2002 3.8L Impala steering. How do I replace a leaking rack and pinion assembly?
Country: United StatesMake: ChevroletModel: ImpalaYear: 2002Engine: 3.8L
The Steering column intermediate shaft,I believe it's called, has been replaced. That's all I could afford for a garage mechanic to do it. I was hopping if it wasn't too difficult, I could replace the rack myself with a little help from you.
Replacing the rack and pinion is not a easy job even if you put it on a lift its not that easy, it can be done but its a job. You need to start by disconnecting the rack and pinion from the intermediate shaft, there is usually a rubber cover that needs to be pushed up to do so, this is right above the rack and pinion on the drivers side, you want to use something to hold the steering wheel because you do not want it to spin when it is disconnected. Then you need to disconnect the lines to the rack they are usually 18 mm, when the lines are removed the fluid will leak out so you will need something to catch the fluid. Then the bolts holding the rack and pinion can be removed they are either 18mm or 15mm, you also can remove the tie rod ends at the outer spindle. The usually the rear of the engine cradle needs to be lowered about 3 -4 inches and the rack can be slid out the drivers side. reverse to install and add fluid. If you have any questions on this process just ask.
28 year experience, Master Mechanic
Youv'e given me some hope of confidence that I may be able IF I can get ahold of a lift and rear engine cradle jack. What did you use to secure the steering wheel? Was it locked on the interior or underneath by the engine. Why remove the tie rod ends at the outer spindle? Do I need 18mm line wrenches to disconnect the rack lines? As you can tell you are dealing with a mechanically challenge retard.So, I will probably be back to ask more questions. Thanks again. Max
I would secure the steering wheel on the inside of the vehicle, you can use the seat belt by wrapping it around the steering wheel and then putting it into the buckle. Its much easier to take the tie rods off at the spindle and then swap them onto the new rack. A line wrench may be needed if the lines are really tight but I usually do not need or use a line wrench for these. Please feel free to ask when ever you need help.