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94sc293sl1 02-21-2003 02:36 AM

Groan in the steering
For a while now my SC2 has had a slight 'groan' or 'creak' when turning the wheel hard. Mainly this happens while turning around and backing into my parents' driveway after a 45-minute drive.
Tonight, however, I heard the groaning while going around town, such as when turning into the grocery store parking lot.
What kind of problem am I likely looking at, and what kind of cost?
Thanks in advance

bennett9000 02-21-2003 10:10 AM

Check your power steering fluid level. It's the little white reservoir at the back of the engine, right next to the passenger's side strut tower.

100KSW2 02-21-2003 08:29 PM

Does this happen only at low speed? I get this when backing out of my driveway and when turning in a small but crowded parking lot I use every day. My SW2 developed this problem a couple years ago around the time the idiot light for power steering fluid level came on. I bought a bottle of PS fluid with "stop leak" and used a couple ounces to top off the reservoir. My Saturn techs said the rack was leaking and to watch the fluid level carefully. The sound comes and goes, but I haven't had to add any more fluid, and the problem has not gotten any worse, either. A replacement (rebuilt) power steering rack for the Sx2 cars (they have the speed sensitive PS) is around an $800 or $900+ job at Saturn shops around here. A cheaper alternative would be a used rack. One tech thought it could also be the PS pump(?). (I got a fortune cookie one time that said "To guess is cheap, to guess wrong is expensive!".)

P.S. I have only driven about 22K miles in the 3 years and 7 months since this started.

94sc293sl1 02-22-2003 03:04 AM

It only happens at low speeds, i.e. pulling into a driveway or into a grocery store parking lot. I forgot to check the fluid level today, but if I recall correctly it was full when I changed the oil last weekend. I don't know what a pump would cost, but if that's the price for a rack I sure hope that's not the problem. :dizzy:

bennett9000 02-22-2003 09:31 AM

The power steering works harder at low speeds. If you ever drove a car without power steering, you'd notice that it's wicked hard to turn in a parking lot, but at highway speeds it feels like any car with power steering. At high speeds you obviously only make tiny movements of the wheel. At low speeds you're usually turning the wheel a LOT farther.

100KSW2 02-22-2003 12:04 PM

The Sx2 models (SC2/SL2/SW2) have "speed sensitive" power steering which provides extra assist at lower speeds - like for parking maneuvers. This may also explain why it is most noticeable (or only happens?) at low speed. Good luck.

Twin_Cam 02-22-2003 07:03 PM

Wow, I thought this feature was only on much more expensive cars....or maybe I'm thinking of something different. Kudos to Saturn for putting such advanced stuff in cheap cars!

94sc293sl1 02-23-2003 01:12 AM

Checked the fluid level today and it was full. I'm guessing the rack and pump will both have to be looked at next?

bennett9000 02-23-2003 10:54 AM

I'd think the rack should be okay unless its visibly leaking. I'd suspect the pump, especially in light of the noise you say you're hearing in the other thread. My guess is they are all related.

94sc293sl1 02-23-2003 07:52 PM

[QUOTE][i]Originally posted by bennett9000 [/i]
[B]I'd think the rack should be okay unless its visibly leaking. I'd suspect the pump, especially in light of the noise you say you're hearing in the other thread. My guess is they are all related. [/B][/QUOTE]

I was beginning to think the same thing last night. Anyone know how much a pump costs?

ProDarwin 02-23-2003 08:29 PM

I know this should be in the classified forum..., but my SC2 has powersteering. If anyone wants the rack and pump, you can get them from me pretty cheap.

94sc293sl1 02-23-2003 09:55 PM

Let me know what you'd be asking for the pump. My e-mail is [email][/email] :)

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