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Old 03-11-2008, 13:27   #1 (permalink)
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Taurus RACK & PINION??????

The inevitable happened today with my 99 Taurus. The power steering pump started to get angry and remained angry until I fed it additional fluid. I checked to see where the fluid was going and sure enough, the passenger's side was soaked with pump fluid around where the rack and pinion are.

I go a price from a "friend" of $1000 to change the rack. I asked if it was repairable and told, "NOPE". That price will include alignment. I checked a new assembly out at RockAuto and found the new prices ranged from about $175-220. Of course, this is just for the part. I also noticed they sell seal kits for $20 which is what I think is gone.

QUESTIONS:

*What should changing this assemble cost?

*How difficult is it to just change the seals and is something recommended?

*How long should it take an inexperienced guy to change this thing?

*The picture in RockAuto does not show tierod ends or their connections. Des this come with inside tie rod ends or am I wrong about where the tie rod ends go?

*Are any special tools needed to replace this thing?

*Is this something you would recommend for the "shade tree guy?"

Your inputs/suggestions are important! OH before I go, how do I gget to post this question with BOLD FONT??

Thanks

Foggy
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Old 03-11-2008, 14:32   #2 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus RACK & PINION??????

First, confirm whether it's actually the rack that's leaking or the high pressure hose. If it's really the rack, the "book" time for a replacement is 4.5 hours including alignment. Rebuilt racks come in two varieties, short and long. The short rack does NOT come with inner tie rods. The long rack does come with inner tie rods. Neither come with outer tie rods.

As for a DIY, it kinda depends your skill level and shop equipment. You will need to put the vehicle in the air and lower the rear engine cradle. That means extra jacks and jack stands. It's also pretty tight working quarters to disconnect the old lines and the steering coupling. Air impact tools help a lot.

The easiest (but a little more costly way) to do this job is to forget about wrestling with the old P.S. lines. Just cut them off and replace with new ones. Pop the outer tie rods (you'll need a tie rod puller for this). Then center the tires and wheels and lock the steering wheel. (if you don't, you'll screw up the clockspring on the airbag). Then disconnect the steering coupler, remove the rack bolts, lower the rear engine cradle and slide the whole assembly out the side. Reverse to install and then get it aligned.
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Old 03-11-2008, 16:33   #3 (permalink)
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Re: Taurus RACK & PINION??????

Rick--

A VERY GOOD REPLY!!!! This is where I am now. I found instructions on how to replace the thing and had a very brief conversation with Self. Self decided that no way in #^%% was I going to do this job. I took the car tonight to a less costly friend, in whom I believe enjoys higher skill levels than the other friend who gave me a $1000 quote.

I am told (veeery rough estimate) that I can expect to pay between 6-700 IF IT IS the rack & pinion. I will know in the morning what they think the problem is. The car will not get any work done on it until either Thursday or Friday. In my humble opinion after learning what is involved, this type of work is best done by those who have all the correct tools including a hoist and smarts.

Thank you for taking the time to give advice. I will report back how things worked out along with what the true problem was.

Foggy
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