DS HP Pump cycle
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    mnm
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    Default DS HP Pump cycle

    Hi everyone

    My old girl has been sitting at my mum's for about 6 weeks.. now that I have sold the Beetle I can get it home as my daily driver. When I last drove it the HP pump was cycling about once a minute.. when I drove it today, that cycle had not changed when the car is stationary.. but when I turn the wheel it clicks a number of times.. it wasn't doing that before.

    What may have caused the change?

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    My apologies as i'm sure this subject would have been discussed before.

    Thanks

    Matthew

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    BVH Roger Wilkinson's Avatar
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    It quite possibly was doing that before but you may not have noticed it. The steering uses so much more fluid flow than anything else.

    Roger

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Hi everyone

    My old girl has been sitting at my mum's for about 6 weeks.. now that I have sold the Beetle I can get it home as my daily driver. When I last drove it the HP pump was cycling about once a minute.. when I drove it today, that cycle had not changed when the car is stationary.. but when I turn the wheel it clicks a number of times.. it wasn't doing that before.

    What may have caused the change?

    My apologies as i'm sure this subject would have been discussed before.

    Thanks

    Matthew
    The assisted steering takes a lot of the existing pressure from the system. when you have the cr at normal ride height and sitting at rest (no use of brakes, steering) once a minuite for the pump to cut in is good.
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    One caveat to all that has gone before...there is a store of pressure ( called the accumulator ) to make sure that there is pressure immediately available, and to reduce the cycle time of the pump and reduce the sudden shock loadings on pipeware...if the pump is quiet when no demand is made then all is good...turn off the engine and you will see immediately if there is a reserve of pressure to power the steering...I have had up to 40+ brake applications from a car with no engine supplied pressure but the steering does use a lot lot more...
    In a quiet environment like a concrete bunker type car park you will hear the accumulator go click quite loudly followed by the grumble grumble grumble of the pump as the steering uses the fluid....if the accumulator's sphere is totally cactus you will feel the amount of steering assistance vary and increase when the pump is pumping.
    Just something to keep in the back of the mind.

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    mnm
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    Thanks for the replies.. from what you say it must be the accumulator.. had it out today and it clicks repeatedly when I turn the steering wheel.. but when it just sits there idling it clicks once about ever 30secs.. and it's a single click not an extended rumble rumble like at start up.

    Matthew

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    mnm
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    I had a look at the accumulator while the engine was idling today.. I noticed the inlet pipe into the accumulator flexes slightly (in/out) when the pump clicks over.. is this normal? There doesn't seem to be any fluid leaking from the union.

    Matthew

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    I had a look at the accumulator while the engine was idling today.. I noticed the inlet pipe into the accumulator flexes slightly (in/out) when the pump clicks over.. is this normal? There doesn't seem to be any fluid leaking from the union.

    Matthew
    When were your spheres last checked and repressurised? You can't tell what pressure they have without pulling them off and testing them. I'd be suspecting that accumulator myself, and this may also be an indicator of "time to check them all".
    Last edited by JohnW; 23rd April 2011 at 08:18 PM. Reason: Typo
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    I had a look at the accumulator while the engine was idling today.. I noticed the inlet pipe into the accumulator flexes slightly (in/out) when the pump clicks over.. is this normal? There doesn't seem to be any fluid leaking from the union.

    Matthew
    Hmmm, Cant say I have ever recalled seeing main pressure lines flex. Having movement in the main feed line from the pump to the accumulator/regulator, to me, would suggest the line or the accumulator is not secured properly and likely to cause a stress fracture in the steel line if not fixed.

    How much is it 'flexing'?

    My sugestion is to remove, test and regas all spheres once every 2 years.
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    mnm
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    When I say flexing I mean the pipe moves in and out (about 1mm) of the securing nut that secures the pipe to the body of the accumulator. .. when the pump cycles. I tried tightening the nut but it seems solid.

    I've only had it for about 5 months.. so it will be getting a thorough check up soon..

    Matthew

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    When I say flexing I mean the pipe moves in and out (about 1mm) of the securing nut that secures the pipe to the body of the accumulator. .. when the pump cycles. I tried tightening the nut but it seems solid.

    I've only had it for about 5 months.. so it will be getting a thorough check up soon..

    Matthew
    Fair enough.
    Sounds like it needs a new pipe seal. It shouldnt move. Im surprised its not leaking...
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    Default Pump Cycle

    Matthew,

    The pressure regulator typically cuts in at around 2000psi and cuts out at around 2400psi. IOW when pressure inside the accumulator sphere drops below 2000psi the regulator shuts off flow from the pump via its by-pass circuit (sending it back to the main reservoir) and diverts fluid, now under pressure from the pump into the cars hydraulic system via the accumulator sphere and the pressure output line.

    Getting only a single click and no extended action of the pump at engine idle is a sure indication that the accumulator sphere is dead as there is no reserve of pressure inside the accumulator sphere. Typically, at engine idle, it takes several seconds for a 7 piston pump to raise the internal pressure in the accumulator sphere from the cut in pressure to the cut out or by-pass pressure.

    The in and out movement of the main hydraulic line that the nut is just slightly loose by about 1/2 turn or so. Replace the the line seal with a new one and tighten that nut so it just becomes snug with a small spanner. Word of warning about the line seals going from the pump to the regulator. Do not reuse them. When the seals are compressed by the fluid the outer suface of the seals gets cut by the threads in the connections. Reusing a seal, even by turning it end for end, runs the risk of having thin threads of rubber break loose and find their way into the pressure regulator. If this happens one runs the risk of having the by-pass slide valve getting jammed causing the regulator to malfunction. Not a good thing as, in theory, the pump is capable of almost infinite pressure out put. In the real world what can happen is that either the pump fails disastrously, the line fails with explosive results or the accumulator sphere is blown apart.

    Steve

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    mnm
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    Hi Steve

    thanks for the reply and information.. much appreciated. One question.. is it OK to drive the car if the accumulator sphere is dead? I was planning on driving it back to Sydney from Bathurst this week and getting it checked over at European Autocare.

    Matthew

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Hi Steve

    thanks for the reply and information.. much appreciated. One question.. is it OK to drive the car if the accumulator sphere is dead? I was planning on driving it back to Sydney from Bathurst this week and getting it checked over at European Autocare.

    Matthew
    Matthew, I agree with everything that been said here, but will add, because you say your main feed line pulses, if the rubber is old it may have perished especially where it clamps at the pump, it could be drawing air. This would give the symptoms you describe. If you have any doubt replace it. Tricky over this long weekend but if you can find an auto store open power steering hose of the same diametre will suffice. In an emergency I have use common green garden hose (only for long enough to get me out of trouble, and of course replaced with the correct hose).

    Cheers
    Chris
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood View Post
    Matthew, I agree with everything that been said here, but will add, because you say your main feed line pulses, if the rubber is old it may have perished especially where it clamps at the pump, it could be drawing air. This would give the symptoms you describe. If you have any doubt replace it. Tricky over this long weekend but if you can find an auto store open power steering hose of the same diametre will suffice. In an emergency I have use common green garden hose (only for long enough to get me out of trouble, and of course replaced with the correct hose).

    Cheers
    Chris
    Good thinking. I learn something with every issue that is raised!
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    Power steering hose is less flexible than is ideal.

    A more likely alternative and one that will fit, to do that particular job is 1/4" fuel line. 3/16" fuel line will do the smaller lines, best sought form a mower or chain saw shop if the servos and part shops can't help. It must be fuel line.
    Windscreen washer and small diameter vacuum line is usually EPDM, which spells death to LHM systems. Don't rely on the salesmans talk, unless they actually check.

    Fuel line is easier to find than power steering line and more flexible, which is more in keeping with the way the seal is meant to work.

    If the accumulator sphere is dead, that distance and time is not likely to do the hydraulic pump any favours. With a cycle time of 30 seconds that is sort of doable, but coming down the Mountains is likely to test things.

    Give me a call Mathew, you have the number.

    Hope this helps.
    Last edited by richo; 24th April 2011 at 08:32 PM. Reason: detail

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    Quote Originally Posted by jackafrica View Post
    Power steering hose is less flexible than is ideal.

    A more likely alternative and one that will fit, to do that particular job is 1/4" fuel line. 3/16" fuel line will do the smaller lines, best sought form a mower or chain saw shop if the servos and part shops can't help. It must be fuel line.
    Windscreen washer and small diameter vacuum line is usually EPDM, which spells death to LHM systems. Don't rely on the salesmans talk, unless they actually check.

    Fuel line is easier to find than power steering line and more flexible, which is more in keeping with the way the seal is meant to work.

    If the accumulator sphere is dead, that distance and time is not likely to do the hydraulic pump any favours. With a cycle time of 30 seconds that is sort of doable, but coming down the Mountains is likely to test things.

    Give me a call Mathew, you have the number.

    Hope this helps.
    Richo, we might be at cross purposes here?
    I'm talking about the main feed hose from the top of the LHM tank to the HP pump... known to fracture and draw air.

    Cheers
    Chris
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    mnm
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    Thank you all.. Yes I will call Richo. I'm not familiar with this seal for the pipe.. where does it go? Inside the nut? which is then tightened.

    Matthew

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    mnm
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    Quote Originally Posted by GreenBlood View Post
    Richo, we might be at cross purposes here?
    I'm talking about the main feed hose from the top of the LHM tank to the HP pump... known to fracture and draw air.

    Cheers
    Chris


    Yes, I was referring to the metal feed pipe which connects to the accumulator.. not the rubber feed tube into the pump.. but i will check that too.

    Matthew

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Yes, I was referring to the metal feed pipe which connects to the accumulator.. not the rubber feed tube into the pump.. but i will check that too.

    Matthew
    That I understand Matthew, but if the hose I refer is drawing air you will get a hamering effect thoughout the sysytem. You would see some weeping that may appear to be a HP pump leak, have a good look in the area where the hose attaches to the pump.

    Cheers
    Chris
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    Your a member of the CCCNSW? if not do it ASAP, the CCCNSW is invaluable.
    Then get to the next CCCNSW Generla meeting (May) and the next technical day. In the mean time bone-up on the parts, repair manuals in the sticky download section hereo.

    The pipe seal goes inside the outer fitting on the end of the pipe.
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  21. #21
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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Thank you all.. Yes I will call Richo. I'm not familiar with this seal for the pipe.. where does it go? Inside the nut? which is then tightened.

    Matthew
    I have a seal for you. Seal goes inside the accumulator, over the main feed pipe.

    Could make you up a two piece main accumulator if pressed. Not pretty, but will work perfectly.
    Need to check I have at least one small diameter diaphragm remaining in stock, while I wait for new stock to arrive from Europe.

    If you are in Bathurst, the post offices don't open until Wednesday and Bathurst is not within the Express Post Network offered from Tasmania. Friday would be the earliest possible delivery day.
    Hoever, until you contact me I am unaware of your location, simply guessing at present.

    Hope this helps.

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    mnm
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    Richo, do you know Michael Jefferies in Tasmania? The D used to belong to him.. he sold it in 04 to the previous owners I bought it from in Adelaide .

    Matthew

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    Matthew,

    The only problem with using a car that has very low pressure or no pressure in the accumulator sphere is possible damage to the Al pump body. This is the unit that holds the pistons and cylinders inside the pump. Not something that happens quickly, but over time stress fractures can develop that will render the pump useless or useless with a massive loss of fluid - depending on where that body fails.

    Having movement in the steel high pressure line from the pump to the regulator will, eventually, lead to a minor and then, most likely, a major leak at the joint affected. OTOH it should not do any real harm to the sealing 'bump' near the end of the line.

    Having a duffed supply hose from the reservoir to the pump will not, in any material way, affect cycle time. OTHO it will introduce a lot air into the system and if sever can actually prevent the pump from functioning. On a more practical note, if this is happening, that included air will eventually find its way into the braking system. It is easy to check if this is happening. Release the pressure by-pass nut on the regulator by about 1/2 turn - the same amount that you would turn it to release any system pressure prior to work on any of the hydraulic lines. Start the engine and let it idle. Remove the filling cap on the reservoir and using a flashlight look at the surface of the fluid inside the reservoir. If it looks at all 'frothy' - kind of like the top of glass of beer that has been sitting a bit after filling, you could have a problem somewhere from the 0-ring for the reservoir's internal filter to the supply hose that is allowing air to be sucked into the pump.

    Steve

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    Quote Originally Posted by mnm View Post
    Richo, do you know Michael Jefferies in Tasmania? The D used to belong to him.. he sold it in 04 to the previous owners I bought it from in Adelaide .

    Matthew
    Ahh, that explains its familiarity.

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    mnm
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    It is easy to check if this is happening. Release the pressure by-pass nut on the regulator by about 1/2 turn - the same amount that you would turn it to release any system pressure prior to work on any of the hydraulic lines. Start the engine and let it idle. Remove the filling cap on the reservoir and using a flashlight look at the surface of the fluid inside the reservoir. If it looks at all 'frothy' - kind of like the top of glass of beer that has been sitting a bit after filling, you could have a problem somewhere from the 0-ring for the reservoir's internal filter to the supply hose that is allowing air to be sucked into the pump.

    Steve[/QUOTE]

    Hi Steve

    thank you. I did this test as you suggested and yes there are small frothy bubbles in the can with the engine idling.. a small trickle of LHM pouring into the top of the tank. I've checked the rubber supply hose and i can't see any fault.. certainly no leaks, the rubber seems to be in good condition and the O ring at the top of the filter is intact.. a firm press fit into the top of the can. If this is the only source of air getting sucked into the pump it has me stumped.

    The car rises promptly when started and and once it reaches normal height the pump clicks about every 20 secs. If I turn the steering wheel or push the brake it clicks repeatedly.. click click click click until I stop turning the wheel or take my foot off the brake.

    Everything was fine when I left the car about a month ago.. this has all started since. If it is the accumulator sphere is it normal for them to lose their charge suddenly or is it gradual? It has been sitting in mum's garage for about 5 weeks doing nothing.

    Matthew

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