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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Guys:
Newbie to this site with an issue!.
My truck's steering wheel doesn't turn toward right while in stand still. If I am driving I can turn the steering wheel toward right, the faster I go the easier it is to turn. No prblem turning the steering wheel to the left at all even in stand still. I have to say it happened like this in couple of days very sudden after I drove 1200 miles from Seattle to LA. No problem on the road even at gas stations and I was not towing anything.
I am having hard time to isolate the problem. Is it the steering box, pitman/idler arm, ball joint(s) or something else?
This is what I have done so far: I flushed the P/S system again(the system was flused at 35000 miles, now I have over 50000 miles on it), I jacked up the front, when there is no load on the front there is no problem turning the steering to left or right, I didn't see any play on either of the wheels or center link despit torn pitman arm boot.
Any ideas? I just don't want to start changing parts without knowing. I thought maybe pitman arm sized/failed but if that is the case shouldn't have problem turning the wheels in any direction? besides, I thought failed pitman/idler arm cause excessive play in center link not freezing the steering?!
Any help would be appreciated. Sorry about long story.
Thanks
 

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It is a known issue w/ these trucks & bigger tires. Make sure you have at least 55 psi (sweet spot for me) in the front tires.

When you say at a standstill are you applying the brakes?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Thanks.
I never heard of this issue before and my truck was never like this. Again I am not mechanic. To answer your question, yes some times I applied the break (mainly when I was flushing the P/S and some times I didn't. Then your suggestion is leave it the way it is?
 

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You said you flushed the power steering about 15000 miles ago?

I see ur pitman arm boot is torn? How long ago did that happen? You can change it out (at least I would). I wonder if the steering stabilizer is bad also? I would think that you would have the issue all the time, not just at a standstill. I know I have a hard time turning in a parking lot. I have to keep my foot off the brake to put it in a parking spot or give it a bump on the go pedal.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
P/S was flushed 15000 mile ago but I flushed again two days ago to see if that makes any difference. It didn't.
As far as the pitman arm boot, I don't know how long it has been like that but I lube the grease fitting every 7000-10,000 miles (If I don't forget) and I don't remember I saw it damaged last time wich should be about 6 months ago. besides when I grab the center link when truck is on the gorund or when the front wheels are lifted, I don't get any play in center link.
As far as steering stabilizer, that is something that I have not thought about. I thought steering stabilizer works mainly when truck is driving not while it is stopped.
ob_1jr until this happened, even in the parking lot I could easily turn my steering wheel in any direction while holding with few fingers. It was never hard at all. maybe you are in the same boat as me!. I hope others chime in and let us know how the steering feels at different situation.
 

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Discussion Starter #6
This is what I did yesterday: I took the stabilizer shock out while truck was on the ground. It didn't make any difference: easy to turn left and impossible to turn right. I lifted the front up again. As soon as tires lose contact with the ground, it become easy to turn the steering whell to either side. I don't see how removing the pitman arm can help to test the steering box since the front is up in the air and in this situation there is no problem to move the steering wheel, besides, based on what I read, I have to loosen (or evene remove) the steering box to be able to remove the pitman arm. I guess the only way would be loosen/remove the the steering box, remove the pitman arm, put the box back together, put the tires back on and bring the truck down but again when there is no load on the front end the steering wheel turns easy. I am confused .
It is so strange that nobody has had an issue like this!!!
 

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almost sounds like something is binding when teh truck has its own weight on it.
 

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Discussion Starter #8
It does sound and feel like that. I have been under the truck while my wife was trying to move the steering wheel, there is nothing that I can see or feel out of ordinary! and ofcourse when the truck is up in the air, everything moves freely!!! I am feeling :cookoo[1]:
 

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Start with steering gear on gear center, with eng off no hands on wheel, watch the steering wheel and start the eng , if the steering wheel moves to the right on start up, the controll valve in the gear is bad, it's cheeper to replace with a reman. then to repair
 

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Discussion Starter #10
Thanks.
Does anybody knows how many spline the steering out put shaft has? I see in Autozone and O'reilly they have 31, 32 and 33 plines!. I just need to know if I end up ordering one.
 

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there two gears for these trucks you need to know if your gear has 3 or 444444 flat splines you can look between the pitman arm and gear and see the flats you might need to move the dust boot up a bit to see them , you might need to help the parts dude , if you can look at the gears first and look at the sector shafts you will see th flats
 

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opps 4 flats ,dumb typeing fingers lol
 

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if you want a little more pressure when sitting on the ground you can either shim the factory power steering pump flow valve or you can replace the valve. GM corrected this issue with a high pressure flow valve, part # 26095470

You're going to have to remove the pump from the engine, remove the pressure line and then the high pressure fitting and the valve will be under the fitting.

if you want to look in to the shimming method, it is discussed here:
http://www.duramaxforum.com/forum/s...-more-weak-steering-me-i-found-fix-cheap.html
 

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Discussion Starter #14
Thanks. Is it possible that my truck had one of these valves already prior to this thing happened?. I never had any problem moving my steering wheel even at stand still with my 285 tires. This thing just happend and happened suddenly. Now, I am vondering if the valve is clogged?! But if that is the case, why I have problem only with one side? I can still move my steering to left just by holding them with palm of my hand!.
 

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Discussion Starter #15
Ok, Steering box was the problem. Hopefully this help somebody else who may end up with the same strange problem. How I know it was the box, well, I ended up to change just about everything except the hydroboost which was replaced by me about 20000 miles ago (at about 30,000 mile on the truck) when it developed a leak. I flused the heck out of the system few times first with no result. Since every time I flush the system, althought the p/s fluid was coming out fairly clean/clear, but I was getting a little particles. I decided to change the P/S pump since it was easier and less costly. well, that didn't do it. I still could not turn my wheel to the right!. That was the time the whole steering gear and pitman/idler arm came out. I changed the hoses too. I also install a P/S cooler too and filled it up with Royal purple syntethic. Now, Like before I can turn my steering wheel just by palm of my hand or few fingers even at stand still. One thing that I have noticed though, it seems that I can turn my wheels further to left or right.
Now, I am just trying to bleed the system which is giving me hard time. Any tips in this regard would be appreciated.
Thanks again for all the help and inputs
 
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