I have a 2002 Cavalier with 60,000 miles on it. The power steering feels like it's working fine (not hard to turn, etc.) But there has been a wheezing sound coming from the steering column when I turn. I took it to one mechanic who indicated a power steering fluid leak that required replacing the rack, hose, and belt. A second mechanic (whom I have used before) diagnosed a leak as well, but recommended replacing the pump and did not say anything about the rack. Not knowing enough about this - if the fluid is leaking onto the belt (as both mechanics said), will replacing the pump solve that problem, or will the rack eventually have to be replaced anyway? Should I mention the rack to the second mechanic, or would he have definitely caught that problem if it was actually a problem?
First of all you need to find out exactly where the leak is coming from. If it's the pump, replace it, clean up where the power steering fluid has leaked onto and check to make sure it's not leaking anywhere else.