Power Steering Noise - Nissan Forum
A32 1995-1999 Chassis 1995-1999 Maxima

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post #1 of 4 Old May 28th, 2006, 08:41 PM Thread Starter
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Power Steering Noise

I have been having a winding/whirring/buzzing noise coming from the engine of my 98 maxima. The Local Firestone shop couldn't find the problem, then thought it was a pulley, and replaced the pulley, but that didn't fix it.

I took it to a dealer and they said it was the power steering pump, but wanted $895 to replace it. The Firestone place said they could replace it for $395, so I let them do it.

The problem is that that didn't fix the noise. The Firestone guy said that a new power steering pump will make noise for a few hundred miles, until the "seals get broken-in", or something like that. However, it has been a week, and the noise is getting worse.

So, my questions are: is the Firestone guy full of it when he says it is normal for the new pump to make noise? & what could the noise be? - Could a bad install of the pump (leaving air in the line, etc.) cause the noise?

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post #2 of 4 Old May 28th, 2006, 09:50 PM
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the Firestone guy is an idiot.

usualyl what happens with these systems is the hoses will begin to leak and will cause air bubbles in the fluid.

If there is air in the line and no leaks, it should all bleed out after a few turns lock-to-lock while the engine is off.

If the noise is still there, then there's still air in the system. most likely, it's coming in from the low pressure return line if you've replaced the pump and it still makes noise.

Also make sure you're/they're using the correct fluid. Nissan uses automatic transmission fluid in their power steering systems, NOT power steering fluid as you would think. if it's been filled with the wrong fluid, then it could cause the brand new pump to fail within miles and take down the rest of the system with it.

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post #3 of 4 Old Jun 7th, 2006, 08:49 PM
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...Are you sure it's the power steering pump making the noise? If you take the belt off will it go away?
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post #4 of 4 Old Jun 8th, 2006, 08:56 AM Thread Starter
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Actually, it wasn't - here's the update:;

I took it back to the Firestone place because the noise never went away, and asked them to try again to find the source of the noise. They did the belt-test, isolating one thing at a time until they determined it was the A/C compressor. They said it would cost about $850 to replace it. I got a couple of other quotes that ranged from $1,033 to $1,200.

I had paid $95 for an incorrect diagnosis from the dealer, and then spent an additional $400 to replace a power steering pump (that did not need replacement). An now I was faced with at least $850 more.

So, I went back to the dealer and explained the situation to the service manager. I was prepared to ask for the A/C compressor to be replaced, with a credit for the approximately $500 I had spent on, or as a result of, their incorrect diagnosis. He said that they should have done the belt test originally (their original diagnosis was simply driving and listening), as that was the only way to correctly diagnose the problem, with and would look at it again and let me know.

After they looked at it, he called and said that it was in fact the A/C compressor, and that they would replace it for me.......at no charge. When I explained I never expected for them to do it at no charge, he said that he consideres his Techs to be the best and was therefore extremely embarassed that this had happened.

Needless to say, I was amazed, but very thankful.

Last edited by TokenWasp; Jun 8th, 2006 at 09:02 AM.
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