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Hydraulic Steering Problem '22 M220

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Posted (edited)

I'm currently in the break-in period on my new M220. Apologies for no pics yet, but 50 degree weather, and pouring rain has put a damper on that. 

I'm having an issue with the hydraulic steering. Sometimes the rudder is straight with the steering wheel in the correct position, sometimes I have to turn the wheel 90 degrees to starboard to track straight, sometimes 180 degrees to starboard, and sometimes 270 degrees to starboard. 

I've done several stop to stop turns of the wheel, with the engine running, to no avail. 

After pulling out, I had my buddy put some resistance on the rudder, while I operated the steering, and it replicated the problem. 

I'm guessing the system needs to be bled, or there is a leak somewhere. The manual, of course, says the entire hydraulic steering must be maintained by the dealer. I can't even see where to check the fluid level. 

I'm scheduled for my 10 hour on Thursday, and I'll have them check the steering then, but thought someone might have an idea. I'm a little nervous being out on the lake with potentially unreliable steering. 


Edited by bigskydoc
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I'm guessing that the system has a reservoir and fill cap under the dash somewhere in a mostly inaccessible place.

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I would agree that operating the boat with a steering problem is not a good idea and could possibly be hazardous.  The fill is usually a small black threaded cap on the dash.  The filling and bleeding procedures are a bit complicated and are available on the Dometic or Sea Star Solutions web page.



The fluid is specialized and I would highly recommend that you have your dealer do it if you do not have experience working on that type of hydraulic steering system. 

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2 hours ago, justgary said:

I'm guessing that the system has a reservoir and fill cap under the dash somewhere in a mostly inaccessible place.

That's the frustrating part. The fill cap is in a very annoying, easily visible, spot, right on the top of the dash. In fact it is in a location that is susceptible to getting caught on things, and damaged. Yet, the manual says not to do anything with it. 


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Interesting. After reading this in the manual, I feel less uncomfortable with this issue. I will update with what the dealer has to say. 



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Here is the fill cap, in close proximity to the walk through. 

Kind of ugly. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯ 


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