cleaning area to find a leak?

Messages
903
Location
wa state
I was changing the oil in one of my vehicles yesterday when I noticed a fluid all over everything. I suspect it is from the power steering pump or hoses. I was curious if it would be safe to spray down the whole area with brake cleaner so I can find the leak. there are hoses, plastics, metals, belts and exhaust minifold in the area. I am praying it is a hose connection leaking, since hoses and new clamps would be around 15 bucks. A new pump is $270
 
Messages
10,244
Location
Birmingham, AL
Brake cleaner might be kind of harsh on some of the rubber and plastic parts. I would feel better about using something like Purple Power or Simple Green and water to clean things up.
 
Messages
60
Location
Georgia,U.S.
Which vehicle?,,,the Neon or the Xterra,,,you can use brake cleaner,,but what would be better is if you can get your hands in there and take a rag and wipe it down first.If you do that,,,and then you still have to spray it down,,,you won't have as much fluid to remove.Can you tell if it's oily or is it coolant,,,let me know
 
Messages
36,420
Location
ME
You can use brake cleaner if you rinse with soapy water afterward. Even if you let it evaporate it's not touching plastic long enough to really do any damage IMO'.
 

hooligan24

Thread starter
Messages
903
Location
wa state
The leak is on the Xterra. There are drops formed and waiting to drip off the bottle of the PS pump, but everything in the area is covered in fluid. Last time I was under the vehicle, there wasnt any fluid leaking from anywhere. I plan to clean the area up the best I can and take it for a 20 minute slow drive in hopes to not blow the leaking fluid all over the place, and try to pin point the cause. I have found a few threads on Xterra sites that say leaking PS hoses are common with this motor, and most common causes are the clamps that are on the hoses. hopefully I can just get some new hose and some batter clamps
 
Messages
36,420
Location
ME
If it is the clamps seek out "fuel injection" style clamps; they don't bite into the rubber like the cheap ones do.
 
Messages
60
Location
Georgia,U.S.
Hooligan,,,xterras do leak but then again,,so do neons,,,I've always noticed that they leak directly underneath the clamp,,so you really can't tell where the leak is,,until you remove the clamp,,anyway,,,good luck with it,,oh,,,by the way,,,what part of Wash,,,west or east side,,,I lived in Yakima for some time,,,and now,,down here in Atlanta,,,we're having the same kind of weather.I just had 8" of the white stuff land on my house and yard,,,I moved back down here to get away from that stuff.
 

hooligan24

Thread starter
Messages
903
Location
wa state
I am in SW WA, kinda close to Portland OR. I am actually looking forward to the snow storm we are suppose to get tomorrow. The clamps on the power steering suction and return hoses look like these:
 
Messages
60
Location
Georgia,U.S.
Yep,,,those are the ones,,I have to admit,they are great when they are new,,but when you have to start moving them around,,they become a pain,,and thats the other thing about them,,,no one trys to move them around,,,so the hose just keeps getting more brittle underneath them.Dodge even has those in some of the recall kits,,they come pre-opened and after you slide them onto whatever hose you're installing,,you just flip the backside of the clamp,,and they close.Oh,,and my oldest daughter lives in Portland,,but she tells me she's not very happy there,,just doesn't like the weather.Anyway let me know what you find with the hoses.
 
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