Questions about Power Steering Lines [Archive] - Forum


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03-03-2011, 12:59 PM

I have a hose leaking power steering fluid all over my engine when the wheel is turned. I want to replace the hose myself.

But the auto parts place has a Pressure line and a Return line. Also, for the Pressure line, they offer two kinds: one with Variable Assist and one Without Variable Assist.

So, which line is the Return line and which one is the Pressure line? And, how can I tell if the system has Variable Assist or not?

Thank you,


03-03-2011, 01:45 PM
I found my answers on another forum here

I found that the hose that screws into the pump is the Pressure line, and the indicator that I have Variable Assist is that there are wires plugged into the pump also.


03-03-2011, 03:40 PM
Yep, variable assist cars have a harness lead going to the pump with a plug. That is what controls the valve in the pump that varies line pressure. Later models , starting in '02 or '03 I think, have a pump with no plug and no variable assist.

The pressure line is the one that screws into the pump, and it also connects to a hard line section on top of the subframe where it goes under the exhaust downpipe. The return line is just a section of rubber line with heat insulation around it under the exhaust, and it also has the cooling loop under the car, then goes up to the pump and just connects to the reservoir with a spring clamp.

Replacing them will take a few hours to disconnect everything and fish the lines out and back in... but it is a really straight forward process. No special tools needed. Just a small assortment of wrenches and sockets, etc. You'll have to bleed the air out after you refill the system, or the pump will burn up. It will make a loud bussing/humming noise the first few times. Fill the reservoir full, then start the engine and let it run a minute. Turn it off, refill the reservoir, repeat until it stops making noise and the fluid level stops going down. :thumbs: