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  • Power Steering Rack suggestions?

    .
    A few years back, I made the mistake of putting power steering fluid in the s14's power steering reservoir (yah...I know) and have had a leaky system ever since.

    I replaced a lot of fluid with the proper Automatic Transmission Fluid (Super Tech brand by Walmart; suitable for Dexron III and Mercon systems) when I changed out the low pressure hose from the reservoir to the pump, but I'm assuming some of that wrong powersteering fluid is still in there.

    I'm getting ready to fork over the $300 core plus $300+ for a new rack, but before I do I was wondering what everyone else has done in the past with their own power steering racks.

    Would it be worth it to rebuild or is there a place you would recommend getting a replacement rack from?

    .
    Last edited by cleantune; 06-03-2015, 11:49 AM.
    "A pessimist thinks the glass is half-empty, an optimist thinks the glass is half-full, an engineer says that glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
    instagram:@cleantune ; Twitter: [email protected]

  • #2
    I found a local place to rebuild it. It was back ~8-9 yrs ago, and I think it was $120 at the time. It was worth it from looking at the FSM and thinking about how long it'd take me.


    I also did the same thing when I noticed I was a bit low at the track one weekend (weeping high press. hose), and grabbed PS fluid. The rack started leaking like crazy in a few months.
    '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


    DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
    http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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    • #3
      try some lucas ps stop leak. the weeping gets better with it. i run about 30% lucas to thicken things up.

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      • #4
        I mat try that for some of my weeping issues. My crossover hardliners at the rack have seen better days. Considered the Isis kit that they put out.

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        • #5
          I've done a couple reman racks now. Currently on a Maval reman that I paid ~$300 for it through a local mechanic buddy. Not a hookup price but had it within 2 days.

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          • #6
            .
            Thought about having it rebuilt or rebuilding it myself, but yeah the time and finding any special tools that may be needed might be a pain to do; especially if there is any kind of distortion in the rack itself around where the seals sit.

            Does the PS "stop leak" fluid gum up the pump (thick residue build up on the walls of everything) or does it just thicken up the fluid?

            I've heard some good things about Maval rebuilds on parts. How long have you had this rack for? and still no leaks?

            Oh and I was wondering too, when you guys rebuilt or swapped the rack out, how important is it to get every once of that bad "regular power steering" fluid out?- like if there is still a little bit in there after a flush, will it wreck the new seals?

            .
            "A pessimist thinks the glass is half-empty, an optimist thinks the glass is half-full, an engineer says that glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
            instagram:@cleantune ; Twitter: [email protected]

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            • #7
              I did a little research on the Lucas since I run a PS cooler. Some Corvette owners said it may lower the boiling point and reduce cooling effectiveness. Thoughts?
              '97 240SX - S13 SR20DET​​​​​
              '19 Camaro ZL1 1LE
              '19 Expedition Max
              Previous HPDE Cars: '17 Civic Type R, '02 Golf GTI, '99 Integra GS-R, '97 200SX SE-R, '96 240SX, '92 240SX

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              • #8
                I can't see it lowering the boiling point - I've never noticed that on mine. If anything it tends to stop the occasional bubbling you'd see coming off track with straight ATF (likely boiling a bit).

                It does not gum anything up, it's like thick gear oil, so don't use it exclusively, but a 20-40% mix with ATF yields a still pretty thin oil that's more like motor oil and less like super thin ATF.
                '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


                DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
                http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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                • #9
                  .
                  I was reading about the Lucas Stop leak on their site and it seems like its pretty much what you said Def- like a motor oil additive to thicken the fluid up ("special" oils and products extracted from petroleum).



                  It doesn't contain any solvents and they say that there are no harmful effects from using it. They even recommend using it on new racks, just as a preventative measure (although I wouldn't). They guarantee it to work and say to keep replacing the old fluid with the "stop leak" fluid until the leaking stops.

                  It seems like it's obviously a fluid thickening agent, so I could see this raising the boiling point (kind of like running a heavier weight oil in the summer months). As far as cooling effectiveness with a power steering cooler, I don't see this being a problem, once the liquid in the system reaches its max heat capacity.

                  The only thing that may effect the cooling is if this product had some kind of "surface-coating" property, which would insulate between the metal of the cooler and the fluid; reducing the effectiveness of the heat exchange.

                  .
                  "A pessimist thinks the glass is half-empty, an optimist thinks the glass is half-full, an engineer says that glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
                  instagram:@cleantune ; Twitter: [email protected]

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                  • #10
                    It's just thicker oil guys - not voodoo.

                    I used it with a recently rebuilt rack - it seems to help the seals and whatnot, as ATF at really high temps is thinner than water.
                    '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


                    DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
                    http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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                    • #11
                      .
                      special oils = voodoo

                      That's good to hear this works like its supposed to.

                      .
                      "A pessimist thinks the glass is half-empty, an optimist thinks the glass is half-full, an engineer says that glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
                      instagram:@cleantune ; Twitter: [email protected]

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                      • #12
                        Running into the same problem on my car as well. Looks like mine is leaking around the head of the pinion. Thinking of doing the rebuild myself though. Have to see if I have the massive torex for the preload cover though.

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                        • #13
                          .
                          ^if you do end up rebuilding it, please let us know how it goes.

                          I just put some of the Lucas Power Steering Stop leak in today. You guys weren't kidding when you said it was thick oil! This stuff poured out like Dawn dish soap- it had a similar consistency to corn syrup.

                          I siphoned out the PS fluid (AT fluid) in the reservoir until the plastic "bottom" of the reservoir was visible (maybe a little more) and replaced the fluid in the reservoir with the Lucas Stop Leak (about half of the smaller $10 bottle)- the ATF fluid used before was so thin, I thought half a bottle would be a good starting point.

                          Turned the wheel a few times with the cap off to make sure no air mysteriously got into the system. Steering felt really smooth, but I haven't had a chance to try it with the engine on. Should work in theory though.

                          .
                          "A pessimist thinks the glass is half-empty, an optimist thinks the glass is half-full, an engineer says that glass is twice as big as it needs to be"
                          instagram:@cleantune ; Twitter: [email protected]

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                          • #14
                            Hey guys. I am getting ready to swap out my rack as well since it's got 200+k on it and some of the lines are crimped a little. I was wondering if anyone has had any experience with a Maval hicas rack. Is there any way to really confirm it's the shorter ratio hicas rack before purchasing it?
                            - '93 S13 (the long awaited fun machine)
                            - '05 E46 (the S13 fund evaporator)

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                            • #15
                              A HICAS rack has the same travel, but less turns lock to lock. It's around 2.7 with the inner tie rods on, and about 3 turns lock to lock without inners on. Stock is like 3.1 lock to lock with inners on, and more without.

                              Double check in the FSM, it's got all the info in there.
                              '18 Chevrolet Volt - Electric fun hatch for DD duty!


                              DefSport Koni Sleeve and Spring Perch Buy!!!
                              http://www.nissanroadracing.com/showthread.php?t=5902

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