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Old 09-17-2004, 08:13 PM   #1
andybot2000
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Default Whining noise from power steering pump/reservior

A couple weeks ago, I began to notice a strange whining sound from the engine of my 96 SL2. It makes the noise whether the car is in gear or not, so I know it's not the tranny. The whining sound increases and decreases in pitch according to the engine RPM. I checked under the hood, and it sounds like the noise is coming from the power steering pump or reservior. The fluid is full, very clean, no leaks. Is this just normal aging, or is something funky going on? I'm thinking maybe the pulley is just getting louder with age?
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Old 09-17-2004, 08:45 PM   #2
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Are you sure that it is from the PS? An alternator with bad diodes will make a high pitched whine that varies with the RPM. The alt is directly below the PS pump.
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Old 09-18-2004, 02:25 PM   #3
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like ssicarman said, check the alternator. but if the sound does turn out to be from the PS pump ( ive seen a few of them make this type of noise before) then try this. add about 1 tablespoon of STP oil treatment to the resivor and turn the wheel back and forth about 10 times although it may take a few days to totally go away, it should help the noise, if it doesnt then a new pump is the only thing that will fix the noise. a guy i used to work with showed me that trick, he used to work at a ford dealer, ford is notorious for power steering noise, he said they would keep cases of that stuff around to quiet the ps pumps.
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Old 09-18-2004, 05:58 PM   #4
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are you sure it's the pump and not the idler pulley? thats the one in the center of the front cover under the top mount. it sounds similar. does the noise change when you turn the wheels? if not, it could be the idler. carefully place a long screw driver on the center bolt of that pulley while the engine is running and put your ear on the screwdriver. you may hear the noise there. if not, try placing it on the back of the pump and listening there. that may narrow it down for you.
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Old 09-27-2004, 04:36 PM   #5
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The noise must have been coming from the alternator, because the battery light came on and now she won't start. The battery is only 3 months old. I'm going to attempt to replace the alternator today using wolfman's awesome how-to.

Thanks everyone for your input. I love this site.
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