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Old 04-30-2013, 11:44 AM   #1
fst2011
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Question 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Hello everyone,

My sister recently got a 2004 Saturn Vue and had problems left & right. All problems are currently fixed except for the power steering.

The Issue:
While she is driving the power steering will just shut off (And then come back on) and basically be a car with no power steering which is extremely hard to drive. Sometimes she will get in the car in morning and it will not be working, but as she drives, it comes back on. Sometimes while driving it will be no power steering for a long time and then for no reason it will start working again.

I had car looked at but they cant find the issue. They say unless it stays broken, they cannot find issue. He mentioned he could change 1 of the 2 parts he feels might be problem but there is no way of knowing for sure if thats the problem and he really doesnt want to waste money.

I tried looking under hood for the power steering reservoir but I cannot find it. I read somewhere that Hybrid vue dont have, but this vue is not a hybrid.

Can someone please help us...please. We spent allot of money to get this car safe for my sister and we dont know where to turn. She has Lupus and needs a car for doctor and its very stressfull not being able to fix this.


Thanks for reading this, sorry it might have been alittle long but was not sure best way to explain the issue.


Mike

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Old 04-30-2013, 12:25 PM   #2
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Mike ... welcome aboard.

The Vue has electric power steering. Problems are rare but can be a beast to resolve when they do occur.

There are a few fuses and connectors you could check but I won't mention the whereabouts unless you confirm having a few skills and electrical tools such as meter or test light.

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Old 04-30-2013, 01:11 PM   #3
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

I need to be away from PC for awhile so will attach a few EPS extracts which could be useful to you or a troubleshooting friend or neighbor.

An intermittent condition such as you folks are encountering is most likely caused by a poor electrical connection.

My preferred method of finding bad connections is to test the system (electric power steering) - in either a working or non-working condition - while an associate moves about the vehicle moving each wire and harness (see wiring diagram) while you check results.

A few hardware problems have been reported but not so many I can recall the major failing end-item.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf 04 Vue - EPS D & O.pdf (12.2 KB, 139 views)
File Type: pdf 04 Vue - EPS Schematic.pdf (70.5 KB, 137 views)
File Type: pdf 04 Vue - Poor Return of Strg Whl.pdf (13.9 KB, 100 views)
File Type: pdf 04 Vue - Pwr Strng Connectors.pdf (62.1 KB, 131 views)

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Old 05-09-2013, 09:11 PM   #4
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Hello and thank you for replying. I would have sooner but my sister got sick again & had goto back into hospital. I'm in a bad spot cause the mechanic can't find problem cause it doesn't stay broken & he can't drive car all day waiting for it to lose power steering.

I'm more then willing to try & trouble shoot but need a bit of direction, please. I own a multimeter but have to search garage for test light.

What should I set meter to when checking? What area would you check first? Any other tips would be so appreciated...truly!

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Old 05-09-2013, 09:48 PM   #5
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by fst2011 View Post
Hello and thank you for replying. I would have sooner but my sister got sick again & had goto back into hospital. I'm in a bad spot cause the mechanic can't find problem cause it doesn't stay broken & he can't drive car all day waiting for it to lose power steering.

I'm more then willing to try & trouble shoot but need a bit of direction, please. I own a multimeter but have to search garage for test light.

What should I set meter to when checking? What area would you check first? Any other tips would be so appreciated...truly!
You need to access the EPS motor and control module. They're located behind knee bolster panel under steering wheel.

Once you see the hardware you'll need to penetrate insulation on a couple of wires to monitor for power loss when harnesses are aggressively moved.

There's also a large EPS fuse under the hood and a smaller fuse in the center console fuse box.

I've attached thumbnails for the EPS motor and inline fuse (in small black rectangular box) in large wire.

If you want to proceed - I can provide service manual extracts to access the motor. Send email address by private message.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg EPS Inline Fuse.jpg (158.4 KB, 99 views)
File Type: jpg EPS Motor & Cntl Module.jpg (138.6 KB, 93 views)

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Old 05-10-2013, 11:12 AM   #6
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by far2grumpy View Post
If you want to proceed - I can provide service manual extracts to access the motor. Send email address by private message.
The thumbnails in my last post were not as good as they should have been.

I've attached updated versions to this post.

You could use photo of PSCM and EPS motor with the connector layout - along with the 04 Vue - EPS schematic in post # 3 - to decide where to attach your volt-meter or test leads.

Send PM if you want the instructions to access the EPS motor.

I know this appears complicated - and it is - there are no simple solutions for the DIY'er.

I'd try to eliminate a poor connection as root cause of the intermittent EPS operation. And, if that fails - parts substitution is next step.
Attached Images
File Type: jpg EPS 80A Fuse.jpg (153.9 KB, 83 views)
File Type: jpg EPS PSCM & Motor.jpg (145.4 KB, 73 views)

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Old 05-14-2013, 10:45 AM   #7
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Your right it does sound very confusing and I truly appreciate your time in having to speak "slow". I wish I could make this easier for you to explain.

I'm not completely newbie but like anything new, I'm a bit slow to understand. So again I really appreciate you having the patience to walk me thru this.

I would have replied sooner but between mysister getting very sick and my son, which has down syndrome having to go back & forth to hospital.

I'm going to send u my email address to it PM right now.

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Old 05-14-2013, 10:58 AM   #8
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Below is pov of a controller I was nodding, so as explained I know alittle but forget cause I don't use often... Anyhow I posted pic so grumpy could see the kind of meter I'm using. Hope u can see the dial and let me know what to swtich the meter to, to find this problem.


Mike


PS: I sent u 2 PM...but not sure if they were sent. It didn't give me a prompt saying message sent.if didn't receive please let me know.
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File Type: jpg IMG_20120612_173421.jpg (159.6 KB, 77 views)

Last edited by fst2011; 05-14-2013 at 11:04 AM..

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Old 05-14-2013, 11:28 AM   #9
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Mike - I received the PM's.

That is a fine looking meter - we need to configure to read 12 volt DC.

I'll send more meter setup information (swap the leads ) to your email address - along with hints on how and where to monitor DC power delivered to EPS.

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Old 05-14-2013, 12:10 PM   #10
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Meter is a good one so I've been told it was gift. Wish I knew more how to use...lol

I'm working on car now... Took off dash... It sounds like when the wheel Locks up I hear a click from that grey power steering box under the wheel. Then it will click again and be free.

I also found under hood inline fuse, about to look at that... Any other fuse I should look at and how do I test fuse & test while attach to car or take out. Sorry lame questions

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Old 05-14-2013, 01:20 PM   #11
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Quote:
Originally Posted by fst2011 View Post
Meter is a good one so I've been told it was gift. Wish I knew more how to use...lol

I'm working on car now... Took off dash... It sounds like when the wheel Locks up I hear a click from that grey power steering box under the wheel. Then it will click again and be free.

I also found under hood inline fuse, about to look at that... Any other fuse I should look at and how do I test fuse & test while attach to car or take out. Sorry lame questions
Look for EPS 10 amp fuse in I/P Fuse Block (next to front passengers left foot).

I suspect fuses are going to test OK - I suspect the problem is related to a wiring connection between one of the fuses and the 12 power supply, or between the fuse and the EPS PSCM.

I'm putting a list of suggested test points together and will either post or email.

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Old 05-14-2013, 02:55 PM   #12
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Please refer to 04 Vue - EPS Schematic in post # 3 and the two EPS thumbnails in post # 6 to assist with the following steps.

These steps are based on EPS wiring diagram interpretation. Please repost or send email if any step does not respond as written. The logical explanation is I probably screwed up.

Connect black meter lead (common) to metal part of vehicle chassis - this lead remains attached for all tests. I generally use small clip-lead wires for this purpose - Radio Shack has different sizes. One good ground point (according to photo of PSCM - Power Steering Control Module) is any of the bolt heads visible on EPS assembly.

Note: It may be necessary to use a sharp pin - or strip a small piece of insulation - from the EPS wires to be monitored in following steps. Use electrical tape to cover any bare wire areas.

The goal is to sequentially connect red meter lead to all EPS wires with +12 volts. First attempt would be to connect to RED wire connected to PSCM connector C1. This wire must have +12 volts at all times. I would monitor meter indication while giving the under-hood wiring (grab the big fuse holder) a vigorous shaking. Continue to wiggle wiring inside the cabin to maximum extent possible. Any meter fluctuation could be an indication of a bad wire connection.

The other wire in connector C1 is the black ground wire. You need to move the meter switch to OHMS and touch the red lead to the black wire. The meter should indicate zero ohms of resistance, and if it does - try moving the black wire while monitoring the meter. Any meter swing away from zero ohms could indicate a poor connection.

Next, reconfigure meter to read DC volts and move red meter lead to the PINK wire at PSCM connector C2. The wire will have +12 volts when ignition switch is set to RUN/START. Once meter indicates steady +12 ... move to I/P Fuse Block (next to front passengers left foot) and begin to wiggle EPS 10A fuse.

Also, try to reach back-side of EPS fuse circuit board to move as many connections and wiring harnesses as possible. (Note: I located a bad ignition terminal connection on my 2005 Vue using this method. I was having problems with engine cranking but not starting at times, and engine also shut down while travelling at 75 MPH on the Interstate at least once - ugly indeed).

Connector C3 is almost the last candidate. Connect the red meter lead to the C3 RED wire. With ignition to RUN/START ... try turning steering wheel for a right turn. The meter should indicate 12 volts when pressure is applied to steering wheel. Move meter lead to C3 BLACK wire and move the steering wheel to the left. Note meter reading is 12 volts for a left turn. You could try turning either direction several times and make note of any attempt when voltage is not indicated when wheel is moved (could be sign of internal PSCM issue).

Two final "road" tests would be to leave the voltmeter connected to C1 - RED wire and try operating the Vue as you normally would. You'll want to monitor the voltmeter if steering should fail. If the voltage does not waver when steering fails - it basically indicates an internal EPS hardware problem.

Next, you could monitor C2 - PINK wire in the same manner. If steering fails ... and voltage is still present ... you probably need to consider replacing EPS hardware.

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Old 05-15-2013, 10:05 AM   #13
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Wow, I truly can't thank you enough for taking that kind of time out. There are not many people willing to help complete strangers and to have the patience in walking me thru it...thank you, thank you... Thank you!

So, I think I may have found the problem...that fuse under the hood has a wire that goes to the main fuse box and there is a nut that holds it down. I noticed the wire was very loose but still had nut to keep from coming off. So technical it was making contact just was not tight, so I don't know really if that could be the cause, so I made sure it is tight down.

I drove car around and its working but I want to give little more time before I try your tips. You would know better then me about if the loose wire could cause that issue. My only reason (again I don't know best) for thinking its not the wire it cause it was still on the metal post, so its making contact, just was not tight. I hope it was something so simple

Please allow me few days before I try your tips, if its still working I will let you know either way.

When I told my sister I found someone willing to help she was amazed, couldn't believe there are people online willing to help strangers...(she a bit old school, still kinda new to internet social scene, if you could believe that, lol)

I don't mean to repeat myself but I'm truly very appreciative. Thanks so very much and will reply in few days. Please let me know if u think it could also be that loose wire or not?



Mike

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Old 05-15-2013, 01:44 PM   #14
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Mike - thanks for the kind words but if you spend much time on this forum you'll find the majority of members are eager to share knowledge as we attempt to keep our orphan Saturn's on the road.

Regarding the loose wire - it could cause the intermittent loss of EPS. I recall there being two wires on that terminal with the other lead direct to the battery positive terminal - to power all under-hood fuse block circuits.

The EPS is the largest single "power-hog" so the terminal could be acting like a corroded battery terminal - which will generally conduct DC voltage when current demand is low but tends to act like an open circuit when demand is high (like when engaging starter motor).

In any case - keep in touch and keep us updated.

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Old 06-12-2013, 03:54 PM   #15
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

OK...so enough time has pass & it is working correctly... No problems with turning at all. I don't know if you feel like you helped but you should! Even thu it was lose wire, I never would have found it, if you didn't ask me to check the fuse on that line.

So.... Thank you.... Thank you.... Thank you!

This problem was preventing my sister from driving, and no one could figure it out, even the so called mechanic. You really did my sister and me a huge favor. If your ever in nyc area and need a ride or etc, I'm your guy. Thanks so very much

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Old 06-13-2013, 11:55 AM   #16
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

Great to see you fixed the problem! That is good info to check that nut if I get that same problem.

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Old 05-17-2017, 01:04 PM   #17
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

I am working on my power steering for my 04 Vue and found this thread. Looking at the location of my 80 amp in line fuse under the hood there is not a lot of room. Wires from both ends are short. I want to remove the fuse to test it but not sure to open the box. I see that it is wired tied together. Do I cut thathe of? Does that release it? Then do I attach a new wire tie? My 10 amp fuse is good so I want to check the 80. If it tests good I'll refer to this thread for the other areas to check and test. Thanks.

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Old 05-17-2017, 02:01 PM   #18
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Default Re: 04 Vue Power Steering Issue, Please Help

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I am working on my power steering for my 04 Vue and found this thread. Looking at the location of my 80 amp in line fuse under the hood there is not a lot of room. Wires from both ends are short. I want to remove the fuse to test it but not sure to open the box. I see that it is wired tied together. Do I cut thathe of? Does that release it? Then do I attach a new wire tie? My 10 amp fuse is good so I want to check the 80. If it tests good I'll refer to this thread for the other areas to check and test. Thanks.
I posted the above comment using my phone. Here it is again with corrections (hope I get them all).

I am working on my power steering for my 04 Vue and found this thread. Looking at the location of my 80 amp inline fuse under the hood there is not a lot of room. Wires from both ends are short. I want to remove the fuse to test it but not sure how to open the box. I see that it is wired tied together. Do I cut that off? Does that release it, and then reattach the same way? My 10 amp fuse is good so I want to check the 80. If it tests good I'll refer to this thread for the other areas to check and test. Thanks.

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