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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I am calling out for help if anyone has had this problem with their Promaster or can steer me in the right direction ( NO PUN INTENDED)

About four months ago I had hit un-level pavement at 50 mph (jarring the front end pretty good). Since then the steering has much more play in the steering wheel, at 25 mph+ if I take my hand off the steeringwheel it pulls hard to the left.(no matter what grade, crown of road, or wind direction).

In trying to fix this problem, I have taken it to 3 different shops, replaced all struts/ shocks, rotated all tires, replaced the rims and tires to new oem rims and winter Blizaks and then rotated them again. Installed front and back sumo springs.

All three shops that I took it to sold me an alignment, and then said "everything is good", however, I have had this vehicle since new, and the steering is loose in comparison to before hitting the bump. If I take my right hand off the wheel to adjust the temperature settings, I am finding myself driving over the center line into oncoming traffic, and never to the right.

Again all three shops said that there is no visible problems, what should I do?
 

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After a short drive, compare left to right wheel temps as close to the brake parts as you can get without getting burned. If a brake is sticking it will be warmer on that side which in your case is the left.
 

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May have a damaged steering rack. Sounds like everything else has been checked. Before I got my new tires last month mine had a very slight pull to the left at high speeds. But it turned out to be a slight alignment issue and got solved with a turn of that side's tie rod end when I had it aligned.
I grew up in Pittsburgh PA. I know how road issues can screw up a car. I had the trailing arm on the passenger side of my old Triumph Spitfire get ripped out of the body after a bad pothole strike on Rt 51 heading into town. Used scrap wood and a hammer to wedge it sort of into place and then drove home at 20 mph. Had no way to fix it. I wasn't a welder yet when I was 17. ;-) Had to sell the car cheap and take the loss.
Good luck with yours. Seems to me the steering rack or hydraulics got jacked up on you.
 
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2019 159 EXT HR (3500) in WA
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I had some bad alignment problems on an old Jetta (well it was new then) -- had gone to several shops. Then I took it to the dealer. Fixed.

So the dealer may be something to try.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
After a short drive, compare left to right wheel temps as close to the brake parts as you can get without getting burned. If a brake is sticking it will be warmer on that side which in your case is the left.
Mcneill78
- Thanks, for the brake temp idea, thats the one thing I didn't think of. I will check it tomorrow. Will this make the steering wheel feel loose?

Gchin wrote -" Is there a way to have the mechanic ride with you to experience the problem"?

Today I went for a ride with the tech and owner. While driving I was told that the vehicle has 100,000 miles its not going to have a tight wheel, that's when I took my hand off the wheel and veered it into oncoming traffic. His response was that he test drove it and never took his hand off the wheel. But still doesn't know whats wrong, but leave it with him another few days he'll look at it.

Baxsie wrote I had some bad alignment problems on an old Jetta (well it was new then) -- had gone to several shops. Then I took it to the dealer. Fixed.

I had all of the above repairs struts/ shocks, strut mounts, and alignment performed by the Dealership that I purchased it from, took it back two times and test drove it with "QC manager", who shows me a printout that the mechanic did an alignment so there's no problems. Come to find out later that the Quality Control manager was actually their wash rack porter. He was the one who said their was no visible problems even though it veered to the left the same way as today.

uralwrench wrote "May have a damaged steering rack. Sounds like everything else has been checked.

I fear that you are probably correct, but I think nobody wants to say it.

Do you think by replacing the rack, this will give me the tight steering and "new car smell" that I am desperately seeking? Not to mention fixing thesteering to the left issue.
 

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While driving I was told that the vehicle has 100,000 miles its not going to have a tight wheel,
Bull. With 143,000 miles, our 2014 has a tight wheel. And if I take my hands off the wheel, it tracks as true as the pavement will allow—I routinely perform this "test" because I have a low tolerance for tracking issues.
 

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Mine only has 43k miles on it. But still has that new car smell/feel out on the hiway. I live in an area with many old rough roads, but no large pothole problem like I grew up with in PA. This is why I am happy with my new tires as they are more supple over the rough stuff than the oem Vanco's were. I got to watch them do the alignment when I got the new tires put on last month. It needed a tweak to the passengers side tie rod to make it right. I did a stint on the hiway taking it home and it was hands off perfect again. Same since then.
I have heard of issues on some cars where the rack will get a hydraulic issue internally that means the hydr pressure doesn't get sent evenly to wear it needs to go. Making it pull hard to one side. This was actually a common issue on Lotus cars. Only solution was to change the rack.
 

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I wonder if the rear axle (or one of the stub axels) is bent.

Or if one of the spring bushings is worn out.

Any of those problems would put the rear axle out of alignment which would make the van track sideways and could possibly make it pull to one side.

Has anybody verified the rear wheel alignment?

It would be reasonable not to check it on a solid axle vehicle like this -- but it sounds like you're running out of things to look for.
 

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I will second Baxsie’s recommendation on ruling out the rear axle. Even though it is not adjustable, there are published specs to measure. My 17 was delivered new with a bent axle, causing a pull. Rear beam replaced under warranty.
 
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