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Creaky steering wheel?

 
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sunnyboymaniac sunnyboymaniac
New User | Posts: 7 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/13/12
05:41 PM

I seem to have a creaking sound coming from my steering column. To my untrained ear, the sound really seems to be coming from inside the car. Also, it's not necessarily when I turn the steering wheel ... the way to make it happen on demand is to push or pull on the wheel.Index

Thinking it had something to do with the telescoping function, I unlocked that and let it slide freely, but at the end of the range (out or in) the sound continues.

Additionally, if I'm driving over even a *slightly* rough surface, I can take my hands off the wheel (obviously only if it's safe to do so, like an empty parking lot) and the creaking sound continues - in fact it's worse. My guess would be that simply holding on to the steering wheel dampens the vibrations and prevents some of the noise.

To me that might indicate some sort of suspension issue, but I could swear the sound is coming from inside the cabin. Is there any place that would be affected by movement from both the steering wheel *and* the wheels/suspension?

Looking down at the floor, I see some sort of joint at the end of the steering column (sorry don't know the proper terminology). Could the sound be coming from there?

I've had this problem for a while and have just sort of gotten used to it, but it's really starting to drive me a bit crazy since it seems to be worse during the colder months.

BTW, I took the car to the dealer sometime last year and they said they greased or lubricated something. But, the sound was back immediately after getting it back. The car is still under warranty, but it's really a hassle to take off work and leave it with the dealer yet again to have them not fix it...

Anyways, it's not the end of the world, but any suggestions are appreciated.  

waynep7122 waynep7122
Addict | Posts: 4561 | Joined: 08/09
Posted: 02/13/12
07:52 PM

how about an idea of what kind of car you have????

as there are various types of steering columns..

various types of steering boxes...


i worked on a car last week... made terrible groaning noises when the steering wheel was turned...   when i greased the ball joints and tie rod ends.. the groaning noise was seriously reduced..  i won't know till tomorrow if its eliminated...

i saw a car being guided by the driver.. being operated by the passenger.. the driver was actually walking along side the front wheel to keep it pointed straight by pushing at it...

i looked under the dash board..  the telescopic intermediate shaft had separated and slid through the bearing that guided the intermediate shaft through the floorboard/firewall..   i happened to have a pair of channel locks in my pocket.. i worked the lower section back into the upper section to allow the steering wheel to operate the steering box to get the car out of the middle of traffic lanes...   the driver actually got the passenger back in the car.. jumped in and sped away..  i was looking for a pen as i wanted to write the 17 digit vin number down..

inside most columns.. are bearings to keep the steering shaft centered...

there are also devices that measure rotational movements and direction of the steering shaft.. as the antilock and traction control computers need this information...

post a year.. make   model.. engine ...  and if its a column shift or a floor shift...  

waynep7122 waynep7122
Addict | Posts: 4561 | Joined: 08/09
Posted: 02/13/12
07:57 PM

in addition... i have found creaking noises in cars where the steering box mounting area of the frame rail was torn loose... the steering box rotates back and forth as you turn the wheel  .. this is in response to the pitman arm pushing on the steering linkage.. 82 to 90 camaros and firebirds were known for this issue.. when larger tires were installed on a conventional model that did not have the additional brackets/braces install.. or where somebody took the braces off for some reason..  or where they jumped the car .. dukes of hazard style..

i came up with a design that attached to the steering box and went across to the idler arm bracket to stabilize the steering box..  i built a few of them.. but i don't have any pictures..  talk about crisp steering..

i have found several ford vans and trucks with twin I beam suspension that had loose rivets on the axle pivot bracket..    the rivets had worked loose slightly and allows the bracket to shift slightly..  i had to drill the center out of the rivets. and replace them with grade 8 flanged nuts and bolts.. then torqued them into place..  this clamped the brackets in place..  and restored steering..

jeep Cjs also had this issue...  where the steering box would come loose.. as did some chevy trucks in the 70s and 80s..

guys with big tires have actually come up with a special pitman arm nut.. that fits into a flanged bearing in a brace between the frame rails..    stops the pitman shaft from flexing the box mounts.. really firms up the steering with big tires..  

bluejin39 bluejin39
New User | Posts: 3 | Joined: 02/12
Posted: 02/15/12
11:19 PM

Ha ha, these problems can be solved, these solutions and measures can be solved  
Only you can not think, no I can't do it
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CherieHunter CherieHunter
New User | Posts: 7 | Joined: 12/11
Posted: 02/26/12
11:40 PM

Laugh Good Post
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henry.budd henry.budd
Enthusiast | Posts: 260 | Joined: 01/12
Posted: 03/02/12
02:09 AM

Icon Quotewaynep7122:
how about an idea of what kind of car you have????

as there are various types of steering columns..

various types of steering boxes...


i worked on a car last week... made terrible groaning noises when the steering wheel was turned...   when i greased the ball joints and tie rod ends.. the groaning noise was seriously reduced..  i won't know till tomorrow if its eliminated...

i saw a car being guided by the driver.. being operated by the passenger.. the driver was actually walking along side the front wheel to keep it pointed straight by pushing at it...

i looked under the dash board..  the telescopic intermediate shaft had separated and slid through the bearing that guided the intermediate shaft through the floorboard/firewall..   i happened to have a pair of channel locks in my pocket.. i worked the lower section back into the upper section to allow the steering wheel to operate the steering box to get the car out of the middle of traffic lanes...   the driver actually got the passenger back in the car.. jumped in and sped away..  i was looking for a pen as i wanted to write the 17 digit vin number down..

inside most columns.. are bearings to keep the steering shaft centered...

there are also devices that measure rotational movements and direction of the steering shaft.. as the antilock and traction control computers need this information...

post a year.. make   model.. engine ...  and if its a column shift or a floor shift...


Good suggestion. I really like reading your replies.  
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