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v6matt
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Joined: 10 Oct 2018
Posts: 79



PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 5:35 pm    Post subject: Play in steering wheel (even after new parts?) Reply with quote

Hi All,

I have a 997.1 Carrera 4 and today it was treated to new top mounts (porsche), angled bearings e.t.c, new tie rods (trw) and inner tie rods (trw)

Before I could hear a light clunking and had play in the wheel. When I picked it up, it felt completely tight (or my recollection of it), I then took it straight for a 4 wheel alignment and about 5-10 minutes it felt like slack had come back. (However one of the sides was 6 degrees out after the work, so perhaps didnt accentuate the other problem).

So I pulled up and noticed that the steering wheel had play in it, of about half inch in each direction and there is a very light clunk (however both noise and play are reduced).

So off it went back to the alignment place - everything tight, then back to the original garage.

The original garage (I have used them for years on various italian cars and completely trust them) but I don't think they quite know how this car should feel.

Anyway they wiggled the steering wheel, and the wheels were moving within that 'play' area, then we got it on the ramp and did the crow bar play check and pushed against the wheels....no play.

When wiggling the wheels however, there was a slight clunk which the mechanic put down to mechanical noise or some kind of minor play in the rack.

The mechanic is a little bemused as there is no play at the wheel but there is the play at the steering wheel with the minor clunk.

Looking online this seems to link very closely back to a couple of slightly loosened bolts on the universal joint and also the "LCA" (guessing this is the lower control arms).

Demort/folk, what do you think? and why is there no play at the wheels if it is this? (Is it so minor, but multiplies by the time it gets to the steering wheel?

I am thinking the UJ bolt might do the trick but keen to seek guidance from those in the know !
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2008 Carrera 4 - Gen 1 997
 
  
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deMort
Dijon


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 7692
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 6:33 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

If you can feel a knock through the steering wheel then i would guess that its something on the steering column .. there are x2 UJ,s one by the pedals and one were it connects to the steering rack.

I would be having a close look at both of them first as to be honest this is a new one on me .. a knock is something worn or loose basically.

Usual place for steering play is the inner rack arm ball joint but i think you said these have been replaced ? You also never feel a knock when these have play in them .. it's only us mechanics that find the fault and mention them .

I can't really see any garage leaving these loose either.
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She's not going until july 2020 though .



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v6matt
Trainee


Joined: 10 Oct 2018
Posts: 79



PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 7:51 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

deMort wrote:
If you can feel a knock through the steering wheel then i would guess that its something on the steering column .. there are x2 UJ,s one by the pedals and one were it connects to the steering rack.

I would be having a close look at both of them first as to be honest this is a new one on me .. a knock is something worn or loose basically.

Usual place for steering play is the inner rack arm ball joint but i think you said these have been replaced ? You also never feel a knock when these have play in them .. it's only us mechanics that find the fault and mention them .

I can't really see any garage leaving these loose either.


Thanks demort,

Okay so the UJs are looking like good potentials, but would you not feel play when pushing on the wheel/crowbar methods

Oddly the loose UJ (on steering rack) is all over google when searching for steering play. (Picture of the typically offending bolt attached - Picture courtesy of another poster/forum). With most people saying they have the 1/2 inch play, a slight knock/click until these UJ bolts are retightened. I am beginning to wonder if that is a forum myth/something if it doesn't feel right to you.

Could I easily get at these if I got the wheel off? (Any idea of torque?). Presumably on the 911 I can use a standard trolly jack with a bit of wood to protect the metal using the hockey puck lift area.

The mechanic was very sure everything went together nicely/tightly i.e the inner tie rods/track rod ends and upper mounts

PS: This is what I mean by track rod ends https://i.ebayimg.com/images/g/qIIAAOSwwKZc97v0/s-l640.jpg

and what I mean by inners https://images-na.ssl-images-amazon.com/images/I/71ursTb4ZnL._SY355_.jpg
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2008 Carrera 4 - Gen 1 997
 



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deMort
Dijon


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 7692
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:15 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

when you wiggle the wheel so top / bottom and side to side you are checking for play in the suspension .. play in the steering column won't be felt .. you need to have the car on the ground and see what free play you have in the steering wheel .

This is where it gets a bit confusing as you say there is play and that garage says the wheels are moving in this free play area .

I'm concentrating on the knock to be honest .. you just don't feel things like this on these cars hence i'm leaning towards it being something on the steering column .. the uj,s are the logical point to check first .

You have changed the inner and outer rack arms so it's not that .. and neither will give you a feel of a knock at the steering wheel .. ive changed many and never felt this fault at the wheel .. i've only ever diagnosed play in these whilst wiggling the wheel side to side .

Thats why to me it must be something on the column for you to actually feel this knock .

EDIT ..

I've never actually seen a loose bolt on a uj so it's not common .. but it's the first thing to check .
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My Daughter's Crowdfunding has hit the target .

Thank you all so Very much .

She's not going until july 2020 though .



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v6matt
Trainee


Joined: 10 Oct 2018
Posts: 79



PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:38 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Brilliant, this confirms the idea of checking the UJ.

Can I gain access to this bolt by popping the wheel off and getting a socket in there? Just tighten as much as possible or a specific torque?

Also can i just use a standard jack and block of wood on the usual jack point to safely lift it ?
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2008 Carrera 4 - Gen 1 997
 
  
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deMort
Dijon


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 7692
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Fri Dec 20, 2019 8:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

The uj by the pedals and just stick your head in there .. wiggle the steering wheel and watch ..

The base one and jacked up is best with wheel on a full left lock .. you might be able to see it with wheel on the ground which is obviously better due to a load on the wheel .

start there then we will move on i think .

Torque .. no idea .. it needs to be tight which will be pretty obvious i think Smile

Jack on the front lifting point but i do always say .. a wheel or a stand under the car to be safe just in case .. never leave a car on a jack .
_________________
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My Daughter's Crowdfunding has hit the target .

Thank you all so Very much .

She's not going until july 2020 though .



Mechanic

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Indy Mechanic .
 
  
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v6matt
Trainee


Joined: 10 Oct 2018
Posts: 79



PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2019 11:11 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

So popped into a fast fit place today and in good xmas spirit they were happy to get it up on the ramp.

This UJ bolt was tightened and the noise/play vanished Thumb , I had always put this down to the loose rods when I bought the car a year or so ago, its never felt better in my ownership.

Thanks again
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deMort
Dijon


Joined: 21 Mar 2015
Posts: 7692
Location: Brighton


PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2019 5:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

A very rare fault and one that's rather dangerous so i'm glad you got it checked and fixed it.

I think perhaps educate your garage as to what the fault is .. by that i mean i learn every day and feedback is important .

It's also why i come here .. not just to help out but to keep learning Thumb
_________________
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My Daughter's Crowdfunding has hit the target .

Thank you all so Very much .

She's not going until july 2020 though .



Mechanic

7pm - 9pm

Indy Mechanic .
 
  
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v6matt
Trainee


Joined: 10 Oct 2018
Posts: 79



PostPosted: Mon Dec 23, 2019 9:04 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks demort,

Oddly this seems to be all over the US porsche forums inc boxster but not so much in the UK.

I have fed this back to my mechanic, who was pleased it got gixed but surprised.

Interestingly another ex opc / porsche specialist missed this when it was serviced and they diagnosed the tie rods were a bit rough.
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benignbrent
Newbie


Joined: 19 Dec 2019
Posts: 2



PostPosted: Wed Jan 08, 2020 2:00 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

v6matt wrote:
Thanks demort,

Oddly this seems to be all over the US porsche forums inc boxster but not so much in the UK.

I have fed this back to my mechanic, who was pleased it got gixed but surprised.

Interestingly another ex opc / porsche specialist missed this when it was serviced and they diagnosed the tie rods were a bit rough.

It's good that you finally got the solution to your problem Smile
Though it can happen again. It's hard, especially if you visit somewhere far away form your home, your mechanic should be reliable and friendly.
If you pass by Chatswood, NSW, I can only pick my reliable mechanic, Karl Knudsen Automotive
Karl and the crew are always great at advice giving and fixing as well! Check them out!
 
  
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