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1999 tahoe loose steering

Discussion in 'Chevy Trucks' started by tphawk09, Feb 11, 2009.

  1. tphawk09

    tphawk09 Member
    Messages: 41

    hi just bought a 99tahoe and every thing in the front end is tight but i find that the steering wheel has lots of ply and the truck kinda drifts at highway speeds any suggestions would be great
     
  2. josh9410

    josh9410 Member
    Messages: 33

    Check the idler arm and pitman arm...i had the same problem on my 99 yukon, the steering felt tight, but the pitman arm was wore out, and the idler was getting there, so i replaced them both and it fixed the problem
     
  3. tphawk09

    tphawk09 Member
    Messages: 41

    hi josh just passed safty fri and was told everything was okay when i bought it ive been reading online alot of similer probs they say spped sensor on the colume ever changed one? thanks
     
  4. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    There not bad to change. Their located at the base of the steering column. You remove the steering shaft from the column, disconnect the electrical connector and slip the sensor off the end of the column. You do need to be sure you replace it with the correct type of sensor as there's two. Just match it up with the old one for positive identification.

    But before you simply replace the speed sensor I'd be looking over the various steering components again. Just because it passed inspection doesn't mean squat. Half the techs don't even look so don't settle on their word alone..
     
  5. 90plow

    90plow Senior Member
    Messages: 738

    My parents had a tahoe and the thing was all over the road. It was a 2003 I believe and it was loose from day one almost like the power steering pump was too strong and needed more resistance. We were just talking about that truck the other day actually.
    -Eric
     
  6. chevykid

    chevykid Member
    Messages: 73

    just got rid of a 99 tahoe plowed for about 7 or 8 years steering was loose but the thing was a pur animal
     
  7. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    I just had my pitman, idler and inner tierods replaced. My truck feels a little drifty, not sure if it was just the wind today but it felt like it kept wanting to leave it's lane and I had to steer it more.
    How would the speed sensor affect steering feel?
     
  8. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    It uses the speed sensor on the steering column to control an electronic orifice valve in the .P.S.. which changes the steering resistance and sensitivity depending on the trucks speed. It's called an electronic variable orifice (or EVO) system. It increases or decreases the amount of fluid leaving the power steering pump depending on speed. Doing so provides the driver with a comfortable balance of steering wheel feel and power assist for a given road speed.

    At vehicle standstill or at very low speeds, the system allows full hydraulic fluid flow for maximum power assist and reduced steering effort. As the vehicle gains speed the variable orifice closes at the steering pump which reduces the pumps fluid flow. This action provides a stiffer steering wheel response for an improved road feel and a greater directional stability at highway speeds.

    The sensor mounted on the steering column detects the steering wheel movements associated with defensive driving maneuvers. A control module uses this sensor input and the vehicle speed in order to adjust the amount of current to the variable orifice, thus changing the steerings "feel". And if the sensor is defective will make the steering feel vague or sloppy at faster road speeds.

    Note for you though Dan since I know you run a 1 tonner...not all the trucks over 8600 GVWR had this system. Take a look on the lower section of the column to see if it has a speed sensor mounted there. If it doesn't then your truck isn't equipped with it.
     
  9. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    gee, I didn't know they had this kind of high tech fancy stuff on my old truck. I'll have to take a look tomorrow. I just had it apart to add a spacer for the bodylift. Didn't notice it. But if it's there it's probably worn out just like everything else on the truck. All the low-speed or no-speed steering with the added weight of the plow on the oversized tires must play hell with the power steering system.
    On my 81 I had to make an adjustment on the steering box itself to tighten up the play in the wheel.
    My DD at work is a 2007 Crown Vic, we burned out the PS when it was brand new and the dealer put a new one on. Ever since it has a slightly harder pull when turning to the left and they can't find anything wrong with it. It's actually pretty annoying actually, drive around for hours on end and anytime I want to turn around to chase someone, or just take a left at speed, I have to really lay on the wheel hard. Not hard, really, but enough to notice it and be aggravated by it.
     
  10. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    Based on your description I think I have one and it must be on backwards... I'd like mine to steer a little easier for tight plowing stuff, but a lot less easy at highway speed.
     
  11. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Needs a new rack. The contamination/debris from losing the PS pump flows into the rack and plugs up the orifices that call for fluid psi and press when you turn the wheel. Each turning direction has it's own orifice so thats why they'll turn ok in one direction but be resistant on the other, one of the two valves is plugged up.

    Happens all the time on the Vickies...
     
  12. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    They either work or they don't. :D

    If you want more assist go with a high flow high volume pump. Makes a world of difference on the plow equipped GM's. AGR makes some nice and very reasonably priced stuff for the GM's. Really helps the steering/hydroboost on the later trucks too that are well know for their lack of assist at low speeds with the plow on.
     
  13. Detroitdan

    Detroitdan PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,937

    somebody else said the same exact thing, I think the dealer said they flushed it or something but couldn't find a problem. or they test drove it and it felt fine to them. I'll tell my sergeant about it, thanks for the info.
     
  14. B&B

    B&B PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 12,777

    Although I'm well aware that it is the "by the book" method, they can flush it till their blue in the face but it won't remove the debris on a Ford rack. Once it in there...its in there. You have to replace them.