leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

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Old 10 Aug 2006, 10:01 pm   #1 (permalink)
mrdarrett@gmail.com
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Default leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

I was rotating the tires on my '96 (4-cyl.) Camry. I noticed that where
the right front tire was, there was oil on the bottom half of what
looks like a small CV boot. Not the actual CV boot, but just to the
left of it, there's what looks like a small CV boot.

Is this part of the power steering rack? I talked to a mechanic at a
car repair shop down the street, and he thinks this is what it is, but
I didn't take it in yet. I didn't notice much drop in my power
steering fluid reservoir...

Any suggestions on what to do...? How critical is this? (Do I have a
month to get this fixed, or days...?)

Thanks,

Michael

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Old 10 Aug 2006, 11:51 pm   #2 (permalink)
johngdole@hotmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

Take a look at Figure 2 in this free online guide at AutoZone.com:

http://www.autozone.com/servlet/UiBr...3d8013f79a.jsp

Is this the boot you are talking about? It always helps to make sure
it's not an oil leak from the valve cover gasket, etc. The V6 valve
cover gasket leak makes people think it's the power steering pump or
the CV boot.


mrdarrett@gmail.com wrote:
> I was rotating the tires on my '96 (4-cyl.) Camry. I noticed that where
> the right front tire was, there was oil on the bottom half of what
> looks like a small CV boot. Not the actual CV boot, but just to the
> left of it, there's what looks like a small CV boot.
>
> Is this part of the power steering rack? I talked to a mechanic at a
> car repair shop down the street, and he thinks this is what it is, but
> I didn't take it in yet. I didn't notice much drop in my power
> steering fluid reservoir...
>
> Any suggestions on what to do...? How critical is this? (Do I have a
> month to get this fixed, or days...?)
>
> Thanks,
>
> Michael


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Old 11 Aug 2006, 10:46 am   #3 (permalink)
mrdarrett@gmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)


johngdole@hotmail.com wrote:
> Take a look at Figure 2 in this free online guide at AutoZone.com:
>
> http://www.autozone.com/servlet/UiBr...3d8013f79a.jsp
>
> Is this the boot you are talking about? It always helps to make sure
> it's not an oil leak from the valve cover gasket, etc. The V6 valve
> cover gasket leak makes people think it's the power steering pump or
> the CV boot.



Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's the boot (on the far left) that's on the
guide. I rotated the tires about a week ago - running from memory.

Only the bottom half of the boot was oil-soaked. That's why I figured
it's probably not an oil leak from above.

Is this the power steering rack?

Is this critical to get fixed ASAP, or can I just watch my power
steering fluid more closely / add as needed?

Michael

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Old 12 Aug 2006, 12:02 am   #4 (permalink)
johngdole@hotmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

Then it's probably a minor leak right now from within the gear
assembly. All leaks will become a major leak later but hard to tell
when. Hard or erratic steering may or may not be the initial symptoms.
If you can isolate it to an o-ring leak, then power steering system
conditioner (o-ring conditioner) may help as a temporary measure.

Other than that I don't know how and when it's going to fail. But if
any power steering system fails, you'll lose power assist. In the best
case gradual, erratic loss/hard steering; in the worst case complete
sudden loss when you need it the most.

So it starts at about $5 for a bottle of steering system conditioner of
the correct type. To a complete rack at about $186 at NAPA, plus a $50
alignment on the excellent Hunter alignment equipment in a local shop.


mrdarrett@gmail.com wrote:

> Yeah, I'm pretty sure that's the boot (on the far left) that's on the
> guide. I rotated the tires about a week ago - running from memory.
>
> Only the bottom half of the boot was oil-soaked. That's why I figured
> it's probably not an oil leak from above.
>
> Is this the power steering rack?
>
> Is this critical to get fixed ASAP, or can I just watch my power
> steering fluid more closely / add as needed?
>
> Michael


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Old 12 Aug 2006, 05:57 pm   #5 (permalink)
Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

Two years ago, two master mechanics -- one a Toyota svc mgr --
told me my power steering was leaking and preparing to burst.
Not eager to spend $600+ for a slow leak, I tried a can of Lucas,
which proved worthless. Maybe six months later, I simply flushed
the power steering per instructions posted in this group, and the
leak seems to have stopped. Not a drop on the floor in many
months. Before adding conditioners, try a simple flush. All you
stand to lose is a little time and less than a quart of trans. fluid.

H.K.


johngdole@hotmail.com wrote:
> Then it's probably a minor leak right now from within the gear
> assembly. All leaks will become a major leak later but hard to tell
> when. Hard or erratic steering may or may not be the initial symptoms.
> If you can isolate it to an o-ring leak, then power steering system
> conditioner (o-ring conditioner) may help as a temporary measure.
>
> Other than that I don't know how and when it's going to fail. But if
> any power steering system fails, you'll lose power assist. In the best
> case gradual, erratic loss/hard steering; in the worst case complete
> sudden loss when you need it the most.
>
> So it starts at about $5 for a bottle of steering system conditioner of
> the correct type. To a complete rack at about $186 at NAPA, plus a $50
> alignment on the excellent Hunter alignment equipment in a local shop.
>


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Old 12 Aug 2006, 07:54 pm   #6 (permalink)
mrdarrett@gmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)


Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com wrote:
> Two years ago, two master mechanics -- one a Toyota svc mgr --
> told me my power steering was leaking and preparing to burst.
> Not eager to spend $600+ for a slow leak, I tried a can of Lucas,
> which proved worthless. Maybe six months later, I simply flushed
> the power steering per instructions posted in this group, and the
> leak seems to have stopped. Not a drop on the floor in many
> months. Before adding conditioners, try a simple flush. All you
> stand to lose is a little time and less than a quart of trans. fluid.
>
> H.K.
>


Ok, I'll try that. I've been doing the "lazy" steering fluid flush -
turkey baster plus 3/8" line, draining whatever comes out of the
reservoir.

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Old 12 Aug 2006, 10:44 pm   #7 (permalink)
Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

Forget the "lazy" flush. You want to raise the front end,
disconnect and plug the return nipple in the reservoir,
and run the return line through clear vinyl tubing into a
bucket. Then, with engine off, turn the steering wheel
fully left and right as you add clean fluid, until the fluid
exiting through the vinyl looks clean. Under a quart
does the job, which is very safe and rewarding.

H.K.

mrdarrett@gmail.com wrote:
> Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com wrote:
> > Two years ago, two master mechanics -- one a Toyota svc mgr --
> > told me my power steering was leaking and preparing to burst.
> > Not eager to spend $600+ for a slow leak, I tried a can of Lucas,
> > which proved worthless. Maybe six months later, I simply flushed
> > the power steering per instructions posted in this group, and the
> > leak seems to have stopped. Not a drop on the floor in many
> > months. Before adding conditioners, try a simple flush. All you
> > stand to lose is a little time and less than a quart of trans. fluid.
> >
> > H.K.
> >

>
> Ok, I'll try that. I've been doing the "lazy" steering fluid flush -
> turkey baster plus 3/8" line, draining whatever comes out of the
> reservoir.


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Old 13 Aug 2006, 12:16 am   #8 (permalink)
johngdole@hotmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com wrote:
> Forget the "lazy" flush. You want to raise the front end,
> disconnect and plug the return nipple in the reservoir,
> and run the return line through clear vinyl tubing into a
> bucket. Then, with engine off, turn the steering wheel


The engine OFF? Do you mean ON? The pump otherwise doesn't operate,
right.

> fully left and right as you add clean fluid, until the fluid
> exiting through the vinyl looks clean. Under a quart
> does the job, which is very safe and rewarding.
>


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Old 13 Aug 2006, 06:48 am   #9 (permalink)
dbltap
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

He wrote "raise the front end" like in off the ground
<johngdole@hotmail.com> wrote in message
news:1155446176.110238.108280@m73g2000cwd.googlegr oups.com...
> Herbert.Kocks@gmail.com wrote:
>> Forget the "lazy" flush. You want to raise the front end,
>> disconnect and plug the return nipple in the reservoir,
>> and run the return line through clear vinyl tubing into a
>> bucket. Then, with engine off, turn the steering wheel

>
> The engine OFF? Do you mean ON? The pump otherwise doesn't operate,
> right.
>
>> fully left and right as you add clean fluid, until the fluid
>> exiting through the vinyl looks clean. Under a quart
>> does the job, which is very safe and rewarding.
>>

>



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Old 13 Aug 2006, 04:04 pm   #10 (permalink)
johngdole@hotmail.com
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Default Re: leak on "small CV boot" (could be power steering rack?)

I know he wrote raise the front end. This allows the ps gear to operate
stop-to-stop.

But the engine needs to run to operate the pump, as in a standard PS
fluid flush procedure.


dbltap wrote:
> He wrote "raise the front end" like in off the ground


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