The Prelude to Honda Prelude Steering Rack Boot Problems
One of the most common steering systems employed in cars today is the rack and pinion steering. This system converts the minimal force applied on the steering wheel into a force that actually turns the wheels of the car so that it could change direction. This capability is called power steering. On power steering-equipped vehicles, there is a component known as a steering rack, which has a boot on either side. The boot acts as a cover that prevents dirt and debris from getting into the steering rack. With age or impact, this boot can become worn out and may break causing severe damage to the steering rack. These are manifested through the different problematic scenarios described below.
A steering wheel with lots of play normally indicates a steering rack problem. As a result, the car may also wander on the road instead of moving straight. Despite the power steering capabilities, steering will be a chore, and the car will not respond to the directions of the steering wheel. Another sign of a problem is that the car will be harder to steer in the morning than later in the day. The steering wheel won't return properly to its normal position after you have made a turn.
Because of a loose rack due to a broken boot, a persistent squealing noise can be heard whenever the vehicle is being turned. If you hear these types of sounds as you drive, you need to get the system checked out.
Unusual tire wear is another problem that can be also associated with a problematic steering rack. Although there are other conditions that can cause uneven tire wear, any combination among the problems within this article will definitely point to a broken steering rack caused by a failed boot. If your tires show uneven wear, especially on the edges, you should suspect a rack and pinion problem.
The rack and pinion is situated at the front end of the vehicle adjacent to the front suspension. If you find that your car seems to be leaking fluid from this location, it could be a leak from the rack and pinion steering system. A boot that has already been worn out can be an opening for the hydraulic fluid to escape. If the fluid drips from the boots, you will know that your rack and pinion steering system is no longer serviceable, and they must be replaced as soon as possible.