is tight. It should also be the pump itself. The leak could be small enough to not leak fluid, but large enough for air to be drawn into the system. If you’d like to have this checked, a certified technician from YourMechanic can come to you to test drive the vehicle and diagnose your steering problem.

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