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Custom Power Steering Pump
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Tad Laird's E30 M3

Tad Laird sent me these photos of a custom power steering project that he had done on his E30 M3. Tad was experiencing over heating problems with the factory system after extended track sessions. The tracks Tad runs at will often be over 100F in the summer months, and the factory P/S system can get over worked.

The long bent metal return tube from the rack to the reservoir on the factory system is intended to allow the power steering fluid cool down a bit before it returns to the pump. But with no air flowing over it it can only do so much. The factory P/S pump is also known to fail, as are the high pressure lines. So this is a nice mod in terms of reliability.

But Tad reports that the new pump also feels better than the old unit. Certainly the pulley on the new pump is larger than that on the stock unit. Thus the new pump will rotate at a slower speed. This might lead to a decrease in the level of steering assist (depending on the pump internals). On an E30 M3 this is not a bad thing as the boost is rather high from the factory in my opinion.

The photos of Tad's system are presented below. Tad's comments on the install can be found on the next page.



The new power steering pump The power steering fluid cooler
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