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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Lately my steering has been getting increasingly difficult. Today it has gotten a lot worse and it almost doesnt seem like i have power steering. I will turn the wheel a quarter turn then it gets very difficult then it almost seems to jump in place and becomes easy for a second then back to being difficult. When i let go it starts to return to center but then seems to get hung up and I have to push it to center...

Any ideas? Suggestions for diagnosing? Do you guys need more info?

I have plenty of fluid and it still seems very red so I do not think i need to replace that yet. The pump isnt making any weird noises and the belt it tight.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I was thinking the rack could be going bad. Doesnt seem like it should at 78k but it is an 05...

Would I be able to hear the whine while at idle or do I need to get a buddy to turn the wheel while I listen?

How does one go about rebuilding one anyway? I thought I could only replace.
 

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I had Lexus that kept blowing pumps they would always get harder to manipulate the wheel and whine. you could hear it inside the car so its pretty loud. Some racks have rebuild kits for the seals. Or refurbished replacements might be another option.
Don't quote me on the rebuild lol. I thought I saw rebuild kits but I could be wrong.
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Could also be ball joints or tie rod ends binding up.

If you are looking for the "oh yea they all do that, it's ..." answer, there isn't one for your problem. There are a handful of things that it could be, and it is just a guess at this point. Until someone narrows it down. You have one of those problems that pretty much needs a hands on diagnosis.

But I can play doctor as well. Rack going out. Could be. Fits the problem pretty well. but not a common failure point on these trucks. Now if you said it was an early 80's K-car, those were known for bad racks.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Is there any easy way to rule out some things? maybe jack up the front and if it turns easy then that eliminates ball joints? or have the front in the air and if the engine is off and its hard to turn its the rack? the steering feels as stiff as it would be without power steering but i an still steer while standing so there is at least some added power. Could my alignment just be that bad? it seems like this happened overnight and preogressivly got worse very quickly.
 

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I remember somebody bought my rack when I parted out the front end, so you wouldn't be the first for a failure.

And steering additive wont fix a problem that recently developed, it might mask it temporarily.

I went through like 4 ps pumps on my old dodge, and I finally put in additive with the fluid and it seemed to keep the 5th one from going bad within 15 miles like the previous ones. They were all reman though so maybe I just had 4 bad ones in a row.
 

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there are no noises when you turn the wheel from the pump or from the ball joints? my uniballs went dry (ha ha) on my TC UCAs after 3 or 4 years and got hard to turn and creaked/groaned sometimes when turning the wheel. I used white litihium grease, but the recommended stuff is a dry teflon based lube.

usually hard spots in the steering travel points to a dying rack. every PS pump that i've had go out would whine and kinda shake the wheel when a load was put on it.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
I jacked up the front end and usually it would be easy to turn the wheels back and forth by hand. Steering wheel wasnt locked and I was able to move it a little but not much at all. I heard a little bit or creaking on the drivers side right where the steering wheel connector rod? goes into the rack. Through the floor board you can feel some tight spots in the steering when it creaks.

How could my rack have gone bad so quickly? It seems like this happened over night. If the rack is the problem, what happened? What can fail in there?
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 ·
OK. still working on this.

Wheels off the ground and engine off. I can easily turn the steering wheel and i can easily turn the wheel but when i push hard to turn fast it makes a bubbling sound almost like there is air in the rack.

Wheels off the ground and engine running it is about the same when turning the steering wheel but the wheels themselves do not budge.

running on the road is the same. hard to turn. no return to center.

ball joints and tie rods are all checked out.

I ordered a new steering rack. brand new with messed up lines for 160 shipped. just have to switch my lines over and I should be good to go.

Is there an adjusting nut that I need to mess with when I install it?
 
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