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BMW 525i Power Steering Reservoir

Troubleshooting for BMW 525i Power Steering Reservoir Problems

The BMW 525i power steering reservoir holds the power steering fluid, which helps the system function in helping you steer your vehicle better. Without this component, the fluid might leak, causing the system to overheat and the steering gear to fail. Because you wouldn't want these to happen to you while you are driving, it is highly important that you diagnose your power steering reservoir.

Visual inspection

When diagnosing the power steering system, the first thing to do is to check the power steering reservoir. Wipe its cover before opening the component to prevent dirt from getting inside. Your car's power steering pump should have a small dipstick built into the reservoir cap. This will show you the fluid level in the reservoir. If there is no specific filling levels indicated on the pump or if the dipstick isn't legible anymore, check your owner's manual for instructions.

If you find that the fluid level is very low, examine the power steering system for leaks. Check all connections, hoses, and couplers for evidence of fluid leaks. Because dirt may be attracted to the oil, it may be necessary to pressure wash the power steering pump and box before you look for fresh oil leaks.

Diagnosing hard power steering

When the power steering is hard to work and your car is cold, then several factors may be in play, ranging from mild to severe issues. When troubleshooting this, make sure that you try the least expensive method first before you move on to the costly ones.

The first thing you can do by yourself is to let your car warm up for a couple of minutes. The power steering fluid becomes thicker in very cold temperatures, causing it to not flow as well as it normally would.

If you haven't done so, check the power steering fluid level and make sure it is completely up to the full line. If it's not, then add more fluid. Especially if you are in a cold area, it is very important to maintain proper fluid levels.

If these don't work, then take your car to a mechanic and have it checked. An electrical mechanism might have gone wrong.

Other troubleshooting tips

Before you begin any power steering reservoir troubleshooting, make sure that any steering or handling problems are not caused by a mechanical component in the front suspension or steering mechanism. Troubleshoot these parts first before moving on to the reservoir itself.

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  • Tips on Keeping Your BMW 525i Power Steering Reservoir Efficient

    Because the power steering system helps you drive smoothly over any terrain and at any speed, it is very important to keep the BMW 525i power steering reservoir in good shape. This component contains the fluid that allows the system to operate. If something goes wrong with your steering, this is the first part you need to check. In order to avoid trouble with the power steering reservoir, here are some recommended maintenance tips that you should do regularly.


    Check the power steering fluid level

    It is best to inspect the power steering fluid while the engine is cold, though it is also okay to check it when it's still warm and then compare the two levels.


    Some power steering reservoirs are made of a clear material that lets you check the fluid level without having to open the component. Just wipe it clean to see a clear view of the markings and examine the fluid level.


    If your car's power steering reservoir is opaque, then you will need to remove the cap and check the level with a dipstick. Before opening it, however, clean the cap and the area around it using a clean rag to avoid fluid contamination that can cause the system to malfunction. Wipe the dipstick off as well so you can see its markings clearly.


    Flush the power steering fluid

    It is recommended that you do a power steering fluid flush every 35,000 miles or when you can't see the bottom of the reservoir anymore. Because the BMW 525i's fluid is deep red yet clear, you should have no problem looking into the component when the liquid is still new.


    Before flushing the power steering system, you should verify its overall integrity and check if it has parts that need to be replaced. If you find any problems, take care of these first before you flush and change the fluid.


    Make sure that you have all the tools you need to flush and a friend who can assist you.


    Removing air from the power steering reservoir

    Because the power steering system is operated by hydraulics, it can easily be affected if air gets inside it. While this is sometimes unavoidable, it is important that you fix this immediately to maintain an easier steering.


    Make sure that the engine is turned off and cooled down before you go under and look for the power steering reservoir.


    If the reservoir is not full, add more fluid until it reaches the "full" line.


    From the bleeding valve, bleed out the power steering fluid until you no longer see air bubbles in the drain pan.