Troubleshooting Rack & Pinion Steering

Rack & Pinion Steering

It is very important to know if something is off with your car before you drive it. After all, you just want a safe and accident free ride. With regard to a rack & pinion steering, it is necessary that any associated problems are quickly identified.

Determine What’s Wrong With the Rack & Pinion Steering

So, how can you determine if there is something wrong with the rack & pinion? You can rather simply test this on your own. First, you will need to look for a straight and level road with minimal traffic for a driving test. While testing, you may try to release the wheel to check if the car will drift off course. You can also try turning and releasing to check if the wheel will return to its normal position by itself or does it need to be manually straightened. Moreover, you also need to check if the wheel is stiff when used. If you tested positive with these driving tests, then it is necessary for you to have the rack & pinion steering checked right away for possible repairs.

Rebuilding the Rack

Once problems with your rack & pinion steering are noted, you can send then consult a professional mechanic for repair. Or if you prefer to check it out yourself first, you can certainly do so. You have the option to rebuild the rack or change it with a new one. There are replacement racks readily available in the market. Moreover, these racks have two standard variables: short and long. The long racks are assembled and are ready to install. They also come with new tie rods, mounts, and bellows. For high mileage vehicles, this would be the best option to choose…and it saves on install and repair time. On the other hand, a short rack does not include tie rods or bellows. They might cost less, but they take some time to install as you would also need to install the tie rod ends separately.

Flushing the Wheel

Once the rack is removed, you will need to flush the steering’s pump as and line to remove the old fluid. This will prevent contaminants of the dirty, old fluid from circulating through your new rack. You can flush it by lifting the front wheels and then pouring fresh fluid into the pump reservoir which allows the fluid to drain through the return line. Whenever the rack is placed on the chassis, be sure to reconnect the return line in the drain pan. Then, add the fluid into the pump reservoir. Next, crank the engine or perhaps turn the pump manually. Then, place two quarts of fluid into the pump reservoir and connect the pressure line towards the pump.

Removing Trapped Air

After flushing and filling the system, the final step is bleeding the system of any trapped air. You can do this by lifting the front wheels, then rotating them from one side to another side maybe 10 times at an easy pace while the engine is off. Repeat this steps until you can no longer see bubbles on the fluid reservoir. The levels should remain steady. Then disable the ignition and crank it several times while checking the fluid reservoir. Verify there are no bubbles and the reservoir is full. Providing this checks out, you should be good to go!

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