2011 Toyota Camry popping in steering wheel

I have a 2011 Camry with 112,000 miles and 2.5 4 cylinder and auto transmission. Lately I’ve been feeling some popping or clicking in my steering wheel. I am deaf so I can’t hear how it feels but sometimes I’ll be driving straight and I’ll start to feel some popping. Sometimes it will not pop when I am making a turn or taking a curve. Sometimes when I hit a bump, it will pop. It’s very random. I’ve been reading some forums and it could be the intermediate shaft but how can I check that for some play? I took it to a Toyota specialist shop and they say they can’t find anything. It is getting to the point where it is getting annoying. Could it be the intermediate shaft or something else?

It very likely is the intermediate shaft, and I say that based on professional experience and your description of the problem

and it is a common problem . . . and not just on Camry, and not just on Toyota, for that matter.

Are you planning on performing the repair yourself?

Dorman sells part #425-465, and it’s called the lower intermediate steering shaft

Even if you are planning on paying a shop fix the problem, it might be a good idea to NOT pay for further diagnosis. Just say “I’m paying you to replace the intermediate steering shaft. I’m not paying for diagnosis.”

In my opinion, it’s very your steering issues will be resolved.

Replacing an intermediate steering shaft is also not the end of the world, if you’re thinking of doing it yourself. An experienced diy guy could do it in a reasonable amount of time, provided he’s got a decent assortment of hand tools. I’m talking ratchets, sockets, extensions and combo wrenches, for example.

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I can turn a few wrenches but I’m not sure whether I am capable of replacing the shaft. Does it include a lot of labor?

Replacing the steering intermediate shaft is spec’d at a little over an hour labor charge, if that’s of any help. The oem replacement part is about $270. the steering wheel has to be removed so there’s airbag issues. Maybe not a good choice for a diy’er job. Common sense says that before going the intermediate shaft route, good idea to have someone else in the car with you at a time when you can feel this sensation, so they can describe to you what (if anything) they are hearing.

really . . . ??

That’s usually not necessary, when replacing an intermediate steering shaft

Not sure. I defer to your better experience db. I was looking at a procedure I found on the internet is all, which was for removal of the steering column ass’y. If that’s not necessary, then it may be considerably easier. It seems like a little over an hour to remove the steering column might be unrealistic, so you are probably correct it can be removed as a partial ass’y.

You’re not removing the entire steering column . . . only the intermediate steering shaft

So…I decided to take a look under the dash where the intermediate shaft is located and turned the steering wheel with the car running. I held the shaft in my left hand while turning the wheel with my right hand. I definitely can feel the knocking on the shaft itself. So that is a definite answer that the shaft is worn out?

I believe you’ve found the cause of the popping