Skip the auto shop - Our mechanics make house calls

Q: Why does my power steering only work when it wants to?

asked by on

I have replaced my power steering pump 3 times within a year. Now my 2009 impala power steering will work then quit while driving and vice versa. It is especially dangerous going around curves when it goes from hard steering then decides to start working in mid-curve and I have to keep from yanking the wheel and over steering into the wrong lane.

A: First off, I would not drive the vehicle un...

First off, I would not drive the vehicle until the problem is rectified, as this is a very unsafe driving condition.

I would have a certified mechanic take a look at the vehicle to diagnose the issue. With that said, they will also want to take a look at the intermediate shaft. It is a shaft that connects the steering wheel (column) to the rack and pinion (steering gear).

It has been my experience that this intermediate shaft will corrode over time and create a feeling of a loss of power steering assist. This is a situation where an experienced mechanic can perform some tests to identify if this is the problem.

If you need help identifying and repairing the issue, YourMechanic offers several options. They have trained mechanics that can come to your home, or place of business, and diagnose your power steering issue and repair it for you.

Was this answer helpful?

Need advice from certified mechanic? Get help now!

Over 1000 mechanics are ready to answer your question.
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Save up to 30%

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Steering wheel stiff

Hello. If the wheel takes a lot of effort to turn, the power steering system is likely the problem. The power steering system includes the pump, rack and pinion, pressure and return lines. Your issue is likely due to a...

Q: Air blows high even with engine off

Hi there. This comes up quite often on this vehicle. The problem is that the blower motor control module has failed. This module fails and does not disrupt the circuit to the blower motor as it should, especially when the...

Q: Steering wheel hard to turn after alternator replacement

Have the system scanned to see what is causing the light to turn on first. The low voltage conditions might have caused the problem and would need diagnosis of the code to fix the issue. Your power steering pump may...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
P0052 OBD-II Trouble Code: HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1)
P0052 code definition HO2S Heater Control Circuit High (Bank 2 Sensor 1) What the P0052 code means This code is seen when the Engine Control Module (ECM) tries to control the...
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.