How JustAnswer Works:
  • Ask an Expert
    Experts are full of valuable knowledge and are ready to help with any question. Credentials confirmed by a Fortune 500 verification firm.
  • Get a Professional Answer
    Via email, text message, or notification as you wait on our site. Ask follow up questions if you need to.
  • 100% Satisfaction Guarantee
    Rate the answer you receive.
Ask Car expert Your Own Question
Car expert
Car expert, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 10370
Type Your Car Question Here...
Car expert is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

2001 saab: hood..oil or coolant) on the drivers

Customer Question

I have a 2001 saab that had a tune up 10,000 miles ago. When i was driving home from the airport, I got a "Warning, Charging" message and my power steering went out. Upon lifting up the hood there appears to be some fluid ( looks like oil or coolant) on the drivers side that appears to have run down onto the tires. Is this a fried idle pulley?
I am not sure if it is the car or the people who service it, but I have not been partciulary happy with either during my 18months of ownership. What can I ask the mechanic to ensure I am not getting snowed? Here are some other ithings to be cognizant of...
I had the altenator replaced 20,000 miles ago.
87,000 total miles on the car.
Rough starts often, but upon firing up the second problems.
What do you think this is?
What should I ask for the diagnostics?
How much should I anticipate the cost being?
If I just had a tune up 2 months, ago should they have caught a fried pulley?
any other suggestions, as this car has been in the shop every 2 months.


Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Car
Expert:  danny replied 7 years ago.
Power steering burning up will cause the belt to slip. That will cause the charging issue. The belt wont turn the altenator fast enough. The stumble on start up is probably from the power steering pump hard to get started.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Should any of this been caught during my most recent tune up? Also is this a costly repair? what suggestions do you have?

Expert:  danny replied 7 years ago.
It could be up to 600 for just the steering pump. if they would have caught it it still would have been 600. You vehicle will be worth it to fix.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Relist: Answer quality.
Seemed nice, but not informative enough
Expert:  Brian replied 7 years ago.

Hi and welcome. was the belt still there when you open the hood? did car over heat?

hard start in the morning does white smoke come out of tail pipe?



Customer: replied 7 years ago.



Thanks for the info. The car did not overheat ( however I did get a fill coolant message). I could not tell if the belt was still there due to complexity of the V6 in that tiny engine. There was not any white smoke ( however, after the tune up last month there was white smoke for the first week). The mechanic told me this was normal....


Expert:  danny replied 7 years ago. this is a description of the power steering of course you will see several other pulley,s there is a chance another pulley could have locked up which would stop your charging and power steering. But from what you have told me It points to the power steering.
Customer: replied 7 years ago.



Thank you for the follow up. I think the power steering is symptom of another problem., as I was not informed of low power steering fluid. What would you ask the mechanic if you were me?

Expert:  Car expert replied 7 years ago.
Welcome to just I'm here to help you and your 100% satisfaction is my goal. Even though the car was tuned up two months ago there would be no way to foresee an idler pulley that was going bad and you should expect to pay approximately $200 for parts and labor to replace the idler pulley. The best way to know that you're not getting snowed is ask for the old parts back
Car expert, ASE Certified Technician
Category: Car
Satisfied Customers: 10370
Car expert and other Car Specialists are ready to help you