• Welcome to SVTPerformance!

Creaking/Squeaking steering wheel when turning fix

Discussion in 'How-To' started by 006, Aug 22, 2007.

  1. 006

    006 Slow mustang :( Established Member

    Messages:
    3,940
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    Some mustangs of various years have a creaking/squeak when you turn the steering wheel. This is very prevalent on the 03-04 Cobras.

    There is a TSB that identifies and fixes this problem: # TSB 05-14-3

    This TSB supposedly covers 2002-2004 Mustangs, but there was a previous one that covered 2000-2001 models with a same procedure and applies to all the models through these years and might also be a fix on all 96-04's.

    If your car is out of warranty, you can pick these sleeves up from FORD at a price of $4.25 each. (you need 2 of them). I did this job last night on my GF's 04 Cobra (still under warranty) mainly since we did not want to hassle with some of Ford's incompetent techs and the long amount of time they had quoted us it would take by leaving her car with them all day...risks etc.

    It's ALOT easier and much quicker if you have a drive-on ramp.
    $20-25 at most autozone/pep-boys/kragen etc...or make your own.

    Parts/tools:


    E5DZ-3K620-A (Sleeves that you will be replacing the original ones with)
    PROTHANE Part # 6-703 or any rack and pinion bushings made of urethane (Hard rubber)
    18mm Deep socket
    15mm Deep socket
    Pliers
    Flat head screw driver
    Penetrating oil/WD-40/Liquid wrench/Silicone spray etc..
    Grinder (optional)


    NOTE: If you're considering aluminum rack bushings, it will move your rack 1/4" to the back and this will affect your toe setting of alignment. Be aware that you will need to get the car realigned if you do upgrade to the aliminum bushings. There are additional modifications needed that can be found here: http://www.miracerros.com/mustang/rack.htm

    OPTIONAL but highly recommended FIX: As an additional step to the fix mentioned below. Grind about 1mm off the front of the new metal sleeves. The creaking noise is caused by the sleeves rubbing against the large metal washer at the front. Creating a space to avoid contact will resolve the issue. Having stiffer bushings also helps fix the problem, but as the front nut is tightened, the front washer is bound to make contact with the sleeve and cause this noise again. I highly recommend grinding out about 1mm off the front of the sleeves to avoid future contact with the washer.

    Now onto the fix:

    Drive stang onto ramp. Set parking brake. Also have a jackstand placed underneath somewhere strategic for additional safety.


    1. Spray the long bolt and nut that is screwed onto it with some penetrating oil.
    [​IMG]

    2. Unscrew the long bolt and remove it as shown. Rear (head of bolt) is a 15mm, front one is 18mm. Here is the nut, bolt and washer removed.
    [​IMG]

    3. Remove the steering rack bushing. (Flathead screw driver)

    4. Use pliers to pry the damn thing out
    [​IMG]

    5. Comparo..OLD sleeve versus NEW sleeve
    [​IMG]

    **********************************************************
    IMPORTANT:
    If you're replacing the bushings with new ones, you HAVE TO unbolt the steering wheel shaft where it bolts up to the rack and pinion.
    It is a small 12mm or 13mm bolt that you have to remove first in order for the rack and pinion to move forward far enough to remove the bushings from the rear of the rack.
    I suggest using some lock-tite (thread locker) on the screw's threads when you put that linkage back and bolt it up.
    **********************************************************

    6. Slide the new sleeve in
    [​IMG]

    7. All the way in

    8. Install Steering rack bushing..I put new stock ones in and they still made some noise, I then had to re-do the job with PROTHANE (Urethane) bushings and it solved all issues. $15-20 for a set. Prothane part # 6-703 are recommended very highly
    [​IMG]

    9. (A) Slide bolt back into the sleeve from the rear as shown
    [​IMG]

    9. (B) *This step is optional, but HIGHLY recommended: Using a grinder or a file type of tool, Grind out 1mm from the front of the sleeve.

    10. Install the big washer and nut to complete the process..

    11. Bolted up and done...
    [​IMG]

    Onto the next one..

    (I took both sleeves out at the same time and used the jack stand placed under the steering rack to give it some extra support and to angle the rack properly in the extrication of the sleeves)

    Should take about an hour or less depending on lighting and what tools you have available. Power tools will turn this job into a 25-35 min job from start to finish.
     
    Last edited: Aug 15, 2012
  2. Disturbance

    Disturbance B.N.4279 ~ B.D.12/11/02 Established Member

    Messages:
    169
    Joined:
    Mar 2, 2005
    Location:
    Central Coast, CA
    Thanks for the write up, ill try this to see if my creek goes away:beer: :beer:
     
  3. akula51

    akula51 Me Premium Member

    Messages:
    385
    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2006
    Location:
    Saint Someoneoranother, MO
    Ahhh, I have that problem. Sweet, excellent writeup, many thanks.

    Ack
     
  4. akula51

    akula51 Me Premium Member

    Messages:
    385
    Joined:
    Aug 28, 2006
    Location:
    Saint Someoneoranother, MO
    Parts are in stock. Any idea the TQ spec on those bolts? I'm lazy, I know, I know...

    Ack
     
  5. JedWele

    JedWele aka "boostfiend" Established Member

    Messages:
    597
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2006
    Location:
    Kansas
    Thanks for the write up, that makes me feel much more comfortable doing it.
     
  6. 04DOHC

    04DOHC New Member Established Member

    Messages:
    2,035
    Joined:
    Mar 29, 2005
    Location:
    Ft Worth, TX
    sweet this write is going to help me after I change my oil this weekend!!:thumbsup:
     
  7. fiveoh2go

    fiveoh2go Cleveland's OG Established Member

    Messages:
    4,981
    Joined:
    Nov 26, 2004
    Location:
    VA
    006, thank you sooo much for posting this up. My annoying creaking noise is now GONE after taking your advice and following your write up! Thanks again.
     
  8. key

    key New Member Established Member

    Messages:
    911
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2001
    Location:
    Jeffersonville, IN
    Thanks! I've been dealing with this creak for a year - hopefully this solves it.
     
  9. cobraCMDR

    cobraCMDR I Whine Established Member

    Messages:
    914
    Joined:
    Jan 22, 2005
    Location:
    Andover, MA
    You can also get the MM aluminum steering rack bushing kit and never have to repair that pos again..........it is like 60 bucks and it stiffens up the steering. Good writeup either way!
     
  10. ShaneHayes

    ShaneHayes New Member Established Member

    Messages:
    310
    Joined:
    Nov 16, 2007
    Location:
    Atlanta/San Diego
    Sweet!!! Once again, this site gives me the knowlege I need. Thanks 006!
     
  11. 006

    006 Slow mustang :( Established Member

    Messages:
    3,940
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    ^ up
     
  12. greengt88

    greengt88 New Member Established Member

    Messages:
    2,384
    Joined:
    Nov 4, 2009
    Location:
    Pennsylvania
    I actually just had this done by the dealer this past week. It still creaks, jsut not as bad as before. Definitely going to go with the MM aluminum rack bushing. How the hell do they consider it a fix if it still makes noie??
     
  13. Yup, unfortunately the new sleeves are a temporary fix at best. The real problem is a design flaw but the good news is the alum bushings when installed properly will cure it :thumbsup:
     
  14. Fastphil

    Fastphil Bagged. Established Member

    Messages:
    1,153
    Joined:
    Feb 13, 2006
    Location:
    Ste-Marthe-sur-le-Lac, QC
    So should I get the sleeves AND the aluminum bushings or just the bushings? Car is going in storage tomorrow, but I'll buy the parts and do it first thing in the spring.
     
  15. 006

    006 Slow mustang :( Established Member

    Messages:
    3,940
    Joined:
    Sep 18, 2002
    Location:
    Los Angeles
    I think just the bushings should do. If you want to get the sleeves, go ahead. They're like $12 for the pair.
     
  16. RedfireRed03

    RedfireRed03 New Member Established Member

    Messages:
    85
    Joined:
    Oct 24, 2009
    Location:
    Katy, TX
    FYI: For any of you with an aftermarket K member the aluminum may not be an option. I talked to MM a few days ago and they said due to the design of my UPR K member (and many others), I'm really limited to the rubber or polyurethane bushings unless I want to cut the rack mounting crush tubes off the front of the K. Hopefully this helps some people in their decision. I'll be going with the poly bushings and hoping it takes care of this annoying creak.
     
  17. whiplash306

    whiplash306 Active Member Established Member

    Messages:
    1,884
    Joined:
    Aug 23, 2005
    Location:
    Gatesville, Texas
    Have done this mod before and fortunately while being very easy, it's also VERY curative. Time will tell how long the "cure" lasts....!
     
    Last edited: Jan 31, 2010
  18. brothmc

    brothmc CobraGator Established Member

    Messages:
    229
    Joined:
    Sep 22, 2009
    Location:
    gainesville fl
    I have been annoyed by this pop creak sound since I got the car - 25 bucks and an hour or two and the sound is gone completely. I wish i knew before how easy it was, I wouldnt have put up with it for so long! Thanks!!
     

Share This Page