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ou812 08-15-2012 01:42 PM

Durango power steering gearbox install,with step x step pics
Thought I'd post a step by step since this question of it being a direct swap always comes up
99 Durango 4wd v8 non snowplow gearbox
First off I had my grill off to do engine work do it made it super easy to reach the gearbox,it can be done with grill on
The old box
Remanufactured box
Looks nearly identical...... But not.we will cover that shortly

Remove the steering shaft bolt completely
13mm and you may have to turn the wheel slightly to make the bolt eaiser to reach,don't worry about realignment because the shafts/pitman arm only go on one position
Remove steering shaft coupling by shaking/tapping and pushing towards cab
Remove the two fluid lines with a 18mm wrench,last time I done this from the bottom it was easier to pull the lines off after the box was need to worry about mixing the lines up as there bent to only fit in one place
Place a bucket underneath to catch your oil
Place the lines high or let them drain
Remove the pitman arm but and lock washer.i used a 24" crescent wrench but I think it's 36mm
Now my arm wasn't tight,I just removed it with a heavy duty puller/heat and lots of beating a year ago.
It's said that some are stuck so tight people just buy a new pitman arm.
If your grill is off you have room to fit a large punch and tap down on the arm
Here's the punch method with 3/4" round bar and can be accessed by removing the plastic swaybar cover
Here's my proto puller/2 jaw
Arm off still connected to the draglink
Old box everything off
Remove the three mounting bolts with a 15mm
These like the pitman arm nut are tight,catch the box it weights about 29lbs
Now if your using the stock bumper the box won't direct fit as claimed
I grinded the stock bumper,notched out for the box to fit and painted
Until the notch is grinded the bolts won't line up

ou812 08-15-2012 01:45 PM

See the notch
Now in sure there are other ways to accomplish this,some may grind the box,remove the bumper
Box is in
And looks good
Put on steering shaft coupling on far enough for the bolt to fit in the notch,it only fits one position.the shaft and coupling has a flat spot to line up
Install arm and nut
Like I said everything only fits one position
Check that the connection seals are good
Install in tighten lines but make sure no tube/hose is touching anything,vibration will cause chaffing and bust lines.
Job complete
Refill will proper fluid and leak test

ou812 08-15-2012 03:39 PM

You can see here with the grill on and plastic swaybar cover off you can get better view and access of the gearbox

ken78744 08-15-2012 03:46 PM

Now that looks damn good and nice write up!!!! Bet it is nice having power steering again!!!!

ou812 08-15-2012 04:36 PM

Yea no more working out while trail riding

I feel a difference at slow speeds
I feel more turning power,eaiser to turn the steering wheel

Thankxz for the gearbox

Ender1183 08-15-2012 04:43 PM

Nice write up! I have been looking to doing this sway. Where did you get the box, were you able to get the core exchange for the old one?

ou812 08-15-2012 04:57 PM

I bought the gearbox from ken78744 for about half price
New in box
I believe he got it from autozone and exchanged his old one for core

My local parts places would have taken it for core aswell.

Let it be known also that the 99 Durango box only fits a 97-02 wrangler

I'm told the 02-06 requires a different gearbox because Chrysler switched to a different design on the wrangler and Durango.
I read it was a Mercedes gearbox.
I hope someone who knows will chime in.

Also if you aren't running the stock bumper,the swap should be direct,no modifying needed

rykemc 08-15-2012 06:12 PM

Why the durango gear box? Is it better turn ratio, stronger or just a cheaper alternative vs the TJ box?

ou812 08-15-2012 07:41 PM


Originally Posted by rykemc (Post 2688596)
Why the durango gear box? Is it better turn ratio, stronger or just a cheaper alternative vs the TJ box?

Stronger design
Larger fluid ports internally
So it offers a lil more turning power

Don't remember all the details but I know it doesn't blow seals like the wrangler box does

ken78744 08-15-2012 09:51 PM

Ur right jeep did switch to the Benz gear box in 03 and I did get the box from Autozone, and a gear box is a gear box parts stores just want the core... So they can send in something to get Remaned.... Don't care on what it is from....

PedroJr 08-15-2012 10:31 PM

hey my box is leaking from the shaft seal. any idea how to replace the seal or I'm gone have to get me a new one? the one i got now is a used one from salvage yard i believe i pay $150 for it. any ideas? my just started liking again!!!!!!! sucks!!

ken78744 08-16-2012 06:46 AM

Best thing for you to do is take your leaking one off use it as core go to oriellys and pay $179.00 for a new dodge durango steering box and put it on solves all your problems it is a waste of time and money tring to replace seals and bearings in the factory steering boxes for Jeeps...

ou812 08-16-2012 08:41 AM

I replaced my seals a year ago
They didn't last long before they leaked again

chilired 08-23-2012 12:17 PM

I have the same leak on the steering column side of my steering box on my 99 Wrangler.

Is there a certain year Durango that fits?

ken78744 08-23-2012 12:51 PM


Originally Posted by chilired
I have the same leak on the steering column side of my steering box on my 99 Wrangler.

Is there a certain year Durango that fits?

It is a 98 or 99 durango w360 engine and non snow plow package....

AZJ33PN 08-26-2012 04:00 PM

How hard/how long does it take to get the front grill off?

Sccafire 08-26-2012 06:53 PM


Originally Posted by AZJ33PN (Post 2727088)
How hard/how long does it take to get the front grill off?

You can do the swap withoout removing the front grill. Removing the front grill involves removing the radiator too.

ou812 08-26-2012 07:47 PM

I removed my grill to do engine work
Wasn't needed for the power steering gearbox

If you do remove the grill it can be done in about an hour providing your bolts aren't rusted solid

Remove bolts,swaybar guard,radiator,a/c cooler,fan,shroud and finally the headlight wires run thru the grill.i imagine the harness could be feed thru.i cut and installed plugs in the middle of my grill for less hassle next time.

Removing the grill was for engine work,not the gearbox change

flash1034 05-17-2013 09:40 AM

What upgraded box fits an 06?



idontthinkuheard 06-14-2013 06:18 PM

New gear box in
Hey, so I had the famous pitman bar leak so I decided to do the Durango upgrade and I must say it was not hard at all!

A few tips from the idontthinkuheard garage :D

1. A second pair of hands is really helpful given the weight of the gear box
2. Get a pitman puller - harbor freight 9.99
3. Buy new hoses dont try to reuse old ones
4. Follow the tutorials they are great!
5. PB Blast s your friend
6. Get a 1 5/16 impact socket, breaker bar and torque wrench - harbor freight

I am sure their is more but this is what I can think of right now.

I did not take the grill off and had no problem getting to everything, though I have a custom bumper so I dont know how different that made the openings.

I ended up buying the durango steering gear box from Napa cost 179.99 minus 111.10 for the core = 68.89. :thumb:

So thanks again WF for all the help... I love you man!

KBR97 06-15-2013 09:28 AM

Did anybody else do this swap and not have to notch/grind the bumper. I did mine last year and it fit without any modifications. Just curious.

Oh and mine is leaking again because I went el cheapo and got one from the junk yard. Now I'm contemplating another durango box or just splurging for the Borgeson box

Borgeson 800205 1987-2002 Jeep YJ,TJ,XJ Gear Box - BOR-800205 | performance steering components, power steering

Flyingscott 07-01-2013 06:40 AM

Hey ou812 what a great post both in quality and content. Just what I needed! Actually became a member here just to thank you.

Flyingscott 07-01-2013 06:42 AM

Sorry meant to post this here.....I'm a newbie...
Hey ou812 what a great post both in quality and content. Just what I needed! Actually became a member here just to thank you.

O_M_Jeep 07-01-2013 06:54 AM

Very well done, this is such a great and simple step x step it answers so many questions for anyone thinking about this swap (that means everyone with a TJ with bigger than 31"s).

This needs to be made a sticky, great write-up and pics.

BigDeaner 07-01-2013 12:52 PM

Subbed for when I get around to doing this. Great write up.

celticsfan 06-29-2015 01:48 PM

Bringing this back, I have a Warn bumper and am planning on doing this swap this week, am I going to have to notch a hole in the bumper? I believe it is more tubular than the stock bumper.

celticsfan 06-30-2015 10:48 AM


Jed-Willy 07-01-2015 07:43 AM

I will add, for recommendation, that this gear box is great!! Especially if you need to upgrade from an old leaky box. Pulling off the pitman arm was a pain in the ass...and lining up the spline since it is reman. box and not perfectly lined up and centered. It would have costed me more to get the stock gearbox actually through Advanced Auto... And to replace the seals would have been just as much work and probably would have ended up busting. Great write up btw!

celticsfan 07-01-2015 08:36 PM

1 Attachment(s)
So went along and swapped in the Durango box, relatively no problems except I had to turn the wheel to get the steering shaft to line up with the new the steering wheel is to the left when wheels are straight..would an alignment fix that ?

Attachment 2308017

Triple88a 09-25-2015 12:19 PM

You can lengthen the draglink to fix that.

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