Has your Subaru’s steering wheel been acting strangely? Has it been shaking, pulling in one direction, or getting stiffer and harder to use? Below, we explain what these steering wheel problems on your Subaru could mean, from a shortage of power steering fluid to misaligned wheels.
Low Power Steering Fluid
If your steering wheel has become much stiffer and more difficult to drive, particularly at low speeds, it’s likely due to a shortage of power steering. This could also be the case if the power steering works fine in one direction but stiffens in the other.
Power steering is crucial if you want to drive your Subaru comfortably and safely, so you’ll want to find the source of the leak and get it fixed immediately. Check underneath your car for any signs of a leak—if you find a small puddle, it’s likely the power steering fluid.
Worn Shocks or Struts
Steering problems on your Subaru could also mean issues with the suspension, specifically the shots or struts. A stiff steering wheel is one of the most common signs that a Subaru needs new assembled struts since it means the current ones aren’t absorbing the impact of the road well. This causes the wheel to tighten up.
Damaged Brake Rotors
Does your Subaru steering wheel vibrate while you drive, particularly when you apply the brakes? A vibrating steering wheel during braking is a sure sign that the brake rotors or calipers have become warped or damaged in some way.
If the brake rotors of your Subaru become bent, the brake pads will press against the wheel surface unevenly and cause shaking and commotion to feel in the steering wheel. While this is dangerous to drive with, it can be a simple fix as you just need to swap out the old rotors with new ones and hope that there isn’t significant wheel damage.
If your steering wheel likes to pull itself one way or the other while driving, it’s likely due to wheel misalignment. It may only be an imbalance of tire inflation, but if your tires have the correct PSI and your steering wheel still seems to have a mind of its own, it’s likely an alignment issue.
Wheel misalignment can occur if you hit a curb awkwardly or too fast, a brake caliper gets stuck, or many other things happen. Whichever it is, bring the vehicle into a professional shop to have it realigned and prevent your steering wheel from drifting one way.