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what happens when rack/pinion goes out?

11-02-2004, 04:52 PM
Since they are telling me the recall was already performed, I'm just going to keep driving it until it breaks down but I'm wondering if anyone can tell me what happens when it completely goes bad?
Tires fall off? no control of steering? no power steering?

i'm trying to prepare myself.

11-02-2004, 06:28 PM
Usually the car will either steer extremely hard or not at all. The tires won't fall off but it may cause you to lose control of the vehicle. You should start feeling it long before it completely fails, it may catch when turning in one direction or the other or make a noise that will be quite audible.

11-02-2004, 09:33 PM
We had bad rack and pinion in the used 2000 Bonneville we purchased earlier this year. The symptoms were a knocking sound when turning left or right, and I could actually feel the knocking through the steering wheel as well. Good thing we purchased from a reputable Pontiac dealer with a 90-day guarantee. Pontiac replaced the rack and pinion free of charge! YES!

11-03-2004, 10:09 AM
I can feel it knocking in my steering wheel and under my feet and it makes this loud clicking but more like a popping sound when I back out of my garage or take off from dead stop.

11-03-2004, 10:26 AM
Im not a mechanic by any means but that sounds more like a CV Axle on the way out no?

11-07-2004, 04:05 AM
I don't know, that's what my Dad said but he hasn't driven it, and it's starting to vibrate the whole car. But the noise when I turn left or right is really bad.

11-07-2004, 05:22 AM
I would agree with both 00BlackGTP and your dad. This sounds like a CV/axle shaft going bad. Does the car vibrate at all speeds or at a certain speed like around 60 mph. Usually when a CV joint goes bad you will feel the vibration at speed and hear it when you are moving at slower speeds. You may also want to check the tires to make sure they are properly balanced. They can mimick the same thing although you wouldn't get the noise when turning. Also, have the wheel bearings checked, they can make a lot of noise especially when turning right or left and would cause a vibration if going bad.

11-11-2004, 05:00 PM
the car does need an alignment and wheels balanced. but I've never had one before feel like this one. It hits bumps SO HARD! I avoid them as much as possible. I did find out my power steering pump is going out also. So if it's the CV/ axle, do I need to worry about having a wreck? Because it feels like it's teetering and at any time, the right bump would break my steering wheel away from whatever connects it to the tires.......does that make sense?

11-12-2004, 02:06 PM
A bad axle wont effect the way a car hits a bump. You may have a strut problem also.
If the axle blows you wont lose control, it doesnt effect steering (unless your taking off at WOT-search "tourque steer"), you just wont be able to move.

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