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2005 chevy trailblazer_lt_ext
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Sorry for bringing up a old thread, But I am having a leak at part 18 and 19. Are they just o-ring's or some sort of special seal?
 

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2003 chevy trailblazer_lt_ext
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13 Posts
Yes they are just O-Rings. Albeit small ones. I used a nail punch to pluck mine out and replace with the new ones that I received when I had ordered hose 7. Unfortunately hose six had rusted through where it went over the strut well and was touching the metal under bushing 5. I used a pipe cutter and cut both sides of the leak and replaced it with appropriate fittings after double flaring the metal hose(remember to put fittings on first before flaring to prevent foul language outbursts).

It was a while ago but I think that the seals went in rather easy and then the new hose 7 fit perfectly with hose 6 because hose six has a directional collar to make it route simultaneously to 7 when inserting it into the rack fluid I/O female mate at the point you might call 18 & 19. Getting it in required a one-handed trapeze act as I was the only person working the job.
 

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2002 chevy trailblazer_ls
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16 Posts
I cannot get bolt # 2 off. I bought a $20 E-Torx socket set and it is still slipping. I used 7 mm. Is it reverse threaded? I do not want to break it off.
Also after I remove that can I just replace seal #18 and #19? the fluid is just pouring out that spot.

I realy appreciate any help you can give on this

P.S. Thank you JayDee for the diagram

Computer geek by day, in over my head!?!
That bolt is 8mm not 7. Not that hard to get out if you go over the axle boot from inside the wheel well.
 

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I have a trail blazer that I am replacing the power steering lines and the cup seals in the rack have been giving me problems. do you cut a hole in the new ones or do you put them in as they come and push the line through them? any help or other suggestions would be great. thanks
 

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2003 gmc envoy_slt
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54 Posts
i didn't see very many technical comments added to this post, so i'll add my 2 cents.

there are actually 3 different power steering hoses in the system.

line #7 in the schematic
high pressure line (runs between power steering pump, often referred to as the "gear" or "gearbox pump", and power steering rack). both ends have hard lines with *seals.

*a note about seals:
there are 2 different styles available on the market from various manufacturers.

"oem style" - this design matches the original equipment on the vehicle. in this case, the end which connects to the steering rack includes a flanged bare tubing end, which also has the hold-down bracket permanently swaged (attached) to the line itself. this bracket cannot be moved, and is assembled at the factory like this. the bare tube end is designed to be inserted into the rack port (passenger side). there seems to be great debate about the seals which are used with this style. the seals are simply "cup" seals that are lightly pressed into the ports of the steering rack housing. purchase of a new line will include a new seal. it is important to remove the old seal. removal of the old seal can be done with a seal puller hook-type tool, or you can improvise and use a medium size flat blade screwdriver. just be careful to not scratch or gouge the inside diameter of the ports on the housing. new seals can be pressed in by hand/fingertip and gently tapped with a hammer to seat into the port housing. some people rig up a special fixture to install the seal, others use a socket of similar size to help tap and seat the seals. the new cup seals that people show in previous pictures are molded with a flap which opens up upon inserting the tubing into the housing.

"revised/improved style"
intuition makes me think that this alternate design was invented due to field complaints about installing replacement lines of the oem style. the revised design has a separate hold-down bracket (not permanently attached), and uses an o-ring seal instead of the oem cup seal. the oem style requires you to install both pressure and return lines at the same time. installing 2 hard lines into the rack ports simultaneously may be more difficult, as you have to position and push both lines at just the right angle into the ports. with the revised design, the pressure line can be inserted first, then the return line, and finally the hold-down bracket.

note about the o-ring seal - the original old cup seal must be removed, otherwise the new line will not fit into the port. the rack is positioned very far down into the engine compartment, so it can be difficult to actually see these seals.

note about the hold-down bracket - i installed the revised design, and noticed that the bracket does not sit flat between the 2 hose ends. the revised pressure line fitting end (with o-ring) is about 1/8 inch taller than the return line fitting end (cup seal type). as a result, the bracket sits farther away from the rack, and requires a longer M6x1.0mm x 20mm length fastener. a previous post mentioned this, and they thought that the original fastener had stripped threads. in fact, the original fastener is a high-speed assembly type, and lacks threads on the first 1/4 inch. bottom line - you will need a new fastener of the same length, but the entire length will need to be threaded. you should be able to find a M6x20mm bolt at your local hardware store. this is a pretty major oversight on the design of the revised hose assembly, and i feel that the manufacturer should have included this in the new hose hardware. another negative aspect of the revised design is that the uneven position of the bracket allows the low pressure return line to "cock" at a slight angle (not perpendicular to the rack face). however, i have not experienced any leakage from the return line, despite the cocked hose angle.

line #6 in the schematic
low pressure return line #1 (runs between steering rack-and-pinion and power steering cooler/radiator)
this line has the cup style seal on the end which inserts into the steering rack. the other end has a rubber hose and clamp which attached to the power steering cooler.

tip on hose clamps - you may benefit from one of those bicycle cable and pliers type hose clamp removal/installation tools (do a search for "astro pneumatic hose clamp pliers"). for some reason the hose clamp on my vehicle was rotated next to the radiator shroud, making it nearly impossible to pinch/squeeze the tabs to release the hose clamp. needle nose pliers did not help. having this special tool helped me remove the stubborn clamp.

this was the hose which failed in my application. the steel or hard line section of hose which runs over the driver side strut tower actually corroded and sprang a pin hole sized leak. luckily i discovered this leak before all of the power steering fluid ran out of the reservoir. the puddle of clear yellow oil dripping down the frame and onto the ground was my indication of the problem. the harsh midwest winters combined with road salt caused this corrosion problem. of course, it did not help that the rubber bracket which holds down the lines harbored this environment and accelerated the corrosion problem. imho - cheap cost savings engineered hose assemblies...


line #11 in the schematic
low pressure return line #2 (runs between the power steering cooler and power steering pump reservoir). both ends have hose clamps. this 3rd hose assembly is not commonly stocked in local parts stores. my only guess is that it must not have the high rate of failure that the other 2 hoses have. i did not replace this hose on my vehicle, it looked clean and rust free.

note on oem hose brackets - there are 3 brackets in this system. the brackets are folded sheet metal construction with a rubber grommet to protect the steel lines. the brackets can be re-used if you gently pry open the tabs which hold the brackets crimped shut. i was able to re-use 2 of the 3 brackets, as i felt that the bracket underneath the battery tray was not necessary (and a pain to access - although in retrospect, accessing it through the driver side fenderwell makes it possible).

surprisingly, i did not need to remove ANYTHING from the engine compartment and was able to remove BOTH lines at the same time. with great patience, i was able to detach both high pressure and low pressure return lines, and rotate/pull them out towards the firewall. there is just enough space next to the master cylinder brake booster to pass the line assemblies backwards and up out of the engine bay. the difficult areas are the strut tower, and getting the 90 deg bends near the radiator to clear the mess of wire looms obstructing the passage. it did help a little to carefully unclip the plastic wire loom keepers in order to give the wiring loom just little more movement while pulling the steering hoses out from underneath them. there was also an electrical plug connection to the right of the ECU that i disconnected to ease access. i also disconnected the rubber vacuum booster line to the master cylinder, to help access the steering rack ports/lines. all work was done from the top of the engine bay.

btw - thanks for the tip about using a couple long extensions, universal joint, 10mm socket and ratchet, for removing/installing the bolt that sits underneath the fan and holds the bracket which captures the 2 hoses running between the frame rails. this saved me some time and cut hands while reinstalling the bracket.

hope this helps someone.
(there has to be some reward for reading this post)
 

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2008 chevy trailblazer_ss_lt
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4 Posts
Lazy Question

I just got diagnosed with leaking PS cooling lines. My normally reasonable mechanic who I use for things I don't feel like doing said it could be as much as $1000 job because mfg parts from the dealer were quite expensive, when they had used various replacement parts, especially Dorman in the past they had problems with things not fitting and leaks. Also some of the joints might be stuck / rusty etc .... sounded just like the PIA I've been reading about here.

I'm wondering ... since it's just pressurized hydraulic fluid, could I just get some flexible lines with the right ends crimped on ... (couldn't be more pressure than my bobcat) ... and simply run them where ever was convenient as long as I screwed them into the right holes? Hell, maybe even leave the existing clamped on stuff mostly in place and wire tie the pressure hoses to it?

Thanks, Cla.
 

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2006 chevy trailblazer_ls
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672 Posts
It's always a P.I.T.A. when the individual doing the job has no business holding a wrench. Example here is the O.P. who had installation issues, then discovered he had the wrong hoses in the wrong places, etc. More cost involved because of those mistakes.

Many jobs are a P.I.T.A., just because of the location of the parts.

Finally, being mechanically able, but not willing or young enough any longer, I opted to have my trusted tech do my power steering hoses job.

The job did get done properly and it certainly did not cost me $1,000.

Your mechanic is not interested in doing your job, thus the $1,000 quote.
 

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2008 chevy trailblazer_ss_lt
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Thanks for your insight. I will say that I think you are selling the integrity, honesty, and skill of the mechanic I currently use a bit cheaply. He told me the truth, with the knowledge that I wanted to keep costs down, but wasn't averse to doing the job myself ... I just don't WANT to and don't have a lift.

He told me that aftermarket parts they have purchased for this job in the past have had leaks because they didn't properly match exactly to the connection, so they don't stand behind them, with Dorman being a particular offender across several auto brands of being close but no cigar. Therefore he goes with "Official" Chevy (or whoever) parts for this particular repair, but the parts themselves are stupid expensive because they are from the dealer. I've personally read many threads on this and there are many where the parts didn't fit right, or there was an obscure change from a flange or double flange to an o-ring situation during the same model year run ... so I believe he's telling me the truth as he sees it. His estimate using Chevy parts pricing was $482 just for buying the parts from Chevy. (I'm in the Balto - DC area, so everything is expensive here).

The labor was a worst case estimate which I asked him for, and which as an engineer who owns his own business and does various IT and Network consulting, I can understand telling a client, well I won't know until I dig into it, but here's the best case, and here's the worst.

In any case it sounds like I'll be crawling under the car soon .... of course PS fluid is only about $6 / bottle ... wonder how much it costs in 50 gal barrels <grin> ....
 

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2007 chevy trailblazer_ls
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67 Posts
re

Great info Gelato,

I read all of your post. I used the Gates lines for my power steering line replacement. I had no issues with the bolt or the line fitment at the rack with the o-ring design. The fitment was excellent. I also removed my inner fender (15 minute job) which gave me a little more room and better sight of my work.

I painted my lines after wiping them down with acetone. I used 2 coats of black brush on Rustoleum and hung them in my garage with wire, then did a few touch ups after the install. No corrosion what so ever after 1 year. Did the same thing with my recent transmission lines that I replaced (also corroding).

Always, alyways, ALWAYS blow out a new line with compressed air. You never know what kind of dirt or metal swarf you will get out of the lines!
 

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2008 chevy trailblazer_ss_lt
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Gates ... I will look into finding that brand.

Excellent point about painting the lines and blowing them out.

Thanks,
Cla.
 

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2006 chevy trailblazer_ls
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672 Posts
Thanks for your insight. I will say that I think you are selling the integrity, honesty, and skill of the mechanic I currently use a bit cheaply. He told me the truth, with the knowledge that I wanted to keep costs down, but wasn't averse to doing the job myself ... I just don't WANT to and don't have a lift.

He told me that aftermarket parts they have purchased for this job in the past have had leaks because they didn't properly match exactly to the connection, so they don't stand behind them, with Dorman being a particular offender across several auto brands of being close but no cigar. Therefore he goes with "Official" Chevy (or whoever) parts for this particular repair, but the parts themselves are stupid expensive because they are from the dealer. I've personally read many threads on this and there are many where the parts didn't fit right, or there was an obscure change from a flange or double flange to an o-ring situation during the same model year run ... so I believe he's telling me the truth as he sees it. His estimate using Chevy parts pricing was $482 just for buying the parts from Chevy. (I'm in the Balto - DC area, so everything is expensive here).

The labor was a worst case estimate which I asked him for, and which as an engineer who owns his own business and does various IT and Network consulting, I can understand telling a client, well I won't know until I dig into it, but here's the best case, and here's the worst.

In any case it sounds like I'll be crawling under the car soon .... of course PS fluid is only about $6 / bottle ... wonder how much it costs in 50 gal barrels <grin> ....
As a technician, your tech gets a good discount off retail pricing, from GM, or parts stores, for his purchases.

The question then surfaces as to how much your tech intends to "mark up his parts prices" to you. Maybe a little, perhaps a lot ..... up to the tech.

In my case, I used one GM line and two Gates lines.

Regarding your mechanic, I made no comments regarding his integrity, honesty or ability. He is correct, regarding his concern of the aftermarket part "fitment".

I did say a $1,000 quote indicated he did not want to do the hose job. Fact is, as a customer, a $1,000 quote for 3 p/s hoses would certainly move me out of the door ..... quickly.

My shop charged me a total of 3.5 hours labor @ $80.00 per hour or $280.00. In my case, that would leave $720.00 for hose parts, based on your $1,000.00 quote. My total cost, with hoses was near $500.00 ....... perhaps your labor costs are very high, labor hours, however, should be the same.

A "best case / worst case scenario" for labor ? Labor prices are already established in the FLAT RATE GUIDE for the hose job .....actually for ANY part replacement job.

The FLAT RATE GUIDE takes the overall job into consideration, level of difficulty, etc.

A FLAT RATE GUIDE, which techs use for quotes, gives customers accurate labor pricing for the job.

.
 

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2002 chevy trailblazer_lt
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02 trailblazer, I dropped the bolt that holds the line to the rack, all I know is it's 8mm, what length and threads is it?
 

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2006 chevy trailblazer_ls
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02 trailblazer, I dropped the bolt that holds the line to the rack, all I know is it's 8mm, what length and threads is it?
Not certain you'll get that answer, BUUUT, if there is one 8 MM bolt under there, there is one more.

Pull ANOTHER bolt, from another location, then try it where you need it.

If it fits well, now you have an exact copy of what is needed.
 

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2002 olds bravada
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I guess I get the (bad) luck of resurrecting this thread. My recently acquired 02 Bravada drinks power steering fluid and after a quick search I realize I am not alone lol

There is video on YouTube where the guy grafts in a section of hard line to replace the rusted hard line section, has anybody else tried that?

I was also wondering like someone else posted why not just use hydraulic or braided hoses?
 

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2007 chevy trailblazer_ss_lt
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Hey guys, I replaced the pressure and return line prob in November. Went with the Gates alternate design with o-ring pressure line. I see I have a slight leak somewhere on my steering. It almost appears on the pressure line into the rack. When I played with it, the pressure line connection almost has a small wiggle to it right in the rack. This doesn’t seem right to me. It should be solid/tight, no?

I’m trying to think if I didn’t install it right. What is that yellow cup that comes with the package? Was that part of installation or what was that piece? Might be grabbing for straws but any help would be great before I tear it off again.
 

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are they normal o-rings in the line or are they the o-rings that are closed? and can i just replace them after taking off that bracket?
 

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2008 gmc envoy_sle
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629 Posts
theres some good pics in this thread.

 
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