Is it really necessary to flush the power steering system? Absolutely! Contaminated fluid is harmful to the power steering system in several ways. Dirty fluid is thicker than clean, fresh fluid, causing the components such as the pump and rack and pinion to have to work harder, which can lead to premature failure of those parts. Burnt, oxidized power steering fluid is also very stressful to seals, and is the leading cause of seal failure in pumps and steering racks today. Furthermore, burnt fluid also contributes to the failure of the high pressure lines, as it causes the rubber to deteriorate from the inside out.
Although power steering maintenance doesn’t appear on a lot of manufacturers’ recommendation lists, we strongly encourage this service after the vehicle odometer has reached 60,000 miles and every 30,000 miles thereafter. Service of the system is a sound investment in the long term well-being of your automobile. Flushing the power steering system on a regular basis is the single best way to maximize the life expectancy of your car’s essential steering components.