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Sticky Steering

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#1 Richieski



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  • 2 posts
  • Name: Richard
  • Ford Model: Smax
  • Year: 2007
  • Location: Wiltshire

Posted 18 July 2014 - 08:10 AM

Hi all,


I am in desperate need of some help.

I have the 2.0 tdci titanium.


Ever since i have owned the car i noticed an issue with the steering. The best i can describe it as "sticky".

Example, when i drive on the motorway and turn the steering wheel 10 degrees either direction and let go it stays there and doesn't self centre.

It did have an engine swap due to flood damage by an independent.


Now, i have spent months trying to diagnose this, i'll go through details below.

1. Had subframe re-aligned

2. 4 wheel laser alignment

3. 3 independent garage to solve issue, no result.

4. FORD dealership, diagnosis was "let's start by changing the top strut mounts" at the cost of £500+ no guarantee.


I have an engineering background and have looked at this myself.


I have changed steering fluid, bled etc.

I have checked all suspension components

I raised the car off the floor and moved the the steering wheel and it still has a sticky feel to it, this tells me the top strut mounts have nothing to do with it as the force from the wheels etc is the opposite to when the car is on the ground.


I have proved the 2 x universal joints between the S/W and deck pad (part it goes through outside the footwell) are not binding.



Is it binding through the deck pad (have put loads of lube on it)

Is it an issue with the hydro electric pump? I notice it runs at the same speed whether or not the wheel is being turned.

Is it a faulty clock spring (angle sensor)? is this not telling the pump i am turning the wheel etc?

Is it a faulty steering rack somehow binding?


I have had FORD carry out diagnostic and nothing comes back.


Problem is all the components involved are very pricey to replace without 100% diagnosis i am not keen on taking a chance as it could run into 4 figures.


Has anyone had similar issue's or offer some guidance please.



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#2 137699


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  • Ford Model: 2006 S-max Titanium X Sport 2.5T

Posted 18 July 2014 - 09:17 AM

Have a look on the smax owners club forum - there have been many stories of failed steering racks - at around £2k to replace it may be time to sell the car...

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