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help!! dodge front end

Discussion in 'Truck & Equipment Repair' started by Bibbo, Sep 3, 2008.

  1. Bibbo

    Bibbo Senior Member
    Messages: 121

    hey guys i got a little problem i need help with... my ole' mans got a 1999 dodge ram 1500 extended cab long box 4x4 with the 360 motor... he says that when he takes off the front end clunks and feels like the steering wheel is pushing down and on braking it clunks and feels like the steering wheel is pushing up....kinda weird... i don't know what would cause this :realmad: any help would be great... thanks:drinkup:

    Bibbo :yow!:
  2. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    i dont really understand what your saying... steering wheel pushing up? like tilting up?
  3. Bibbo

    Bibbo Senior Member
    Messages: 121

    i think he means it feels like its pushing up in to the truck... im not shure ill call him tomorrow and clarify it
  4. snow7899

    snow7899 Senior Member
    Messages: 234

    I'd start with checking the basics: check all tie rod ends for any play, ball joints, and the most important the trac bar which keeps the axle centered under the truck. Also check the sway bar end links. Good luck.
  5. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    id say possibly a joint of somekind on the steering shaft? maybe there is a bad one, ? and its binding up? as the truck brakes it noise dives , and that changes the reaction on the steerig wheel?

    im still having a hard time understanding what is the issue?
  6. Snowplow71

    Snowplow71 Senior Member
    Messages: 284

    Just to warn you. I have a 2002 Dodge Cummins Turbo Diesel. Plows during the winter, and basicly just sits during the summer. Maybe 4000 miles a year. Last summer cost me over $2,000 dollars in the front end, and still isn't fixed!! Every part in the front end is replaced, from wheel bearings to power steering pumps and box's!! I have given up on this truck and just drive it. It's a bull in the winter though love it. And pulling? Also love it. Just hate the repair bills.
  7. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    you just need to learn to do the repairs your self, and your bill will be around 800

    replacing everything? how many miles do you have on it total? are you putting balast in the bed behind the axle like your suppost to?
  8. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    Sounds like a axle joint.

    It" time to use a bar and go try to wiggle the U-joints by prying on them.
    Or put in 4x4 turn the steering wheel all the way to the stops and drive in a circle.

    Have someone standing out side listening, you'll find it..
  9. Snowplow71

    Snowplow71 Senior Member
    Messages: 284

    Haha thats the thing! I can do every repair to that truck. Now theres only one word that is making it so I can't do the repairs. TIME! Yes replace everything. Now has around 70,000 on it. And yes I am putting balast in it. A fisher speedcaster with around 18 bags of salt.
  10. elite1msmith

    elite1msmith 2000 Club Member
    from chicago
    Messages: 2,762

    yes Time is never your friend.... sounds like a few of the things are wearing prematurley... but not by alot, at 70 , i normally am doing ball joints, 90 - steering... so your not that bad... remember its the price of doing business..... 5 years of plowing,

    some of the other trucks might not need as much work , but they have money to be spent as well... chevys you need to turn up the T-bars,....and really consider timbens (which cost a few bucks) thats just to get you plowing...
  11. BK Hammer

    BK Hammer Member
    Messages: 64

    I'm with snofarmer and the axle joint or as I would call it a steering knuckle. Either way I think we are on the same page.

    185000 on my 99 dodge with a cummins. One bad truck. Timbrens front and rear. Running about 1400 pounds of ballast-sand and salt at the start of my route. Usually end up with 600 or 700 pounds left. Don't have to spread a lot of salt here in sunny Colorado.
  12. ServiceOnSite

    ServiceOnSite Senior Member
    Messages: 950

    axle joint or i was wondering if mabey he had a flat and put a different sized tire on it and the locker in the front is binding up from the uneven size????/ i have seen it before. is this happening in 2wd and 4wd or no?????//
  13. Bibbo

    Bibbo Senior Member
    Messages: 121

    thanks for the help guys.. its happening in 2wd hes running 265/75/r16 on it so there not much bigger than stock but we've been running that size since we got it with no problems...
  14. SnoFarmer

    SnoFarmer PlowSite Fanatic
    from N,E. MN
    Messages: 9,883

    Still take a look.
    They don't have free wheeling hubs.
    The axles are always truing so is still could be the u-joints
  15. RJ snow

    RJ snow Member
    Messages: 41

    sounds like a trac bar......
  16. Bibbo

    Bibbo Senior Member
    Messages: 121

    u- joints are good and trac bar is fairly new... we're gunna check the steering knuckle, thanks for all the help guys its helped narrow it down
  17. lake_effect

    lake_effect Junior Member
    Messages: 19

    Steering wheel shouldn't move at all unless something is loose between your steering gear box up to the steering wheel. Not sure if the movement is actual, or perceived......So..

    First thing I would check would be the steering gear box. Sounds like it may be loose on your frame. Could have a broken or loose mounting bolt(s).

    If that looks ok, work your way up the steering shaft towards the cab. Check for any play in the slip joint and universals in the shaft. Make sure the pinch bolts are tight.

    There is also a bushing at the base of the steering column (under hood) that Dodge has had problems with. Grab the steering shaft where it exits the column and check for play. I think there is one on the steering wheel end of the column also.

    Last, and most unlikely check the retaining bolts under the dash that mount the column inside the cab.

    Any actual movement of the steering wheel / column would lead me to look on the cab side of the steering gear....(if not the steering gear box itself).....not on the axle side.

    Good luck, let us know what you find.
  18. bharry20

    bharry20 Senior Member
    Messages: 124

    does it have a tilt column? those things wear out too. and when you brake your pushing on the wheel therefor pushing it up, the othe way around when taking off. that still doesn't explain the noise in the front.
  19. USMCMP5811

    USMCMP5811 Senior Member
    Messages: 267

    Good advice here, if the steering wheel / colum is moving, most likely culprit is the steering shaft. Replace it with a borgson shaft and you should be all set.
  20. streetsurfin'

    streetsurfin' Senior Member
    Messages: 770

    I suspect the steering shaft also. I've used a borgeson on an 85 and am installing one on a 96. I changed them because of side to side playin the steering wheel when the u-joints wear. However, the shafts have a slip joint allowing them to telescope and I suppose that joint could seize up and cause the up/down feel of the wheel during any frame to body flex or suspension movement (the clunk you hear?).
    Last edited: Oct 20, 2008