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Old 02-07-2020, 12:37 PM   #1
TLM
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Power Steering Pulley Fail

Something I didn't think about or expected bit me pretty good this week. Now that I've researched the problem, it appears to be more common than I thought.

Check your power steering and water pump pulleys! The plastic fatigues and cracks. Our cars are getting up there in age and the heat cycles are doing no favors to the bits under the hood.

It looks like the pulley had stress cracks and finally cracked and cut the serpentine belt causing an immediate catastrophic turn off the motor ASAP or else risk engine melt.

Fortunately, no further damage other than a mess belt threads under the hood. As you might have guessed, new pulleys, tensioners, and belts are on order. I see aluminum pulleys, but I went with a Febi plastic replacement since well, it lasted 19 years and that's probably good enough. FCP Euro to the rescue.

Next time you're under the hood, take a very close look at the power steering and water pump pulleys.

Edit: added a pic of the big bad wolf

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Last edited by TLM; 02-10-2020 at 12:47 PM.
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Old 02-07-2020, 01:26 PM   #2
VpointVick
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I ended up with a weird noise that took me forever to track down. The P/S pump pulley bolts had loosened, one coming completely off and the other two backed way out, so that the pulley was wobbling all over. The holes and the area of the face surrounding the holes were badly chewed up so new pulley it was.

I went with the URO aluminum one because while I don't have much faith in many URO brand parts how badly could they screw up a chunk of aluminum?
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Old 02-07-2020, 03:40 PM   #3
jagmandan
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I changed to the ECS aluminum pulleys before a cross country road trip. Slept easier ever since.
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Old 02-07-2020, 05:10 PM   #4
Geo31
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I bought an aluminum pulley from either ECS (probably) or FCP (maybe) and it is a POS. I refused to put it on my car. It was a crudely cast pulley. If they are now selling machined aluminum pulleys I may change my mind.
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Old 02-07-2020, 06:53 PM   #5
jagmandan
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They are indeed machined... check them out.
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Old 02-08-2020, 01:28 PM   #6
Geo31
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Ah, I see what I did. I bought a stupid URO aluminum pulley, thinking "how badly could they screw that up?" Pretty badly.
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