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Driving without power steering question.


Udinthrik
08-26-2005, 10:47 AM
well, i have been driving my 1991 chevy lumina for about 2 months without power steering. the reason is it has a really bad leak so i stopped putting power steering fluid in it. i find it pretty easy to drive, im suprised because everyone says driving without fluid is harder than driving a car that never had power steering. well, my question is, i have heard driving with no fluid will burn up the power steering unit eventually. and ive been told several things that this can result to, wont hurt the car at all, to the car wont run. how long will it take to burn up, and does anyone know for sure what happens when it does burn up?

marleyer
08-31-2005, 10:30 PM
My high pressure line went out in my 93 Z34 and it was only about 3-4 months before my belts broke off and pulley seized up. I replaced it with a new pump and pulley and have since drove it about 500 miles. The leak is still there and I think it is cheaper and easier to get the leak fixed. You won't get the workout but it will save you some headaches in the future.

cadgear
09-01-2005, 02:01 AM
Pumps usually rely on the medium to cool and lubricate, so its not wise to run without any fluid at all. Water pump, power steering pump, fuel pump; they all use the medium to keep functioning as-is. If nothing else, and you don't want to mess with fixing the leak, reroute the belt (probably need to buy a shorter one) to bypass the pump pulley.

When a bearing seizes, it seizes. The pulley stops turning, and the belt rubs on the now stationary object until the belt snaps from heat. As far as a timeframe, that's like asking two raindrops to fall in exactly the same place. It might be tomorrow, it might be five years from now (assuming the thing is still driven). While power steering is one of those things we can all do without (I drove for quite some time in England in a 96 Volvo with power NOTHIN), it sure is nice to have when you have a larger vehicle.

Something I've thought of is somehow rigging the PS pump to operate off an electromagnetic clutch and either a vehicle speed switch or a manual switch on the dash to operate it in such a way that when the speed of the car falls below, say, 10mph, the clutch engages assuming parking or low-speed maneuvering. I know some of the Buick's already have an electromagnetic assist and the Vibe (I believe) has electric assist only, but this is something that wouldn't require too much fabwork.
Nothing I'll be able to tackle myself due to the fact I work more or less all the time and still can't find money to fund my little brainstorms, but its fun to think about.

decollect
09-02-2005, 07:38 AM
Something I've thought of is somehow rigging the PS pump to operate off an electromagnetic clutch and either a vehicle speed switch or a manual switch on the dash to operate it in such a way that when the speed of the car falls below, say, 10mph, the clutch engages assuming parking or low-speed maneuvering. I know some of the Buick's already have an electromagnetic assist and the Vibe (I believe) has electric assist only, but this is something that wouldn't require too much fabwork.
Nothing I'll be able to tackle myself due to the fact I work more or less all the time and still can't find money to fund my little brainstorms, but its fun to think about.[/QUOTE]


Cadgear, I hear ya on the last paragraph! You should see the similar idea I have for A/C clutches. What would be wrong with a variable speed clutch for the A/C? That way when you're on the gas, it can run the A/C at low speed/low load, but when you're coasting-decellerating it spins the A/C at high speed/high load? Back it up with a program in the main CPU and I bet you can tweak it to use half the engine power a traditional A/C system uses and offer little, if any, loss in cooling performance.

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