Have you found that your car or truck just isn’t as easy to steer as it normally is? Before jumping to major repairs, check your power steering fluid level. Here’s an easy step by step to walk you through it.

  • Turn off the engine. Power steering fluid can be checked no matter the temperature of your engine. But you’ll want to make sure it’s off.
  • Locate your power steering fluid reservoir. It will be marked with a cap which will indicate that it contains power steering fluid. (fig.1)
  • Look at your reservoir. There are two styles of reservoir. Some are opaque and feature a small dipstick under the cap, while others have level markers on the outside to measure the fluid level without removing the cap. (fig.2)
  • If you can see the fluid through the reservoir: visibly check the fluid level. If it’s in the safe zone, you’re done! If your fluid level is a little low, continue to step number four.
  • Clean the cap! Before opening loosening the cap – and potentially letting in harmful contaminants into your fluid system – take a rag and clean the cap and around the cap. Now remove the cap.
  • If you can see the fluid through the reservoir: remove the cap and add the appropriate fluid to your reservoir until the level is at the full line. Replace the cap. Now you’re done!
  • Clean the dipstick. Use a clean part of your rag to wipe fluid from the dipstick. This ensures that you’ll get an accurate reading on the dipstick. Once it’s wiped clean of fluid, return the cap to the reservoir.
  • Check the fluid level. Make sure the cap is fully back in place before removing it again. Read the markings on the dipstick – take note that there are “cold” and “hot” markers! (fig.3)
  • Check for leaks. If the fluid level is low, check for any obvious signs of leaking. Attend to leaks accordingly.
  • Fill the reservoir. Slowly add the approved fluid to the correct fill line – remember there are hot and cold markers. Replace the cap, screwing it tightly into position.