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[VT-VX] How To Replace Power Steering Cooler

thepowerman

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Has your power steering cooler split open or rusted through and leaking oil all over your nice white driveway???
Well maybe it is time to replace it. I priced up the replacement from the Holden near me and they wanted $69.95 for the standard replacement cooler, but autopro sold an aftermarket cooler for $79.95 which came with new piping and hose clamps, so that is what I went with.
I did this on a VX V6 but the concept will be the same on most cars with a cooler on the power steering.

JCcooler1.jpg

What you need:
- Phillips screwdriver
- Flat Head screwdriver
- 8mm spanner
- A drip tray
- 1litre DEXIII fluid
- Knife
- Couple of cans of degreaser
- Rags
- New cooler (I used DERALE performance power steering cooler kit - Part Number:13200 from Autopro)
- A hammer and large extension bar from a socket set (if the radiator is still in the car)
- Water based lube

Step #1 (Tools - Phillips screwdriver)
Remove the front bar, If you haven't done this before the is three screws in each tyre well and three screws on top of the bar near the bonnet latch, once those are all out just start at one wheel well pull the bar away from the car and roll the bar around the other side to remove it.

JCcooler2.jpg

Step #2 (Tools - Flat blade screwdriver, Drip Tray)
You need to find the pipe that goes from the cooler back to the steering rack, to find this pipe look down behind the radiator and look at where the two power steering pipes run past the drivers side of the radiator. One of these runs up to the reservoir and one runs to the rack. Where the rubber hose connects to the metal hose undo this hose clamp and place the drip tray under this pipe. Disconnect the rubber pipe from the metal line and watch all your old power steering fluid out into the drip tray.

JCcooler3.jpg

Step #3 (Tools - Phillips screwdriver, 8mm spanner)
You will see on the cooler there is 2 metal brackets holding the cooler in place. Undo the screws, one at the top and one at the bottom of each bracket, and the screws holding the bracket to the cooler and remove these brackets from the car. Don't get rid of them we will reuse them for the new cooler.

JCcooler4.jpg
JCcooler5.jpg

Step #4 (Tools - Hammer and extension bar)
Now for one of the tricky bits. If you follow the cooler from the front of the car and round to the side of the radiator you will see a screw holding the cooler pipes to the car. And the only way I could see to remove this screw was a tiny screwdriver or remove the radiator. Well I wasn't going to remove the radiator and I don't own a screwdriver that would fit in there. If you look on the other side of the chassis rail there is a nice large hole where if you look through you can see the back of this screw, so I got an extension bar from my socket set placed it on the back of the screw and smacked it out with a hammer.

JCcooler6.jpg

Step #5 (Tools - Flat blade screwdriver)
Now your power steering fluid should be completely empty, so we will remove all the old parts we don't need any more. On the engine bay side of the cooler undo both hose clamps and remove the rubber pipes. Once the pipes are off you can pull out the old cooler and throw it in the bin once and for all. Also undo the hose clamp on the upper hose on your power steering reservoir and remove this pipe from the car, do not throw away this pipe we will re use it. You will also have a piece of rubber pipe about 15cm long, you can throw this one away as well it is no longer needed.

JCcooler7.jpg
JCcooler8.jpg

Step #6 (Tools - Degreaser)
Time to clean. Using your degreaser now is the time to clean all the old oil and gunk off from the front of your car, you can also remove the reservoir and clean all that at this point if you wish to. I will let you decide how much and where you would like to clean.

Step #7 (Tools - Phillips screwdriver, 8mm spanner)
Now we will install the brackets back on to the car. If you look across the top and bottom where the brackets were originally bolted to on the car, you will see an array of holes that we can use, 4 on the top and 6 down the bottom. We will put the brackets on in the following order
- Top of first bracket bolts to far left hole
- Bottom of first bracket bolts to far left bottom hole
- Top of second bracket bolts to third hole from left
- Bottom of second bracket bolts to fourth hole from left
The second bracket will be on an angle, but that allows the bracket to fit better.

JCcooler9.jpg

Step #8 (Tools - Flat blade screwdriver, Lube)
Now the to run the new piping. First push the brand new pipe in the gap between the chassis rail and the radiator, there is a piece of hard plastic in this gap but it but the pipes will go past it quite well, run this new pipe up to the reservoir. Put some of your lube on the reservoir connector, put a hose clamp on the pipe and slide your pipe onto the reservoir and tighten up the hose clamp. Adjust how this pipe runs so as it does not touch the fan belt, I used a cable tie to hold it back just for extra safety. Now push the old hose through with the new hose between the radiator and the chassis rail and connect this pipe onto the metal line that runs back to the rack. Don't forget the hose clamp BEFORE you put the hose on the metal line. LOL I always forget.

JCcooler10.jpg
JCcooler11.jpg
JCcooler12.jpg

Step #9 (Tools - )
Now you can finally put your brand new clean leak free cooler onto the car. Take the cooler out of the box and also the two plastic connectors that come with the kit. Place the cooler behind the brackets with the lines facing the pipes of course. Push the plastic connector wires through the holes in the brackets and push them through the correct holes in the cooler. Once you have the cooler in place and the connectors wires in place you can put the connector locks on and trim the excess wires off. There are instructions on how to exactly use the connectors with the kit.

JCcooler13.jpg

Step #10 (Tools - Knife, Lube, Flat blade screwdriver)
Now trim the two pipes to suit the cooler. Put a hose clamp on each pipe, put some lube on the two pipes on the cooler and put the hoses onto the cooler and tighten the hose clamps. Nearly finished

JCcooler14.jpg

Step #11 (Tools - DexIII Fluid, car keys)
Do a final check that all hose clamps are tight and all hoses have been connected. Now to refill the system with fluid. I found that the best way to do this is by the following steps:
- fill the reservoir completely, and start the engine for no more than 2 seconds
- now fill the reservoir again, and restart the engine again for no more than 2 seconds
- once you have done this to the point where the reservoir doesn't drop any more put the cap on the reservoir and start the car
- with the car in gear and slowly creeping forward, move the steering wheel from lock to lock 2 or 3 times
- turn the car off and check the level of your power steering and top up as necessary

Step #12 (Tools - Phillips screwdriver)
Put the front bar back on the car, and enjoy your car which doesn't leak power steering oil everywhere any more.

JCcooler15.jpg

I hope that this HOW TO will help some out as many of the HOW TO's on here have helped me.
This is my first how to so let me know what you think of how i have done, thanks.
 

edals

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Great How to mate.
I managed to do this with on removing the bumper on the VY. It was one of those i really should have really removed it in the end lol
My Holden Dealer gave me one for about $59, and yes rusted through and spilt.
 

VYMAD

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Great How-To! Thanks for sharing your knowledge.
 

morphix

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When i get some spare time and a little cash i might give this a go on my VZ.

Currently i have gunk built up around the cooler and **** loads of rust.
 

miss ss

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Thanks so much for this how to!
Was so easy to follow and I did the whole thing all by myself.
I'm about to do my pcv pipe/valve but can't find anything to help like this one.
 

immortality

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Check out a few LS catch can threads as these are normally fitted because of the poor PCV system so may have info on removal/install of the OEM PCV system. Alternately the Elite website has some good tutorials on install their catch cans which should also have what you are looking for.
 

miss ss

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Thanks for that info. It looks like I can just pull the old one off and put new one straight on without anything much in the way. Maybe that's why no one has done a how to coz it's so basic... I'm hoping haha. Doing it in morning ☺
 

Yande

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8 Years since your post was made, my heart rate has now calmed and I know there is light for the future. THank you so much for this!
Had someone hit the accelerator, not the brake and stuff up my coolant pipes. Now all I need to google is to find out how to get her to pay for it. I was in a Mall carpark, and she pushed a 4WD back onto me, (the 4WD had to be towed out) so I figure I was lucky. (Oops, wasn't going to state the "she" part, but there you have it.) Only hope AutoPro still have these pipes.
 

immortality

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Any small external transmission cooler will do the job.
 
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