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Old 10-09-2020, 08:12 PM #1
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Power Steering Whine

Flushed and cleaned the Power Steering system today because I was getting a really bad whine and the steering was choppy and the reservoir was black. So I flushed it, removed the reservoir, cleaned it, reinstalled it and then flushed again and topped off with ATF and burped the system. Turned on the 4runner and still had a whine but the steering was smooth as butter.

So where should I go from here? Just let it go? Keep running it until the pump goes? It has 160k miles and I'm sure wasn't flushed many times in its life.

If the pump goes is it going to cause issues like a bad timing belt would? Or would the issue just be isolated?

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Old 10-09-2020, 09:26 PM #2
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Proper way to bleed the power steering system is to have both front wheels off the ground and crank the steering wheel lock to lock until you have no more bubbles showing up in the reservoir. Leave the cap off while you do this. It is possible you might need to add some more ATF to the system as the air in it escapes. Crank the wheel lock to lock a good 10 times or so and then check. Rinse and repeat until the whine is gone.
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Old 10-10-2020, 12:33 AM #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtremewlr View Post
Proper way to bleed the power steering system is to have both front wheels off the ground and crank the steering wheel lock to lock until you have no more bubbles showing up in the reservoir. Leave the cap off while you do this. It is possible you might need to add some more ATF to the system as the air in it escapes. Crank the wheel lock to lock a good 10 times or so and then check. Rinse and repeat until the whine is gone.
Hmm, I'll rebleed it in the morning. Only did lock to lock twice and minimal bubbles came up. Hopefully that will solve the problem but I am doubtful as I have a feeling the pump has been damaged due to previous owners neglect of the fluid.

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Old 10-10-2020, 12:36 AM #4
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Honestly as bad as I hate to say this, you may have a bad pump.

Not saying you do but both of my 4runners do this and itís highly annoying and Iím just too lazy to do anything about it lol
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Old 10-10-2020, 09:45 AM #5
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are you sure the whine is from the pump? how did you confirm that? there are a few other pulleys in the serpentine drive assembly that can make noise when bearings go bad too. also the alternator.

& if the p/s pump actually fails it wont cause any other problems with the engine, you will just loose all power assisted steering.
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Old 10-10-2020, 10:01 AM #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by I dont even know View Post
Honestly as bad as I hate to say this, you may have a bad pump.



Not saying you do but both of my 4runners do this and itís highly annoying and Iím just too lazy to do anything about it lol
Yeah, and honestly I'm not too worried about it. The whine is bad but I can easily get over it.

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Old 10-10-2020, 10:02 AM #7
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Quote:
Originally Posted by firebirdguy View Post
are you sure the whine is from the pump? how did you confirm that? there are a few other pulleys in the serpentine drive assembly that can make noise when bearings go bad too. also the alternator.

& if the p/s pump actually fails it wont cause any other problems with the engine, you will just loose all power assisted steering.
Definitely from the PS pump, it fluctuates according to how much I turn the wheel. When I am at almost full lock it sounds like a band saw.

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Old 10-10-2020, 10:58 AM #8
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Originally Posted by FrothyLlama View Post
Definitely from the PS pump, it fluctuates according to how much I turn the wheel. When I am at almost full lock it sounds like a band saw.

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It seems like it takes forever to get it to stop whining. The method I posted above is straight out of the service manual though. It just takes time and a lot of cranking lock to lock to get it to stop. You don't have to climb in and out of the driver seat every time, just do it thru the driver window.
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Old 10-10-2020, 12:25 PM #9
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Theres a few other threads. Ive had a bad PS pump/ whine for a ~ 30 k miles. Its very loud when i start my engine. No other problems, than just loud
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Old 10-10-2020, 12:55 PM #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xtremewlr View Post
It seems like it takes forever to get it to stop whining. The method I posted above is straight out of the service manual though. It just takes time and a lot of cranking lock to lock to get it to stop. You don't have to climb in and out of the driver seat every time, just do it thru the driver window.
Did 10 times this morning, had some tiny bubbles and the level of ATF went down maybe just 2-3mm. Still have the whine, thanks for the help, but I do not think it'll go away.

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Old 10-10-2020, 12:56 PM #11
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Quote:
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Theres a few other threads. Ive had a bad PS pump/ whine for a ~ 30 k miles. Its very loud when i start my engine. No other problems, than just loud
Yeah, I don't think any issues will come of it other than it someday going out. I'm not worried; I'm sure the pump has plenty of life left. It's low on the list of priorities for me.


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Old 10-10-2020, 03:29 PM #12
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Did 10 times this morning, had some tiny bubbles and the level of ATF went down maybe just 2-3mm. Still have the whine, thanks for the help, but I do not think it'll go away.

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Dude, I did lock to lock 10 times and repeated that process like 6 or 7 times. Like I said, it takes time to get it to stop.
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Old 10-10-2020, 05:19 PM #13
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Quote:
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Dude, I did lock to lock 10 times and repeated that process like 6 or 7 times. Like I said, it takes time to get it to stop.
Oh, well you didn't say you did it like 6 or 7 times lol.

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Old 10-10-2020, 05:26 PM #14
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Oh, well you didn't say you did it like 6 or 7 times lol.

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Rinse and repeat until the whine is gone. I posted that in my first post. That means keep doing it until the whine is gone.

And now that I think about it, when I did that, the whine never fully went away when it was on jackstands. Wasn't until I dropped it and drove it that the whine stopped. But you HAVE to do the bleed process a lot, not just 10 lock to locks, but multiples of that.
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Old 10-11-2020, 10:00 AM #15
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A buddy of mine has the whine going on. Mechanic quoted a new pump, he being thrifty with his money decided to just spend some time and clean the inside of the pump and reservoir. After an hour of scrubbing with a rag on the end of a stick he pulled a bunch of jelled material out and no more whining. Might be worth looking at, not sure if it will apply to your situation or not.
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