Aligning steering column and rack and pinion shafts

Replacing rack and pinion, having trouble getting the steering column shaft coupler to engage far enough to get the coupler bolt in without binding. Anybody know any tricks?

Steering column coupler aligning with rack and pinion shaft


If we don’t know the year?


Well let me see. What years had rack and pinion steering? Power ? Not? Of never mind, too much work already.

2011 Impala LTZ

Did you lock the column in place with an anti-rotation pin of some kind, inserted into the steering column access hole, prior to disassembly? Damage to the clock spring could result, otherwise.

Are you completely removing the intermediate shaft pinch bolt before connecting it? It should be removed before seating the shaft.
CSA :palm_tree::sunglasses::palm_tree:

The rack and wheel must be centered.But I suspect that the clock spring and coupling may not survive the struggle.

I tied the steering wheel in place and I assume the steering locked when I took the key out. I took the bolt out that holds the steering gear shaft in place. If there is another one inside the passenger compartment, I didn’t take it out.

i recall that GM cars have a rubber boot/bellows that slides down over the pinchbolt area and makes adjusting the angle of the u-joint to be awkward. you really have to have the coupler at the exact correct angle and than it will slide on. i assume the new rack is the proper diameter at the splined shaft location? not impossible to get a wrong rack from parts house

It does slide up and in, but the coupler and the shaft are coming together at slightly different angles and before the coupler gets low enough on the shaft for the bolt that locks the two to together to be inserted, they bind. The steering gear is bolted into the subframe and as you lift the subframe the shaft pivots up and into the coupler

The new one looked about identical to the old one.