North American Turbocoupe Organization



Leaky rack opinions
sicsiksix Offline
Member
#1
Well here is my question of the day. I decided to investigate into my leaking rack problem yesterday as well as check my tie-rods to ensure that they are okay and wont break on me when I'm driving on the highway.

I'm pretty sure the tie-rods are okay, I jacked the front of the vehicle up, locked the steering wheel and had a co-worker grab them at 3 oclock and 9 oclock while I watched the rods. They both move at the same time about an inch or two in both directions until the wheel hits it lock.

Now as for the leaking part, the leak comes from the passenger side boot. I cleaned it up and pulled it back and about half a pint of pink (fairly clean) fluid came out. I used a flashlight and kinda looked around in there and everything LOOKS okay. Its not a huge leak, but it is an anonyance. Is it worth my time to pull the rack and have a look inside? or is a little leak from in there going to be okay? I dont want to replace the rack right now so my only options are to live with it, or buy a seal kit for it. Just thought I'd get some opinions.
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Pete D Offline
Administrator
#2
On checking the tie rods, I'm not sure you did it correctly and i can't find a procedure for it in the manuals. However there are some past posts about it: http://natomessageboard.com/Forum1/HTML/003636.html
http://natomessageboard.com/Forum1/HTML/000064.html

See Jeff K in this one: http://natomessageboard.com/Forum1/HTML/001370.html

If you need to change the rack, see the last reply here: http://natomessageboard.com/Forum1/HTML/004365.html
Pete Dunham


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sicsiksix Offline
Member
#3
Hmm, well I had already read all those posts...but now that I've searched some more and on here and TF I dont think I checked them correctly. I read on TF that you have you grab the rod and shake it hard at the inner and outer. If there is any movement (besides moving in towards the rack and having the other side move in unison) then they are bad. I was just turning the tire in and out. I will jack up the front end again today and this time have someone hold the steering wheel tight and I'll grab the rod and violently jerk on it and see if it moves towards the front or back of the vehicle at all. I'll do that at lunch after I go pickup my WGA from the welding shop down the street.
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Jeff K Offline
Administrator
#4
Quote:Originally posted by sicsiksix:
Hmm, well I had already read all those posts...but now that I've searched some more and on here and TF I dont think I checked them correctly. I read on TF that you have you grab the rod and shake it hard at the inner and outer. If there is any movement (besides moving in towards the rack and having the other side move in unison) then they are bad. I was just turning the tire in and out. I will jack up the front end again today and this time have someone hold the steering wheel tight and I'll grab the rod and violently jerk on it and see if it moves towards the front or back of the vehicle at all. I'll do that at lunch after I go pickup my WGA from the welding shop down the street.

Yes, that is the correct method. If the tire doesnt have any play when jerked, all is good. If there is play, you need to look at the tie rod and outer tie rod end while the tire is jerked to find out the source of the play.

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Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 23 psi, forced air intercooler, water injection, bypass valve, Ranger roller cam, subframes, etc., etc.. // 86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP nitrous, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.... // 91 Escort: Bone stock winter car // 04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car) // 91 Topaz (daughters first car)
Jeff Korn

88 Turbo Coupe: Intake and exhaust mods, T3 turbo at 24 psi, forced air IC, water injection, BPV, Ranger cam, subframes, etc., etc.
86 Tbird 5.0 (original owner): intake, exhaust, valvetrain mods, 100 HP N2O, ignition, gears, suspension, etc., etc.
05 Taurus SEL Duratec daily driver
04 Taurus Duratec (wifes car)
02 Pontiac Grand Prix GT
95 Taurus GL Vulcan winter beater
67 Honda 450 Super Sport - completely customized
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Chuck W Offline
Posting Freak
#5
You should not have fluid in the boots...They're there to keep crud off the tie rods and the rack itself, not to keep fluid in.

The rack seals are leaking...time for a new one.

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83 TC Clone, 84 XR7, 80 XR7, 80 Zephyr Z-7, 86 XR4 AND 88 Scorpio
NATO Member
83 TC Clone, 80 Cougar XR-7, 85 Volvo 244 Turbo, AND 88 Scorpio
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sicsiksix Offline
Member
#6
What sort of problems could I run into if I just let them leak? could it result in a diaster? or possibly just lose all power steering? I really dont have the money to replace the rack on this beast.
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tps87turbo Offline
Posting Freak
#7
Quote:Originally posted by sicsiksix:
What sort of problems could I run into if I just let them leak? could it result in a diaster? or possibly just lose all power steering? I really dont have the money to replace the rack on this beast.

Depends on the amount of the leak. You chould try to add some trans addiative that stops leaks (Only a little, not the whole can). I used to use TransX when the tranny was leaking & slipping on my 95 F150. It helped swell & recondition the seals. I also would jack up the car (Safely) & have someone turn the wheel lock to lock while you are under the car seeing how much fluid is leaking (pull boot away to see what going on). If its a few drops, then you should just top off the system everyday until you get it fixed. If its pouring out, then you have no choice but to replace the rack.

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Tony Sceia -

HIS Red 88 TC http://www.turbotbird.com/showroom/TySa_88tc.html



HERS - Blue 87 TC, fully loaded with every option, Gilies Valve, K & N Filter, 3-core Radiator, New Paint...just needs to be put back together, Interior re-done & get some exterior parts.

87 TC - Bought as a Parts Car, & will remain a parts car now that I found the blue one.
Tony Sceia -

HIS Red 88 TC
http://turbotbird.com/showroom/data_r-z/...a_88tc.php
HERS - Blue 87 TC, fully loaded with every option, Work in Progress
87 Gray TC Parts Car - Gave to BJL and is now his daily driver
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JohnL Offline
Senior Member
#8
Too bad you're so far away, I just did the rack on my car and I thought it was a pretty fun job, two bolts, steering shaft, and the lines and tie rods and it's off. Auto Zone stocks the racks but I got the TRW outer tie rod ends(yours may be reusable) and the matched Auto Zone's price, one of the people in Auto Zone really was being a d***(although she was a woman) and so I took their tie rods back. They gave me two different ones with the same warranty and proceeded to tell me they were the same because they had the same warranty. Whatever.. Also, if and when you get a rack, check the seal around the input shaft, mine wasn't in all the way on a brand new(remanufactured) rack. Must have been built on a Friday. I tapped it right back in, but it pissed me off some more.

Also, I measured the overall length of the old rack as best I could and made the new parts match that number, the steering wheel isn't centered but that's easy to fix with equal turns on each tie rod. Car handles the same and it beats a 40 dollar alignment. If the tires start to wear weird than just adjust it and rotate the tires.

Anyway, way too much information.
John Lewis
88 TC, 87 XR, 84 SVO
Currently deciding which is worth my time.
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