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Discussion Starter #1
Ok, well I've decided it's time for a new thread. On my last post my idler pulley came off and PS fluid was all over the place. I got everything fixed up and the PS pump was working fine... I assumed that it only leaked as a result of high torque when the serp belt came off.

Today I drove about a half hour and then as I got to work, I heard the standard "you need more power steering fluid" whine as I was looking for a parking spot. I stopped and looked in the reservoir... fluid didn't even touch the dip stick. :eek: I whipped out my CHF11s (handy since the first problem) and topped it up. Then I started the car and opened the hood. I could acctually SEE power steering fluid squirting out from where the pulley enters the pump!!! :eek::eek:

I parked (took a few minutes) and the reservoir was empied below the dip stick AGAIN :evil::evil::evil:

Is it possible to re-do the seals in the pump? If I need one, is the remaned one ($175) on thesaabsite.com the one I want, or is there a better price somewhere else?
 

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I saw a used one on ebay for $40 with a 3-mo. warranty the other day, I think the auction had a day or two left. No bids, should still be up. Some things I would not buy used, but a ps pump is not that critical. I would have bought it but I already have a used spare... ;)

Usually they can be rebuilt if you find a kit or match the seals, but not as easy as it seems. There is usually the internal pressure relief valve, and a good rebuild would have to deal with that...
 

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Yeah grab the one off ebay $50 shipped. I almost did myself but my pump isn't quite there yet.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
I just ordered the part on eBay and spoke w/ my indie mech. He said he would charge 1 hour to put it in. How difficult is it to do myself? The high pressure stuff makes me think it might be difficult, but if it is pretty straightforward I'll try and save myself $70.
 

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For $70, I would let a mechanic do it, but it is not difficult, just a bit messy.

You will need to soak the pipe thread and the bolts at the pump with PB Blaster or some other kind of penetrating oil.

New o-ring seal, not sure what size, Saab p/n 4104048. New hose clamp, p/n 7970072. Looks like you might need a flare nut wrench, not sure what size, to get a good grip on the pipe fitting. Any part store or Sears will have those.

I will probably replace the ps fluid when I do mine, but it sounds like you don't have much of the old fluid left anyway...:cheesy:
 

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I've never done this, but for $70.00 plus the cost of the part i'd let him do it too. There will always be some fiddly little o ring or stuck hose or something that just wouldn't be worth the aggravation for you. If the guy you took it to for the linkage is good, then the $70.00 would be well spent.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
What a bugger! I drove home today with my spare bottle fo CHF11S handy and when I got home.. NO LEAK!? :confused:

It's too late though, because I already got the pump on eBay and they're usually not to keen on un-ordering. Can you think of any reason this is happening?

Actually, one thing I -just- though of was the CHF11S itself... that's a synth oil, right? Could it be the old fluid was mineral oil? I've heard some things about switching to synth engin oil and sudden leaks that stop after a little while... Could that be the cause, or is it very likely it was just a fluke and the seal is still broken? This is really weirding me out.
 

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Could that be the cause, or is it very likely it was just a fluke and the seal is still broken? This is really weirding me out.
Lets face it Kye, both the ps pump and the linkage are flukes. The root causes are too weird to think about. Have you broken any mirrors lately? :D

Since you already ordered the new one, I'd go ahead and use it. It might be that the seal temporarily healed itself somehow, but it could come back any minute. Maybe it's just fine, and I hate to sound lazy and reckless with $, but for seventy bucks I'd let your mechanic put the new one in and have the peace of mind. It would really suck to stop every five miles on I-95 to refill the fluid.
 

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Kye said:
What a bugger! I drove home today with my spare bottle fo CHF11S handy and when I got home.. NO LEAK!? :confused:
Sorry dude, what a nightmare...

As far as I know 1995 and 96 cars use GM Power Steering Fluid, says so in my owners manual, not sure after those years. If not, then I have been adding the wrong stuff... <sigh> do NOT mix the fluids (as in "do not cross the streams")

Aside from that... The pressure in the ps system can vary. Some leaks are intermittent, because pressure spikes in the system when you turn the steering wheel hard to one side (google "power steering" and "pressure spikes"). People sometimes blow the rack seals while trying to get the car out of a tight parking spot, or while replacing the fluid the old fashioned way, by turning the wheel back and forth to help pump it out. In Europe they blame the smaller Saginaw racks, but I don't think that is likely accurate. Saginaw has been making car parts for a while now.

I would turn the wheel all the way, and have someone watch the seal (not from up close, at least not w/o safety glasses) don't wear your good shoes, either...
 

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It important to use the correct PS fluid at all times.

The wrong oil can react with the seals and cause them to swell - either a leak results or a leak is "fixed"..
Risky, too risky..
Replace the pump, and even the hoses that are subject to excessive heat..
And maybe all the old oil should be changed as well..
 

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earthworm said:
Replace the pump, and even the hoses that are subject to excessive heat...
There is only one hose w/o a hard line attached. The whole system is a nightmare when it starts to go. The hard lines are crimped to the hoses, and there are three of those. Only one is available as an aftermarket part (I think). Oem, the combination lines are very expensive. The hoses are reinforced, and the rubber parts seem to be in better shape than the crimp joints and the metal lines on my car... the cooling line is BELOW the oil cooler where all the salt goes, and rusts out... the barbed plastic ends at the reservoir tend to break while taking off a stuck hose... how they can stick to the plastic, and at the same time leak eludes me completely... my pet rant, ranks even above the SID... :x ;oops:
 

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While we're discussing this I'd like to bring up my hose issue again. The one below the pump that goes up and back to the firewall?! Looks real bad. Every other hose is fine.
Checked the 99 9-3 a few weeks back and it's bad, too. It's so bad it is slowly leaking. Very very very slowly, but leaking nonetheless.
I'm thinking this is something everyone should go look at.
Report back, if you do.
2 Saabs a year apart from 2 different areas of the country (Colorado/Tennesse).
Same problem.
Anyway, my question: How do I get to that hose where it attaches to the firewall? Haynes no help. Someone said remove the relay/fuse box. OK.
Any help/tips with that?
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Hurm well I went to the Saab dealership and asked for "Power steering fluid for a 1995 900s" and they gave me CHF11S, and I didn't think about it at all until last post. I guess that teaches me to generalize, but I was in a hurry - I had 30 minutes to pick up the parts from a dealership 20 minutes away. When I get the new pump, should I put in CHF11S or GM Power Steering Fluid?

Anyway, I -think- my hoses are OK... When I get the pump fixed I'll ask the mech to take a good look at all the lines... All I've ever seen leaking was the pulley axle... so I'll replace the pump and hopefully I'll be all set...
 

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When I get the new pump, should I put in CHF11S or GM Power Steering Fluid?
I checked the Pentosin web site, and there is nothing to say whether you can mix that fluid or not.

http://www.pentosin.de/eng/products/chf/hydraulic.html

I would check with the dealer, tell them you found out the old owner's manual said GM fluid, see what they say. Flushing the whole system if you don't need to would be silly.
 
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