I bought a used 2001 Taurus SW (24 valve eng) 2.5 years ago, with 60k miles on it. I have 82k miles on it now. It’s making a creaking noise when I turn the steering wheel, mostly to the right. I know the steering rack was changed before I bought it. What’s the noise from? Is it the steering rack, the power steering pump? Will the steering eventually fail if not repaired? The power steering fluid was overfilled and I took some out recently.
It’s impossible to tell without a hands on look, but it could be a bad ball joint, tie rod end, or something like that.
Yes, this could fail and cause you to crash. get it looked at.
I had the same noise on my 91 Taurus (35k miles) and 98 Windstar (57k miles). In both cases, it was the tie rod ends. The creaking was most noticeable a low speeds turning the steering wheel (i.e. backing out of a parking space). There are no grease fittings on the ball joints and tie rods. My mechanic was able to grease the tie rod ends on the Windstar using a needle (?) fitting. The tie rods were still holding up when I sold the Windstar with 99k a few years later.