Can't figure out how to pull the diconnected steering rack out of my 98 chrysler cirrus (2.5 V6)
Thursday, February 3rd, 2011 AT 11:08 PM
You have the worst car for this procedure Chrysler ever designed, sorry to say. You have to drop the cross member down to get to the hoses to unscrew them, but you can't drop the cross member until you unscrew the hoses! See a problem here?
Here's what works the best. Unbolt the 10 mm nut that holds the metal part of the pressure hose to the back of the engine. Turn the wheels to the left. From behind the left tire, use an 18 mm crows foot wrench on the end of an extension and universal joint socket adapter. That will get you in there to unscrew the hoses. Remove the brace that runs from the bottom center of the radiator to the cross member, then you can unbolt the cross member and lower it. The rack will come down with it. Lower everything just enough to give you access to remove the rack mounting bolts, then you can lower the cross member more if needed. It will also lower the rack to expose the roll pin in the steering shaft. If you lower the cross member too much with the rack still bolted to it, you could pull the steering shaft couple apart. Just makes extra work putting it back together.
There's no way to wiggle the rack out without dropping the cross member. It's also a lot easier to slide the coupler on the new rack when the cross member isn't in the way.
Under warranty, when everything is not rusty yet, this job pays 3.2 hours. I did a pile of them for a tiny "squeak" noise and had to do them on a drive-on alignment hoist so it took a little longer. If I really gave 'er holy smoke, I could get one done in just under four hours. That was after I had lots of experience.