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power stering problems

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  #1  
Old 10-22-2017, 07:38 AM
cman9898
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Default power stering problems

hey guys looking to do some upgrades to my truck but need to fix some original problems I have a 1997 1500 w/5" lift on 35's. At low rpm I have problems with the power steering system. This is my first truck and I'm just starting on the DIY path. I have replaced the pump, pulley, and the intake/return lines. What else is involved in the system and, beside the tires, what else could be causing the problems? Also, if it is the tires, what solutions are out there?

Edit: one of the upgrades in mind is a removal of the 5.2 and the addition of a 5.9l.
 

Last edited by cman9898; 10-22-2017 at 08:44 AM.
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Old 10-22-2017, 10:27 AM
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What problem are you having?
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 12:45 PM
cman9898
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at low rpm steering gets very sluggish and takes a lot of muscle to work when the engine is revved all steering returns to normal
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 01:18 PM
pershingd
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I'm assuming that you're also running wider tires as well as taller and that may be the root of your problem. Wide tires are a beast to turn at low speeds and get easier and they build momentum. I would get it to an alignment shop that will work on lifted vehicles and have the front end checked for binding and to make sure the caster/camber/toe settings are acceptably close to spec. If they are, and the there isn't any problem cycling the front end with the weight off the front, then you will have to make some choices. If you want to keep the wider tires, then you're going to need to install a hydraulic ram steering assist to help provide a little extra oomph when turning the wheels. The other option is to go to a narrower tire to reduce the size of the contact patch with the road thus reducing the effort needed to turn.
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 04:11 PM
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Are there specs available for various flow-control valves on power steering pumps? Seems like installing a valve with higher flow rate would solve the issue......
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 05:09 PM
pershingd
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Old school Ford pumps could be modified to increase flow at the cost of pump longevity. I wouldn't be surprised if the Dodge pumps could be tweaked as well.

I've got a friend running a Stage 1 monster truck that uses a modified stock Ford pump to feed the hydro steer for a 2 1/2 ton Rockwell with 66" classic monster truck tires.
 

Last edited by pershingd; 10-22-2017 at 05:14 PM.
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Old 10-22-2017, 10:23 PM
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I contend there's something wrong with the system. He shouldn't have to add power assist to just 35s. Over the years, many many many trucks swapped to 35s and no one complained of low power steering.

I'm with Heyou getting it checked out first. The pump should still be working even at low speed and while it may have weak return, it shouldn't suddenly get easier with just higher rpms. That's a symptom of bad pump/flow.
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 10:46 PM
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Originally Posted by Ramman18 View Post
I contend there's something wrong with the system. He shouldn't have to add power assist to just 35s. Over the years, many many many trucks swapped to 35s and no one complained of low power steering.

I'm with Heyou getting it checked out first. The pump should still be working even at low speed and while it may have weak return, it shouldn't suddenly get easier with just higher rpms. That's a symptom of bad pump/flow.
I wholeheartedly agree. It's far more economical to figure out what's wrong as opposed to keep throwing parts at it.
 
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Old 10-22-2017, 11:40 PM
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Originally Posted by pershingd View Post
I wholeheartedly agree. It's far more economical to figure out what's wrong as opposed to keep throwing parts at it.
Yeah, but isn't it much more fun to walk into the parts store, and just empty your wallet on the counter?
 
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Old 10-23-2017, 01:22 AM
cman9898
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like I said this is my first foray into the truck world what is past the intake/return lines and could id be the issue? ive replaced the pump brand new and all lines, so I doubt that's the problem.
 
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