Power Steering Fluid - Kia Forte Forum : Sedan / Koup / Forte5 Forums
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post #1 of 14 Old 06-17-2012, 04:41 PM Thread Starter
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Power Steering Fluid

I took my car in to the dealer for oil change & maintenance and they told me that I should or they recommend that I flush the power steering fluid.

In the manual there is no mention that it needs to be changed just inspected at 64 000km. I am not going to pay $120 for something I could do myself for $10-15. My question is, what the fluid should look like good or bad, and what is a normal frequency to change the fluid for a car like the koup.

I'm going in for 64 000km maintenance on friday and I am sure they are going to tell me I need to change it.


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post #2 of 14 Old 06-17-2012, 08:09 PM
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Don't need to change it unless it's been contaminated in some way. Also, do you have another Kia dealer in your area? If they are telling you that you should flush the power steering fluid for no reason then they are probably going to want to replace just about everyone on your vehicle.

Do me a favor... when they recommend it.. ask them why the people who made the engine don't recommend it.
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post #3 of 14 Old 06-17-2012, 09:30 PM
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If the manual says it needs to be inspected and they inspected it finding that it needs to be changed, then it needs to be changed. The manual doesn't say to inspect things just for the sake of looking at things, they do it to see if something needs to be replaced.

Now with that said, many shops and dealerships will say that you need to replace something when in fact you might not need to for a while. They are in the business of making money after all. If you can do it for $15 yourself, then maybe you should just do it.
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post #4 of 14 Old 06-18-2012, 02:38 PM Thread Starter
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I forgot to say, that it was told to me before they even had my car in the shop. It was just "recommended" based on my milage.

I figured if it was a problem then the mechanic would say something after or it would be in their inspection report.

Ill see what they say on friday.


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post #5 of 14 Old 06-18-2012, 05:14 PM
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I am 68 years old and have never flushed a power steering unit.
The only reason to check it is to see if it is low and needs to add a little bit to it.

A tell tale of when your power steering fluid is getting low is your car will develop a whining sound under the hood. Adding fluid usually stops the noise. It is better to keep it full and not get the noise.

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post #6 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 10:27 PM
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Lawlz, I'm a tech at a Kia dealer anddddd their is no maint for PS at all.

Top it off if it's low other than that, nothing more.
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post #7 of 14 Old 07-02-2012, 11:43 PM
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You can get test strips here to test brake fluid and power steering. I would ask them to perform one of those test and show you the strip.

This is kinda what we used to us in our shop.

http://www.fluidtesting.com/
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post #8 of 14 Old 07-03-2012, 12:21 AM
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ps fluid, like all fluids, does get contaminated. it starts looking more brown than normal.
This is, however, how dealerships make money.
I wouldn't recommend flushing it yourself as the flushing process involves two lines going into the reservoir, one sucking old fluid out and the other feeding in new fluid. the old fluid is sucked out until it's almost dry (car running) and the new fluid is then added. quickly.
I personally wouldn't do it myself at home with no flushing machine. it's not just a drain and fill.
That said, several previous kias have a campaign listed on alldata for a squeaky power steering system, (my car does this but it isn't too annoying right now, and the dealership denies that it is applicable to my car). Solution is to replace the res
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post #9 of 14 Old 07-05-2012, 10:26 AM
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Just DIY it.

Take 2 hours with a bud. He sits in the car and turns the wheel lock to lock.

You fill the res as you go. Just use a bunch of wire coat hangers to make brackets to hold a washer jug.

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post #10 of 14 Old 07-07-2012, 09:30 PM Thread Starter
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I took it in 2 weeks ago for 64000 km maintenance which was only an oil change etc... and there was no mention of power steering fluid needing to be flushed

There was a new guy at the counter and I guess he isn't big on useless upsells


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post #11 of 14 Old 07-14-2012, 01:43 AM
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Here's a YouTube video for doing PS flush on Honda which has very similar setup as Kia. The PSF 3 fluid means any Dexron 3 ATF.


However, as others have said, I wouldn't flush the PS unless you notice steering problem. The only "flush" I did with my old Hyundai/Kia car was to suck out the reservoir with turkey baster and fill with new Dexron 3 ATF

You can also drain from below by temporarily disconnecting power steering return hose located under the passenger front.
---
Update: just read the manual and Kia recommends PSF-4, which is an upgraded PSF-3 to better handle failures and pump noise associated with cold climate starts. PSF-4 is not supposed to be backward compatible with PSF-3. Some dealers will charge you over $20 per quart.

Staring my personal position again. I wouldn't flush the PS fluid unless you notice something. And if I really had to flush the PS fluid, I would use any good synthetic ATF to replace it, not pay over $20/quart at the dealer.

Last edited by sspak9; 07-15-2012 at 11:37 PM.
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post #12 of 14 Old 07-23-2012, 02:37 AM
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Wanted to share a cheapy way of doing PS "flush". This works for any car.

Get a turkey baster, and buy clear plastic tubing that will fit into the end of the turkey baster so you have longer/thinner reach into the PS fluid reservoir. For me, I bought Walmart turkey baster, 1/2 inch outer, 3/8 inch inner diameter tube and another 3/8 inch outer and 1/4 inch inner diameter tube to connect the large one to the turkey baster and the narrower one to the end of the large tube to gain better access to the reservoir.

Depending on the turkey baster, you may need to wire/tape tight the upper end where the rubber ball meets the plastic stem because PS fluid will loosen and make the turkey baster leak from that area. Furthermore, you will lose the ability to suck fluid if it starts to leak.

What you do is: with the car off, suck out as much old fluid as possible via the reservoir and then replenish with new fluid. Start the car, and turn the steering wheel end to end few times to force the fluid to circulate. Check fluid. If still dark, repeat until satisfied. (Wear vinyl/nitrile gloves and recycle the fluid)

Last edited by sspak9; 07-23-2012 at 02:41 AM.
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post #13 of 14 Old 11-21-2012, 01:26 PM
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I replaced the fluid in my 2010 SX with genuine PSF-4 this morning because the car came back from the dealer with redish fluid in the reservoir instead of green fluid it had before.

Buy PSF-4 fluid from Kia or Hyundai dealer. Retail is about $8.50 per bottle. Buy two.

Steps:
1. Better to have the front wheels raised to make it easier to turn the wheels later

2. It's better to remove the reservoir to make more room. Have lots of rags and small container ready.

See the picture below


3. Remove the two screws holding the reservoir.
4. Put some rags under the reservoir and unclasp and remove the tubing that you see in the picture. This is the line that pushes fluid back into the reservoir.

If you are game, remove the another clasp/tubing that sucks fluid out of the reservoir on the other side of the picture and completely remove the reservoir.

Remove the cap to drain all the fluid in the reservoir

5. Have a container ready and hold the tube that will push out the fluid into the container.

6. Have a helper start the engine and turn the wheel end to end. This will push out the fluid. It's easier to turn the wheel with the front wheels raised and on jack stands.

7. Repeat the turning until you don't see much fluid coming out. Stop the engine.

8. Clean out the area before you assemble.

9. Assemble the reservoir into the holder and attach and clasp the tubes.

10. Top off the reservoir with new PSF-4 fluid. Start the engine and pour in the fluid as it gets sucked into the power steering pump.

11. When it doesn't suck in anymore, turn the wheel end to end multiple times to bleed air. Re-fill the fluid as necessary.

12. Tighten the cap and you are done.

13. Test drive. You still may have a bit of air. It will get bleed out as you drive around.
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post #14 of 14 Old 04-14-2019, 04:29 PM
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What the heck is PSF-4?

So what the heck is PSF-4, anyway? Do I have to buy it from the dealer? Is it just Dexron III ATF, like most carmakers use, or is it something special? I need to add some to my daughter's 2012 Koup SX, and I want to make sure I'm getting the right stuff.

2010 Forte Koup EX 5-speed manual
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