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Old 05-14-2015, 08:57 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Scary 1992 Accord Front End Mystery

I finally got a chance to drive the '92 Accord wagon, it's got 83000 miles on it. It goes straight ok, turns right with the usual over assisted ease of an Accord, but try and turn left - it's like the power assist goes away, and the steering column clunks every 1/2 turn of the steering wheel?? I've driven some hashed out stuff, but I have never had a car that turns one way fine but is scary turning the other. Any ideas? Or should I just call an exorcist to get the evil spirits out of the front suspension?? Maybe the steering rack is moving around and the column binds up when the rack moves to that side? I'm reaching here.

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Old 05-14-2015, 10:33 PM   #2 (permalink)
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Bent rack & pinion? Try jacking the front end up and see what happens.

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Old 05-15-2015, 03:57 AM   #3 (permalink)
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Yup I think one of us has to be correct. The column clunks a bit when you turn to the "good" side, but it is nasty when you turn the other way. It's almost too bad to drive it to the shop, but I can get there with mostly right turns so I'll risk it haha. That car was supposed to replace my CX, but any repair that is steering rack related is going to price it out of the market darnit haha.
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Old 05-15-2015, 06:28 AM   #4 (permalink)
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To make a left turn, drive through the intersection, back up 90 degrees with wheel turned right, go straight forward. I would disconnect the tie roads to make sure the problem is in the rack.

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Old 05-15-2015, 07:32 PM   #5 (permalink)
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I've fixed a car with the same symptoms by replacing the rack.
Take my theory with a grain of salt, but I thought the clunk might be, at least in part, due to "getting over the hump" in the steering shaft u joints, because the angles don't cancel each other out like a well aligned driveshaft does. Then because you don't have assist, you're putting more torque through the column and steering shaft than you normally would.
But yea I was sure to check turning each knuckle turning back and fourth once the tie rods were off, being such an odd problem
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Old 05-15-2015, 07:37 PM   #6 (permalink)
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Definitely could be a binding u joint in the connection from column to rack. I've seen a Civic and the angle is rather severe, Accord is probably similar. Try just running it lock to lock, it might free up,if you can stand doing it.

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Old 05-15-2015, 07:51 PM   #7 (permalink)
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with the new rack mine was fine, I think the "good" side with the old rack was really only getting partial assist, compared to the new. But partial assist feels great when you're comparing it to no assist

...btw chasing steering noises on malibus and traverses are my most dreaded jobs, seems like things are always clear as mud, components are stupid expensive and it's all a big time suck
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Old 05-15-2015, 10:09 PM   #8 (permalink)
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We had an '07 F150 that one of the joints in the column had seized up on. It was the definition of clunky. We got told it needed a rack of course, but our whiz mechanic figured it out - I worked the steering wheel back and forth, he sprayed it with WD40 and whacked it with a hammer. 3 minutes later it drove mint. Accord must just need a bigger hammer haha.
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Old 05-25-2015, 10:51 PM   #9 (permalink)
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How's the power steering fluid? Is it clear or dark and burnt?

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