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Power Steering flush on C6 - How to do it?

carbuff

Active member
Joined
Aug 15, 2005
Messages
25
Location
Vancouver, BC
Corvette
2006 Yellow Z51 Coupe
Hey Guys, need your help please.

Can anyone help? I do not have a shop (service) manual for this car. My Power steering fluid is dark Coke colored (apparently common), and the system needs a PS flush.

Anyone have the EXACT DETAILED procedure for doing one on a C6? Can anyone post the procedure outlined in the service manual?

The way I generally understand it from reading the internet as it applies to other cars, is to:

1. disconnect the return hose to the reservoir. But which of the 2 hoses is that on the C6? The fat one or the skinny one? Looks like the skinny one in the diagram?

And how do you do this? Presume you need to drain the reservoir first. But then you are sucking air into the system?

2. Plug inlet hole in reservoir. Does anyone know what to plug it with, and what diameter this needs to be? Once you disconnect it, you do not have time to rummage around for the right size plug, since fluid is dripping everywhere at that point.

Then fill the reservoir with fresh fluid. How much fluid will I need to do a flush. Someone said on the internet that it could take up to a gallon!!

3. Put the return hose into a bottle to catch dirty fluid.

4. Lift up entire front end of the car.

5. Start car, turn wheels from side to side. Keep topping up fluid in reservoir while doing so, as not to suck in air.

6. Stop when fluid is running clear.

7. Then somehow reconnect the return hose to reservoir. But how do you do this when the reservoir is still full of fluid, without making a holy mess? Do you need to drain the reservoir again first?

Is it worth paying the dealer $100 to do this service, given the fluids cost less than $10?

Has anyone done this flush themselves? Your help is much appreciated. Thanks!
 

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Hib Halverson

Technical Writer for Internet & Print Media
Joined
Jan 10, 2001
Messages
13,453
Location
CenCoast CA
Corvette
71 04 12 19
What you've posted is generally the factory recommended method of flushing with one big exception.

You do not run the engine.

After you've got the inlet plugged, you key-on/engine-off then work the steering back and forth while an assistant pours in clean fluid. The stop the process when the draining fluid runs clear.

Based on reading that, I think what I'm going to do is simply drain the system using the above procedure. Then refill it with the new fluid because I'm not going to be changing contaminated fluid.

If I was going to change bad fluid and replace it with something like Red Line, considering the cost of RL, I'd flush the system with cheap fluid I'd buy at an auto parts mass marketer. Then I'd drain the system using the above procedure. Finally, I'd refill with a quality synthetic fluid such as Red Line.

If there was air in the system, I'd use the FSM bleeding procedure.

As for where to get a plug for the pump inlet...good question. Guess we need to research that, eh?
 

carbuff

Active member
Joined
Aug 15, 2005
Messages
25
Location
Vancouver, BC
Corvette
2006 Yellow Z51 Coupe
....As for where to get a plug for the pump inlet...good question. Guess we need to research that, eh?

Actually the reservoir inlet, not pump inlet, but I am sure that is what you meant :)

Good tip on not starting the engine. Makes sense.

But still no closer to finding out which hose is the inlet. :(
 

Hib Halverson

Technical Writer for Internet & Print Media
Joined
Jan 10, 2001
Messages
13,453
Location
CenCoast CA
Corvette
71 04 12 19
Actually the reservoir inlet, not pump inlet, but I am sure that is what you meant :)

Good tip on not starting the engine. Makes sense.

But still no closer to finding out which hose is the inlet. :(

Ok. I screwed up :mad and previously posted incorrect info.

MOST IMPORTANT TO NOTE

Originally, I posted the 2010 procedure because I had the 2010 FSM on my desk. The 2006 procedure is different and seems to be what you read elsewhere in the Internet.

I apologize for the confusion.

I got off my sorry ass and went over to the "stacks" and got my 2006 Factory Service Manual. What follows is the procedure, verbatim from the FSM for MY06. talics are mine. In blue are my comments which are not in the FSM.

1) Turn off the engine
2) Raise the front of the vehicle so the wheels can turn freely
3) Place a large container under the fluid return hose to collect the draining fluid from the pump reservoir.
4) Remove the fluid return hose at the reservoir inlet connection.
5) Plug the reservoir return hose inlet connection on the reservoir using a rubber cap or similar device.
6) Run the engine at idle while an assistant maintains the fluid level at the "full cold" level in the reservoir.
7) Turn off the engine
8) Turn the steering wheel full left and full right
9) Remove the plug from the pump inlet
10) Reinstall the return hose to the reservoir
11) Maintain the fluid level at "full cold"
12) Run the engine at idle for 15 min
13) Repeat steps 3-5.
14) Inspect the fluid. If it's milky (water), brown (burnt) or contains plastic debris or dirt chunks, repeat steps 6-12 a third time.
15) Remove the plug from the reservoir inlet
16) Clean any spilt fluid
17) Bleed the system

The return hose will be a low-pressure rubber hose which is likely hose-clamped to the bottom or a bottom-facing side of the plastic reservoir. The pressure hose will connect to the pump itself. It will have screw-type, compression fittings on both ends which are crimped to a high-pressure hydraulic hose.

Hope that helps. Sorry for the confusion caused by posting the 2010 info.
 
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