Screechy sound when steering?

Tiny
STEVENHAUGE
  • MEMBER
  • 2000 FORD TAURUS
  • 4 CYL
  • 2WD
  • AUTOMATIC
  • 165,000 MILES
This is my son's car, so I'm not sure how long this problems has been developing, but he brought his car to me and asked me to listen to the screechy sound that happens when he turns the steering wheel back and forth. To me, it sounds like a rubber belt of some kind, because it's a twisty, screechy sound like twisting a balloon. But I don't know anything about the steering system on a Taurus, so I don't have a clue if there are even belts involved. Online forums say anything from ball joints that need grease, to the rack and pinion is going, to struts. Can you give me a definitive diagnosis and tell me if it's diy job?
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Saturday, September 12th, 2009 AT 9:13 AM

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Tiny
MERLIN2021
  • EXPERT
Any of the mentioned items are possible, check ball joints and rack parts by jacking the car and shake the wheel back and forth with your hands at 9 and 3 oclock. Then again with hands at 12-6 oclok, if any wheel movement is noticed on first test, look at tie rods and ball joints, second test will show up and down movement of ball joints. Belt screetch can be worn belt and tensioner pully, this is a high mileage car, and tensioners do not usually last this long! Check fluid level in the power steering pump. If tires are low on air, you will hear sounds as you turn the wheel. Car should be moving when turning the steering, if stationary(park) tire do exert extra drag on the ground!
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Saturday, September 12th, 2009 AT 9:27 AM

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