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93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air


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lesgohuntn
User

Oct 18, 2015, 5:55 PM

Post #1 of 15 (846 views)
  post locked   93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

You patiently helped me track down the "door shut kills engine" problem, and thanks again. New problem: same truck, 93 Chevy Z71 5.7 auto., I had to replace steering gear, so I also replaced PS lines per warranty requirements. As I attempted to bleed the air out as Haynes manual suggested, (turn wheels back and forth while engine at fast idle, topping off fluid as needed) it occasionally seemed to get easier to steer, but never smoothly. I kept repeating, thinking, eventually it would smooth out. Never did, now it has no PS at all. Fluid shows full. Do you think it possible, my PS pump failed, or still just air in lines, and if air, do you know better way to bleed air out? Thanks.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Oct 18, 2015, 10:04 PM

Post #2 of 15 (835 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

? What went wrong with first gearbox? If it leaked out and you ran it dry the pump would take a hard hit or fail.


Generally turning fully left and right bleeds PS preffered IMO is with front wheels hoisted at first at least.


Begs some questions and some snags possible: Many trucks have PS coolers like heater core size at engines radiator or perhaps a smaller one another way.
Back when another issue I do recall you felt a binding with this. Not sure if mentioned then but now called for is that these use a lot of grease fittings, many ignored like lower ball joints and shaft of idler arm tricky. Also have to steer them just a bit to grease all or the last one if OE fitting which you can change to suit on many. Joints really can bind feeling like lack of power assist and problem is the joint not elsewhere.


New lines: Ya - at the age and required agree with new.
Let the guys suggest away but since this was partly working and now nothing I think pump sustained damage and or the gearbox. Look for debris that may have killed them again hate to say but either are somewhat rare to need and if debris that's the problem and can kill both again.


Seems silly but you did use proper fluid right? PS specific fluid or sometimes calls for ATF. New I would default to PS specific fluid that meets or exceeds vehicle requirements.
Still thinking on why NO assist at all now. Really doesn't bode well for this working out and by rights should have with what you did fairly quickly. Not as many tries as you said?


T



lesgohuntn
User

Oct 19, 2015, 6:01 AM

Post #3 of 15 (818 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

End cap seal blew, was leaking plus some play in output shaft. I never let it run dry of fluid, and was working good with steering assist, just leaking a lot of fluid, before old steering gear was replaced.
The ball joints, idler and pitman arms, tie rods... everything but steering gear on front end, only have 100 miles or so since all was replaced and fully greased and worked smoothly just before I removed st gear. Doesn't have PS cooler on this truck
It calls for GM PS fluid or equivalent, and parts place gave me equivalent.
I didn't raise front end off ground as in your opinion, as manual didn't say to do so, although makes sense to do so. I just didn't think of it.
:quote from you: "Not as many tries as you said". I turned it back and forth so many times it dug out holes in my yard under tires 3 inches deep, and had to back truck up, tried again long enough to dig out significant holes again. (wish I had thought to raise tires off ground to start with)
I'll try raising front end and try again, I'm just afraid damage has already been done to pump and/ or St gear since I've tried so many times, only for steering assist to diminish.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Oct 19, 2015, 6:35 AM

Post #4 of 15 (812 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

Dug a hole trying! OK - I get how hard you tried. My reason for lifting front wheels is to at least begin with no/little load on the system - tires of course are just scrubbing sitting still.


It was leaking before is info. You probably wouldn't know it was low till buzzing was heard and or lack of assist. Just my experiences is that if that happens too much the pump will fail to pump properly and said debris comes into question.


Suck some fluid out for examination - clear glass, thru plain white paper towel just to see what's up.


I don't even own a pressure device to test pressure of high pressure and low should really just be a return plain hose with appropriate ends attached if new and not sure of the pressure but know when working hard it's way up there.
You keep calling it a "gear" not a gearbox? What did you get or do? Truth is so few failures to me personally that when one is damaged or hopelessly leaking I seek out used even a lot younger than this truck/vehicle. Never a problem there and few in general.


Were all those front end parts really bad or did you just replace them just because? People do that but truth is if a greasable front end/steering joint really fails to wear it didn't have enough grease periodically lots older than this. Fairness, you can get caught with fittings that don't work or excessive water wash up to dunking parts will speed up failures quickly.


Can you see turbulence looking into pump cap now? If not and guessing it failed already. IDK - do you wish to persue checking pressure then you could blame a bad rebuilt 'gearbox' and would like to call it that not just one part in it.


Own one that should be the same or very similar for replacing these either pump or gearbox, whole. PS pumps don't come with pulley on any that I recall so just need a puller for those or if used the same exact one with pulley still on.


Was just out junkyarding and some again today for other stuff. Around me (very rusty area for vehicles) the two are now NOT holding vehicles much past about 10 years as the metal is worth too much and the space is wildly costly just to park junks whole is just not worth the space they take up,


T



kev2
Veteran
kev2 profile image

Oct 19, 2015, 7:50 AM

Post #5 of 15 (807 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

lets get a plan.
you SURE hoses from pump to gear box are ok- correct routing, no evidence of leakage at connections...
wheels off ground - then back and forth - do you get feeling of "assist" ?
pump it was working before and you had "assist" ?
next where did gear box come from?
lets cover those BEFORE pressure testing, pump removal etc.


like colleague said- not often do they fail or create replacement issues...


lesgohuntn
User

Oct 19, 2015, 4:17 PM

Post #6 of 15 (800 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

The seal just blew while I was tracking the electrical problems, I know when it blew, because it sprayed my boots while looking in engine compartment, and I haven't driven it since this happened. I wanted to get it fixed to keep from damaging the pump. The pump never got low enough on fluid to buzz or to loose assist, because I added fluid to it before running it while checking electric problem. You're right.... steering gear box is what I replaced, sorry for the confusion. I checked the lines and routing correct, no leaks. There was still turbulence or small bubbles on top of PS fluid in reservoir when I last attempted to bleed, I hope that's a good sign!
I realize this is rare, but my friend's 93 Z71 just did the same thing a few months before mine (what's the chances?)... same exact seal blew, and his leaked worse than mine! I realize what fixed one truck may not fix another in most cases. This time was the exception. I could have bought a build kit for a lot less, but since I had to take it out anyway, decided on reman. gear box. It was purchased at a local parts house. I can't remember the brand, because I've already returned core before having a chance to bleed system (dumb, I know),but he carries Gates parts new, but I don't know if Gates was the brand, or even if they deal with reman. parts.
Most of parts on front end were worn pretty bad, some were replaced simply due to the fact I had it so far apart to replace worn parts, anything that had to do with steering and suspension got new parts (except st gear box) My truck from day one, new, has been used heavily. Deep mud, in creeks, heavy loads, rough off roading, anywhere I need to be, that's where it goes. Some call it abuse, I call it using my truck for what I bought it for. Most of these parts I replaced, were still factory parts, and yes, I did find some that even though I was greasing them, they weren't actually taking the grease as I thought, so failure was my fault.
I just got home, too tired to try the new suggestions right now, so when I do, I'll update. Thanks for the input.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Oct 19, 2015, 10:33 PM

Post #7 of 15 (794 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

I hear you about being tired now middle of the night and wide awake is usual.


Let's put this together: It leaked and you claim never low enough to buzz or lose assist so really, how would you know it was low? Pump has to be junk by now and quick look if not used still only $50 or less. Rebuilt only again that I know of. Keep the old one for a while + you need the pulley anyway.
Ramblings: Don't give cores back till replacements work out on much of anything. If recent enough go get your gearbox back - something is wrong with the whole scene and probably a bad part now the pump + not sure gearbox has liked all this.


Have to use the crystal ball but don't think the gearbox was the leak but rather the pressure hose alone. Not there, can't be sure but is a weak link.
It's a truck and used as a truck - understood. It's old now, so what? Good trucks especially have parts for ages or did to never give up. What bugs me more now than ever is rebuilt parts. You are getting what was junk before redone by who knows even with a name on a box what was done more than cleaning it up. High failure rates and real new probably not available easily or at all?
Understand the harder use of off road - parts plain break depending on what jams you get in.
*************************************
Grease and fittings: It matters totally. Mud and or wet off roading I suggest you grease it every run depending not at oil changes only. Use MARINE grade grease or synthetic. Take a headache pill as it's costly. Know that grease gun (most likely hand pumped like I do and suggest) you can feel grease is working out of gun into fitting. Only first 2-3 pumps do a thing the rest is wasted. The fittings fail if not dealt with the part will. IDK - think you can only buy a full assortment now blister packed. They wear and the tip on guns wear too.


The parts: New isn't always better or good to do just because you are there in many cases this being one. The disappointment is the new replacements can be real junk - buyer beware.


Back - really think the pump is waste now and not sure how practical it is to try to test it out nor really thrilled about rebuilt ones either but do get one with tank installed. I almost want to suggest plain getting another gearbox suspecting debris has messed with it if it ever was any good? Parts house can't know because the rebuilder didn't know either! YOU are the test track for this stuff! When enough stuff comes back then these jokers pay attention,


T


lesgohuntn
User

Oct 25, 2015, 5:43 PM

Post #8 of 15 (761 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

Won't make that mistake again about carrying back the core before trying new (remanufactured) part out. Just wasn't thinking! Wasn't just pressure line... I saw fluid spraying from end cap seal. (lines could have been leaking also, though.)
Installed reman. PS pump (new was $279, had to go with $45 reman.), have assist now, but belt is squealing. I found leak in oil cooler lines also. I suspected oil blowing on belt from fan caused slippage on pulleys (pulley had oil splashed on it on after installing reman. pump, and bleeding, but wasn't PS fluid) ... replaced lines, stopped leak, ran for some time, tried belt dressing.... made worse. Belt had just been replaced before electrical problems, but sat on truck for several months with out engine being run (may have stretched?) Sounds like belt tensioner but not sure. Didn't squeal before new pump installed. Do you think due to more pressure on new pump may be causing belt to slip? The tensioner has an arrow to show the range of play in belt, and it's close to being fully extended, so belt will probably need replacing soon anyway. Would you replace belt first?
I'm getting out of heart, but can't afford to buy new truck, used.... may just be buying someone else's headache! Can't afford used either at the prices I've seen lately. I know my truck well, and know what it's capable of, I just let it set too long, and everything is falling apart all at once, so now it's costing me! HELP PLEASE!


Discretesignals
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Discretesignals profile image

Oct 25, 2015, 6:02 PM

Post #9 of 15 (757 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

Belt dressing doesn't work on serpentine belts. The dressing is sticky and will attract dirt and gunk that will get caught up in the grooves and make the belt slippage even worse. I'm surprised they even sell that crap still.

First, you need to find out what is getting on the belt and fix that first. Second, clean all the pulleys, so they are free of rubber and dressing. Third, make sure your pressed on power steering pump pulley is lined up correctly. They make a laser tool that helps you line up the pulleys, so the belt is tracking correctly. Last, replace the belt and tensioner. See how that goes.





Since we volunteer our time and knowledge, we ask for you to please follow up when a problem is resolved.

(This post was edited by Discretesignals on Oct 25, 2015, 6:08 PM)


lesgohuntn
User

Oct 25, 2015, 8:22 PM

Post #10 of 15 (744 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

OK Did not know not to use on serpentine belts. I'll try your advise and post results. Thank you.


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Oct 25, 2015, 9:19 PM

Post #11 of 15 (744 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

As DS said - NO BELT DRESSING - a last try get home product only IMO. If belt has PS fluid all over it for any time newer or not get new and the tensioner which should show where in the range you are for stretch/wear, where it will slip. PS pumps works real hard and can make new everything squeal a belt if at it's limits. Go quality on belt as best you can.
Understand the frustration of cost and problems all coming at once. Only YOU can decide when to fish or cut bait on a vehicle OR give up on one.


Reman parts: From experience and knowing some rebuilders. Way too many failures IMO despite the clever claims all is tested out as perfect which is total bull. Tell me how you test out assorted items short of installing each one and seeing work properly? A pain in the butt for most folks to keep the core till the fix proves itself. I'm supposed to be retired from this crap but not totally yet and more and more disgusted with replacement parts new or rebuilt all the time,


T



lesgohuntn
User

Oct 26, 2015, 4:51 AM

Post #12 of 15 (666 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

OK Thanks. I did consider new PS pump, but as you said about new replacement parts as well, I was afraid to take chance on paying that much ($279) for a after market part that may not work or even fit right. At least reman. part I could afford. Just hope it was the right choice.
The belt dressing is in the garbage!


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Oct 26, 2015, 6:38 AM

Post #13 of 15 (662 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

What I'd like to see avoided is playing what I call ping pong with two item dependent on each other and can harm each other such that a real problem with one can harm the other and back to square one again and again! Each need PS fluid if only for lubing themselves - right? I've said that about all were caught so early none so far got more involved than one or the other, whole used gearbox or used pumps too from know running vehicles was my choice for some time and faster for the fix - same day - done.
Now long done with any biz but still have a fleet of my own vehicles and tend to them, none near new now so still at it and now used has become a problem locally as space for salvaged vehicles is too expensive so they just take off what is popular, inventory it and the whole rest if much over 10 years is worth more in squished metal than taking up space which leaves the new and rebuilt parts market more and more for me, not all.
OK: Losing track but think you've said you have assist now but noisy belt. It would be wrecked with an oil and PS fluid is an oil. Dressings just want to sell a product and claim bull it doesn't do which is long term help anything as said it might help get you home if an alternator couldn't keep up with a loose belt and no other way to try something just to get to where you can really fix it.
For now, right quality belt and look at tensioner. They should be marked how far they can travel OR put the tool on it to release tension and see if you can tighten with the tool or it's at the end now to tell. Just did that on a 5.7, 1997, my own!
Easy and done but squealed only after start up at alternator on that. NBD as things go.
Check on that. I can't see quite how new PS pump alone now working would cause a slippage unless belt and or tensioner were the now immediate issue,


T



lesgohuntn
User

Oct 26, 2015, 3:31 PM

Post #14 of 15 (655 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

Thank you all for your advise and help. I realized on another inspection of my work pressing on the pulley, it liked about 1/8 inch being flush with end of shaft. I flushed it up with press tool, replaced belt, as it was stretched, and went ahead with tensioner as well, because I couldn't remember the last time I'd replaced (been a long time, no doubt). I cleaned pulleys of the sticky mess I made with the belt dressing. Have assist, no belt noise. Pump makes small whining noise, noticeable, but not bad. I think things are going to be alright, now (I hope) You guys rock...... thanks again.


(This post was edited by lesgohuntn on Oct 26, 2015, 3:38 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
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Oct 26, 2015, 10:30 PM

Post #15 of 15 (641 views)
  post locked   Re: 93 Chevy Z71 power steer won't bleed out air  

Sounds like you are in good shape for now. Pulley alignment a must and tensioners no waste IMO as I swear spring tension loses it over time anyway?
For remaining noise now? Try sucking out PS fluid with something clean just at pump and refresh with more new, quality proper fluid may help. No hydraulics - pumps, trans or other like heat or old fluid or abused fluid not really listed in a maintenance thing but I do now and then on MUCH older stuff and seems to help. Good luck that it stays OK for a good long time now.


Should close out thread to keep spammers out and YOU can ask to reopen it by any moderator. Refer to thread if so wanted,


T







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