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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Suspension | Brakes | Chassis > Car steering seems to hunt



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      02-09-2015, 09:54 PM   #1
pedalstomper78
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Exclamation Car steering seems to hunt

OK guys. Need some help here.
'06 330i Sedan w/active steering, sport/premium/cold weather packages. 104k miles.

So about two weeks ago, I was having some fun and getting the car a bit "out of shape" on an entrance ramp when the steering got super duper stiff. Almost un-steerable for about a second (felt like 20 minutes) and then it softened up again. After that and since then, the car has seemed to want to follow cracks in the road and also has a tendency to "hunt" on the road. It really is a handful to drive now as it wants to wander all over the place. I also noticed that the steering pump is whining a bit.

A few days ago, I started the car and turned the wheel just a bit in the garage and heard a bit of a "pop".

Today, I finally get the car in the garage to check things out. Tie rods, ball joints, and control arm bushings are tight. The rack bolts are tight also. So everything in the front end seems to be tight. I'm not seeing any fluid in either of the tie rod boots and none of the hoses seem to be leaking, but the fluid was very low. I topped it off and most of the PS pump noise went away. (I don't drive the car much so it's not a huge worry) I checked the U-joints on the steering shaft and can find a small amount of play in one direction, but not the other.

So as the car sits in the garage with the front wheels up in the air, I turn the wheel or grab a tire to turn and as I am doing so, I hear a lot of hydraulic fluid moving around. Is it possible for it to leak internally?

The next question......
Just before I hit the steering lock on the left side, I hear a bit of a "pop". This happens by turning the steering wheel or by pushing on the tire. As you start to move things back to the right again, there is a smaller, more muffled pop as it goes back through. This noise seems to be coming right from the center of the rack. Am I replacing my rack?
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      02-09-2015, 10:47 PM   #2
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Did you check power steering fluid level?
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      02-10-2015, 04:44 AM   #3
pedalstomper78
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Yes......as it says in the 3rd paragraph from the bottom
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      02-12-2015, 06:30 PM   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pedalstomper78 View Post
OK guys. Need some help here.
'06 330i Sedan w/active steering, sport/premium/cold weather packages. 104k miles.

So about two weeks ago, I was having some fun and getting the car a bit "out of shape" on an entrance ramp when the steering got super duper stiff. Almost un-steerable for about a second (felt like 20 minutes) and then it softened up again. After that and since then, the car has seemed to want to follow cracks in the road and also has a tendency to "hunt" on the road. It really is a handful to drive now as it wants to wander all over the place. I also noticed that the steering pump is whining a bit.

A few days ago, I started the car and turned the wheel just a bit in the garage and heard a bit of a "pop".

Today, I finally get the car in the garage to check things out. Tie rods, ball joints, and control arm bushings are tight. The rack bolts are tight also. So everything in the front end seems to be tight. I'm not seeing any fluid in either of the tie rod boots and none of the hoses seem to be leaking, but the fluid was very low. I topped it off and most of the PS pump noise went away. (I don't drive the car much so it's not a huge worry) I checked the U-joints on the steering shaft and can find a small amount of play in one direction, but not the other.

So as the car sits in the garage with the front wheels up in the air, I turn the wheel or grab a tire to turn and as I am doing so, I hear a lot of hydraulic fluid moving around. Is it possible for it to leak internally?

The next question......
Just before I hit the steering lock on the left side, I hear a bit of a "pop". This happens by turning the steering wheel or by pushing on the tire. As you start to move things back to the right again, there is a smaller, more muffled pop as it goes back through. This noise seems to be coming right from the center of the rack. Am I replacing my rack?
When the steering rack seals fail, oil will leak into the bellows.

Squeeze the bellows with your hand. If you hear liquid squishing around in there, the seals have failed and you'll need to have the rack rebuilt or replaced.
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