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Discussion Starter #1
2008 T&C Limited - Popping + screeching noise when turning hard in either direction

I have a 2008 Town & Country Limited, and it makes a combination screech + popping noise (loud) when turning hard in either direction. My first thought was CV joints, but my mechanic says they are fine. He says it's just a lot of pressure build up in the power steering and it's harmless, but I find it annoying and would like to do something about it. Also, the van makes a low wah-wah sound while idling, which I figured was low power steering fluid. The Limited trim doesn't have a user-serviceable reservoir, and the mechanic assures me the power steering fluid is not low. There are no apparent fluid leaks. Any idea what these issues might be?
 

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When you open the hood, it's located under the hood on the passenger side in front of the air cleaner and right behind the washer fluid filler neck. The cap should have something like "power steering" written on it.

Who told you it's not "user-serviceable?"
 

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I have a 2008 Town & Country Limited, and it makes a combination screech + popping noise (loud) when turning hard in either direction. My first thought was CV joints, but my mechanic says they are fine. He says it's just a lot of pressure build up in the power steering and it's harmless, but I find it annoying and would like to do something about it. Also, the van makes a low wah-wah sound while idling, which I figured was low power steering fluid. The Limited trim doesn't have a user-serviceable reservoir, and the mechanic assures me the power steering fluid is not low. There are no apparent fluid leaks. Any idea what these issues might be?
Welcome to the forum!

If making that kind of noise when turning, it is not normal and yes, it can be harmful. I would recommend seek a second opinion. Steering and brakes must be taken seriously.

If it is just a noisy power steering pump, then you can live with it but, if noise came from anywhere else, then it must be addressed seriously. CV joint noise is very easy to diagnose .

Hope someone here had the very same problem and can help, otherwise we will just guessing.

Good luck!
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thanks for the replies! I don't know where I got the idea that it isn't user serviceable. Maybe it's that it doesn't have a dipstick... Either way, it's clearly right there in front of my eyes, and I can see the fluid level is good. I also checked the belt and belt tension, which are both good. Specifically the mechanic told me the belt is popping when it gets under pressure, and that there really wasn't anything to do about it. That seemed suspect to me. The pump also seems ok because it isn't making any weird noises when the wheel is turned. So having ruled out the pump, belt itself, and fluid level, I wasn't sure what else to check.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
The noise is intermittent (but frequent), and it happens when moving or sitting still. However it seems like it only happens when in gear. This morning it happened when I first started the van and began turning the wheel to pull out of a parallel parking space. I described it as popping & squealing, but it's actually more like a combination grunting/squealing/straining, as if a mechanism is being pushed beyond its limits.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
I just sat in the garage and tried to replicate it, and I determined the following:

- Everything is normal with the car in park.
- I always get a high pitch squeal (with an occasional pop or tap) with the car in gear and the steering wheel turned to the stops, but SOMETIMES this happens just when sitting still and turning the wheel.
- While turning the wheel with the car in gear, I always get a low grunting noise.
 

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I've heard this noise in several Dodge Journeys/ Dodge/Chrysler vans pre 2011, just by passing by or being in/by the vehicle. Seem like a common issue.

I had a similar issue at full lock and a replacement belt solved that issue.
 
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