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Electric Power Steering Issues

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Lancer08
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Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Wed Feb 19, 2020 9:41 pm

Hi,
As my username suggests I've a 2008 Lancer. I do love my car but its power steering is breaking my heart at the moment.

I have an intermittent fault where the power steering out of nowhere fails and the service light pops up on my dash.
It has been happening the last couple of months. Randomly, always so far at low speed in 1st gear and generally not long after taking off I just lose power steering and my dash goes yellow and tells me to get a service. I turn off the engine. Let it sit for a few seconds, start it up and fault generally goes first time and it mightn't happen again for a week or so. Or maybe ten minutes. It has a mind of its own. But when it works it gives no indication at all of a a struggling power steering system.

I've had it in and out of my mechanics and they don't know what it is. Not reading any faults on an OBD2
Ive stuck in a brand new battery out of precaution to make sure it's getting enough juice but it's still happening every now and again.

I'm afraid it'll happen sometime at speed, maybe entering a turn and it could be the end of her.

Has this happened to anyone else before?
I'm hoping it's only something stupidly small like a sensor that's been overlooked by the mechanics.

I'm reluctant to go to my main dealer because they're so incredibly viciously expensive.

Any info would be appreciated thanks!

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bumblebee
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby bumblebee » Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:00 am

What wheels and tyres are you running?
Are they the OEM size or have you gone bigger?

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lancerdarryl
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby lancerdarryl » Thu Feb 20, 2020 8:11 am

Is it electric or hydraulic assist? 2008 is a bit early for electric steering. There may be a problem with the drive belt slipping or the tensioner isn’t working properly and not keeping the belt tight
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Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:14 am

Appreciate the replies.
I've OEM wheels are tyres so nothing out of the usual with them even though I've been planning on getting nicer alloys.
Also it's definitely electric power steering. It would probably be less problematic if it was hydraulic.

I have been scrutinising the steering the last few weeks and it's difficult to say for certain but it does feel like the steering isn't 100%. Bit of a dead zone in the centre and a general feeling of being a little imprecise. Not sure if that's my imagination or not though. But I have had front shocks replaced recently (not pre dating the power steering issue) so i imagine a feeling of imprecision might be down to a bad job at tracking and not related to the power steering itself.

I was hoping it was a common issue but from speaking to the main dealers they haven't come across this before.. but I feel all they want is money unfortunately. Costs 100 quid minimum just for them to glance at the car and run a quick diagnostic. So I feel like they'll just drain me of money without really being very helpful because it's an old car now.

Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:21 am

Image

There's an image of the dash when it happens

Just so you know what I mean by service light

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lancerdarryl
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby lancerdarryl » Thu Feb 20, 2020 10:38 am

Never seen such an early model with electric steering. Exactly what specification Lancer do you have? And what country are you in?
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Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Thu Feb 20, 2020 11:53 am

Ireland.
So we only really have the most basic lancer available.
1.5 petrol saloon, 'intense' whatever that really means.

Originally I would've thought it was hydraulic.. now I don't have the owners manual after buying it second hand but after my first glance under the bonnet I noticed the lack of a power steering fluid reservoir day one. I was surprised too that it wasn't hydraulic. Because I know most models are.

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benyamin
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby benyamin » Thu Feb 20, 2020 12:33 pm

After the front shocks were replaced, a front end alignment should have been done. Part of this should have included resetting the steering neutral position in the ASC (Automatic Stability Control) ECU. It seems to me this may not have been done. It often isn't if the works were not done at a Mitsubishi dealership as it requires execution of proprietary functions usually not available in generic scan tools.
MY09 VRX one of these: (cj-sb-red)

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lancerdarryl
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby lancerdarryl » Thu Feb 20, 2020 1:45 pm

Could be on the right track there benyamin. Normally there are no issues with the electric steering. As a side note the Hyundai i30 has a problem with a small bush wearing out in the motor drive in the column. After replacing the bush you need to do a reset of the neutral position otherwise it does similar things as our Lancer08 is experiencing
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Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Thu Feb 20, 2020 6:31 pm

Thanks lads.

Sounds logical enough.
So before getting the front shocks done there was an imbalance. The front left had worn out and the front right was still okay.
I sent the car in for the NCT (Irish MOT, or yearly road worthy money racket test) which would have put more strain on the already worn out suspension and it's really only been since the test that it's been happening intermittently.
So I got the front shocks done, and got the car retested and passed.
Problem persisted then and mechanics couldn't find any faults other than a weak battery which I knew I had to replace anyway.

So unfortunately I think I have to suck it up, go to the main dealers now I have confirmation that they do use proprietary functions that can be overlooked with average tools.
Tracking and adjusting elements of the ECU really shouldn't be that difficult for them to do.

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benyamin
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby benyamin » Thu Feb 20, 2020 9:13 pm

You could ask whomever replaced the shocks if they did a front end alignment and reset the steering neutral position in the ASC ECU. It is possible that they do have the required tools but didn't know or forgot to do it or even chose not to because there was no error at the time. It's noteworthy that changing the shocks would likely change the steering neutral position anyway.

I should note that it's all just a hypothesis on my part, your lancer is somewhat different to the vehicles typically discussed on this forum.
MY09 VRX one of these: (cj-sb-red)

Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Fri Feb 21, 2020 1:13 am

I asked them day one when I was collecting the car and they said they didn't touch the steering. 'no need' they said. Which I knew was generally just time saving on their part and I intended on getting it done separately afterwards anyway.
I had a ford in the past and I got new front shocks and had to get tracking done separately afterwards too because the car ended up pulling to the left after the job was done. But tracking this looks a bit more of a skilled job because there's electronics involved.

It's a good hypothesis. The problem wasn't there before it got tested. I figure they knocked the suspension hard during the test and the fault started there.

And yeah unfortunately she's no Evo but still a tasty car. Insurance and tax are very expensive here so 99% of the market of lancers is made up of the smallest engines possible.

I have it booked in for early next week in the main dealers anyway. Give them their pound of flesh and see what they say.

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benyamin
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby benyamin » Sat Feb 22, 2020 9:39 am

Hopefully they get it sorted for you. Let us all know how it goes!
MY09 VRX one of these: (cj-sb-red)

Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Mon Mar 09, 2020 9:09 pm

Update,

Finally got the car to the main dealers. They've a long waiting list.

They told me pretty much what I already knew and you guys were on the ball. Your advice was free, the main dealers advice cost 110 quid.
Fault wasn't active at the time so they couldn't tell me 100% for certain but narrowed it down to being either the ECU or the motor.
They couldn't know for sure unless I took the car in when the fault is active and the power steering is cut off.

Unfortunately the motor is part of the rack.
The price for a new rack is hefty €2700 and that's before labour.

I wasn't able to speak to the mechanic himself and the people in reception were unsure if the ECU can be replaced separately to the rack.
If the ECU is the problem, they do have an auto electrician who would specialise with mitsubishis however his cost for labour would be equal to or in excess of the cost of just putting in a new ECU I've been told.

My question now is, does anyone know for certain if the ECU is part of the steering rack?
If I were to get a second hand steering rack from scrap for much cheaper would this include both the problematic motor and ECU. Then have it installed by a much more affordable mechanic and hopefully make this cost effective.

The fault has only happened once in the last couple weeks. It doesn't seem to be becoming any more frequent at least and still hasn't happened beyond 1st gear. So I'm weighing up is it worth the money fixing something that may just become a quirk of my specific Lancer? Or is it a disaster waiting to happen at speed coming into a tight bend. I really don't know at the moment.

Lancer08
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Re: Electric Power Steering Issues

Postby Lancer08 » Mon Mar 09, 2020 9:29 pm

PSX_20200309_112735.jpg
PSX_20200309_112735.jpg (777.05 KiB) Viewed 9369 times


Pretty but problematic.


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