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Stiff steering wheel -RR P38 - 1999(Solved)

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The steering wheel for my P38 Range Rover (1999) seems a lot stiff. Especially during taking reverse and Uturn. 

Really feels like driving a heavy truck. 

Any quick solution or things to check? 

 

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Did you check the steering fluid level? 

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Did you check your tire pressure? Any recent work is done on steering / suspension....?

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4 minutes ago, Gaurav said:

Did you check your tire pressure? Any recent work is done on steering / suspension....?

How does tire pressure matter? Like the steering to be that stiff tire pressure has to be real low right? 

Yes just got work done on suspension. Bushing changed. 

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By looks tire pressure on 35 or 25 looks "almost same" to the layman, but it makes a hell of a difference in steering, fuel mileage and shortening your tire life by half. So inflate to 32-35 and see any difference.

Also, check your steering fluid level at first and ask someone to sit inside and steer full right and left once and then top up the fluid as it will go down after a bit of steering movement.

Suspension work often results in tight feel in jumping and bouncing and not steering tight per se, but give few days to see if you get used to or not then show it some good mechanic for an opinion.

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Also if the car was sitting for a while, everything becomes little out of order so drive for a week and see any improvement before spending further.

My Pajero sitting for a month and a half had some rattling noise, tight steering, and hard braking which got normal after a couple of drives.

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Let the P38A guru set you straight.

Your steering pump I'm pretty much guessing is almost 20 yrs old now and while in reverse, Uturn or any crawl driving situation you are at low rpms and pump is not what it used to be and weaker than it used to be, so it won't work as efficiently resulting is a stiffer steering at low rpms. If the fluid level is correct and its humming when you turn then its on its last legs anyways. 

Replace your steering pump with a new one, not used but new and it should get better.

Or look on top of the steering box there is a 14mm( If I recall ) checknut, loosen that a bit and in the middle of that is much smaller a hex/torx nut, loosen that ever so slightly, like 15 - 20 degree turn, some steering fluid might also leak out but thats normal, that will loosen up the steering, check steering if it is to your liking, can take several attempts or have another pair of hands to help you out. Once you are happy and the amount of resistance, tighten the 14mm nut but side effect of that is you may now have slop in your steering. But you can come try to get a middle ground where you have minimal slop and steering stiffness is to your liking. 

That adjustment in the steering is there as the worm gear in the steering box wears away you develop slop or dead play in the steering over the years to get rid of that you tighten that and it reduces the tolerances between the gears. a lot of old skool cars that use the traditional worm gear steering box setup have this. 

I personally hate slop in the steering and dont mind a slightly stiff steering and in my 98 to get rid of it the adjustment it was fully tight which made the steering stiffer than normal cars but I didn't mind it as it didn't have any free play at all. 

I do miss my many P38s, contrary to popular belief one of the most reliable and cheap cars to maintain I've ever had. 

Never know in the future a nice clean one at the right price comes along. This time maybe turn it into an weekend warrior. I've always wanted to do that but always thought they were too elegant and civilised to be bashed around in the desert. 

 

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pumpis the problem get it changed should sort out this

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On 11/21/2018 at 12:37 PM, Gaurav said:

Also if the car was sitting for a while, everything becomes little out of order so drive for a week and see any improvement before spending further.

My Pajero sitting for a month and a half had some rattling noise, tight steering, and hard braking which got normal after a couple of drives.

This solution kind of worked.

But the major difference was by just fixing all the fuses in the fuse box. 

Steering wheel oil etc was all right levels. 

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Nothing in regards to the steering is electronically controlled so the fuses thing is just a placebo or coincidence. 

You most probably overtime just got used to the stiffer steering.

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