Why Does My Car Steering Wheel Becoming Hard To Turn?


Our editors independently research, test, and recommend the best products, and articles are reviewed by professionals. As an affiliate of Amazonwe may receive commissions on purchases made from our chosen links at no extra cost to you.

Aside from sheer negligence on the part of the car owner and also lack of proper maintenance and late service checks, several factors can cause a steering wheel to become hard to turn, but before I go into details, note that the major reason usually has to do with your POWER STEERING FLUID.

When you ignore some warning signs such as struggling to turn your lower steering when driving at low speed, you stand the chance of risking your life and those of your loved ones in your car.

Having stiff steering while driving shouldn’t be something you wish for, and that’s why it’s necessary to take the required precautions.

Various reasons can cause a steering wheel to become hard to turn, and some of them include the following;

  • Running low on power steering fluid
  • Using a faulty power steering pump
  • Driving on thick power steering fluid
  • Using a damaged serpentine belt

1. Running low on power steering fluid

A common reason why your steering is stiff can be attributed to low power steering fluid in your vehicle.

This can be caused by fluid leakage in certain areas of the pressurized hose area.

Simply refilling the fluid in the power steering tank will go a long way in arresting this anomaly, but ensure you take care of the leak to avoid future occurrences.

2. Using a faulty power steering pump

Your power steering pump is responsible for producing the right amount of pressure needed in effortlessly turning your steering wheel.

However, things become really difficult and challenging when you have a problem with your steering pump.

A sign of this problem can be a “buzzing” sound you hear anytime you turn your power steering.

To avoid the hazard that comes with such a problem, get your car to a professional car mechanic as soon as you notice the symptom I just spelled out.

3. Driving on thick power steering fluid

Sometimes, power steering fluid can also go bad with time, and by going bad,

I mean becomes thick thereby losing its lubricating capacity.

Endeavor to religiously follow your car’s routine of changing your power steering fluid as recommended by your manufacturer.

When you notice difficulty turning your steering at low speeds, it is a sign that your power steering fluid might be going bad – do well to change it with a new power steering fluid

4. Using a damaged serpentine belt

Aside from the issues involving power steering fluids and pumps, breaking or cracking of your car’s serpentine belt is also a common cause of having a stiff wheel.

As soon as you notice any form of stiffness, and you have ascertained that the power steering fluid is up to date, do well to check the belt area – and the moment you notice a break or crack, ensure you replace it with a new one to avoid any sort of stories that aren’t pleasing to the ears.


What would cause the steering wheel to be hard to turn?

The following is a summary as to why it would be difficult for a wheel to turn when it should;

  • Using a damaged serpentine belt
  • Driving on thick power steering fluid
  • Using a faulty power steering pump
  • Running low on power steering fluid
  • Defective steering rack, amongst many others.

What causes car steering to be stiff?

Other factors attributed to stiff steering wheels apart from the factors spelled out above are poor maintenance culture and late servicing, so do well to avoid such in the future because the consequence of having stiff steering when you should be turning is very severe, and it could cost you your life if not addressed adequately, and on time.

How do you fix a steering wheel that’s hard to turn?

As soon as you notice any of the signs I pointed out above, you will do yourself a lot of good by either visiting or calling a professional mechanic well suited for the job, or changing the power steering fluid before calling a mechanic – just ensure you seek the counsel of a professional for a better and lasting result.

How can you tell if your power steering is going bad?

Just as I stated earlier, you can easily tell if your power steering is going bad by observing the following;

  • Looking out for buzzing noise anytime you make a turn
  • Difficulty in turning when on low speed, amongst many others.

As soon as you notice any slight difficulty in turning your steering, do well to locate your mechanic as quickly as possible.

Why does my car steering wheel becoming hard to turn – Conclusion.

You really shouldn’t be putting your life at risk due to negligence on your own part.

No matter how busy or tight your schedule is, always take your car for routine checks, and make the necessary changes where needed.

A stitch in time saves nine – don’t be too late when you shouldn’t.

Leave a Comment