Steering wheel hangs up...cracking noises too.... - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 02-18-2009, 08:52 AM
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Steering wheel hangs up...cracking noises too....

My 99 has a 10" lift and 38's. My steering wheel has developed a cracking noise every once in a while when I turn the wheel. Sometimes it seem like the steering wheel "hangs up" and I really have to muscle it. Once it gets past where it "sticks" it's fine.

I have no power steering whine, and there's fluid in the pump, and there is no play in the wheel. I think the problem is in my column? Bearings? Rag joint?

Anyone experience these symptoms? Thanks!

~Tony
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Old 02-18-2009, 03:15 PM
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Removed the panel below the steering wheel (the one at your knees that covers the fuse panel) and there were a few small pieces of flat metal that were rectangular. You could tell they were sheared off of something. Also, there has been a very fine black debris (looks like graphite) that is dusted all over the inside of the cover too. Something is definitely coming apart in the steering column. Ideas?
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Old 02-18-2009, 03:27 PM
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when my clock spring broke my steering wheel would get hung up sometimes
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Old 02-18-2009, 03:36 PM
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Im not sure if it could be this or not, I would get a popping noice sometimes and hard to steer when I had 12in and 38s... It was the drop pitman arm hitting my upper trac bar bracket. It would hang up then pop over it and be fine... Not sure if yours may be doing to same...

Just a thought..
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Old 02-19-2009, 12:06 AM
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Thanks for the replies. But my problem is definitely in the steering column.

Here's a pic of the fuse box cover...note all of the debris:


Here's a pic of the metal pieces that fell out when I removed that cover:


What is this stuff?????

Willy...what is a clock spring?

Last edited by Red66gt; 02-19-2009 at 12:13 AM.
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Old 02-19-2009, 04:14 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willypscustoms View Post
when my clock spring broke my steering wheel would get hung up sometimes
my 92 the bushing was wearing out and it would hang and wobble. the newer units i think you are able to tighten the tilt union up now. worth a try.
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Old 02-21-2009, 03:03 PM
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UPDATE

I took the column covers off today and here's what I found:

Yellow arrow: See how that sleeve is at an angle? It has been digging a groove into the steering shaft.

Red arrow: This is a ring of metal that has fallen from the shaft and this is where it was resting. (see second picture for detail of this ring).

Green arrow: You can see the shavings that have been grinding off of the shaft.





So, my question is, what will I need to replace? The upper shaft? The casing around the shaft? A bushing? A bearing? Do I just go to a junkyard and yank the upper steering column assembly?
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Old 04-28-2009, 08:45 PM
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Ok, so I've started taking apart the column. So far I've gotten the air bag clock ring off and the plastic tabs around the steering shaft are broken off....so that was the cracking noise.

I intend on removing the entire upper column assembly....the aluminum casing and all. Is it easy to get them apart to see where the damage is and just replace those parts, or should I just buy a new/used column assembly? The manual I have (on CD) only shows how to remove/install the steering column assembly.....not how to take it apart from there. Anyone? Thanks.
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