How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic system

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Helli
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Location: Bavaria

How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic system

Post by Helli » Tue Feb 17, 2015 11:01 pm

I have been neglecting my Q4 during the last six month, just drove it happily and did not repair things that were running :D
I neglected also the forum, having other priorities on my hands.

However the Q4 reality has caught up with me again.
Replacing the middle and end part of the exhaust was just a question of getting the parts.

But now the pressure line of the Viscomatic has sprung a leak, involving of course also the power steering with the loss of fluid.
I would like to take the occasion of the repair to replace also the rest of the fluid by another type of oil.
That needs flushing of the whole system.

My big question now is: "how do I empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic system"?
(I do not mean "bleeding" the Viscomatic part).

- opening the lowest line connection and let it run out (gravity)?
- if yes, where is the ideal lowest connection?
- with enginge and (two stage) pump running?

I am sure that some of you guys have done that.
I would be very grateful for some advice.

Thanksi
Helli
3.0 V24 Q4 1994

Helli
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by Helli » Wed Feb 18, 2015 12:07 am

One additional question:

the Viscomatic has a filter in the accumulator block.
The part number from EPER is 5894238.

I could not find a supplyer for this.
Are there alternative types available?
I read in another thread (some years ago) that Alfisti has a supply of them. Is that still true?
Helli
3.0 V24 Q4 1994

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AlfaWhiz
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by AlfaWhiz » Wed Feb 18, 2015 11:28 am

the Viscomatic has a filter in the accumulator block.
The part number from EPER is 5894238.
+1 to this. I did a bit of research some time ago. I think your Alfa dealer should still be able to get this part, they told me it looks like it's available but I didn't follow it through (you actually just reminded me that I should do that as well).
- with enginge and (two stage) pump running?
Definitely not. The pump needs fluid to lubricate, if you run it without I would fear you could damage it. I think your best bet is to open up a line anywhere under the car, open the tank (to let air in) and maybe open the bleeding valve as well in the rear part to let air from there also, then let gravity do the work. Because it's a two stage unit, I think you should empty the power steering part separately (the lower pressure circut).

Never did it before, just my suggestions. Maybe someone with more practical experience can also help out. :)

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Alfan
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by Alfan » Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:41 pm

Welcome back ;)

I think it will be difficult to empty the steering rack completely, but taking the cap of the reservoir and disconnect hoses in different places, then maybe modest air compression into the system might be the best way - disconnecting the rear hydraulic distribution unit first...!

Why do you want to change to a different type of oil?
1994 Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 Proteo Rosso 550.000km
1989 Lancia Thema 8.32 Verde Indy 270kkm
2001 Alfa Romeo Spider 3.0 24V Blue Lightning 55kkm
2011 Alfa Romeo Giulietta Multiair TCT Bianco Pastello 185kkm
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Helli
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by Helli » Wed Feb 18, 2015 8:49 pm

Alfan wrote:Welcome back ;)
Why do you want to change to a different type of oil?
Because just before I got the car the wrong type was put in.
Due to the leak repair (loss of a lot of fluid it is a good occasion to do that.
Helli
3.0 V24 Q4 1994

164 TD
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by 164 TD » Thu Feb 19, 2015 11:01 am

Hi Helli,

Good to have you back!

I once made this "hydrogram" of the Q4's powersteering/ viscomaticsystem.

I would perform the following steps;

Empty the reservoir
Remove all 3 pressurehydraulic lines from 2 stage pump and try to get as much fluid out as possible (turn steeringwheel a couple of times)
put on goggles and remove hydraulic lines from hipress viscomatic system.(accumulatar will hold pressure as well.)
tighten everything up.

Now there is still hydraulic fluid trapped in the actual viscomatic coupling, hopefully it comes out during step 3.

Fill the reservoir with the correct fluid. Start engine and check oillevel. Move powersteering a couple of times to bleed.

Now do the bleedprocedure for the viscomatic with the tester. The last residual wrong oil will leave the viscomatic actuator and purge into the system.

Always hard to get the last residue out, but repeating all the above steps again and replacing the filter will do most of the job!




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164 TD
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic sys

Post by 164 TD » Fri Feb 20, 2015 5:58 pm

Helli,

Another lead here for your filter; several parts on the hydraulic control unit were made by a german company named Knapp Microfluid in Barbing. Maybe they have some records there.


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krrobrock
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic system

Post by krrobrock » Tue Jan 28, 2020 5:26 am

Hi all, @Helli, any feedback on how this worked out? I just had my power steering pump on my Q4 start leaking from the front shaft seal, and am going to have it rebuilt. The system has had ATF in it since I bought the car in 2002. The system was then open for many years, closed up a couple of years ago, and has been driven probably 500km or so since it was put back together. No other problems running on ATF, but I feel like it probably makes sense to switch back to Tutela GI/R (I have 6 quarts on the shelf already) if I am going to rebuild the pump

I am always paranoid about changing fluids after a system of any sort has been running on a certain type of fluid for many years. Also, it seems like the ability to flush the visco completely is questionable, and that I will end up with a mix of fluids unless I were to flush multiple times - I worry about incompatible fluids. Is there any reason I should be worried, or should I just proceed with 164 TD's recommendation above?

Thanks,

Karl

finalfa
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Re: How to empty the power steering/Viscomatic hydraulic system

Post by finalfa » Tue Jan 28, 2020 7:28 am

Flush the system.
I did so a couple of times when changing from ATF to more suitable fluid for the colder climate in Finland.
A couple of months after the fluid change, I had to rebuild all the pipes, due to the supply hose being rusty and started leaking. There was no sign of ATF in the system, only the new fluid I had put in a couple of months prior to that.
I used 164 TD;s method, and did that 2-3 times to try and get all the old ATF out. Between flushes, I bled both the Power Steering and Visco using the Marelli tester. After the first flush, there was a little ATF in the system left, so I think I did it totally 2-3 times.
I don't think you have to worry about incompatible fluids. Flush it out once or twice using similar fluid that you will be using in the long run, and you shouldn't have a problem what so ever.

And remember, if you've got your hands on the newer type of GI/R that is used in the 159, that won't work in the 164 Q4 according to some sources.
Alfa Romeo GTV 6 2.5 -83
Alfa Romeo 156 2.5 V6 -02
Alfa Romeo 164 Q4 3.7 -96
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