of course. but you're better off giving them the money and having them
/not/ change it since that way there will be no contamination and no
seal problems. honda power steering systems are good for hundreds of
thousands of miles unless monkeyed with.
YES. YES. Do it. Really. Make sure they use genuine Honda PS fluid. This is
$45 is a cheap price to make sure your system will remain good and
leak-free for many years hence. Ever priced a new pump? A new rack? They're
somewhat more than $45, I can assure you.
Original owner of a 91 Civic here. Before 2004, the most I
had done with its PS system is add a little genuine Honda
fluid. I never had any problems. I worked on engine drive
parts that required the PS pump's removal then and ended up
adding a lot more fluid.
I personally do not care if it is "only $45." The Honda
newsgroups just do not see reports of the PS system failing
unless some yo-yo adds non-Honda PS fluid to it.
If you must do this for peace of mind, I would think you
could wait at least a few years more.
i respectfully disagree for the reasons previously cited. the power
steering system has very little mechanical load, zero chemical load, and
is spectacularly reliable. the only time it has a problem is if the
fluid becomes contaminated, and frankly, even if it's a dealer, the only
way it /can/ become contaminated is if the junior oil change clown
starts messing with it. dirty fingers, dirty rags, dirty funnels, dirty
oil containers - no thanks.
Tegger's long term result speaks for itself.
Power steering fluid, if left unchanged, will darken. It's picking up
dirt from somewhere.
Maintenance, however, is pretty simple. Most shops simply use a device
to suck fluid out of the reservoir and replace it with fresh fluid.
They do nothing more than that. You can do the same (use a turkey
baster) just be sure to use OEM power steering fluid. Total cost to
you, less than $10. Expect a surprise next Thanksgiving. :-)
Not allowing the reservoir to ever get empty would prevent "chocolate
milk" and save most of the check-and-topup afterwards, but there's no
harm to the system in letting it run dry while you change the fluid.
I have replaced my fluid several times according to the factory manual's
procedure, which does not warn against air in the system.
1) Place front wheels on a section of newspaper (I can't get both wheels
off the ground at the same time. The newspaper reduces friction.)
2) Drain the reservoir with turkey baster
3) disconnect the return hose and place the free end into a large
4) start car
turn steering wheel lock to lock two or three times, then re-center
shut car off
5) reconnect return hose
6) fill reservoir
7) restart car
8) add fluid as necessary
9) add fluid over the next day or so as air is ejected from the system.
All the fluid gets ejected within the first or second lock-to-lock
during the drain.
The new fluid will be very chocolate-milky at first because of all the
air in it, but that's no problem. The air gets ejected all by itself so
long as you keep the reservoir topped up. Eventually the level will
stabilize and the fluid will be transparent again. That takes maybe a
I think I would caution here to try very hard no to
overfill. As I know you know from previous posts (IIRC), the
reservoir's contents slosh around a lot when the pump is
running. Overfilling even by a little sloshes some of the
stuff out. If air is in the system, it will be more likely
to be overfilled, at least temporarily, and the chances of
sloshing loss are higher.
The FS manual has a strong caution about overfilling as
Seems to me I did hear noise at least once briefly when I'd
"opened" the PS system and was refilling and purging. Just
for the anecdotal, DIYer record.
I should check this next time I run the engine.
Fluid ejection into the catch container when draining is not that vigorous,
but it may appear differently when discharging into a more confined space.
I've never once had a problem with overfilling. The problem I run into is
UNDERfilling, which results when the air exits the fluid, causing its
volume to drop. This is why there is need to check and top up as necessary
after a fluid change done the shop manual's way.
I add fluid to the reservoir up to the full mark, wait for it to drop, then
add more until it doesn't drop any more. Simple.
Mine just says "CAUTION: Do not overfill the reservoir beyond the full
As a contrast, the warning against the wrong fluid reads: "CAUTION: Use
only GENUINE HONDA Power Steering Fluid...Using other fluids...will damage
Now THAT I"d call a "strong" caution.
I just checked for fluid movement today.
When cold at idle, there was no movement of the fluid at all with the engine
When hot, at idle or when revved, there was the barest trace of surface
rippling. It's the sort of rippling you get on the surface of a cup of coffee
when somebody walks past the table it's sitting on.
Certainly there is no trace of sloshing or other vigorous fluid action.
My fluid level is right up to the upper mark on the side of the reservoir.
I'm not going to try overfilling the reservoir, of course, but I'm left
wondering how high you'd have to overfill it before you ended up with
Hey Tegger, no video necessary :-). I certainly believe you
observed no sloshing. Something's different--maybe something
with the cars--in our experiences, that's all. I thought I
saw other reports here over the years reporting on the
sloshing. But it's not important enough to me to google on.
I'm going to make a video on the weekend anyway. Or sooner.
I will rev the engine to about 5,000rpm as I show the action of the fluid
in the reservoir. This will get posted to the Misc directory on my site.
Plus -- I will temporarily overfill the reservoir to see what the action
is. I figure a few seconds of overfill can't possibly harm anything except
maybe my shirt. Be there or be square!
no they don't. your argument is like saying that because elephants hate
cheese, the cheese in my refrigerator is responsible for the fact that
my home has never been invaded by them. in reality of course, the fact
that there are no elephants in marin county, ca., is responsible - the
cheese is a red herring.
seal rubber. any hydraulic system does that. you're not going to
change the steering rack because of that are you?
what percentage of the fluid do you think you manage to change like this?
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