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Old 05-20-2016, 06:36 AM   #1
Join Date: May 2014
Location: Portland Oregon
Posts: 214
My Power Steering Pump Replacement Experience

There were several lessons learned when I replaced the PS pump myself, in my garage, and thought I would share. I didnt find these lessons on the web before and during my project so maybe some day it will benefit another DIY rookie like myself.

No leakage and no performance loss but my PS pump, I suspected it was my PS pump anyway, was whinning. It wasnt too bad but just loud enough that it was affecting my enjoyment of my de-snokled garage queen. I purchased this base 02 used with 99k miles, maintance history unknown. It has 114k miles on it now. Using a plastic syringe and tubing I pulled the existing fluid out of the reservior and, sure enough, burned. Replaced what I could with Lucas synthetic but it didnt really help. I had had good luck with it before in other cars and thought I would give it a try, on my own first, before taking it to my mechanic but no luck.

German Formula here in Portland Oregon is an excellent shop that has treated me very well. I explained that the pump was whinning and I was preparing to do a full replacement, they recommended a pro clean/flush and replacement with Pentosin first as 'most' of the time this succeeded in quieting a pump. Lots of metal encountered during flush, they said the pump is toast. They also said my belt pullys and tensioner were or would be toast in the near future. Five hours labor at $100 an hour, a new pump was (after a quick search) $600 and the two pullys and tensioner would be $300. He did mention that PS pump failure on 986s is rare and that a used pump would probably be fine. I could bring it back and they would do the flush again, free of charge, when the new pump was in. I paid $125 and, with the pump now roaring, drove the car home.

Got a used pump for $125 and the two pullies and tensioner for $215.

Using the Bentley manual for the first time, I began my project by omitting several steps. I didnt remove the drivers seat, I didnt remove the AC compressor (I did loosen it) and I didnt jack up the car and disconnect the power steering lines underneath. I did get most all of the fluid out of the reservior and pump prior to removal just using my syringe and tube. Not removing the AC compressor did make the pump a little harder to remove but with patience you can remove the bolts and gently pry it up enough to get the pump out. The reservior is held to the pump by two bolts and two pins, I recommend removing these bolts and pushing the pins out from the front and removing the reservior first, then the pump. Interesting the pump and reservior togeather with go back in just fine but getting them out togeather was a pain. The biggest snag was the low pressure return line on the back of the reservior that requires disconnect before you can get the reservior out. This line has a red locking ring that requires, according to the Bentley, you push in on the ring as you pull out on the line. After much cussing, bruised feelings and aquiring a slim forked door panel removal tool I discovered that you must push this line IN and then out in addition to holding in the lock ring. Big lesson learned.

This was a fun project, I was more 'one' with the car than ever, and after a free AAA tow back to the shop for a flush Im happy to report the car is very quiet now. I saved myself a few hundred in labor.

02 Seal Grey 5 Speed

Last edited by TypeA; 05-20-2016 at 06:39 AM.
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Old 05-20-2016, 06:45 AM   #2
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TypeA - hey, thanks for the write-up.
2001 Boxster S - Speed Yellow, Black Leather, Tiptronic, Jake Raby rebuilt 3.2 with IMS Solution
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Old 05-20-2016, 01:40 PM   #3
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Thank you! You are correct that the DYI for the PS is kind of hard to find. Enjoy your quiet car!
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Old 02-15-2020, 02:30 AM   #4
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I know this is an old thread but do you remember when installing the low pressure line did you just push the line in to the red locking collar? any special procedure?
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Old 02-15-2020, 06:28 PM   #5
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Push the line in until the "ridge" hits the red collar. Give it a pull to make sure it's seated, and that's it.


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