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Audi A6 The mid-sized Audi A6 model offers more room to the driver and passengers over the A4 line.
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  #1  
Old 01-17-2009, 09:29 PM
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Default Power Steering Groan - affected by outside temp?

I've done some searching and haven't found anything exactly like my problem. I have a situation where my power steering groans when I turn the wheel, like it's low on fluid. It's not low, and it's not leaking anywhere. This first started in December 2007, I took the car into an Audi shop where they bled the system and the problem went away. Fast forward to December 2008 and the problem returned, a year to the day. I checked the fluid and it was actually over the full line a little. I took the car back to the same shop and asked them to bleed the system again, hoping that it would cure the problem for another year. This time the solution lasted only about a week. We continued to drive the car because we had snow and it's about all we have to get around in such conditions, once the snow had melted, I parked it for about a week, over which time the weather warmed considerably (from about 20-35 prior to 45-55 now). What I immediately noticed was that in the warmer weather the groaning was almost completely gone. Over the next few days I've paid very close attention to the weather temperature and the amount of noise coming from my power steering. What I've concluded is that in temperatures above 50 it's almost completely non-existent. Between say 40-49 it lets you know there is a problem, and below 40 it groans like a dying animal.

All said, what could be causing this problem? When it's cold outside, even driving long distances doesn't make the problem go away. I've noticed that my fluid is pretty dark, not the nice yellow color the new stuff is. Do I just need a flush?
  #2  
Old 01-18-2009, 06:54 AM
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Year? Engine? Mileage?
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  #3  
Old 01-27-2009, 12:36 AM
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2002, A6, 102k miles.
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Old 01-27-2009, 03:14 PM
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Interesting. I have a 2000 A4 and I think I have the same problem going on with my power steering. Mine makes a noise when I turn the wheel either way, but mostly to the right and in reverse. The noise can be described as the noise you'd hear when the pads on a car's brakes are worn. Or at least that's what I hear.

Could it just be the fluid? I did see a yellowish leak under the car earlier. I also noticed the noise only since I've been driving in the colder temperatures. I'm getting it looked at this Friday, but my question is: Is it okay to drive the car? It sounds really bad and I'm afraid to drive the damn thing.
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Old 01-27-2009, 04:14 PM
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This probably won't help, but I did notice a groaning noise last winter when my car was outside in -6o weather all night and I started it the next morning. It went away after a short while. I have not heard it since, and the car has been out side at temperatures below 10o and driven at -4o this winter. I think the PS fluid thickens and it's a little tougher to pump.

When I'm forced to do hard work in the cold, I groan, too.
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  #6  
Old 01-27-2009, 04:20 PM
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Either way, I think the PS fluid is leaking and I will have that fixed. If cold temps continue to make it groan than so be it. I'll have to wait til Spring if that's the case.
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  #7  
Old 01-28-2009, 06:10 PM
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Sounds like the Power steering pump.

Temp will affect the amount of noise you hear. Tempature has a big impact on the oil/fluid viscosity.
  #8  
Old 02-11-2009, 06:38 PM
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I have an 03 A6 84,000 miles and it groaned terribly for during the very cold days, now that its gotten a little warmer my car is quiet as a mouse. So I think it is jsut the weather.
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Old 03-06-2009, 10:52 AM
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Mine does the same but only when it's hotter than 90 degrees out. Is my power steering pump?
  #10  
Old 03-06-2009, 11:20 AM
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The power steering fluid is designed to have little temperature dependance.
It is bad to have either low or high level .
Aging of plastic parts inside the pump and mainly the steering unit are most likely to blame.
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Old 03-06-2009, 01:54 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by nemohm View Post
The power steering fluid is designed to have little temperature dependance.
It is bad to have either low or high level .
Aging of plastic parts inside the pump and mainly the steering unit are most likely to blame.
The PS fluid level is fine. I flushed the system several months ago but I noticed the fluid would bubble in the reservoir when the engine was on. Since it got colder starting around September the groaning, moaning sounds went away and I fully expect the noise to come back here within the next couple of months or so.

I thought I read someplace that our power steering racks are a problem on these cars. Could this be causing my symptoms?
  #12  
Old 06-02-2009, 10:48 AM
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Update:

Now that it's gotten considerably warmer outside the noise has begun to creep back. It's gotten above 90 degrees two days of last week and it began sounding like the dying animal the OP mentioned in his thread.

I checked the fluid and it's fine. What can be causing this? Should I replace my steering rack? I'd hate to spend $400 on a new steering rack plus labor only to have the noise remain.

Anybody????
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Old 06-02-2009, 12:08 PM
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Replace your clamps first with non-perforated worm drive clamps. Audi has them or search them on line. You could be sucking in air. especialy from the one on top of the pump. Mine did that after I changed the belt and moved it around. For now tighten the single use clamp some more.
After I changed my fluid to the G400 fluid from Audi and changed the clamps mine went away and did not come back.
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  #14  
Old 06-02-2009, 01:52 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jackmup View Post
Replace your clamps first with non-perforated worm drive clamps. Audi has them or search them on line. You could be sucking in air. especialy from the one on top of the pump. Mine did that after I changed the belt and moved it around. For now tighten the single use clamp some more.
After I changed my fluid to the G400 fluid from Audi and changed the clamps mine went away and did not come back.
I did replace my clamps with worm drive ones. But if that were the case, wouldn't I have the noise all the time regardless of outside temps?
  #15  
Old 07-24-2010, 07:11 PM
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Having same problem on my 2000 A8... 80,000 miles. Horrible groaning sound when parking or making slow speed turns. No noise at all while driving. Given the commonality of this problem, I am surprised that there does not seem to be a "stock" answer that takes care of it! Help?

Thank you!
  #16  
Old 07-24-2010, 07:26 PM
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I had the noise for months getting slowly worse, then one day close to home, the accessory belt went loose, a belt tensioner had come apart. I replaced the tensioner and belt and the noise went away. Car had ~120,000 miles.
  #17  
Old 07-25-2010, 05:07 AM
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It is a bad power steering pump. Need to replace it. Had the same thing. Cold weather, pump very noisy, warm good. I replaced the pump and things look good. No biggie.
  #18  
Old 07-25-2010, 08:55 AM
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It was mentioned already but, I have found a common cause is the hose at the pump becomes stiff over time and even with new clamps will not seal air tight. It does get worse with cold temps, can also happen at any temp though. You won't have any fluid leakage but air will get sucked into the system (since it's the suction side hose leaking) and aerate the fluid, causing the groan similar to a what low fluid will do. Eventually, if left alone it will damage the pump. The air bubbles actually "explode" (simplest way to describe it) when the fluid is pressurized and erodes the pump vanes and housing bore.
  #19  
Old 11-11-2010, 06:48 PM
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so the mercury has crept lower here, north of the 49th and my Steering is super noisy on start up and for the first 20min of driving... I suspect the fluid, thought being that once it has warmed up either by use or by conduction under the hood, the fluid is more viscous

Anyone know if, like brake fluid, PS fluid can slowing pull moisture in from the air?

I think this is a viscosity problem with the temp dipping and making the fluid more like molasses...

I'm going to try some 100% synthetic PS fluid as a fix.

What's this G400 Fluid I saw mentioned? Just overpriced generic power steering fluid with an Audi logo on it or is it something substantially different?
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  #20  
Old 11-12-2010, 03:50 AM
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Hi, don't even bother to replace just the fluid. The PS pump is busted and needs to be replaced. It doesn't cost that much. All pumps are refurbished (rebuilt) anyway. Even dealer sells them rebuilt and sells as new. I bought one as OAM and have no issues. Works great. Hope that helps.

Last edited by A6Driver10; 11-12-2010 at 03:55 AM.
Old 11-12-2010, 03:50 AM
 
 
 
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18t, 2002, a4, a6, a8, audi, bleed, fluid, flush, groan, leak, okc, power, steering, yellow


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