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Old 03-08-2011, 04:53 PM   #1
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Default bad Steering gearbox or pitman arm?

I own a 96 zj 5.2 and i cant tell if it is my pitman arm or gearbox that is messing with my steering. Lots of play in my steering wheel, about 2 inch either way before wheels turn. Also can feel a sort of knocking/grinding in my steering wheel when i turn past a certain point (turning both ways). The knocking is coming from the drivers side. I can feel the knocking from where the pitman arm connects to the tie rod end and at the pitman arm at the steering gearbox. I replaced the tie rod end with no success and cant tell if its the pitman arm or gearbox that is causing the looseness and knocking. Anyone have any ideas on how to tell if its one or the other?
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:10 PM   #2
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The pitman arm is a non wearing part on your Jeep, check the tie rod ends and the steering box mounting bolts. If the tie rod ends check ot ok and nothing else is loose in the front end, it may be a worn out steering box. I've found that adjusting the steering box will not really help and could make it feel even more funky.
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Steering stabilizers will not cure or cause death wobble, they only mask the real problem that is causing death wobble. Oil pumps do not make pressure, they create flow. Bearing clearence and restrictions make pressure. It's the crank sensor.
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:14 PM   #3
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thanks ill check it soon. could it be the idler arm?
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:28 PM   #4
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You don't have an idler arm.
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Steering stabilizers will not cure or cause death wobble, they only mask the real problem that is causing death wobble. Oil pumps do not make pressure, they create flow. Bearing clearence and restrictions make pressure. It's the crank sensor.
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:34 PM   #5
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check the ball joints too
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:44 PM   #6
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Check and see if this is your issue. Trailing arm could have a worn ball joint where it connects to your frame. Not saying yours looks lie mine did, but this bar keeps the axle shifting when you turn. and you could be hearing your springs binding when turning. could be totally off the path but just a suggestion.
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Old 03-08-2011, 05:59 PM   #7
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How in the hell did that happen?
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Steering stabilizers will not cure or cause death wobble, they only mask the real problem that is causing death wobble. Oil pumps do not make pressure, they create flow. Bearing clearence and restrictions make pressure. It's the crank sensor.
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Old 03-08-2011, 06:07 PM   #8
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honestly...I have no idea. i was going through a hole and there where a few floaters and heard a pop sound. i figured it was a stick breaking. well when i was out of the hole my steering was very sloppy. but couldnt see that from where i looked. drove home sprayed everything down. was washing the diff and saw that. I wasn't even goin that hard into or out of the hole...it blew my mind
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Old 03-10-2011, 04:41 PM   #9
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So I checked it again and found that when the steering wheel turns either direction my Track Bar slightly moves up and down and can also feel the knocking in it. The bolt that connects the track bar to the axle is able to be twisted(the nut twists with the bolt but the bolt does not seem to be loose) also took the jeep to a shop and they told me it was just a loose bolt, I think it was the track bar to axle bolt that was loose because it had recent wrench marks. could this be the culprit? And could the knocking transfer from the track bar to the pitman arm? thanks for any advice
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