Jeep Wrangler Forum

Jeep Wrangler Forum (http://www.wranglerforum.com/)
-   TJ General Discussion Forum (http://www.wranglerforum.com/f282/)
-   -   Changing Steering Box (http://www.wranglerforum.com/f282/changing-steering-box-94030.html)

fonecop1 05-16-2011 08:13 PM

Changing Steering Box
 
How big of a pain is it to change the steering box on my 2000 4X4 Wrangler? I have a pitman arm puller and a reman steering box. Is there any tricks I need to know about before tackling it?
Thx,
Bob

sevenservices 05-16-2011 08:32 PM

I had to heat mine w/a torch, broke a bolt in a puller and had it shoot across the room... quite a challenge but mines a 94'. I also heard another guy with a brilliant idea to pound down on it with a long steel rod and a BFH from the top. :)

Dewry636 05-16-2011 08:43 PM

I decided to save a headache and just get a new pitman arm for the junkyard gearbox I got out of a Durango. I am in the process of swapping my leaky gearbox out.... Easy to get the gear box off the jeep, but I gotta get to the garage to finish the install after my new pitman arm comes in. I didn't have to remove anything to get it off.... the lines were accessible from the bottom without having to remove anything.

2003x 05-16-2011 09:42 PM

Just did mine last week. This is the 2nd time I have changed it. What I can say about it is, have another set of hands. The box is pretty heavy to hold your self while trying to bolt it in. A pitman arm puller is a must, and as your are applying pressure to the pitman arm to loosen it, use a hammer to tap the side of the arm to help loosen it more. If the arm slides off the box smooth you will be fine. If its been on there a while, it will make a loud bang when it lets go, its loud, but its normal from the pressure.

Have a good set of 1/2" sockets and wrench and a 1/2" breaker bar helps alot, pb blaster and WD-40. I believe for a 2000 Wrangler the nut on the pitman arm is 32MM.
The last thing is when you go to put the box on, you may have to widen the steering shaft column piece. A large flat head screw driver works best to pry it open a bit. They also tell you to put the seat belt through the steering wheel to keep the wheels strait. I did this the first time and still needed an alignment. This time I did not do it, and still needed an alignment, so just plan on getting an alignment after installing the box.

Take your time, there are plenty of good write ups online to do it. If there is an Auto Zone near you, you can rent the pitman arm puller and 32 MM socket.

fonecop1 05-16-2011 10:04 PM

I haven't looked at the pitman shaft but by your comments I guess there isn't a flat spot so it only goes on one way so the result is your steering wheel is crooked because you are off a few teeth?

2003x 05-17-2011 12:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fonecop1 (Post 1244104)
I haven't looked at the pitman shaft but by your comments I guess there isn't a flat spot so it only goes on one way so the result is your steering wheel is crooked because you are off a few teeth?

Not sure, I just know you will need an alignment.

Gary2 05-17-2011 07:50 PM

pitman is indexed . I had a problem on two Jeeps loosening the fluid lines . The nut would not spin independently of the line . I ended up removing it from the pump and worked on it with PB blaster on the bench in order to remove it and not twist up the tubing beyond repair.

Mr Smeee 05-17-2011 08:14 PM

Did the box last weekend, hardest part was removing the pitman arm, finally used a torch on it for about three minutes, then applied the puller.
Second hard thing was the hoses, use an 18mm line wrench to remove them from the box, you'll need to remove the sway bar to help get at them.
The parts are indexed, so they only go one way. Lock your steering wheel down when the column is free to prevent damage to the clock spring. Search this forum for steerign box replacement and you'll find info on bleeding the air from the system, and other info on the project.

pslamp32 05-17-2011 08:35 PM

What are the main symptoms which would lead to replacing the steering box? Thanks!

2003x 05-17-2011 09:34 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by pslamp32 (Post 1246216)
What are the main symptoms which would lead to replacing the steering box? Thanks!

Large tires

fonecop1 05-17-2011 09:35 PM

Mine is leaking fluid pretty bad out of the seal around where the steering shaft goes into it.

fonecop1 05-17-2011 09:39 PM

I'm thinking I will just pop the pitman arm loose from the drag link or whatever that is considered and then us the puller on it once I get the steering box off and on the floor. Then I can apply heat if I need to.

Dewry636 05-18-2011 07:07 AM

Mine started as a drip a couple months ago... and now when I turn lock to lock, the fluid streams out. I tried the stop leak additive stuff because I had some laying around here.... did not work.

Peepers 05-18-2011 07:18 AM

When I changed the steering box on a cherokee, the old lines would not thread into the new box, we had to buy new lines in addition to the box. also when I needed a new steering box for my tj because it was leaking, the cheapest one i could find was from my local parts store. It did not line up with any of the mounting holes on my frame. I took it back and went to a friend that owns a garage and he got me a remanufactured one and installed it for about $20 more than autozone wanted for their one.

Also becareful because the new steering box might have a different ratio. mine turns much quicker now with the new steering box.

Dewry636 05-18-2011 09:18 PM

I got mine together tonight.... there are two flat spots where the pitman arm slides on. Opposite sides from each other. I was sure not to spin the shaft when I removed the gear box from the frame. I put a pair of vicegrips on the steering shaft to keep it from moving. I laid the new gear box beside the old one and spun the shaft in the exact position as the old one. And the shaft where the steering column connects can only go on one way. There is a flat spot on that shaft too. There was no need for an alignment. No more leaking.... Yeehaw! It held almost a full quart of power steering fluid. I poured fluid in... and worked the wheels back and forth by hand (without starting the jeep) a few times while the tires were off the ground until I no longer heard air coming to the top. I filled as needed throughout this process. Then I started the jeep after putting the tires back on the ground and worked it back a forth a few more times. Took it for a small drive and added a little more fluid. Then it was all done.

2003x 05-18-2011 09:46 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Dewry636 (Post 1248830)
I got mine together tonight.... there are two flat spots where the pitman arm slides on. Opposite sides from each other. I was sure not to spin the shaft when I removed the gear box from the frame. I put a pair of vicegrips on the steering shaft to keep it from moving. I laid the new gear box beside the old one and spun the shaft in the exact position as the old one. And the shaft where the steering column connects can only go on one way. There is a flat spot on that shaft too. There was no need for an alignment. No more leaking.... Yeehaw! It held almost a full quart of power steering fluid. I poured fluid in... and worked the wheels back and forth by hand (without starting the jeep) a few times while the tires were off the ground until I no longer heard air coming to the top. I filled as needed throughout this process. Then I started the jeep after putting the tires back on the ground and worked it back a forth a few more times. Took it for a small drive and added a little more fluid. Then it was all done.

Yes, getting all of the air out of the system before starting it is a crucial step.

fonecop1 05-21-2011 07:11 AM

I got it changed and an extra set of hands (my Sons who's a Mechanic) was the way to go. To get to the lines we undid the steering shaft and unbolted the box, when we lowered it down and got the steering shaft loose then we put the lower front bolt in the top front hole of the box and it was easy to get to the lines without having to hold the box up the whole time. Getting the steering shaft back on was a bit of a pain, the new one was painted and the coupler needed to be spread. I still had to take my smallest ball peen hammer and lightly tap on it to get it to go on the last 1/4 inch or so.

2003x 05-21-2011 10:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by fonecop1 (Post 1253191)
I got it changed and an extra set of hands (my Sons who's a Mechanic) was the way to go. To get to the lines we undid the steering shaft and unbolted the box, when we lowered it down and got the steering shaft loose then we put the lower front bolt in the top front hole of the box and it was easy to get to the lines without having to hold the box up the whole time. Getting the steering shaft back on was a bit of a pain, the new one was painted and the coupler needed to be spread. I still had to take my smallest ball peen hammer and lightly tap on it to get it to go on the last 1/4 inch or so.

Good. The hardest part I had as well, was getting the shaft back on the gear box. I had to spread the coupler with a large flat head screw driver.


All times are GMT -5. The time now is 02:53 AM.