Sloppy Steering...PLEASE HELP - Ford Powerstroke Diesel Forum
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:43 AM
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Sloppy Steering...PLEASE HELP

Hey all I'm kind of new to the diesel world and am already having problems with my truck. When I'm driving down the road it feels like my truck is all over the road and i'm fighting it just to go straight. The steering wheel is turned slightly to the left when driving down the road too.

I just had it realigned and put steering stabilizers on it. They both seemed to help(took out alot of wobble), but it's still wondering all over the road and the steering wheel is still slightly to the left. Any suggestions on how to tighten up the steering and correct this problem?? Also since my steering wheel is still turned to the left is that something more than an alignment or should i be taking it back to the garage that just did the alignment?
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Old 06-01-2009, 05:48 AM
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With the lift you have, you will need a/m caster cams to correct the 'wander'. Truck Toyz is a sponsor here, and htey have them. You just swap them out, and then make sure your alignment is still good by takign it to a shop.
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Old 06-01-2009, 01:56 PM
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We had the same problem on our 04 and we just put $650 worth of new ball joints and tie rods on this weekend and it's fixed now bad ball joints on these trucks can make the steering stiff and unsmooth and as a result it woreout the steering linkage. I reccomend checking bjoints and steering linkage.
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Old 06-02-2009, 04:49 AM
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Thanks for the suggestions guys.

It's hard to explain, but it almost feels like something is loose in the steering wheel?? I went from a car to a truck so i don't know if this much play in the wheel is normal or not, but it just doesn't seem right to me. Another thing it will do is when im going down the highway and im fighting it back and forth it kind of "slips". I don't know how to really explain it but it's almost like theres tention on the wheel then all of the sudden the wheel turns a few degrees to the left on its own. Almost feels like you hit a patch of ice and the tires are floating....but it's june so theres definetly no ice around now! haha
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Old 06-02-2009, 04:59 AM
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It sounds like you've got a couple of things going on here.

First off I'm a little suspicious of the shop that did you're alignment. The steering wheel should be centered after an alignment. The only valid excuse for it not to be if you've got so much lift that you've reached limit of the adjustment on the drag link. I really doubt that's the case and if it is they should have told you that.

You may very well need aftermarket caster cams to get the alignment within spec but again the alignment shop should have told you that they couldn't get it within spec. without them.

If there's worn parts in the front end the shop should have found them before they tried to do an alignment.

The steering boxes in these trucks suck. I've had 5 of them in my '01 including one that was junk when it went in. I suspect that's a big part of your problem.

I think you need to get the recommended alignment spec.s from ProComp and find another alignment shop.

Your truck is never going to drive like a car and the lift is going to make it worse but it should go down the highway without having to fight to keep it in your lane.
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Old 06-02-2009, 06:01 AM
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They gave me a printout with all the specs, but it doesnt really mean a whole lot to me. The tires are pretty wore down (around 40,000miles) so i dont know if that would play a part in it or not.

Am i going to do any further damage to the steering box or linkage if i keep driving it or is the damage already done?? The reason i ask is because i am heading to canada(500miles each way) next week and don't really have the time, or the money to fix it before the trip.
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Old 06-02-2009, 09:22 AM
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Tires could cause some of the handling issues but they won't cause and off center steering wheel. You won't cause damage to the steering box or linkage by driving it but if the shop missed something that's about to fall apart then you'll be running the risk of that happening and that won't be fun.
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Old 06-02-2009, 09:47 AM
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Since you have the printout, can you tell me what your caster is on the front axle on both sides?
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Old 06-02-2009, 11:12 AM
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We took our 04 to ford for a reflash and told them to take a look at thesteering and see if they had any idea what was wrong with the steering anyway they look at the steering and reflashed the truck and only charged us for a reflash so what I'm saying is take it in to somewhere and have them tell you what's wrong with it before you start slinging parts at it just to have it looked at shouldn't cost you.
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Old 06-02-2009, 11:40 AM
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Alright Here's the numbers from the alignment printout

Left Front
Actual __ Before __ Specified Range
0.3 __ 0.2 __ Camber __ -0.08 __ 1.3
5.1 __ 5.1 __ Caster __ 1.5 __ 5.5
0.10 __ 0.00 __ Toe __ -.011 __ 0.14

Right Front
Actual __ Before __ Specified Range
-0.3 __ -0.2 __ Camber __ -0.8 __ 1.3
5.2 __ 5.2 __ Caster __ 1.5 __ 5.5
0.09 __ 0.13 __ Toe __ -0.11 __ 0.14

Front

Actual __ Before __ Specified Range
0.6 __ 0.4 __ -1.0 __ 1.0 __ Cross Camber
-0.0 __ -0.0 __ -1.0 __ 1.0 __ Cross Caster
0.19 __ 0.13 __ -0.22 __ -0.28 __ Total Toe
0.08 __ 0.12 __ Set Back

Can someone tell me what this all means and whether they actually did anything or was the alignment a waste of money???

Like i said before the steering wheel is still pointing to the left about 25 degrees....do you think based on these numbers i should take it back in??
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