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worn suspension parts

Posted by joe_mn (My Page) on
Sat, Sep 19, 09 at 17:52

98 grand prix. i can feel a little clicking in steering when i turn left/right quickly. shop said 1 outer tie rod was loose and an opposite side ball joint was slightly loose but not bad. i changed tierod and the sound is exactly the same. shop said no other parts were bad. i know changing out a tierod is not fun. is it possible to drill out rivets on car or should i take off control arm? might as well replace front bushing too. they always tear/wear out.

Follow-Up Postings:

RE: worn suspension parts

First, you need to determine where the sound is originating. Have a helper move the steering wheel back and forth just enough to create the sound and you move around the vehicle to find where the sound is located. It may be tough to locate, but at least you should be able to tell which side of the car it is coming from. Test it with the engine running and stopped - is there a difference? (This tests the difference with and without active power steering. The clicking could be coming from the servo-valve in the power steering unit or a mechanical component within the power steering unit.)

Inspect the fasteners holding the steering unit. The steering unit could be slipping a tiny amount.

What about the steering column? Is it tightly held?

Loose wheel bearings?

Friction fit wheel/hub caps. I have traced mystery noises to hub caps. As loads change on the wheel, the wheel flexes a tiny amount and at times a friction tang on the hub cap slips a bit makes a noise. To test, remove the hub caps and if the noise goes away, that is the culprit.

Do not rule out the body and/or frame. Loads on the steering components are equal and opposite on the body/frame.

Do you have a steering damper? Although not likely, it might be a source of a clicking noise.

And by all means, tell us what you find.

RE: worn suspension parts

98 gp has a rack and pinion. alloy wheels. no hubcaps. we had the car on the lift and were exerting force on the components. i could feel the looseness in the tierod. took it off and it is certainly loose/worn. i changed out the control arm on drivers side last week. new front/rear bushings and ball joint. now i did the tierod. pass side has all original parts. maybe i was foolish to assume 11yr old car with 120k miles would only wear parts on 1 side.

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