Karmakanix VW Audi Berkeley CA

Power Steering Service: Eventual Metal Flake

Power Steering Service DSC07479Repair 32x32It is not common knowledge that the power steering fluid should be changed with some regularity. Most cars never get the fluid changed, and those that live to high mileages tend to suffer leaky steering racks and pumps as a result. Modern mineral hydraulic fluid is synthetic, and is therefore longer lasting, but Karmakanix recommends long term fluid changes to save you from the long term expensive repairs. There is no set interval, since every driver and every car goes through a vastly different life. Lots of city driving involves lots of steering. Dusty roads get dirt in every fluid. Our technicians monitor your fluid level and quality, by looking at the fluid and smelling it. Old, nasty power steering fluid should be flushed completely. Expect power steering fluid changes every 60K in the worst cases, every 80K to 100K for most customers.

The Different Power Steering Fluids

power steering wheel (2)You should not just go a parts store to buy power steering fluid unless you are positive it is correct. If you pour in the incorrect fluid, the odds are good that you will cause rack and/or pump leakage. At Karmakanix, we use Pentosin synthetic hydraulic fluid. Early Audi models except the Fox and 4000 also use the power steering fluid for hydraulic assist brakes. Here is a short list of the different models and the proper fluid for each.

Car Repair Blue 8x8Vanagons – all models: Automatic transmission fluid or ATF, Dexron II rating, red color. These models have a filter in the reservoir that should be changed.

Car Repair Blue 8x8Rabbits Pickups – Built in USA only, has rectangular headlights: power steering fluid, yellowish color. Older German Rabbits with round headlights use Dexron III ATF.

Car Repair Blue 8x8Golf, Jetta, Cabriolet and Passat – From 5/89 and later: Mineral Hydraulic oil, Part number G 004 000, greenish color, fondly called Goo Four Thousand. Earlier Golfs and Jettas (MARK II) use Dexron III ATF.

Car Repair Blue 8x8All Audis except early Fox and 4000 models: Mineral Hydraulic oil, Part number G 004 000, greenish color. Some earlier models have a filter screen that should be cleaned or changed. Earlier Fox and 4000s use Dexron III ATF.

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