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Power Steering Cooling Loop Replacement
 
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Pelican Technical Article:

Power Steering Cooling Loop Replacement

Nick Czerula

Time:

2 hours2 hrs

Tab:

$100

Talent:

***

Tools:

13mm socket, diagonal pliers, hose crimp pliers

Applicable Models:

BMW Z4 Coupe/Conv (2006)

Parts Required:

Power steering fluid, power steering fluid reservoir, power steering hoses, hose clamps, power steering cooling loop

Hot Tip:

Work with a cool engine

Performance Gain:

Quiet power steering pump

Complementary Modification:

Power steering hoses

The steering system used in BMW Z4's is known as power-assisted rack-and-pinion steering. Rotating the steering wheel spins a small pinion gear, thus sliding a toothed rack left or right. The ends of the rack attach to tie-rods, which steer the front wheels. A hydraulic pump, powered by the engine accessory belt, forces steering fluid into hoses that leads to pistons in the steering rack. A hydraulic valve in the steering rack varies the hydraulic fluid pressure in the two cylinders, dependent on how fast or forcefully the pinion gear is rotated. This multiplies the driver's force in steering the wheels.

The power steering pump cooling loop helps to keep the fluid cool during operation. The loop in mounted in front of the A/C condenser and is susceptible to damage and corrosion. If you have what looks like a power steering fluid leak at the front of your vehicle, inspect the cooling loop first.

In this article, I'll go over the steps involved with replacing the power steering cooling loop and bleeding the power steering pump.

To avoid marring the paint and trim, work with a plastic prying tool or wrap a screwdriver tip with masking tape before prying out body or interior items.

Keep in mind that when your car was serviced before, parts may have been replaced with different size fasteners used in the replacement. The sizes of the nuts and bolts we give may be different from what you have, so be prepared with different size sockets and wrenches.

Protect your eyes, hands and body from fluids, dust and debris while working on your vehicle. If you're working with the electrical system, disconnect the battery before beginning. Always catch fluids in appropriate containers and properly dispose of any fluid waste. Recycle parts, packaging and fluids when possible. Do not work on your vehicle if you feel the task is beyond your ability.

Vehicle models change and evolve, as they grow older, so the vehicle shown in our illustrations may vary slightly from yours. If something seems different, let us know and share your info to help other users. Do you have questions or want to add to the article? Leave a comment below. When leaving a comment, please leave your vehicle information.

The first step is to suction the fluid out of the reservoir. You can use a fluid pump or a turkey baster.

Remove the cooling fan and radiator. See the tech articles for each procedure.

The power steering pump cooling loop helps to keep the fluid cool during operation.
Figure 1

The power steering pump cooling loop helps to keep the fluid cool during operation. The loop in mounted in front of the A/C condenser (green arrow) and is susceptible to damage and corrosion. If you have what looks like a power steering fluid leak at the front of your vehicle, inspect the cooling loop first.

Working at top of radiator support, remove eight Phillips head screws (red arrows and the two T25 Torx fasteners (green arrows).
Figure 2

Working at top of radiator support, remove eight Phillips head screws (red arrows and the two T25 Torx fasteners (green arrows).

This photo shows a close up of one of the eight Phillips head screws (green arrows) with the plastic anchor (inset) and theT25 Torx fastener (red arrows).
Figure 3

This photo shows a close up of one of the eight Phillips head screws (green arrows) with the plastic anchor (inset) and theT25 Torx fastener (red arrows).

Lift the radiator support trim in the direction of the red arrow to remove it.
Figure 4

Lift the radiator support trim in the direction of the red arrow to remove it.

The cooling loop is now uncovered (red arrow).
Figure 5

The cooling loop is now uncovered (red arrow). It is routed from the left side and mounted with plastic brackets (green arrows).

The power steering cooler hoses shown (viewed from above) are the first part to be detached (red arrows).
Figure 6

The power steering cooler hoses shown (viewed from above) are the first part to be detached (red arrows). Press the gray plastic collar (green arrow) and hold it while you pull the hose off.

You can access the hoses (red arrow) from the engine compartment.
Figure 7

You can access the hoses (red arrow) from the engine compartment. Start by removing the intake air housing. See our tech article on intake air housing and ducts removing. Press the gray collar toward the hose (green arrow) and hold it while pulling the hose straight off the cooler line. Remove the hose from the mounting brackets, and install the new hose.

Working at the top of the A/C condenser on the left side, remove the plastic rivet (red arrow).
Figure 8

Working at the top of the A/C condenser on the left side, remove the plastic rivet (red arrow). Use a trim panel tool (inset) to lever out the center pin. Then remove the plastic anchor.

Pull the cooling loop away from the condenser and unclip the retaining tab (red arrow).
Figure 9

Pull the cooling loop away from the condenser and unclip the retaining tab (red arrow).

Lift the cooling loop up (red arrow) to remove it from the right side plastic bracket (green arrow).
Figure 10

Lift the cooling loop up (red arrow) to remove it from the right side plastic bracket (green arrow).

Push the condenser toward the engine.
Figure 11

Push the condenser toward the engine. Expose the left side of the cooling loop, where it mounts to the bracket. Unclip the retainer (green arrow), and pull the cooling loop (red arrow) out of the plastic mount. You may have to wiggle it a bit to get it to free up.

This photo shows the lines (red arrow) being pulled out of the plastic bracket (green arrow).
Figure 12

This photo shows the lines (red arrow) being pulled out of the plastic bracket (green arrow).

Once detached, lift the cooling loop up (green arrow) to remove it from the condenser and support.
Figure 13

Once detached, lift the cooling loop up (green arrow) to remove it from the condenser and support.

This photo shows the loop-mounting bracket.
Figure 14

This photo shows the loop-mounting bracket. The green arrow points to the plastic retainer for the loop. If damaged, replace the entire bracket.

When installing, be sure that the condenser tab (green arrow) is correctly seated in the plastic holder (red arrow).
Figure 15

When installing, be sure that the condenser tab (green arrow) is correctly seated in the plastic holder (red arrow). The photo shows the condenser viewed from above. Reverse the steps to reassemble the vehicle. Before starting the engine, fill the power steering reservoir with clean fluid to the MAX level on the dipstick. Start the engine and turn the steering wheel fully left and right three times. Turn the engine off. Check the fluid level. Add fluid until it reaches MAX on the dipstick. When full, the fluid should be clear and foam free. Foam or bubbles is a sign of air in the system.

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Page last updated: Fri 12/9/2016 02:58:30 AM