Power steering fluid leak


#1

I purchased a new 2007 car, and recently noticed that fluid was dripping (about two or three drops an hour)on to the carport floor. The car, with 3500 miles on it, is still under “warranty.”



I took it to the dealership and was told that the power steering fluid is leaking and they would order a part and repair it.



That was about two weeks ago. I can sense they are stalling and trying to wear down my patience. It’s baffling, however, why they don’t want to fix it. Maybe fixing it would be very expensive?



I’m discouraged (the dealership has won), and I’m thinking about picking the car up and taking it to a reliable repair shop which I have done business with in the past. Maybe they can find the part and repair it.



My question is would it be alright and safe to drive the car even though it is leaking power steering fluid? If it can’t be repaired, can I just keep adding fluid? Is it hard to do? Can I do it myself? Is it easy to check? How would I know when to add fluid? How much fluid does it hold?



I’m beginning to think that warranties are a sham and nobody honors them.



Thanks in advance for any advice, suggestions, etc.




#2

You mean they kept your new car and didn’t give you a loaner? This is terrible. I don’t think they are stalling, I think they are having trouble getting the part. Let them fix it under warranty. That’s their job. Demand a loaner if they can’t fix it right away.


#3

What kind of car is this, anyway?


#4

I didn’t mention the make of the car because I thought it might be a no-no. I called the dealership a while ago and was told they are having to order “a power-steering rack” and it’s going to be a “really big job.” They’re still trying to wear me down. How in the world could a new car with 3,500 miles on it possibly need a new power-steering rack? They didn’t know either. They said it’s just a factory defect.

I’ve bought three new, same make cars from them in the past. Obviously they have more business than they want. I’ve had it with this make of car. I should have bought a Toyota Camry.

Thanks to all for your comments. I apologize for venting and ranting.


#5

Well, replacing a power steering rack can be a big job, and they may have trouble getting one for such a new car. They’re answer, “a factory defect,” makes perfect sense, since the car has so few miles. What is it you think they want you to do by “wearing you down?” Your post indicates they agree it’s a factory defect, and they intend to fix it free.

Other than a loaner car, I’m not sure what more you could ask. If they can’t get the part, that’s not their fault.

How long have they had the vehicle?

By the way, it’s perfectly acceptable to name the vehicle. People do it all the time. Actually, it’s good information for others.


#6

And how many names are you using?


#7

Document absolutely everything.

Have you called them and asked why they haven’t called yet? Have you asked them what part they have on order and why it’s taking so long? They’re still clearly responsible and it needs to be corrected. They may just be having difficulty getting the part. If you don’t get satisfactory answers, there should be a number or address in your Owner’s Manual to forward a complaint. Don’t hesitate to use it.

If you keep an eye on the power steering fluid you should be fine. Even if it were to fail you wouldn’t lose your steering completely.


#8

“Names” of what?


#9

My question is would it be alright and safe to drive the car even though it is leaking power steering fluid? If it can’t be repaired, can I just keep adding fluid? Is it hard to do? Can I do it myself? Is it easy to check? How would I know when to add fluid? How much fluid does it hold?
Not knowing what vehicle you’re talking about makes answering some of these questions difficult. But regardless, it CAN be repaired. Rack and pinion steering gears are not rocket science. It sounds as if you have never taken a new car back for any warranty work. For a new car under warranty, it’s a no brainer. Let the dealer replace the rack.


#10

Replacement steering racks, particularly for Asian and European cars, are almost always remanufactured. The rem is just as good as the oem, but they are not always in stock. I’d stick with your dealer/warranty. It will be fixed sooner or later.


#11

AllanY

It’s a 2007 Honda Accord, Value Package (VP), four cyl. True, I’ve never taken a car back for warranty work. I’ve bought four new Hondas in the past from the same place and never had any problems. I’m astonished that a new car with 3,500 miles on it needs a new power-steering rack. It makes me wonder what else might be wrong with it. No more Hondas for me – I’m switching to Toyotas.


#12

I would not get upset with Honda just yet. They build fine cars and just like anything that rolls down a production line, a certain percentage of them may have a fault or two.

It is unusual for a steering rack to leak at that low of a mileage, but it’s not the end of the world.

First off, you do NOT take this car to an independent shop for repair. Second, document this problem and make sure that you have a written copy of the repair order specifying your complaint. This could come in handy, and required, if for some reason this turns into a Lemon Law issue.
Lemon Law issues usually require 3 trips in for the same probem and x days of the car out of service.

If there is a delay in procuring the part, then call the Honda regional office and speak with them about this problem. Be polite about it and I’m sure they will get this resolved.
If for some reason the steering rack assembly is a back-ordered item and not availble at the moment they should tell you so.

I say don’t dump the car just yet.


#13

Thanks for the advice and suggestions. Now that I’ve vented my frustrations and managed to cool down a bit, I think you are right.

If they make it right, I’ll post my experience.

You’re advice about keeping the problem documented is good.

Thanks again.