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#4476563 - 08/01/17 01:57 PM Steering rack clunk - cannot solve
Klutch9 Offline


Registered: 01/07/09
Posts: 2453
Loc: Rochester, MI, US, World
Our Fusion has this clunk that comes from the steering rack. The noise almost sounds like a gearbox with play. I can only replicate it when the car is still, and I shimmy the wheel back and forth quickly. I'm not sure why I ever did this in the first place, but it's been like this for awhile. Today I finally got around to taking some things apart, and checked for bad parts. Both inner and both outer tie rods are good - no play, no broken boots or bellows, no clunks. I disconnected them on the outer end to test, so the parts were unloaded. Even when the tie rods are hanging free, the noise is still present. I checked the steering shaft/joints, and those too are good.

What I did see, where the shaft stub comes through the floor, is that it will wiggle back and forth the tiniest bit if you try and move it. Is this normal? I really have no experience with power steering racks, and how much play they should have. Rack mounts are in good shape also, FWIW. This is also a fully electric rack. Car drives and steers fine, with seemingly no play or noise under normal driving.
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'11 Fusion SE 2.5L - 75k miles - Havoline ProDS 5w20, FL-910s
'08 Sedona LX LWB 3.8L - 117k miles - Peak conv. 5w30, XG9999

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#4476616 - 08/01/17 02:55 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
nthach Offline


Registered: 01/02/04
Posts: 3909
Loc: California
There should be some preload on the rack and pinion but its hard to measure that in the car. I'm thinking either the pinion bearing/bushing has some play in it or the steering shaft has some slop at the splines/coupling or at a joint.

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#4476664 - 08/01/17 03:43 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
bdcardinal Offline


Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 11014
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
It could be the rack itself. I went through the ROs where we replaced racks on your year Fusion but all the descriptions were for either complete loss of power assist, or a light on and towed in.
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1995 Ford Mustang GT

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#4476668 - 08/01/17 03:51 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: bdcardinal]
Klutch9 Offline


Registered: 01/07/09
Posts: 2453
Loc: Rochester, MI, US, World
Originally Posted By: bdcardinal
It could be the rack itself. I went through the ROs where we replaced racks on your year Fusion but all the descriptions were for either complete loss of power assist, or a light on and towed in.


Is there a way to adjust preload on this unit?
_________________________
'11 Fusion SE 2.5L - 75k miles - Havoline ProDS 5w20, FL-910s
'08 Sedona LX LWB 3.8L - 117k miles - Peak conv. 5w30, XG9999

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#4476690 - 08/01/17 04:13 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
bdcardinal Offline


Registered: 06/03/05
Posts: 11014
Loc: Santa Barbara, CA
No adjustment that I can see listed.
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1995 Ford Mustang GT

Ford/Mazda Parts Counter
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Opinions expressed are my own.

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#4476701 - 08/01/17 04:24 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 18909
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
You may need a rack, I use a good place that builds perfect racks with a great warranty, not cheap junk. PM sent.

http://www.jorgenauto.com/index.html


Edited by Trav (08/01/17 04:30 PM)
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#4476709 - 08/01/17 04:34 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
DBMaster Offline


Registered: 09/18/12
Posts: 5323
Loc: DFW
I know that Escorts are not the same as Fusions but I had very similar issues, worse actually, when the steering rack bushings needed replacing. They were basically rubber inserts that fit inside the metal brackets that secured the steering rack to the body/frame.

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#4476814 - 08/01/17 06:49 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
double vanos Offline


Registered: 08/05/04
Posts: 1887
Loc: 5600 feet elevation, Arizona
For years Chevy trucks had an Intermediate Steering Shaft clunk which, among other things, caused me to switch to Ford Pickups. It is aggravating as all get out. Could this be it? When my first one was replaced under warranty on my 2005 Silverado the service writer informed me that they had over 300 in stock and replaced them like popcorn. I haven't driven a Chevy since: I wonder, did they ever get that fixed?
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#4476832 - 08/01/17 06:57 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: double vanos]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 18909
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
Lots of GM cars had that problem all the way back into the 90's, I don't think they ever got it squared away 100%.
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#4476835 - 08/01/17 07:01 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: double vanos]
4WD Offline


Registered: 09/21/10
Posts: 6432
Loc: Texas
They went to rack & pinion ...

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#4476961 - 08/01/17 09:18 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Trav]
RoGuE Offline


Registered: 02/05/08
Posts: 680
Loc: Atlanta, GA
Originally Posted By: Trav
Lots of GM cars had that problem all the way back into the 90's, I don't think they ever got it squared away 100%.


I think you're referring to the intermediate steering shaft clunk. My dads 02 Suburban has it, even my 07 Malibu has it.
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2007 Chevrolet Malibu
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#4476964 - 08/01/17 09:24 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: RoGuE]
4WD Offline


Registered: 09/21/10
Posts: 6432
Loc: Texas
That vintage had recirc ball, right? Now both of my GM's are rack & pinion - one electric and one hydraulic - no noise ...

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#4476974 - 08/01/17 09:40 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: RoGuE]
jkasch Offline


Registered: 04/07/10
Posts: 171
Loc: Michigan
Originally Posted By: RoGuE
Originally Posted By: Trav
Lots of GM cars had that problem all the way back into the 90's, I don't think they ever got it squared away 100%.


I think you're referring to the intermediate steering shaft clunk. My dads 02 Suburban has it, even my 07 Malibu has it.


Yup. The spline sticks and slips making annoying clunk. Lubing works for a while, but it seeems to always come back.

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#4477007 - 08/01/17 10:30 PM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: RoGuE]
Trav Offline


Registered: 11/20/06
Posts: 18909
Loc: MA, Mittelfranken.de
Originally Posted By: RoGuE

I think you're referring to the intermediate steering shaft clunk. My dads 02 Suburban has it, even my 07 Malibu has it.


Double vanos said..
Quote:
For years Chevy trucks had an Intermediate Steering Shaft clunk


To which I replied..
Quote:
Lots of GM cars had that problem all the way back into the 90's


Is there a question as to what I was referring to?
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#4477097 - 08/02/17 04:56 AM Re: Steering rack clunk - cannot solve [Re: Klutch9]
Silverado12 Online   content


Registered: 02/26/13
Posts: 3118
Loc: Central Virginia
I had the intermediate shaft clunk in a Dodge truck without rack & pinion steering. I just greased it and it went away.
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12 Chevy Silverado ext. cab LS, 2WD 4.3 auto
16 Challenger R/T Shaker 5.7 manual B5 blue
07 Harley Dyna Street Bob 96 c.i. 6 sp.
00 Mustang GT auto

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