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Ever wonder how turning your steering wheel makes the the car’s wheels turn as well?
That’s where your steering rack and pinion come into play. As you turn your steering wheel, the pinion rotates, which then turns the rack. That leads the wheels to do their thing.
To paint the the picture for you, imagine those scooters you rode around as a kid. So, they’ve got the handle bars, which are like a steering wheel. And they’ve got the wheels. And they’ve got a long bar connecting the two, right?
That’s pretty much what your car’s rack and pinion is. The steering rack is connected to the steering shaft, which is connected to the steering wheel. And it’s also connected to the steering knuckles, which are attached to the wheels. As you turn the steering wheel, the two ends of the rack and pinion move to control the wheels of the car, and then your car goes where you ask it to. In theory, at least.
Now, slow down. Don’t stop going to the gym just yet. Your car utilizes either hydraulic or electric power steering, which helps create the necessary force to turn the wheels.
We get it. You don't like admitting you're not as strong as you thought you were. But in this case, you should. If your steering wheel is getting harder to turn, then the steering rack and pinion may be malfunctioning, thus killing your power steering.
You’re probably familiar with how your car feels when you steer. If it feels abnormal, that’s probably because something’s wrong. Hopefully, this isn’t new information.
Develop a good relationship with your car. Now, you don't have to talk to it, though we're not judging if you do. But, more importantly, you should listen to it. If what you hear is some clunking, that may be a steering rack issue.
Now, here's a crowd favorite: fluid leaks. If there’s power steering fluid puddling under your car, it may be from the steering rack. So, give your car an encouraging pat, tell them they’ll get that issue figured out next time, and get the steering rack fixed.
So, that thing you do where you avoid warning lights because you don’t know what they mean? Yeah, maybe stop doing that. In an electric power steering system, a malfunctioning steering rack and pinion can trigger warning lights, such as the EPS light or the stability control light.Get a Quote 1-Year | 12,000-Mile Warranty
Steering is a kind of critical part of driving. Treat it as such. A faulty steering rack and pinion will make it harder and less effective to steer, and could eventually result in a total loss of steering…which is as dangerous as it sounds.
1-Year | 12,000-Mile Warranty