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Old 02-22-2020, 07:23 PM   #1
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Leaking Steering Rack

Today I drove my '02 base for the first time in probably two months. As I was driving away from my house, the steering pump started to get really noisy, and I noticed that when I turned the wheel, you could hear the rack making a lot of noise as well. It sounded as if the noise was coming from the drivers side.

When I got home, I used my Quick Jack to lift the car (I had driven the car to get it warmed up for it's annual oil change), and noticed a puddle of steering fluid under the driver's side front wheel. Sure enough, there's fluid all over the place. It appears that the fluid is coming from the end of the bellows. The area on top of the rack where the lines connect to the rack are clean and dry. Tomorrow I'll pull the bellows off, but I'm guessing a seal in the rack is leaking badly.

I did a search, and there is little information on the rack itself leaking. Most of the problems seems to be the o-rings where the lines go into the rack itself.

I looked at a few of my regular parts sources (including Pelican), and don't see any seals for the rack, but there are remanufactured racks available. My fear is that I'll have to replace the rack.

Has anyone experienced this? If so, did you have to replace the rack?

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Last edited by Racer Boy; 02-23-2020 at 08:18 AM.
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Old 02-24-2020, 08:47 PM   #2
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Hmm, I guess this must be an unusual problem! I did find a thread about this on a few 987s on Pedro's forum, and the high-pressure valve in the pump can stick, causing the seals to blow out on the rack.

I've got a junkyard rack and pump on the way, along with any seals mentioned on the Pelican Parts site, so hopefully I'll be back in business soon.
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Old 02-24-2020, 09:29 PM   #3
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Hmm, I guess this must be an unusual problem! I did find a thread about this on a few 987s on Pedro's forum, and the high-pressure valve in the pump can stick, causing the seals to blow out on the rack.

I've got a junkyard rack and pump on the way, along with any seals mentioned on the Pelican Parts site, so hopefully I'll be back in business soon.
I didn't comment because I didn't think I would be very helpful.
When I was chasing my PS leak, I considered a leak in the bellows area, and everything I found showed that it's generally a swap-the-whole-damn-thing job. I didn't look much into it, though, since I decided pretty quickly that my leak was not coming from there. I hoped somebody else may have more insight.
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Old 02-24-2020, 09:43 PM   #4
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I didn't comment because I didn't think I would be very helpful.
...
Ha... me too. I watched a YouTube video of disassembly, took a quick look at mine and decided it's best to just replace the whole thing.
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Old 03-03-2020, 04:58 AM   #5
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The seals are inside the rack itself; so in order to replace them you need to remove the rack.

996 racks will bolt right in.

The bellows keep dust and dirt out; not oil in.

Its super easy to replace the rack in this car cause you don't have to work around an engine like you do in most cars. Just remember to lock your steering wheel or you can kiss your air bag light functionality goodbye.
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Old 03-03-2020, 09:02 AM   #6
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I already got a Boxster rack from a wrecking yard, along with the PS pump (which is shockingly light, BTW). Is the 996 rack different?

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