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Registered
1998 Outback!! 2.5
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153 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
sup guys!

so first... 98 legacy outback... just rolled over 200k.. MT...

the problem... I was driving to work yesterday and i noticed that my steering wheel was tough to turn. then suddenly it wasn't. at this point i've kinda narrowed it down.. when i turn maybe 30 degrees to one side it will be tough (as if no power steering) and then it works like normal again (with power steering lol.). I haven't noticed any leaks and i don't remember the last time filling the power steering fluid and its still full.. it makes no noise... no whining, moaning, no belt slip, doesn't sound like anything out of the ordinary.

Q1- what the heck could this be? and where do i start at trying to fix it?

Q2- I drive about 95 miles a day round trip to work, I can't fix it until sunday (don't have to drive anywhere on saturday.. well at least not in my car, maybe her fozzy) will it be okay until then? ie: is the pulley on the pump going to seize and strip the belt and leave me stranded?



THANKS SO MUCH!!!
 

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Registered
Lawn ornament XT
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14,366 Posts
If the problem relates to the angle of the wheel, the problem is much more likely related to the rack than the pump.
 

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Registered
1998 Outback!! 2.5
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153 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
it does it no matter how far i turn the wheel.. also, sometimes it won't return all the way to center... just most of the way.. but again its sometimes.. other times it works like normal.
 

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Registered
01 Outback H6 VDC, 97 GT wgn w/ ej22, 98 OBW w/ej22
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1,401 Posts
it may be the unversal joint that connects the steering column to the rack. over time they lose the lube and start to bind. some times when the u-joint is only in one position. try driving slowly in an empty parking lot go from full left to full right, about 2.5 turns i think. does it bind up only once or does it do it twice for every full steering wheel rotation?

spray some lube on the u-joint. this may help for a while but it will not last forever. if the problem goes away you have figured it out.

any u-joint from an outback 96 - 99 will work. legacy, GT, impreza will not. they are shorter.
 

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Registered
1998 Outback!! 2.5
Joined
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153 Posts
Discussion Starter #6
It does seem to do it at specific spots through full rotation towards either side. That might be it but I have no idea how to replace it. It seems to be ok for now and tomorrow I'm stopping by a local shop that only works on scoobs for an eval and diagnosis. The u joint problems seems to fit the description well. Hopefully it's not too expensive ( just recently had to cough up some bread for head gaskets and timing components and such). Ill post back after that appointment. Tha ls for the help canubaru!!
 

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Premium Member
2001 VDC/SC One of a Kind
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14,318 Posts
Try flushing the fluid before spending for parts and time to replace those parts. It could possibly be the valve in the rack is binding due to carbon and a flush could correct it. Parts stores carry a P/S system flush that poors in. Just follow the directions. Pull the return hose after, plug off the reservoir and run some DEXIII through with the engine running to allow all the dirty fluid to run out.
 
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