If you are thinking about buying an older car, you may find that it does not have power steering. Wondering if these vehicles are safe? How to handle them and if you can upgrade them? Here's what you need to know:
1. Power Steering Was Not Always Common
The very first vehicle with power steering was introduced in 1951, and throughout the next two decades, power steering was a luxury feature for top vehicles. If you have a car from one of these decades and even from a later decade, it may not have power steering built in. As a result, you need to make adjustments to the car or to your driving techniques.
2. You Need A lot of Muscle Power Without Power Steering
As suggested by the name, power steering lends power to the steering. That extra power makes it easier to steer. If you don't have power steering, you will have to steer more.
When a vehicle has power steering, you just have to move the steering wheel slightly to either side to make a turn. Most turns are made without ever turning the wheel a full 360 degrees. In contrast, in the absence of power steering, you have to manually crank the wheel around. If you're not used to doing that, you need to be prepared for that difference.
3. Driving Can Be Safer With Power Steering
In most cases, it is safer to have power steering in a vehicle. It makes the car easier to control. That makes it easier to respond to oncoming traffic, quick turns, unexpected issues or other problems as you are driving. When you have to manually crank the wheel around, it takes a lot more time and effort to respond to issues on the road, and as a result, you may accidentally hit something.
4. You Can Add Power Steering to an Old Car
If you're fixing up an old car that doesn't have power steering, you can retrofit power steering to it. However, this is a very involved process, and you will need to replace the entire steering wheel and add several other parts.
Generally, you need to add a steering rack, some pipes, and a drive belt. On top of that, you need to add a power steering pump and finally several clips and bolts to hold everything together.
If you have more questions about power steering or if you want to add it to your vehicle, contact an expert today.