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Colds impact on power steering

We are going through probably the overall coldest winter I have ever been through. I was wondering is it not out of the question for the cold to impact the power steering on a car. I have a 2002 Kia Sedona mini van and have noticed when starting out in the morning my steering is a bit more sluggish/stiffer and then has the day wears on it is back to it’s normal self. It has depending on the temps out said taken a few minutes up to a half hour or so. I have never had this issue before, but agian have never had to deal with so many sub zero nights and days like we have this winter in Indiana.

Although this could be normal, do you have fairly fresh fluid in there? If not, this might be a good time to change it.

Nope it’s not new so I will look into that soon.

Look in the manual for the correct fluid and get some. Then use anything that will work (e.g. turkey baster) to suck as much fluid out of the reservoir as you can. Then refill with fresh fluid. Do that a few times over the course of a month or so and your fluid will be mostly fresh.

You should also take a good look at the belt.

depending on your terminology of sluggish, the extreme cold we have had lately does have an impact on cars. if your definition means slightly more effort until the fluid warms up, that makes sense and is normal.

That is exactly it, as the car/engine warms up the steering goes from sluggish and feeling like you don’t have power steering to operating normally.

I’ve never noticed that, even when I lived in Colorado, but its possible that it is normal I suppose. How noticeable this was would vary from car to car probably. Worthwhile to make sure the power steering fluid is clean and up to the full mark. Has fluid ever been added before? If so, it’s possible a fluid with the wrong specs was used.

That’s called morning sickness.

There’s no power steering assist when the vehicle is cold.

It means the spool valve seals in the rack and pinion assembly are wearing grooves in the bore of the R&P assembly.

There should be power steering assist at all times no matter the temperature.

I’m in Minnesota, and we hit -15 below zero last night. And there’s been no reports of sudden power steering assist failures.


try using synthetic fluid, it helped my car in very cold weather