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Popping in steering

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  #1  
Old 12-21-2015, 10:32 PM
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Default Popping in steering

So I've been reading up on the intermediate steering shaft and the popping sound you get when it goes bad. Mine pops all the time. It even pops when I step on the brake, or accelerate. Not loud pops, it's really slight and you can feel it in the steering wheel.

Now here is the thing. When I turn the truck off and rock the steering wheel, I swear the sound seems to be coming from the steering column under the dash. If I stick my head in the engine compartment while rocking the wheel, it still sounds like it's coming from inside the car. Anyone had the column fail inside the truck?
 
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Old 12-21-2015, 10:50 PM
WrenchMasters
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It's under the hood driver side the come out under the brake booster
You won't miss it.
 
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Old 12-21-2015, 11:11 PM
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My steering shaft pops all the time I've checked it and its solid little U-joints are ok but it has never caused me any problems other than that pop noise. Just another weird Dodge thing probably a strange not perfect design some small flaw.


My guess is the steering gear has too much flex and needs to be tightened up re shimmed how ever its done.
 
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Old 12-22-2015, 08:39 AM
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Mine sounds exactly like yours.

I've read that the portions of the shaft that slide together can wear, as well as the u-joints. I don't see how you can shim it. Both ends are splined where the u-joints are and one end slides into the other in the center.
I really haven't looked into it with effort yet. Haven't even had someone else rock the wheel as I look around. I'm going to spray the joints with some lube, one by one, rocking as I go along to see if anything changes.
 
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Old 12-22-2015, 01:36 PM
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I don't have any popping in mine, but when I was under it the other day I decided to check the U-joints and the bottom one that is right before the rack connection is slightly loose, I can move/slide it back and forth with my hand, but don't hear any popping noise....my steering does feel like it's floating a bit and it's a bit sloppy when going straight down the road.

Does that sound like the U-joint going bad or will they always make the popping when they go bad? I didn't think any U-joint was supposed to have any play in it, steering, drive line..any of them.
 
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Old 12-22-2015, 02:40 PM
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I also had 'popping' and slop in my steering . I got the replacement shaft from Rock auto and the noise went away , the play at the steering wheel improved by half. I think there may be an adjustment at the gear box, at least on some. ?
 
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Old 12-22-2015, 02:53 PM
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I've got no play.... just a persistent pop. The steering actually feels great every since I did endlinks and ball joints. I'll post a video later. Found this TSB for an 01. I might try this on my 03'.


NUMBER: 19-009-00

GROUP: Steering

DATE: Dec. 15, 2000

SUBJECT:
Popping Sensation/Sound In Steering Column While Turning

OVERVIEW:
This bulletin involves repositioning the steering column on the steering column mounting brackets.

MODELS:
2001 (AN)Dakota
2001 (DN)Durango
2001 (R1)Dakota (International Markets)

SYMPTOM/CONDITION:
A popping sensation/sound can be felt and/or heard in the steering column during sharp turns (parking lot maneuvers).

DIAGNOSIS/REPAIR PROCEDURES:
Start the engine. Rotate the steering wheel to the extreme right and then to the extreme left while monitoring for a popping sound or sensation. If a popping sound or sensation can be heard and/or felt in the steering column while turning, perform the Repair Procedure.

REPAIR PROCEDURE:

1. Start the engine.

2. Rotate the steering wheel so that the steering wheel is in an upside down position then remove the ignition key to lock the steering wheel in this position.

3. Remove the three screws that secure the lower edge of the steering column opening cover to the lower instrument panel reinforcement.

4. Using a trim stick or another suitable wide-bladed tool, gently pry the upper edge of the steering column opening cover. Pry lust below the cluster bezel on each side of the steering column away from the instrument panel far enough to disengage the snap clip retainers from the receptacles in the instrument panel.

5. Remove the steering column opening cover from the instrument panel.

6. Loosen the steering column attaching nuts.

7. Bounce the steering wheel lightly in a vertical motion to normalize the alignment.

8. Without influencing the new location of the steering column, tighten the rear driver side nut to 25 Nm (225 in. lbs.).

9. Next, tighten the front passenger side nut to 25 Nm (225 in. lbs.).

10. Then, tighten the front driver side nut to 25 Nm (225 in. lbs.).

11. Tighten the rear passenger side nut to 25 Nm (225 in. lbs.).

12. Position the steering column opening cover to the instrument panel.

13. Align the snap clip retainers on the steering column opening cover with the receptacles in the instrument panel.

14. Press firmly on the steering column opening cover over the snap clip locations until each of the snap clips is fully engaged in its receptacle.

15. Install and tighten the three screws that secure the lower edge of the steering column opening cover to the lower instrument panel reinforcement. Tighten the screws to 2.2 Nm (20 in. lbs.).

16. Start the engine then, rotate the steering wheel back to its normal position.


POLICY: Reimbursable within the provisions of the warranty.
 
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Old 11-18-2017, 12:37 PM
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Almost two years later and I finally decided to fix the issue, so I got the Dorman 425-269 Intermediate Steering Shaft.

The problem hadn't gotten any worse, I just didn't like the popping. So I pulled off driver's side wheel liner to put this thing in. Little did I know these were plastic rivets holding it in. You have to buy new plastic rivets and a rivet gun to get it back in... I have it zip tied right now.

Anyway, I pulled off the shaft and when I realized how much beefier the OEM was in comparison. Furthermore, I had to extend the Dorman to the point where I felt there wasn't much of the shafts left to mate. The steering isn't something I want to go cheap with, so I decided to try simply reinstalling the OEM and get a new Mopar part. Well lo and behold, the popping is gone. It disappeared when I reinstalled the old part. Maybe it will return...but I'm good for now.

Here they are side by side. The Dorman part more resembles the parts I saw on all the Dakotas at the junkyard. As you can see, my OEM doesn't have that round rubber damper. I have RWD. Take a good look at the ends, where they clamp. The OEM is vastly superior to the made in China part.



Here is how they look fully extended, as they would be in the truck....

 

Last edited by Dodgevity; 11-18-2017 at 12:53 PM.
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Old 11-18-2017, 08:54 PM
magnethead
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does it snow much in Atlanta? If not, you don't need the fender liners anyways.
 
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Old 11-18-2017, 09:44 PM
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Originally Posted by magnethead View Post
does it snow much in Atlanta? If not, you don't need the fender liners anyways.
Maybe once a year, if that. I would imagine the engine would be a holy mess without the fender liner though...dirt, water being kicked up. Road noise too.
 
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