I noticed the rt. Side steering rack boot on my 2006 Toyota Sienna was oily and has splits. Power steering fluid level was slightly low. Mechanic says seal is leaking and entire rack has to be replaced. Naturally, the 60,0000 mile warranty ended about 3500 miles ago. Think there's any chance a Toyota dealer would take pity on me? I guess I should call just in case. Mechanic says the early failure could be due to a defective part, manufacture problem or perhaps some bad tire jars against curbs stressed the part. Could that last one really be a possible cause? Live in Florida so weather is often hot, there hasn't been much rain in the last couple of years and car is not garaged. Could seals have dried/shrunk that prematurely? Estimate to replace rack is over $1,000 which I can't afford right now. What are my short term options until I can? There is a large frame piece right below the boot, so unless I drive on a lot of dusty roads, the area seems fairly protected from road grime. The boot has splits but is basically intact. Leak is not leaving spots on my driveway, so seems to be slow. Perhaps it's only leaking when the car is running and steering is used? Could adding stop-leak fluid help? Other than running low on fluid, is there any danger in driving it? Can it affect tire wear or alignment? Any short term measure I could take to improve protection of the area from water dust and grime? Finally, is replacing the entire rack the only repair option, and is saving money with a remanufactured part a good option for a steering rack?
Thursday, November 18th, 2010 AT 2:36 PM