Just two days after posting our article on Preventing Winter Power Steering Fluid Problems, we were strolling through a hotel parking lot and observed what appears to be the aftermath of a blown power steering line.
This mess certainly looks to be from a sudden and catastrophic evacuation of the power steering fluid from a car or truck. As we mentioned in the article, during spells of very cold weather, power steering fluid can congeal in the fluid cooler or within the system’s hoses. When the vehicle is started after a long, cold night, the power steering pump tries to circulate the fluid. As the system is blocked by frozen fluid, pressure builds until a power steering hose bursts. The power steering fluid then sprays all over the ground until the system is emptied. The red appearance of the fluid would suggest that this vehicle used automatic transmission fluid (ATF) in its power steering system (this is not uncommon).
Using a synthetic power steering fluid (as is suggested in our article) could have saved this person a lot of inconvenience and prevented an expensive repair bill. Changing your power steering system over to a synthetic fluid is easy, inexpensive and requires no special tools or skills. Again see our article at the link above for more information.