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Old 04-02-2010, 09:06 AM   #1
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Groaning sound from steering

Wondering if y'all can help me diagnose this.

2001 S, 105 Kmi. From time to time, when I turn the steering wheel, there is a groaning sound coming from the front of the car. It's most audible when I coast to a stop; when accelerating it's difficult to hear because of engine noise.

It sounds like a power steering pump, but that can't really be it because the pump is rear of the driver, and this sound is definitely coming from the front.

P/s fluid level seems fine. No drips. I jacked up the front but could not find anything obviously amiss. I have not yet taken the plastic underbody off, but there is no evidence of leakage anywhere around the steering rack.

Any ideas? Maybe just air in the p/s lines?

Thanks,
Gary

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Old 04-02-2010, 09:30 AM   #2
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Must be an 01 S thing because mine does the same thing, on the passenger side when the car is warm. Let me know what you find.
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Old 04-02-2010, 09:56 AM   #3
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Huge longshot but is the belt stretched or old?

PS You think you heard a groan, wait till the groan you hear leave your own body when you get the pentosin to the cash register.
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Old 06-30-2010, 12:55 PM   #4
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I've a similar noise on my 2000 2.7 now also. Will check PS levels later failing that might be a trip to a local garage to get it looked into
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Old 07-01-2010, 07:01 AM   #5
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First check your fluid level...if it's ok I would suspect the pump could be failing and not supplying enough fluid to the rack or the rack could be by-passing fluid. Since the system is basically sealed with fluid moving though all the time I would not consider a blocked line. Post what you find, it helps everyone here.
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Old 07-01-2010, 11:54 AM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by jcb986
First check your fluid level...if it's ok I would suspect the pump could be failing and not supplying enough fluid to the rack or the rack could be by-passing fluid. Since the system is basically sealed with fluid moving though all the time I would not consider a blocked line. Post what you find, it helps everyone here.


my 1st guess.

I know a lot of older fords have a very loud groaning that comes from their power steering, but that's normal.
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Old 07-01-2010, 01:28 PM   #7
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“Grumbling” or “groaning” are fairly well documented and common signs of a dying power steering pump. Pumps most often die for two reasons: Heat, or low fluid levels (the system has very little reserve fluid, and the filler is hard to get at). No parts are available to rebuild the pump either, it has to be replaced………….
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Old 07-02-2010, 06:26 PM   #8
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I'm interested as well, I have a slight "groan" but only on the passenger side and only when I make a *right turn* at low speed...?
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Old 07-17-2010, 10:48 PM   #9
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same issue 03 boxster S

I await some enlightenment,
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Old 07-22-2010, 08:02 PM   #10
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same problem here ...
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Old 07-23-2010, 05:59 AM   #11
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At the risk of angering the Porsche gods... my boxster is no longer making the noise.

I topped off the pentosin (it was not really low) and it made the noise a couple of more times and then it stopped on it own.

I would not relate the cessation of the noise to my merely adding a thimble full of pentosin any more than I would suggest the effectiveness of offering blood sacrifices.

I am still just as stumped on this one as I was before.
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Old 07-23-2010, 06:17 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landrovered
At the risk of angering the Porsche gods... my boxster is no longer making the noise.

I topped off the pentosin (it was not really low) and it made the noise a couple of more times and then it stopped on it own.

I would not relate the cessation of the noise to my merely adding a thimble full of pentosin any more than I would suggest the effectiveness of offering blood sacrifices.

I am still just as stumped on this one as I was before.
Hey, when you said "you topped off", where in the dipstick is the level after topping off?. There are two marks in the dipstick.
"Cold" which is pretty much at the end of the sipstick and "Warm" which is much higher
My car makes the noise only when cold so I am tempted to overfill a little...
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Old 07-23-2010, 06:52 AM   #13
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Yes when I say "topped it off", I mean I overfilled it.
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Old 07-26-2010, 08:08 PM   #14
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So I did a little search on the interwebs and apparently tracked Boxsters and Caymans have the tendency to cook the power steering fluid and consequently damage the pump and the power steering lines:

http://boxcar-racing.com/forum/index.php?topic=177.0
http://boxcar-racing.com/forum/index.php?topic=145.0
http://forums.rennlist.com/rennforums/racing-and-drivers-education-forum/149499-boxster-ps-fix-for-brian-p-and-other-boxster-de-and-racers.html
http://www.planet-9.com/cayman-boxster-competition/19400-power-steering-fixes-without-big-bucks.html

Ah, one more thing to worry about in these sleepless nights...
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Old 07-26-2010, 08:25 PM   #15
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Landrovered, you are a very good writer. And entertaining too!

My power steering fluid reservoir needs a top off once a year but doesn't make noise. Should I be worried about this?
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Old 07-27-2010, 06:49 PM   #16
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Quote:
Originally Posted by landrovered
Yes when I say "topped it off", I mean I overfilled it.
Hmmmm, so far so good, no more groaning this morning
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:26 PM   #17
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So, I (2001 S) have this same groan / creak coming from the front when I turn the steering wheel. It's not doing it all the time, so that's what makes it more challenging to diagnose.

However, yesterday I had a diagnostic breakthrough: the noise appeared when I came back from a drive. I jacked up the front of the car, and there was no noise when turning the steering wheel. Back on the ground, the noise was back.

To me, this indicates the noise has nothing to do with the steering rack, or low/high p/s fluid. It must be something in the front suspension that gets stressed when the wheels turn. I am thinking control arms, perhaps struts.

Anyone have an idea based on this information?
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:47 PM   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Fluellen
So, I (2001 S) have this same groan / creak coming from the front when I turn the steering wheel. It's not doing it all the time, so that's what makes it more challenging to diagnose.

However, yesterday I had a diagnostic breakthrough: the noise appeared when I came back from a drive. I jacked up the front of the car, and there was no noise when turning the steering wheel. Back on the ground, the noise was back.

To me, this indicates the noise has nothing to do with the steering rack, or low/high p/s fluid. It must be something in the front suspension that gets stressed when the wheels turn. I am thinking control arms, perhaps struts.

Anyone have an idea based on this information?
It is probably still the pump. The resistance from the tires on the road build pressure in the fluid, which is what stresses the pump, which is what makes it groan.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:57 PM   #19
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Blue,

The sound comes clearly from the area right next to the front wheels. I stood outside the car, turning the steering wheel through the open window. No mistake possible. I don't see how the p/s pump could be responsible for the noise coming from that area?

Also, it is a very mechanical sound. Like a rusty old spring, or a creaking door hinge opened very slowly. A low metal-on-metal scraping sound.

Thanks!

Edited: the more I think about it, the sound is probably what I would imagine a dry ball joint would sound like.

Last edited by Fluellen; 09-20-2010 at 02:00 PM.
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Old 09-20-2010, 01:58 PM   #20
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I experience creaking/groaning from my lower control arm (the one with the ball joint) and I've replaced one side three times now and the other side once up front. These go out frequently on our cars.

Fill the power steering reservoir and then see if the creaking still exists, if it does I'm confident you have a worn lower control arm. If you remove it and the ball joint flops around and grinds with aluminum on steel, you know you found the culprit.

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