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  #1  
Old 03-20-2003, 11:30 PM
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300TE with steering problem

I have a 1989 300TE with a very annoying problem. At highway speeds on a flat road, the driver has to constantly correct the steering. It's as if the rear of the wagon is trying to steer the car. As the owner of a small trucking company, it feels like I am pulling a trailer with my car, with side-winds hitting it as I move down the road and I have to constantly correct the steering. This occurs while I am holding the steering wheel perfectly steady. I've replaced the front idler arm, tie rods, dampener, new shocks, and new tires but the problem persists. Could the rear suspension be off?

Thanks,
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  #2  
Old 03-21-2003, 01:11 AM
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Yes - there are ten links in the back that DO wear out. One or more of these is probably causing your steering instability. A worn thrust arm especially will result in a torque steer - happened on mine, first when the originals were wearing, then again when one had loosened over time.

-anthony
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  #3  
Old 03-21-2003, 01:51 AM
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In addition, if you have not replaced the front and rear sway bar bushings, you should.

In handling terms, the opposite end often feels to influence the other- if the front sway bar bushings are shot, it will allow wallow influencing the rear.

Wagons are taller than sedans and have more mass resulting in a higher CG (center of gravity). This is why the wagons have beefier sway bars.

Replacing the front and rear bushings are inexpensive and definitely a DIYer project. Additionally, check the rear sway bar links. They are verticle plastic pieces that also wear. Just a small amount of wear translates into weird handling.

Keep us posted,

Haasman
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  #4  
Old 03-21-2003, 08:31 AM
LarryBible
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It is great that everyone is sharing their particular experiences. The items that have failed for them are certainly items that also may be causing your problem, however, it is impossible to know exactly what is causing your particular problem by just reading your description.

Badly worn shocks could be the cause, loose rear suspension links, very low tire pressure(s), sway bar bushings, suspension joints of all kinds, steering play, etc., etc., etc., ............

You need to raise the car safely and start inspecting all suspension joints, shocks and everything. My approach is using the 4 P's, Push, Pull, Pry and Prod on all steering linkage and suspension components.

Good luck,
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Old 03-21-2003, 11:02 AM
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Along that same line, my wagons' steering wheel shakes pretty good from side to side when I hit a bump in the road. I have replaced the front sway bar bushings, but no difference. Should I just start replacing everything from the steering box down?
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  #6  
Old 03-21-2003, 03:20 PM
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Could be in the rear, but don't overlook those front suspension balljoints, since the symptoms match fairly well.
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Old 03-21-2003, 04:11 PM
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PJG56

My experience with those types of symptoms indicates a bad tie rod or drag link. Check them out.

Keep us posted,

Haasman
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  #8  
Old 03-24-2003, 09:44 AM
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the post-bump shaky steering wheel is bad steering damper, had exact same problem back in December, easy fix.

Not a cure all for other problems though.
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