Your vehicle runs smoothly while you’re driving down the road due to the power steering fluid, making it important to assure that the fluid doesn’t leak. Check your power steering fluid reservoir regularly for cracks and chips and leakage around the edges. If you’re seeing traces of power steering fluid on the ground when your car has been parked for a bit or if you’re having trouble steering your vehicle – maybe the steering wheel feels more stiff than usual – then it’s probably time to take a peek at your power steering fluid reservoir to be sure it’s still functioning accurately.
The power steering system is meant to do just that – help you steer your vehicle more effectively and with less effort. Gaskets in the reservoir can crack or fail and the tank itself can even be punctured. Here are a few pointers about the importance power steering fluid reservoirs:
Blow-molded plastics: Stick to plastics that are blow-molded, as these are the most resistant to extreme heat which will prevent cracking from happening.
Metal is an option but more expensive: Metal power steering fluid reservoirs are available, but a high-quality plastic tank is much more practical and affordable. Plus, clear plastic tanks allow you to check the fluid level without a fluid level sensor or dipstick.
Bundle with o-ring: All reservoirs need an o-ring to function properly and ensure a tight seal. If you’re buying a new power steering fluid reservoir, the best bet is to get one that already includes an o-ring and new gasket – this will ensure that you’re not replacing one part only to have another, smaller part fail soon.
Dipstick included: Power steering fluid reservoir caps can include a dipstick – this is a great option that makes is much more convenient to check your power steering fluid on a regular basis. The graduated dipstick cap lets you see almost immediately if the fluid levels are up to snuff. However, some vehicles do not have a stock gradated dipstick; be sure you’re getting a cap that will fit well on your vehicle and keep the fluid where it belongs.
Keep your car on the road and your steering smooth by checking and replacing your power steering fluid reservoir as needed.
YourMechanic supplies top-quality power steering fluid reservoirs to our certified mobile technicians. We can also install a power steering fluid reservoir that you've purchased. Click here to get a quote and more information on power steering fluid reservoir replacement.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Buy a Good Quality Power Steering Fluid Reservoir and was authored by Valerie Johnston.