Everything you need to know about power steering pumps

BG Automotive reports on the evolution of power steering and reveals common pump failures.

Power steering was first invented in 1876 and the hydraulic systems we know today were developed further by Frederick W. Lanchester in 1902, the star of our previous article on TVDs.

It took until 1926 for power steering to be fitted to a working motor vehicle, built and done so by Francis Davis.

However – power steering didn’t catch on at the time and only did so after the advent of heavy, heavily armoured military vehicles requiring it in the 30’s and 40’s.

It wasn’t then until the 1950’s where Chrysler produced power steering systems for their Imperial range – a commercial automotive first, basically using the same tech as from the 1920’s.

Two years later, all manufacturers were offering it.

Fast forward to today and it’s all but forgotten about, until it goes wrong.

How power steering pumps work

By far the most common method employed to assist steering is a hydraulic based pump system.

Hydraulic power steering pumps, typically powered by drive belts, deliver pressure to the rack to give its assistive steering power.

In recent years, electro-hydraulic systems have started to appear where an electric motor is used to drive the pump, and finally purely electric motor driven gear systems are used in some cases.

It’s the former two that BGA specialise in, where fluid is involved. 

In the cases of the hydraulic pumps – vanes or gerotors are used to apply positive pressure, combined with pressure control systems to ensure pumping pressure remains the same despite engine speed.

When the steering wheel is turned, the pump’s pressure is used to push a piston in the hydraulic steering rack in the desired direction, controlled by valves.

Additional control systems exist to offer adaptive pressure depending on the driving situation and wheel speed.

Causes of power steering failure

The most common cause of power steering pump failure is contamination of fluid.

It can occur where ageing hoses lead to moisture ingress and degradation of internal components.

The fluid gets old and the contaminates exacerbate wear, leading to failure.

Low fluid levels reduce the amount of pressure the pump can develop, meaning it has to work harder and thus wears out faster.

Power steering fluid also acts to cool the pump meaning low levels bring on overheating adding to additional wear and fluid contamination.

Belt alignment or damage can result from an incorrectly fitted or functioning belt.

In these cases, the belt can pull on the pulley causing uneven wear to the bearings in the pump, eventually leading to leaks, poor operation and failure.  

A worn out pump, either by age, use, heat or contamination, is another common cause of failiure.

As the pump ages the pump will become louder and weaker indicating it’s time to change it.

BG Automotive OE quality

BG Automotive power steering pumps are 100 per cent brand new.

Where possible and/or required by market demand we re-engineer the OE parts to remove any issues with the design.

The specialist then manufactures the pumps from scratch so its customers receive brand new product which it says is far superior to re-manufactured products.

As a result, the pumps are free from the inconsistencies, contaminations, micro-fractures and shortened life that is unavoidable with re-manufactured products.

BG Automotive pumps often feature upgraded internals to the OE part too.

A BG Automotive spokesperson said: “Every pump is manufactured using the latest in OE technology in our state-of-the-art, environmentally controlled facility.

“During manufacture, each component is individually measured and tested for conformity and quality assurance.

“This includes hardness and surface testing as well as dimensional and functional checks of all the individual components.

“During assembly, every single pump is rigorously tested and is tested throughout the manufacturing process, before being subjected to multiple levels of quality control prior to release to sale.

“Finally, the icing on the cake is that no surcharge system exists meaning no core exchange is required.

“This means the whole supply chain is free from having cash being tied up waiting and no core acceptance issues to worry about.”

For further information about BG Automotive, click here.

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Tenneco revenue growth continues to outpace light vehicle production

Company evaluating “multiple strategic options” to deleverage and facilitate the separation of the businesses.

Tenneco has reported a third quarter 2019 revenue of $4.3 billion, an 82 per cent increase versus $2.4 billion a year ago, which includes $1.8 billion from acquisitions. 

On a constant currency pro forma basis, total revenue increased three per cent versus last year, while light vehicle industry production declined three per cent in the quarter.

Value-add revenue for the third quarter was $3.5 billion.     

The company reported net income for third quarter 2019 of $70 million, or $0.87 per diluted share. 

Third quarter 2018 net income was $57 million, or $1.11 per diluted share. 

Third quarter 2019 adjusted net income was $99 million, or $1.23 per diluted share, compared with $85 million, or $1.66 per diluted share last year.

Third quarter earnings before interest, taxes and noncontrolling interests (EBIT) was $148 million including the acquired Federal-Mogul business, versus $112 million last year. 

EBIT as a per cent of revenue was 3.4% versus 4.7% last year.                       

Third quarter adjusted EBITDA was $387 million versus $366 million last year on a pro forma basis. 

Adjusted EBITDA as a percent of value-add revenue was 10.9 per cent, a 100 basis point improvement on a pro forma basis, which includes a $13 million impact due to a work stoppage at our largest customer. 

Cash generated from operations was $164 million. 

Roger Wood, co-CEO at Tenneco, said: “Tenneco’s revenue growth outpaced industry production by six percentage points, driven by higher light vehicle, off-highway and other revenues.

“We also delivered year-over-year margin improvement, driven mainly by effective synergy capture actions, operational improvements and disciplined cost management.”

Tenneco remains committed to the separation of the businesses and continues to execute its plan for the spin off.

Additionally, the company is evaluating multiple strategic options to deleverage and facilitate the separation. 

Certain of these options could help mitigate the impact of challenging market conditions, which, if current trends were to continue, would likely affect the company’s ability to complete a separation in the mid-year 2020 time range.  

For further information about Tenneco, click here.

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Filter status in real time with new software solution

Filter monitoring now available for fleet operators of agricultural, construction and heavy duty commercial vehicles.

A new software solution which includes sensors has seen MANN+HUMMEL become the first filter manufacturer worldwide to offer a solution for precise filter status monitoring.

The company says proactive monitoring offers many advantages over common reactive measures.

Until now fleet operators have had to determine the filter status by time-consuming visual inspection which could lead to an incorrect assessment or alternatively fixed servicing periods are maintained.

With the new solution from MANN+HUMMEL, they can now view the exact status of their fleet at any time and ensures that the filter is always changed at the right time.

In addition, maintenance times are precisely matched to the machine schedule, unplanned downtimes are reduced and the risk of exceeding the service life can be eliminated.

This has a positive effect on the efficiency of the vehicles and thus reduces the total operating costs.

Filter monitoring

Various sensors monitor the load status of air and cabin air filters, oil, hydraulic oil and transmission oil filters as well as fuel pre-filters and main filters.

Furthermore, the status of the engine oil, hydraulic oil and fuel can be observed.

The measured data is transferred from the respective vehicle to the OEM cloud where it is anonymized and then passed on to the MANN+HUMMEL cloud.

Algorithms analyze the data of the individual sensors and determine precise key figures for the predictive maintenance.

This information is prepared and returned digitally to the OEM which makes the information conveniently available to end customers, fleet operators and users in the telematics system or via an app.

MANN+HUMMEL has been collecting experience on predictive maintenance since 2017 when the company introduced the Senzit air filter monitor as a retrofit solution for agricultural and construction machines.

The experience gained in the development and practical use of Senzit enabled the integration of predictive maintenance into a wider range of filters.

In addition to the complete solution, in future on request MANN+HUMMEL will offer vehicle manufacturers customized and integrated solutions.

The first customer pilot projects are planned for 2020 – and that will be just the first step.

The development of self-monitoring systems and components is ongoing.

To learn more about MANN+HUMMEL, click here.

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eBay urges garages to use “recycled car parts”

Call made despite recent gov report highlighting industry problem with counterfeit and customer-supplied parts.

eBay is calling on independent garages to commit to offer consumers the option of purchasing what it describes as “recycled car parts”.

The online auction site says such a commitment would bring the UK in line with France, where its government passed a Circular Economy Law in February 2019, in which the use of recycled vehicle parts in repairs is mandatory.

Laura Richards, senior automotive business manager at eBay UK, said: “Increasing the use of reused car parts in vehicle repairs in the UK would see huge environmental benefits, as well as helping to drastically reduce pressure on premiums.

“Guarantees for the safety and quality of used parts”

“The launch of our new pilot scheme will help provide extra guarantees for the safety and quality of used parts, building on eBay’s position as the biggest marketplace for buying and selling vehicle parts and accessories.”

Tania Tucker, senior advisor, Environment Agency, said: “We support eBay’s plans to encourage the safe use of recycled car parts.

“The scheme supports both the Environment Agency’s commitment to move towards a circular economy and the 95 per cent recycling target set for end of life vehicles.

“It also enables consumers to make sustainable purchasing decisions.”

Counterfeit parts problem

The news comes just weeks after a government report highlighted a counterfeit and customer-supplied parts problem within the industry.

The 132-page report said: “Preventing counterfeiting and piracy isn’t just about protecting the innocent from criminals, it’s about maintaining the credibility of legitimate trade.

“Counterfeit car parts can affect both Original Equipment Manufacturer and aftermarket businesses alike.

“Counterfeiters are becoming more skilled in making fake parts and their packaging look identical to genuine ones.

“Whilst parts might look the same, they are unlikely to perform to the same standard and in many cases the counterfeits are produced using dangerous and substandard materials, which have not been properly tested.”

Customer supplied parts

eBay’s calls for garages to fit “recycled” car parts will likely come as a disappointment to independent garages, many of whom are increasingly saying no to customer-supplied parts.

The Independent Garage Association has long urged its members to be wary of customer-supplied parts.

It suggests that such parts may not be the correct fitment for the car and warns that some internet-sourced parts can be of low quality.

There are also potentially complex warranty issues if the part fails – especially where provenance is difficult to establish.

A survey of thousands of independent garages in 2017 revealed that 69 per cent of garages will never fit customer supplied parts.

It also showed that 29 per cent of garages used to fit customer supplied parts but no longer do so, while two per cent routinely fit customer supplied parts.

Auto Torque has partnered with Garage Wire to bring you all the latest aftermarket news.

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Hybrid RPO set to boost permanent recruitment

Automotive recruitment specialist responds to increasing demand from aftermarket and OEMs for dedicated recruitment service.

Autotech Recruit has enhanced the permanent arm of its business to offer the industry a Hybrid Recruitment Process Outsourcing (Hybrid RPO) solution.

The struggle to recruit and retain highly skilled vehicle technicians is well documented and many automotive companies are using several recruitment companies to hire staff which increases overall costs.

By adopting the Hybrid RPO approach, automotive businesses can streamline their recruitment processes and expect a significant reduction in overhead costs.

Autotech Recruit estimates a Hybrid RPO approach could save an automotive company or OEM up to 74 per cent of its recruitment costs per year.

Under a Hybrid RPO agreement, Autotech Recruit will take ownership of a client’s recruitment needs, from marketing the position, screening the candidates, through to HR paperwork and even clothing distribution, if required.

We can create a suite of customised options to suit the exact needs of a client,” explains Simon King, Autotech Recruit’s sales director for permanent and RPO who is spearheading this initiative along with Hannah Fermor, who heads up permanent aftermarket recruitment, while Sue Dixon will lead the permanent OEM and main dealer side. 

“We are working in true partnership with our client”

By taking a Hybrid RPO approach we are working in true partnership with our client, rather than just being a supplier,” adds Simon.

Significantly, under the Hybrid RPO, Autotech Recruit will provide an automotive company with a single point of contact who will manage the day to day recruitment operation. 

This not only provides consistency,” comments Simon, “but having a single person on the account will give them an in-depth knowledge of the company they are recruiting for.”

Recruitment Process Outsourcing (RPO) is a proven method to improving candidate quality and reducing the time and the cost it takes to hire. 

“We know this process works,” comments Simon: “Earlier this year we began working with In‘n’Out Autocentres, who outsourced its entire recruitment process to us.

“As a result, we have filled 67 placements since April and 99.5 per cent of the candidates we put forward are hired.”

High calibre candidates

Jon Morgan, CEO of In‘n’Out Autocentres comments: “Autotech Recruit’s customer-centric approach, coupled with a thorough understanding of our business, means they are introducing high calibre candidates who meet our high standards of skill, knowledge, and values.

“Partnering with Autotech Recruit will ensure that as we continue to expand our network, we will have the skills and personnel to support us in delivering fantastic customer service with great quality work and give motorists a real alternative to franchise dealerships.”

Autotech Recruit offers effective, comprehensive strategies to help the automotive aftermarket overcome talent shortages, encompassing three core strands: temporary cover, permanent recruitment, and training. 

Our clients include large, independent fast-fit garages to national chains with multiple sites, and we work with 80% of Motor Trader’s top 200 dealerships,” Simon concludes.

To visit the Autotech Recruit website, click here.

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Volkswagen Caddy 1.6 TDI clutch replacement guide

Schaeffler REPXPERTS share step-by-step guide for technicians.

Schaeffler is this week explaining the clutch replacement process on a 2011 Volkswagen Caddy fitted with a 1.6 TDI common rail CAYD engine for GW readers.

The customer’s complaint is that the clutch slips under load, a short road
test confirmed clutch slip and with a mileage of over 92,000 clutch replacement was advised.

Volkswagen introduced the Caddy to Europe 35 years ago in 1982, with the current model being the third generation, it is available in two body sizes and many variants, this model Caddy is based on a Volkswagen Touran with Volkswagen Golf Mk 5 front suspension, and won best small van of the year
in 2007 and 2008.

The Volkswagen Caddy shares the same platform as other VAG models with a transverse engine/gearbox arrangement, so there is a good chance this will look quite familiar when the bonnet is raised.

We used the following workshop equipment for this repair, a scissor lift, transmission jack and an engine brace.

Figure 1.

With the vehicle positioned on the ramp, open the bonnet and remove the engine cover, air intake ducting and air filter assembly, disconnect the battery and remove the battery followed by the battery carrier, this now exposes the top of the gearbox giving us good access for component
removal (figure 1).

Disconnect the gear change cables from the selector linkage, remove the three bolts from the gear cable support bracket and stow in the bulkhead area.

Figure 2.

Remove the plastic quadrant (figure 2) from the selector mechanism by removing the retaining clip, this will ensure the quadrant is not damaged during the gearbox removal and installation, remove the centre nut from
the selector mechanism and remove the gear change weight.

Figure 3.

Now remove the clutch slave cylinder assembly, inspect the slave cylinder for any fluid leaks or wear to contact areas, we found wear on the end of the slave cylinder push rod (figure 3), so a clutch slave cylinder replacement was advised.

Disconnect the earth cable from the bell housing bolt, reverse light switch wiring multiplug and then the wiring from the starter motor, at this point the top starter motor bolt and top bell housing bolts can be removed.

Slacken both front wheel locking bolts with a bar and then raise the ramp to waist height, remove both front wheels and the N/S/F wheel arch liner, then raise the ramp to access the underside and remove the engine under tray.

Figure 4.

Remove the gearbox pendulum mounting (figure 4), remove the six
driveshaft flange retaining bolts from both driveshaft’s, disconnect the ball joints from bottom suspension arms and release, there will now be enough clearance to move the driveshaft’s away from gearbox and secure to aid gearbox removal, the O/S gearbox output flange can now be removed by removing the centre bolt, be careful when removing the flange as some gearbox oil can run out (figure 5).

Figure 5.

Now remove the bottom bell housing bolts, bottom starter motor bolt and the starter motor, lower the ramp and support the engine with an engine beam or support frame, release the gearbox mounting and then lower the engine on a beam to a position that the gearbox can be removed, raise the vehicle and support the gearbox with a transmission jack, the gearbox
mounting bracket bolts can now be accessed from the N/S/F wheel arch area, remove the three bolts and the bracket (figure 6), remove the final bell housing bolts and then remove the gearbox with the aid of the transmission jack.

Figure 6.

With the gearbox removed, the clutch was removed and as diagnosed, the clutch had reached the end of its service life, the solid flywheel was inspected and confirmed to be ok and the “glaze” was removed from the flywheel face using emery cloth.

Figure 7.

Then clean the flywheel and back plate area to remove the old clutch dust, remove the clutch release arm, bearing and gearbox input shaft sleeve and clean the clutch dust out of the bell housing area, lubricate the gearbox input shaft splines with high melting point grease and then slide the new clutch plate onto the input shaft to confirm the splines are correct and to dissipate the grease evenly, then wipe off any excess.

Figure 8.

Now fit the new clutch assembly using a clutch alignment tool (figure 7), always inspect the release arm and pivot points, we noticed some wear to the pivot point, so this was replaced (figure 8) along with the release arm that is provided in the clutch kit.

Fit the new input shaft sleeve, clip the new release bearing into the release arm, apply a small amount of high melting point grease to the pivot points
and then fit the release arm and bearing securing the pivot point with the retaining clip.

Ensure the gearbox alignment dowels are still installed correctly in the engine block and then refit the gearbox, once secured in position the free play on the release arm can be felt to ensure correct fitment before full installation is carried out in reverse order of removal.

A new clutch slave cylinder was fitted at this point and the clutch hydraulic system was gravity bled, torque bolts to the manufactures specifications, check and top up the gearbox oil level as required, also ensure all electrical items are reset after the battery has been connected, finally, carry out a full road test to ensure clutch and gearbox operation are correct.

Check out the full workshop instructions and online support by clicking here, or contact the LuK Technical Hotline on 08457 001100.

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DVSA warns of “more rigorous” application of rules for motorcycle MOT

20 disciplinary points given for every failure item a tester misses.

The DVSA has this week confirmed that it is now applying the rules for incorrect test standards for motorcycles more rigorously.

A DVSA spokesperson said: “Motorcycles have fewer parts and missed defects on a motorcycle may have a greater impact on road safety than a similar item on a car or van.”

For every failure item a tester misses when carrying out a test, 20 disciplinary points are given.

50 points or more in a single case can lead to short term cessation.

The spokesperson added: “We randomly check both car and motorcycle MOTs to make sure tests are being carried out correctly and following appropriate procedure.

“This includes mystery shopper tests with defects.

“We’re not changing the current rules, just the way we apply them.

“Cases will still be reviewed on their own merits and sanctions to testers and authorised examiners will be applied as we deem necessary.” 

Auto Torque has partnered with Garage Wire to bring you all the latest aftermarket news.

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Ivor Searle expands LCV manual gearbox range

New additions include specific gearboxes for models fitted with and without cruise control.

Remanufacturer, Ivor Searle has expanded its all-makes range of gearboxes for and light commercial vehicles.

Costing up to 40 per cent less than OE, the latest additions to the Ivor Searle LCV manual transmission line-up includes applications for 2.0L and 2.3L versions of the popular Renault Trafic II and Master, the Vauxhall Vivaro and Movano, and the Nissan NV400.

For peace of mind, all Ivor Searle gearboxes are covered by a 12-month unlimited mileage parts and labour warranty.

In addition, Ivor Searle holds comprehensive stocks to ensure first class customer service and minimum vehicle downtime and provides free next day UK mainland delivery for stock items ordered before 3.30pm.

To find out more call 01353 720531 or click here.

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Mental health costs employers £1.2bn a year, Ben reveals

Mental health is still one of the biggest issues affecting the industry’s workforce, whitepaper warns.

Ben’s new whitepaper called ‘Mental health in the automotive industry: moving up a gear’ examines evidence and provides practical solutions for employers on how to support the mental health of their workforce.

Ben seeks to make automotive industry employers aware of the stigma still attached to mental health issues and builds a clear case for businesses to take action in support of their employees.

As part of this, Ben wants to work in partnership with automotive industry employers, through its Ben4Business programme, to make a positive difference to the mental health of those who work in the automotive industry.

The paper highlights that, when it comes to workplace issues, the mental health of employees can still be a taboo subject.

The focus of today’s World Mental Health Day is on suicide prevention: suicide is the leading cause of death among men under 45.

Ben’s recently launched Critical Response Service has seen the organisation predominantly supporting employers and employees after a colleague has taken their own life which is a stark reality and should be considered as a call to action.

Whilst the industry’s aim is to increase the number of women employed, it is still predominantly made up of men.

Rachel Clift, health and well-being director at Ben, said: “To coincide with World Mental Health Day, we wanted to shine a spotlight on mental health in the workplace.

“I urge employers to read ‘Mental health in the automotive industry: moving up a gear’ as it offers great insights into the mental health of the automotive industry.

“It’s insightful but it’s also a great resource to help employers support their workforce  and promote positive mental health in their workplace.

“We’re here to look after the health and wellbeing of automotive people because they are the lifeblood of our industry.”

Mental health awareness training

Anna Hatton, well-being manager at Jaguar Land Rover, said: “We’ve been working closely with Ben to provide mental health awareness training for all of our employees with line management responsibilities.

“We felt it was important to train our line managers so they could fully develop their skills in supporting colleagues with their mental health.

“So far, Ben has trained over 800 of our managers, and this number is growing all the time.

“The training has gone down extremely well with our managers and they have given us fantastic feedback, saying they have found it incredibly useful.

“They tell us that the course has really helped build their confidence in approaching and supporting employees they are concerned about.”

Ben’s new whitepaper draws on findings from many sources, including Ben’s own survey that asked hundreds of employees from the industry, including CEOs and HR professionals, to identify key health and wellbeing issues affecting them.

In 2018, 52 per cent of requests for help from Ben’s helpline related to mental health issues, including anxiety and depression, a 23 per cent increase on the previous year.

The evidence in the report paints a picture of an industry that is still struggling with mental health issues.

To find out more about Ben, click here.

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Mechanic gets restraining order after threatening non-paying customer

Judge issues two year conditional discharge, imposed a restraining order plus costs and surcharge.

A mechanic has been handed a two year conditional discharge and imposed a restraining order after storming into a woman’s home demanding payment, the Retford Guardian has reported.

The man jumped over a gate and entered the house on Netherfield Lane, Meden Vale, on July 31.

“He was shouting threats about being owed money,” said prosecutor Donna Fawcett.

The court heard the occupant of the house, who has been diagnosed with autism, also suffers from severe anxiety.

“She was so scared that she began to stammer,” said Ms Fawcett.

“He made threats in the kitchen.

“I will blow the f***** up that’s out there,” he said about the car parked outside.

“I want my money.”

The woman went upstairs and called her mother, and the mechanic ran off.

In a victim impact statement, she said: “I feel I am going to struggle to manage my nightmares.

“He had no right to threaten me”

“He had no right to threaten me or put me in fear.

“I am worried that he will come back.

“This has caused me extreme distress.”

The mechanic admitted making the threats when he appeared at Mansfield Magistrates Court, on Wednesday.

District judge Jonathan Taaffe said: “There is clearly a background and you were owed money.

“It’s not an excuse to behave in the manner that you did”

“Owed money or not, it’s not an excuse to behave in the manner that you did.

“It clearly caused her to fear what was going to happen.

“I take the view it was an idle threat issued against a heated background.”

He handed Vincent a two year conditional discharge and imposed a restraining order, banning him from contacting the woman, except through solicitors.

Costs of £85 and £21 government surcharge were also ordered.

Auto Torque has partnered with Garage Wire to bring you all the latest aftermarket news.

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