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Porsche 928

1986 Porsche 928 – Power Steering Hoses

Being the dead of winter, working on paint and bodywork on the Etype is problematic. So I have turned my attention to my Porsche 928. It has developed a power steering fluid leak and frankly, I had quit driving it for fear of a fatal engine compartment fire. Amazingly, after months of sitting, it pretty much started right up. Got to love a fuel injection car!

I moved it 200 feet from the unheated garage to the heated one. I knew it was loosing power steering fluid but was not quite sure where. The engine compartment on a 928 is very tight, to say the least, and diagnosing the specific spot where the leak was occuring was going to be difficult. I did determine that the leak was not coming from the steering rack. So I decided to change the 3 primary hoses, as all of them are now 35 years old.

2 of the “hoses” are a combination of hard pipe and swaged rubber hoses. One leads from the pump to to the rack, the “high pressure” hose. The other leads from the rack to the fluid reservoir, the “low pressure” hose. A third hose runs from the reservoir to the pump. All 3 are difficult to access.

I will not go into details but I will say that to get the job done, I removed the alternator in order to access the fittings on the pump and I dropped the sway bar to access the fittings on the rack. This made access possible and I was able to fit the new hoses, along with a new reservoir. I also had to remove the lower coolant hose connecting to the radiator in order to get the bolt out that holds the alternator.

New hoses from Porsche.
Tight quarters.

Another job that needed doing was removal of the drivers side valve cover. The problem was that there was oil collecting in the wells that contain the spark plugs. A review of the internet led me to believe that this was caused by a failure of gaskets on the underside of the valve cover, that seal the cover to the cylindrical wells for the spark plugs. This job involved a partial removal of the inlet manifold and some related vacuum hoses. The big challange for this job was that the cover is held on with allen head screws. The screw in the lower right hand corner of the cover is substantially obstructed by the brake booster unit. I took a standard L shaped allen wrench and cut off the short leg to be even shorter. This allowed me to insert the wrench into the bolt and remove it. The rest were more accesible. I don’t know why but I always worry about allen head (internal hex) fasteners. They seem fragile when you are breaking their installation torque. Fortunately, all broke loose without issue.

Flipped upside down on the workbench, I cleaned the sealing surfaces for the various new gaskets and reinstalled the cover without incident.

928- Dual overhead cams. 4 valves per cylinder. The spark plugs wells can be seen in this photo.

While I was in there, I changed out the oil filter and changed the oil. When I removed the radiator hose, I dumped a lot of coolant. Before starting the engine, I filled the coolant reservoir with distilled water. After I reconnected the battery and remembered to reinstall the fuel pump fuse that I had pulled, the car started right up. It took me several short trips up the driveway to get the coolant circulated and topped off. Once things had settled down coolant wise, I made a shakedown cruise around the area with no issues. Once I am sure that I am done with all things coolant related, I will dump some water and add anti-freeze.

BTW, while I had the inlet manifolds off, I pulled all 8 spark plugs and checked the compression. All cylinders registered between 175 and 185 psi.

While reinstalling the vacuum line from the inlet manifold to the brake booster I found one small vacuum line loose. I determined that it fed the vacuum reservoir for the cruise control. After replacing a broken tee fitting, I was able to connect it back up. Hopefully, that will have a postive effect.

Next up is replacement of the shock absorbers. That will be another story.

BTW people sometimes seem amazed that I tackle jobs like this. I have to admit that 50 years of working on cars and having proper tools helps. But the internet has been a game changer for me. There are few jobs that I undertake that haven’t been done before and documented on various websites. Never underestimate the power of doing a Google search such as “How do I (fill in the blank) on a Porsche 928”.

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