I know that the steering in our trucks is not a new issue (steering and braking simultaneously at low speeds), but I can't believe that there is not a viable solution to the poorly engineered steering/hydra boost operation that plagues us!!!
My truck- 02 F250 7.3 (see sig) w/215K well maintained miles, all normal maintenence, no major problems, I've had my truck since new, I love and adore my truck.
My problem- truck does not steer at all while stopped with or without applying brakes or e-brake. No power steering at all while stopped, period. I have to be rolling either direction at ~3+ mph to be able to turn the wheel at all.
My problem with this problem- This may not seem like a big deal to some people, especially those that learned to drive vehicles "back in the day," when power assisted steering was not commonplace.
I have heard folks say "it is was it is, just deal with it", "that's normal", and "just don't expect steering while applying the brakes in these trucks." First, I don't accept a $40,000+ vehicle not steering easily like a Lincoln Town Car, and secondly, as I stated in the beginning of this post, I have NO STEERING at all even when the brakes are NOT being applied in any way what-so-ever.
I have had this problem since new, albeit, not as bad as it is now.
I noticed steering and brake whine back around 180K miles, replaced the steering pump and things were back to "normal." "Normal" was stiff steering while stopped, but I could, at least turn the wheel, with difficultly, while in parking lots with or without the brakes being applied. I just dealt with the not so great steering for the love of this truck in every other way.
I don't do heavy hauling or towing on a regular basis with this truck. I haul light bed loads of landscape/irrigation supplies occassionally in the summer, make a dozen tandem snowmachine trailer load trips per winter, and make 1-2family vacation trips of 1-2K miles per year.
I replaced all four ball joints with greaseable Moog's this Summer (~15K miles ago), have checked front u-joints, hubs, half shafts, axle seals, replaced front differential fluid, and checked and maintained all bushings/joints in steering linkage. Finally, I only have a single OEM steering stabilizer and I keep tires aired up religiously.
I have had factory 265's and replacement 285's up until 2K miles ago when I installed a 3" front/1.5" rear leveling kit with 315's on stock wheels.
Just recently, I have noticed difficult, then ultimately, no steering while stopped, even when reving the rpm's with no brakes applied.
So, I replaced the pump, checked/replaced low/high pressure hoses, checked out steering box and hydra boost unit. The steering box and hydra boost checked out fine, as did bearings in steering column/shaft. All were smooth/normal in operation throughout all diagnostic steps done by myself and Ford stealership independently. Flushed steering/hydra boost systems with Mobil 1 syn ATF
, found no obstructions, no leaks, no whine or growl.
BUT,..............STILL CANNOT STEER AT ALL WHILE COMPLETELY STOPPED WITH OR WITHOUT APPLYING BRAKES.
Sorry for the long post
...but, I just want to know if someone out there has any ideas for why the steering is bad in the first place, and now is down right unacceptable in my truck. Should I just endure the expense of replacing the steering box/gears and hydra boost unit even though the gears are smooth with the front wheels off of the ground and the brakes are actually working great in my truck. And...don't forget that the stealership even says that the box and hydra boost are fine. They say to..."just live with it, it's normal to some degree."
I've read countless posts about AGR pumps, Saginaw type pumps, Redhead steering boxes, etc. But, is there any reliable, repeatable, known remedy for the steering problem that, seemingly, many folks are having in our trucks?
I know our diesels don't produce vacuum like gassers do, so how can we get more vacuum to properly operate the steering/hydra boost braking system in our trucks?!!!
I just can't accept "living with it."
I mean, really, I don't even trailer a lot...I can't see how others that hook up to a trailer for a living and recreation deal with the inferior low speed steering in our trucks.
What ideas and/or questions about this do you guys have...?
Thanks in advance!