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 Steve Your Own Question
Steve, Service Manager
Category: Dodge
Satisfied Customers: 5494
Experience:  25+ Years experience as a professional working automotive technician; ASE L1 master technician
Type Your Dodge Question Here...
Steve is online now
A new question is answered every 9 seconds

Dodge Ram 2500 Has Lost all power to the brakes and power steering

Customer Question

Dodge Ram 2500 Has Lost all power to the brakes and power steering systems
Submitted: 7 years ago.
Category: Dodge
Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.


The most likely cause of these problems to both happen at the same time would be a failed power steering pump; I believe the PS pump pressure also operates the power brake assist on the turbo diesel models.

If the belt came off it could also cause similiar symptoms, but your alternator is also run by the same belt so your battery light would be illuminated on the instrument panel if the belt was the source of the problem. If it is charging, then you should check the power steering pump in the morning when it is daylight.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.

Okay...Let me add this to ya,

My Rig has 245K on it, whatever it is that is causing the problem is SEVERELY LEAKING under my truck, spilling down on the front axle....The PS and Brake reserviors are COMPLETELY Full, The brake pedal was so rigid that I couldnt get it to go down for the life of me....It was almost like I was trying to turn a Tank When everything Crapped out...The Belt Didnt Slip at all.Its still on the Pulley's....


Still think its the PS Pump?? NOt a potential Vacuum leak or something like that?

Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.
Does yours have the hydraulic brake booster that runs off of power steering fluid (most diesels do, as far as I know), or do you have the vacuum operated brake booster?
Customer: replied 7 years ago.

The System Runs off the PS Pump...As Far as I've been told.

Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.

The one thing that is shared here is the power steering pump; a failed pump will cause both the power steering and the power brake assist to stop working at the same time.

You stated that whatever is causing the problem is also causing a SEVERE fluid leak under the truck; this is probably power steering fluid. Have you identified the source of the leak?

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Yup! The Leak looks like its coming from the back of the pump (heading towards the firewall) That's the only place I actually SAW Fluid dripping from..If you were to look at the Front end of the Truck (Or if you have an email address outside of this site here, I'd Gladly Send you a picture of it...)its Coming RIGHT down the Center of the Front Diff Cover...
Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.

Sounds like you either have a bad pump, or a leak at the power steering pressure hose where it attaches to the pump.

If you replace the pump and/ or leaking hose, it should correct both of the problems you are having.

Customer: replied 7 years ago.
Im Sure I'll be replacing the pump, Is there any where I can find or have a Diagram of the Pump Sent to me so I know what I'm getting into??
Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.

Here is the procedure to replace the power steering pump and purge the air from the system. I was not able to locate any illustrations that I can upload, but once you get into it this really isn't that complicated of a repair job; I don't think you will have any difficulty.


Remove and cap steering pump hoses and vacuum pump vacuum line

  • Remove the oil pressure sender unit (next to the PS pump) from the engine block and plug hole in block.
  • Remove the serpentine belt from the pulleys
  • Remove and cap the oil feed line from the bottom of the vacuum pump.
  • Remove the lower bolt that attaches the vacuum/steering pump assembly to the engine block. Remove the nut from the steering pump attaching bracket.
  • Remove the upper bolt from the pump assembly and remove the assembly.
  • Remove the mounting gasket.
  • Remove the steering pump to vacuum pump bracket attaching nuts
  • Slide the steering pump from the bracket. Use care not to damage the internal oil seal in the vacuum pump.
  • Remove the two pump body spacers



  • Install the two pump body spacers.
  • Rotate the pump drive gear until the steering pump and vacuum pump drive align. Install the steering pump onto the vacuum pump bracket. Use care to avoid damaging the oil seal in the vacuum pump during installation. The steering pump housing and spacers must mate completely with the vacuum pump bracket.
  • Install the vacuum pump bracket to steering pump nuts and tighten to 18 ft/lb
  • Position new gasket on vacuum pump assembly.
  • Align and install the pump assembly on the engine. Ensure the steering pump stud is inserted into the block bracket. Tighten the pump- to-engine block attaching bolts to 77 ft/lb
  • Install the steering pump to attaching bracket nut and tighten to 18 ft/lb
  • Remove plug and install the oil pressure sending unit and electrical connector.
  • Install the oil feed line to the vacuum pump. Tighten the oil line connection to 60 inch/lbs
  • Install the fluid hoses to the power steering pump. Tighten the pressure fitting at the pump to 23 ft/lb
  • Install and clamp the hose on the vacuum pump.
  • Install the serpentine belt.
  • Fill the reservoir with power steering fluid CAUTION: Use MOPAR Power Steering Fluid or equivalent. Do not use automatic transmission fluid and do not overfill.
  • Turn steering wheel all the way to the left.
  • Fill the pump fluid reservoir to the proper level and let the fluid settle for at least two 2 minutes.
  • Raise the front wheels off the ground.
  • Slowly turn the steering wheel lock-to-lock 20 times with the engine off while checking the fluid level.
  • Start the engine. With the engine idling maintain the fluid level.
  • Lower the front wheels and let the engine idle for 2 minutes.
  • Turn the steering wheel in both direction and verify power assist and quit operation of the pump. If the fluid is extremely foamy or milky looking, allow the vehicle to stand a few minutes and repeat the procedure. CAUTION: Do not run a vehicle with foamy fluid for an extended period. This may cause pump damage
  • Start the engine and check the operation of the brakes
  • Customer: replied 7 years ago.

    WELL....The Problem Is, I Dont Beleive it has a Vacuum pump at all...So, Im not sure how this applies to my Ram...Do you by chance have a Diagram on it?? I Can read and understand the removal, But I Want to See a picture of it...The steps to remove this thing sound like a Pain in the Arse!! So I'm NOT looking forward to doing it...But a Diagram and or Picture would SERIOUSLY Help!

    Thanks Again~!


    Expert:  Steve replied 7 years ago.

    I am afraid the manuals I have access to do not contain any pictures or diagrams...

    If yours does not have the vacuum pump, then you do not need to worry about that part of the procedure. There were 2 different VIN code cummins diesels used in that model year pickup, that could be the difference.

    If yours does not have an attached vacuum pump, then it should be basically the same pup used on the gas engine trucks, and should be much easier to change. The only difference is you will need to purchase a power steering pulley remover and installer tool, to swap the pulley from the old pump to the new one (and to remove the pulley to access the mounting bolts located behind the pulley).

    I have found a picture of the conventional style pump; if this looks like yours then you do not have a vacuum pump attached.

    If you do not want to purchase the special tools needed to remove and install the pulley, you may want to consider just having your mechanic perform the installation; it is usually pretty inexpensive to have done since it does not take very long.





    Customer: replied 7 years ago.

    Ha! Mine is the VIN "6" WIThOUT the high output Motor...AND if there was a mechanic close, I'd already taken it to them...Unfortunately our Fleet Mechanics that service all of the Sheriff's Office Vehicles can't work on it for me, Otherwise I would have left it at the office!


    I Dont understand why I have to pull the Pulley out though, And If I do...Accessing the front of the motor (with the fan shroud and radiator right there) is going to prove to be even harder than I expected...Can ya elaborate on that side of it??


    I hate to keep bugging you with tons of Questions, But I like to be prepared BEFORE I start busting my knuckles on something that could potentially be VERY straight forward and easy to replace...


    Customer: replied 7 years ago.

    Okay - Took your advice and had the Power Steering Pump Replaced, Turned into be a Problem with the Vacuum Pump...Now I dont know why Dodge STEALERSHIPS have to be so expensive, but 1500 bucks for a New Vacuum pump was a bit RETARTED....So I bought one for a little shy of 400 through Napa...Replaced That and Bolted everything back together...


    and I STILL dont Have any PS or PB....Does The System Need to Prime at all, Or Am I missing a simple step to make this bloody thing work like it Used to?