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Steering, how to check by Volvo procedure.

Help, Advice, Owners' Discussion and DIY Tutorials on Volvo's stylish, distinctive P2 platform cars sold as model years 2001-2007 (North American market year designations).

2001 - 2007 V70
2001 - 2004 V70 XC (Cross Country)
2004 - 2007 XC70 (Cross Country)
2001 - 2009 S60
2003 - 2007 S60 R
2004 - 2007 V70 R

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zegers
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Steering, how to check by Volvo procedure.

Post by zegers »

I have a 2001 Volvo V70XC with 300.000 km. The car failed safety because of the steering. All joints are tight!

The mechanic puts the car on a lift, wheel hanging down, then checks.
With the tire on the ground there is no movement at all. I don't want to buy a new steering rack and still have the same problem.

My question is: does anyone know the official Volvo procedure to check the steering on a Volvo? Is there Volvo documentation?

Help is greatly appreciated.

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Post by jimmy57 »

The first step is to see what the prescribed check is for the inspection used to fail you.
I looked in VIDA and there is nothing there as a specific steering check. There is a very vague thing in maintenance list about inspecting for leaks, torn boots, and excessive wear.

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Rattnalle
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Post by Rattnalle »

I agree we need more details about what they actually checked for. Why did it fail more specifically?

zegers
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Post by zegers »

With the car on a hoist, you can move the left wheel just a little with your hands (on the 9 and 3 clock position). The wheel on the right cannot be moved.
The "rack" on the left side moves a little up in the housing if you force the left wheel. I took the steering rack to a steering rack re-builder and he said that the rack movement is normal. With the wheels on the ground there is no angle between the outer and inner tie rod to the "rack" and the wheel cannot be moved.
Turning the steering wheel with tires on the ground moves the wheels instant, without play.
The mechanic says it fails safety, I disagree.

My other 2001 V70XC is exactly the same.

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Post by abscate »

Steering on a car is checked with the suspension unloaded and by visually inspecting play in the toe rod ends, rack. And ball joints. Typically, allowable play is a few mm at most
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Post by jimmy57 »

There is a bushing for the rack in the end of steering housing. There is a preload spring that pushes against a saddle puck (can't think of the name they call this part) to keep the rack gear teeth loaded at the correct amount against the pinion. When the wheels hang there is a force vector to push the rack against the preload puck and it yields since there is a spring. When laden, as already mentioned, there is no angle to have the force to create the yield and the play you can feel. Another thing I have had some national chain tire stores say is a failed rack is a knock you can get if you turn steering wheel right and then reverse turn to the left (or vice versa). The fluid pressure applied to one side of power piston on the rack is suddenly reversed when you do this and there is a pressure wave that does create a knock in the rack and the lines. A recirculating ball integral assist steering gear can do the same. Sometimes the fix is the similar to the fix for your getting burned when you place it on a heated stove, quit doing that!

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Post by oragex »

I doubt these racks can be rebuild (and surely not worth the hassle) so going used is in order here IF the rack is bad. You'll need a 2001-2003 SMI one www.youtube.com/watch?v=CxdHQt_XDhw

But, if one wheel moves a little, I doubt the rack has a problem. This sounds pretty close to a worn inner or even outer tie rod. Be aware of garages that jump right into blaming the steering rack: they make plenty of money on this repair - my past experience in Montreal is three garages blatantly lied to me the rack was to change when it was only a loose ball joint. They even lifted the car with the keys removed from the ignition (the steering is locked but still has a little play) and told me look, the wheels have play and knock, the rack is busted.

It can also be a busted control arm. Try jacking the car on one side and ask a fried to shake the wheel (grab at 3-9) then look from behind and rear of the wheel what is moving - can put you hand on parts to 'feel' the knock. Careful not to get under the car if you're lifting it with only the spare jack. Lift only on a level and dry surface.

By the way, use only parts from the few quality brands out there. May try with NAPA, if not see on Eeuroparts. I think they use UPS World Ease which has import taxes paid in advance, so no surprise as with other carriers. Get only Lemforder, I don't trust the other brands (don't let yourself temped to save a few $ on these)
https://www.eeuroparts.com/Cars/Volvo/1 ... ch=tie+rod

Of course, you can always get a large pipe wrench and pull a tie rod from the junk yard, these are quite commonly replaced so you can find one in good condition. Again, only from a 2001-2003 SMI rack

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Post by abscate »

The lower control arms on average roads last about 100 k miles, replace if getting close to that.

Just replaced some LCA with 200k and I could barely see play, but on removal they were horribly loose
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Post by zegers »

jimmy57 wrote: 09 Feb 2019, 21:57 There is a bushing for the rack in the end of steering housing. There is a preload spring that pushes against a saddle puck (can't think of the name they call this part) to keep the rack gear teeth loaded at the correct amount against the pinion. When the wheels hang there is a force vector to push the rack against the preload puck and it yields since there is a spring. When laden, as already mentioned, there is no angle to have the force to create the yield and the play you can feel. Another thing I have had some national chain tire stores say is a failed rack is a knock you can get if you turn steering wheel right and then reverse turn to the left (or vice versa). The fluid pressure applied to one side of power piston on the rack is suddenly reversed when you do this and there is a pressure wave that does create a knock in the rack and the lines. A recirculating ball integral assist steering gear can do the same. Sometimes the fix is the similar to the fix for your getting burned when you place it on a heated stove, quit doing that!
When laden there is no play. Only when the wheels are hanging there is "play". The "play" is the rack in the steering house moving up a little at the left end of the steering rack, where there is no bushing.
On the right hand side end there is a bushing, on the left hand site there is not a bushing, hence the "play".

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Post by oragex »

Was the inner tie rod replaced on that side? When these are being replaced, the inner centring bushing can fail upon torquing the tie rod, if the rack bar is not counterhold (Volvo has a special tool for this). Not always but may happen. Anyhow, you need a replacement rack so look for a used one if keeping the car - and its a good job, several hours. 'Refurbished' racks may or may not be good

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