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Old 12-25-2012, 08:23 PM
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fixing loose steering

My 01 chevy 1500 van has developed some looseness over the last 10k miles ( van has 150K miles). It wanders a bit and lacks the responsiveness it used to have.

Its not too bad, but I have just replaced the engine and trans, and now everything is perfect except the steering and handling. Its diving me nuts.

Where should I look first, what areas are suspect on a chevy steering system?
Its a recirculating steering box system-not rack and pinion.

Another problem, possibly related, is that the van is pulling left while driving, and pulling hard left when I break. again... where should I look first?

The steer tires are new.
I know this is very vague, but I'm hoping you chevy guys know where
to look first.
Thanks Hotrodders!
Brian

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Old 12-26-2012, 06:54 AM
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rack time

Time to get it up on a rack and inspect for damage, wear, bent parts,, around here winter pot-holes can mess up an alignment. check brake pads, calipers, rotor condition. around here salted roads in the winter can cause rust fast calipers can stick.
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Old 12-26-2012, 08:31 AM
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Yea I've been up under it, and everything looks good. I'm in Atlanta so there is literally no rust. And our roads are incredibly smooth. The only thing that stands out is slight dry rot of some bushings, and the gear box has a slow leak.

Thanks
Brian
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Old 12-29-2012, 05:57 PM
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With 150K i,d check ball joints, tie rod ends, and idler arm for wear. At that mileage i,d start there. You can check toe in/out with a tape measure to give a rough idea if alignment is out of whack. Also raise the front wheels off the ground and spin the wheels by hand and observe if the effort required is equal on both wheels. This will give an idea if the front brakes are dragging .
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Old 12-30-2012, 09:27 AM
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Do I measure toe in/out from tire to tire with the van on the ground?
Thanks
Brian
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Old 12-30-2012, 04:53 PM
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Yes, on the ground. Measure from the centre tread to centre tread at the front and rear of tire and at the same height front and rear. If it,s wider at front too much toe out. I would think 1/16 -1/8 out would be close. You can probably get proper spec on line.
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Old 12-30-2012, 06:32 PM
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Incorrect toe in will feather edge the tires. You will be able to feel it by running your hand across the tread.In some cases its easy to see, especially if the toe has been out for a while.
Hearing that it is pulling left, could be a dragging brake as suggested.
Also a complete front end inspection, also as suggested should be performed.
Idler arm comes to mind here.
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