Hello, I am new to this forum and am hoping I can get a little advice. I know, its hard without actually seeing the car, but I need to ask the question anyway. What are the chances that the steering rack on an 03 Corolla will break when a tie rod is bent in a 30mph accident (with the MINIMAL body damage I suspect that this accident happened at a much lower speed)? It has about 65000mi. On it. Thanks in advance for any help.
Better than 95%. The tie rod assembly can be replaced if the rack isn't damaged. Did the air bags deploy?
May, 3, 2006 AT 7:46 AM
No, the airbags did not deploy. From what I understand about steering racks, if its broken, I shouldn't be able to steer to both extremes w/o a sound, or feeling of skipping a gear tooth (or anything out of the ordinary for that matter), or complete loss of power steering. There were also no leaks. The car still steered while on the ground, so I just replaced the tie rod assembly. So far so good when it comes to steering (except the alignment is slightly off. Shuddering at about 70mph).
However, now I have a new sound to deal with. I originally thought it was a brake problem, but the sound happens when decelerating. Not neccesarilly braking. Again, hard to describe on a forum, but it kind of sounds like " scht. Scht. Scht.&Quot; The interval of " scht's" lengthens as the vehicle slows. I'm guessing is a busted bearing or bent bushing somewhere between the front passenger side wheel and the front drive side wheel. Is this a good assesment?
May, 3, 2006 AT 8:08 AM
I don't think it is a major metal sound. It sounds like a sheet metal sound. There is a dust shield around the back of the brake caliper. Sometimes in an accident it will bend just enough to make a noise.
There is a lot of sheet metal around the exhaust manifold area that likes to vibrate when you slow down.
Check it out and let me know.
May, 5, 2006 AT 7:33 PM
Turned out being the tie rod end assembly. It loosened up a bit causing the noise and the missalignment. I've only driven it once since it was retightened, so only time will tell. Thanks again for your help! I'm sure I'll be back to ask more questions.