These are the causes why power steering fluid is foaming

Why is the power steering fluid foaming? One of the most common causes of power steering foaming in any vehicle is usually related to air getting into the power steering system.

Unfortunately, these problems can be traced to at least one of these 6 top common reasons.

  • Problems that exist in the pipework (i.e.between the pump and the reservoir)
  • Leak in the power steering suction
  • Small punctures in the pressure line
  • The power steering fluid reservoir is cracked
  • Low-pressure connection on the pump
  • The steering wheel pump is old and cracked

Typically, whenever the power steering system in a vehicle is compromised by an opening that allows air to seep in, you may begin to see the power steering fluid foaming and overflowing in the power steering reservoir.

As a result, you may also see other signs that you need to pay close attention to.

Signs and Symptoms of Power Steering Fluid Foaming Problems

As mentioned above, there are other signs and symptoms that you may encounter with your vehicle due to foamy steering fluid issues.

Based on the situation, you may hear odd grinding and growling noises, especially when turning the steering wheel at low speeds. These signs and symptoms will usually vary based on the severity and the extent of any damage that has been caused.

Here are 5 of the most common signs and symptoms that you may encounter while driving under these conditions.

  • At low maneuvers, when you begin to turn, you may notice growling or grunt noise radiating from under your hood.
  • You may see bubbles inside the power steering fluid
  • Your steering system may begin to leak out your steering fluid
  • You may also find that it gets much harder to steer the wheel of your car
  • When the air gets trapped in today’s power steering system, it is difficult to get out

How do you get rid of foamy power steering fluid?

Now that you know what to look for, you need to know what can be done to get rid of your foamy power steering fluid problems. Thankfully, numerous fixes can be used to get rid of this bad steering fluid.

In some cases, you may need a good mechanic to assist you with the right solution, especially before the problem gets worse and more damage occurs. First off, the mechanic will need to identify the actual source of the that you are dealing with.

Inspect the Pipework

When a mechanic is looking for the source of this type of problem, they usually inspect the power steering system for the leaking points that is easy to see.

  • Signs of swelling in the hoses and fittings
  • Wet spots and damage in the lines and fittings
  • Cracks and leaks in the reservoir
  • Wet areas behind the steering pump pulley
  • Cracks and leaks in the steering pump
  • Loose hoses

If the source of the problem is a loose or cracked hose, the mechanic will normally take care of the easier issues first. It is also important to note that this type of problem is routinely found between the pump and the reservoir.

Bleed out Air of the Power Steering System

If the source of the problem can easily be seen, the mechanic will make the necessary repairs (i.e replace old hoses). However, before these problems can be fully corrected, the foam in the power steering fluid will need to be removed.

This process is normally called bleeding out the power steering pump. And, as this process is being performed, the new power steering fluid will also be poured in.

How much does it cost to fix a foamy power steering fluid?

The costs for repairing this issue can vary a lot, but the average cost of repairs for replacing an old power steering hose can range from $400 to $900. The exact prices will vary based on several different factors, including

  • Cost of parts and labor
  • Geographical location
  • Make, model, and year of the vehicle
  • Any additional damage to the mechanics that has occurred


So, why is the power steering fluid in my car foamy? The answer to this question may vary based on the source of the problem that is occurring.

However, the primary cause of this problem is due to air seeping into the car’s power steering system. And, once this occurs, you may encounter a wide range of signs and symptoms, including difficulty in steering your car and odd grinding and growling noises that indicate there are problems.

In some cases, the fix for this type of problem can be as easy as replacing an old worn pump or tightening a loose hose. In either case, your car must be inspected properly to find the source of the issue before any additional damage can be done.

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