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Reman power steering gearboxes that aren't trash

holyford86

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Has anyone found any reman steering boxes that aren't trash? I just replaced the reman box I had about a year ago because of excessive play, new one was fine for a few months and now the play is back. there is no play in any tie rod end, or ball joint, the pitman arm is tight, and the rag joints are fine. The factory box that I swapped at just over 300k had no play it just leaked from everywhere. Once I replace this box it'll be the 4th reman I've swapped in 100k. I've bought boxes made by both Cardone and BBB industries that major parts houses have slapped their name on. I thought about Red Head but I've heard their quality has suffered in recent years. I've got a 100k mile box out of a 4x2 truck that I'm tempted to install then get this reman warrantied out and stick it on the shelf if the non rebuilt box ever goes bad. Thoughts?
 


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I've used three Cardone boxes from Carquest in the past few years and two of them have been perfect. The third works fine on the road but it seems like it's harder to steer off road than with the old box - maybe it is my imagination.

Fortunately they have a lifetime warranty so I'll just swap them out if I ever have trouble. Maybe you just got a bad run of them - hard to say.
 

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Everything I’ve ever heard is that Red Head and Blue Top are pretty much the best out there. I e never used either of them, so I don’t have any first hand experience.
 

holyford86

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I've used three Cardone boxes from Carquest in the past few years and two of them have been perfect. The third works fine on the road but it seems like it's harder to steer off road than with the old box - maybe it is my imagination.

Fortunately they have a lifetime warranty so I'll just swap them out if I ever have trouble. Maybe you just got a bad run of them - hard to say.
The first reman I had was fine play wise until it started leaking, didn't have the time or want to repair it myself so I got it warrantied out at Advance and swapped in another, it developed play after about 10k miles, went to warranty it out and Advance "updated their system" and couldn't find where i had purchased it and had no record I had ever purchased anything from them ever... went and bought a reman from O'Reilly and installed that, really nice looking box with all Ford stamped seals and such, now it has about 3 inches of play in it also, I've considered adjusting the preload to see how much I can remove but I'm on the fence about it. This box also has a lifetime warranty but I shouldn't need to exchange it yearly...

Everything I’ve ever heard is that Red Head and Blue Top are pretty much the best out there. I e never used either of them, so I don’t have any first hand experience.
I've been doing some research on both of them, red head has had some quality issues in recent years from what I can tell, going to research blue top a bit more and see what I find. I'm considering going with one of them over the reman I have currently, might try adjusting per factory spec and see what happens.
 

gw33gp

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I replaced my power steering pump with the same Ford remanufactured unit from O'Reilly. Mine is working great so far. I am not sure how a power steering pump would cause play. That sounds like something bad in the steering rack that would result in play. Then again, I am not that familiar with how that system works.
 

Roert42

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I would be tempted to simply try and fix it myself. Three times of doing the same job over because of someone else's sloppy work is more then enough for me.
 

holyford86

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I replaced my power steering pump with the same Ford remanufactured unit from O'Reilly. Mine is working great so far. I am not sure how a power steering pump would cause play. That sounds like something bad in the steering rack that would result in play. Then again, I am not that familiar with how that system works.
Pump is fine, it's the coveted heavy duty thunderbird pump that Cardone hasn't made in years. It's the gear that's junk, truck is too old for a steering rack but the gear serves the same purpose.

I would be tempted to simply try and fix it myself. Three times of doing the same job over because of someone else's sloppy work is more then enough for me.
That's kinda the way I'm leaning currently, I'm going to look over the other box I have and see if it's worth doing anything with, if it is I'll probably run that, as I know it hasn't been abused too badly over it's lifetime and warranty the reman I've got. I'll try adjusting it up a bit first, once I see if it voids my warranty or not though.
 

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If it's just loose I'd adjust the preload- but that will probably be the end of your warranty. Lift both front wheels off the ground and tighten the preload screw slowly while turning the steering wheel back and forth at the center of travel, if it drags back it off slightly- maybe 1/8 turn. Once it doesn't bind on center you're set. Before adjusting it I'd check the steering shaft to make sure you're not feeling a worn u joint or broken rag joint.
 

gw33gp

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Pump is fine, it's the coveted heavy duty thunderbird pump that Cardone hasn't made in years. It's the gear that's junk, truck is too old for a steering rack but the gear serves the same purpose.
Sorry, I misread your post. For some reason, I had pump on the brain. I did not realize you did not have rack and pinion steering. I have a couple old cars with steering boxes and I know they do wear. I also know they can be adjusted, but even that fails to work at some point.
 

BlackBII

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I bought the Motorcraft one - STG41RM, and it has been great, no issues at all. I paired it with a Motorcraft pump (STP25RM) and the correct Type F fluid and have no whine.
 

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