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Troubleshooting Common Steering Problems in Your Vehicle

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When your vehicle's steering is acting up, you don't want to put off getting this repaired. Many problems with the steering components can lead to a shutdown of the steering while the car is on the road, which is obviously dangerous for you and for other drivers. Note a few common problems you might face with controlling your car, so you know what to expect from your mechanic when you do bring your vehicle to the shop.

Leaking fluid

This gearbox is the connection between your car's steering wheel and steering column, and the tie rods that turn the wheels. This gearbox works with hydraulic power, so the power steering fluid in your car should never get low, as if it's being used up or burned off. If the fluid levels do get low, this is often caused by a broken gasket that seals the compartment holding the fluid, or a crack in the reservoir tank. This should be fixed as soon as possible, as lower fluid levels can allow the system to get overly warm so that the steering might then seize up.

Burning smell

If your car has any type of burning smell, you want to get this checked as quickly as possible, no matter its cause. However, if you notice the smell and that the steering of the vehicle seems very tight and difficult to control at the same time, this often means that the gearbox is failing. In turn, it isn't able to turn the tie rods when you turn the car's steering wheel, and excess friction is causing that burning smell. If the gearbox fails outright, the steering will also fail, so you should have this problem checked immediately.

Dragging or pulling during turns

If your car seems to resist turning, or you feel the car pulling into or out of the turn, the tyres may be balding and need replacement. However, if they're in good repair, the tie rods could be bent; these are what connect the tyres to the steering column. If these rods are bent, they won't move the tyres evenly and you'll then feel pull and drag.

In some cases, this might also be a problem with the car's differentials. These are gears that allow the inside wheels to spin more slowly than the outside wheels during a turn. If the diffs, as they're often called, are worn down, they won't offer as much control over the tyres so that they pull and drag as you turn; have them replaced and this should correct the problem. For more information, contact companies like Precision Automatic Transmissions.