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Old 05-22-2013, 10:07 PM   #1
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new rack and pinion

I'm going to be replacing mine soon. Anyone have any pointers? Also what kind of fluid does a 91 power steering pump take. I read somewhere that it takes atf type f. Can anyone confirm?
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Old 05-23-2013, 11:03 AM   #2
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So, it's pretty simple and straight forward. Disconnect the lines and drain fluid.
Disconnect two bolts at the rag joint. (It may be a good time to replace the rag while you have it apart, if needed).
Disconnect two bolts holding the rack.
Write down position of tie rod ends by counting the threads or turns. This will allow you to have your alignment close to what it was. If you skip this step before you remove the tie rods, you will learn the hard way to give your vehicle an alignment at home. (Ask me how I know!) Disconnect tie rod ends from spindles. You may want to mark castle nuts just so you don't over tighten them when you are putting them back.
New rack should come with stock rubber type bushings. Get the sport or performance option rack with a better turn ratio. 15:1.
Reverse the procedure...install two long rack bolts loosely. you need them loose until you get rack connected at the rag joint. then install tie rods. Leave everything loose until all bolts are in. Then go thru and torque everything down. You may want all new hardware. Cotter pins, castle nuts, rag joint, etc...it's not necessary, just check the condition of yours during removal. Go the extra mile and clean every part thoroughly after disassembly. Every nut, bolt, cotter pin, threads.
Refill with your choice of ATF...type f, dex/merc, your new rack should tell you what fluid is recommended. Most people use dex/merc3 or higher. It's weird but your pump recommended fluid may be different than your rack,(since aftermarket) but since they use the same fluid, I go with what the pump calls for. If its good enough for pump, then it's good for rack.

After filling with fluid, you need to bleed the system by starting the vehicle and turning the wheels from lock to lock with the return line disconnected from the pump, until it pushes all the air out. disconnect return line to pump and place end in bucket, you will fill until fluid comes out and into the bucket. then reconnect the return line. Do Not let the pump run dry!! After you turn the wheel a couple times the fluid level will drop, and you need to keep adding some until it stays at proper level. At first the pump will make noise and wheels will be hard to turn, but as you turn wheels it will get easier and quieter. Don't overfill! I think it takes about 2 1/4 or 2 1/2 quarts of fluid. I did all of the bleeding with wheels in the air, until it got easier. Then I set the car on the ground to finish.
Lastly double check your alignment. You can do an alignment at home also, just takes some time and patience.
Another tip is take pics before you disassemble so you know how stuff goes back together easiest. I didn't, cuz it's pretty simple, but then it took me a little while to figure out how the rag joint was connected.

Hope this helps, it's pretty easy, can be done in 3 hours or so. If you wrote down where tie rod ends go, your alignment will be pretty good. If you are using new tie rods you will need to go through the entire alignment process, or spend the $ to take it somewhere. Good luck.
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Old 05-23-2013, 07:22 PM   #3
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Thanks. I ordered the 2.25 sport steering. Hopefully I will be installing it next weekend. Will be back on if I run into troubles.
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Old 05-24-2013, 02:46 PM   #4
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I'll be here
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