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Old 01-23-2011, 09:42 AM   #1
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1978 28' Argosy 28
Post Falls , Idaho
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Power Steering Not Working - 310 Motorhome

The power steering is not working on my 1983 310 motorhome. It's extreemly difficult to turn the steering wheel left or right. I have inspected the power steering pump drive belt, hoses etc. and everything looks ok with no leaks. There is a little wobble in the power steering pump pully. I have jacked up the front to get the tires off of the ground and the steering works fine. Also tried the bleeding proceedure several times. I am guessing the problem is the power steering pump but I'm not sure how to get to it. I don't see any good access from outside. I'm thinking the best way is to remove the engine cover inside the motorhome and remove the AC compressor. This might give me enough room to get to the pump below. Has anyone replaced the ps pump before ? I very much appreciate any help.
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Old 01-23-2011, 12:16 PM   #2
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Sounds like the pump has failed.

What about pulling the wheel and going at it from that angle?
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Old 01-23-2011, 12:26 PM   #3
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I agree with Garry. When I replaced the power steering pump in my old Dodge van, I had to do it from below. You really want to avoid opening the AC system.
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Old 01-23-2011, 02:35 PM   #4
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Pulling the wheel sounds like a good option. There is a small access opening through the inner fenderwell panel. The side of power steering pump can be seen through this opening. I'm not sure if the opening is large enough to get a hand through and see what I'm doing. If not maybe the panel can be removed somehow. I'll check it and see....Thank you.
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:58 AM   #5
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1989 34.5' Airstream 345
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If I remember correctly, the power steering and the disc brakes are connected. Are you having any braking problems? Our reservoir is located inside left of the driver's side front wheel, front of the axle with an access port designed for triple-jointed forearms...you can access this by parking, turning your wheel all the way left, setting the emergency brake, and extending the left front 'leveler'...a real b-kitty to get to to uncap, but a lion kitty to replace that cap...I had noticed a co-relation to difficult steering and braking...have you checked the fluid level? m
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:44 AM   #6
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If you have a Hydro-Boost (and you probably do) you do not have a vacuum assist brake system power assist for brakes is from the power steering pump.

You might want to review this, not a big deal but you will have to bleed the power steering.

Operation, Diagnosis and Repair of HYDRO-BOOST
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Old 01-24-2011, 11:03 AM   #7
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1978 28' Argosy 28
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The motorhome is a few miles away but I will get over there and check to see what kind of system it has ASAP. In the meantime does anyone out there know if a 1983 310 would have a brake booster or if they Have a Hydro-Boost system ? I checked the brake fluid recently but will do it again. I haven't owned this motorhome very long and have not driven it because of the steering problem. I know the brakes have pedal but do not know how well they work. Thanks to everyone for your replies.

Steve
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Old 01-24-2011, 12:03 PM   #8
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Hydro Boost

Quote:
Originally Posted by garry View Post
If you have a Hydro-Boost (and you probably do) you do not have a vacuum assist brake system power assist for brakes is from the power steering pump.
Quote:
Originally Posted by garry View Post

You might want to review this, not a big deal but you will have to bleed the power steering.

Operation, Diagnosis and Repair of HYDRO-BOOST
Garry:
Thanks for that excellent link.

Dave
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Old 01-24-2011, 02:46 PM   #9
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I may have missed it but is this coach a diesel or gas powered unit? I think both probably use the hydro-boost but they may use different pumps. My diesel uses a JIDOSHA KIKIKK pump that is mounted on the lower right front of the engine and gear driven. I would guess the gas 454 probably uses a belt driven GM type pump.

Just wondering, Dan
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Old 01-24-2011, 05:40 PM   #10
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1978 28' Argosy 28
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Dan, This is a gas powered motorhome. The power steering pump is belt driven and is mounted on the lower left front of the engine. The only possible access that I see is through a small opening in the inner fenderwell panel that I believe is intended for adding brake fluid to the master cylinder. However It would be very difficult to see what you're doing with your hand and a wrench in there. This is why I'm wondering if it would be easier to remove the AC compressor and try to get to it from above. There has to be a way to access the pump for removal. Maybe the best way would be to pull the radiator. This would be alot of extra work but should make for easy access from the front.

Steve
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Old 01-24-2011, 06:22 PM   #11
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Must be the desert air, but I'm confused. My power steering canister is here, and easily checked. If I had a older coach, I'd have those hoses replaced before so much fluid is lost that the canister heats up, melts the wiring and the steering becomes much like my old '47 GMC ton and a half.
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Old 01-24-2011, 06:33 PM   #12
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bkahler posted this a while back, might help yor visualization...
http://www.airforums.com/forums/atta...9&d=1223077583

Swebster did it on the side of the road in this post...
http://www.airforums.com/forums/f159...les-19876.html

And from that thread here is the best bit, on page 2...
For those that have the misfortune of replacing this pump yourself here is the trick to saving yourself two hours of work. If you need the following steps, I'm so sorry to hear it, but it it helps you out of a jam, use it well and pass it along to the next generation so that they may benefit from it as well:
  1. Remove the lower fan shroud and driver's side front wheel for access.
  2. Sitting in the wheel well, loosely bolt up the back of the pump in the bracket, this is tricky as the back bolt (stud actually) sits in a slot in the bracket so it wants to slide down and out.
  3. Loosely tighten the bolt that is used to hold the pump at tension (passes through a curved slot in the pump mount and bolts into the block)
  4. Now, position the pump so you can see the threads for the front bracket mount through the hold in the bracket. This is best accomplished when lying under the motorhome, looking up through where the lower fan shroud would normally be located.
  5. Once you can see it lined up, finger-tighten the bolt into the block to keep the pump from sliding around.
  6. Lastly, with one hand inside of the frame rail and the other outside (no kidding) slide the bolt that hold the front of the pump up behind the pulley sideways, then turn it slowly placing the threaded tip into the hole in the bracket. At this point use your other hand to catch the head of the bolt and using a finger from each hand (seriously) begin turning the bolt while praying to the almighty bolt gods over and over "let it catch a thread, let it catch a thread". It's important to pass the bolt up behind the pulley sideway because it won't fit any other way. The pulley actually covers the threads in the pump so you have to use the space behind the pulley like the inside of a bowl, then maneuver the bolt down and into the hole.
  7. One you catch a thread, stop immeadiately and celebrate as this is the high point of the installation.
  8. Grab your 1/2" wrench and tighten the bolt the rest of the way.
  9. Go back and tighten the rear nut.
  10. Lastly, hook up the high pressure line and the two low pressure return lines, install the belts, tension belts (using a breaker bar in the slot provided by the GM engineers ), tighten the last bolt, add fluid and check everything about ten times before starting up the engine.
Really, it took my 2 hours to figure out just how to get the bolt up in there, let alone lining up the thread and starting the bolt. I now understand how people can spontaneously self combust.
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:02 PM   #13
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1982 28' Airstream 280
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Mike Leary View Post
Must be the desert air, but I'm confused. My power steering canister is here, and easily checked. If I had a older coach, I'd have those hoses replaced before so much fluid is lost that the canister heats up, melts the wiring and the steering becomes much like my old '47 GMC ton and a half.
Not to worry Mike, the 454 is an entirely different set up from what we have. Personally I don't think working on either one is that much fun.

Cheers, Dan
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Old 01-24-2011, 09:24 PM   #14
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If nothing else, I can at least add that the inner fender wall panel can be removed. May not make the ten steps keyair mentions a couple of posts ago any easier, but along with the wheel removed you'll be able to see a lot more of what your up against.
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