Originally Posted by Rubicondon53
I Think my power steering pump may be giving up the ghost .. I'm experiencing a very low pitched growl/ whine on occasions when it is working hard, ( rock crawling ).. It's still doing its job, the fluid is topped off. Any thoughts?
Anyone that plays in the rocks should be running a large cooler on the return side back to the reservoir. Essentially, a steering pump is nothing more than a hydraulic pump that is limited on the max pressure output by a relief valve. Without the relief valve, the pump would just keep building pressure. Unfortunately, the relief valve just bypasses fluid in the pump which really builds heat.
That is also the noise you hear when you go to full lock. When you get in the rocks, it's very common to force the pump into bypass without going to full lock, so you are really heating up the fluid and making the system less efficient.
Install a cooler, you'll be happier and your pump will thank you by working better.