anybody recognize the hose in the picture? you can see it's just below the idler pulley. I can't tell where it goes. It's the only hose in the whole engine compartment that is grimy. Just wondering what the sludge might be from...
I will take a stab at this and say transmission cooling line going to bottom of radiator? Doubt the "sludge" is ATF but it could be. More likely power steering fluid or oil leaking from oil pump cover. Just my 2 cents.
That's your high pressure power steering line. It goes down, loops upward with a metal bend and then goes over to the steering box. That hose with the protective rubber outer sheath above it is the same hose. You'll need to replace it eventually since it's showing that evidence of weeping.
Looks to me like the High Pressure line for the Power steering circuit Mine looked the same. Looks like it is sweating out the PS fluid just like mine was..
Check for bubbles or foaming on your PS reservoir, also does your PS make a high pitch grinding/gear noise when you move the steering wheel?
I replaced mine, no more foaming, or grinding noise. Once you are in there replace the low pressure lines also.. I think they where something like $6 at Napa, make sure you get hoses rated for transmission fluid, and not just radiator hoses since they will disintegrate over time with the PS fluid.
Good Luck! It's tight in there.. so take out the battery and battery tray to make things easier to work with..
took me about 2 hours tops to do the whole thing.. there are good treads on how to bleed the PS system make sure to follow one of them, It's easy if you follow instructions.