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Needs steering rack-fix or get another car?-2000 grand prix

I have a 2000 Grand Prix GT with 135K in decent shape, or was. It has a few dings and minor GM electrical bugs, but is one of the more dependable cars I have drove, and is a great driver. That was until the steering rack finally started leaking out with extra thick fluid in a day.

But I have been quoted a replacement cost of about $700 to a little over $1000 once I throw in alignment, and don’t know how to do the work myself. This is on a car that is probably worth $2000 to $3000 depending on the source.

Should I let it go or fix it?

If the steering rack is all that is wrong, I would get it repaired. Cheaper than a car payment and could be much cheaper than getting a different used car.

Remove the cap from your power steering reservoir and compare the fluid to the leak. There should be nothing else in the rack to leak out other than the fluid from that reservoir. Maybe a second look would be in order.

Well, we just bought a used rack for a '99 taurus, for $35 and a mechanic replaced it for $90. The car wont need realignment, just the toe-in will be affected.

GM rack is against firewall. Hard to remove. Ford rack is on front of subframe and is very easy. The gp job is awkward. U can lower rear of subframe and wiggle rack out but it is an above average do it yourself job. Is a shame to dump car for a “minor” issue but it’s your call.

Well, it seems to me that the rack is on the firewall on the Taurus. I know it is behind the engine, between the engine and the firewall.

If you think you can get a better used car for the cost of the repair (unlikely), it may be worth it to do so. If you can’t stand to look at or drive this car another day, use this as an excuse to get something else. If you like the car and it is in otherwise reasonable condition, I say fix it.

$1000 to put in a car you seem to like and is otherwise dependable? Why not do it. A thousand bucks in car terms isn’t that much these days. Sales tax alone you pay on a decent used car could be $1000.

I agree…if it’s dependable…then it might be worth getting fixed.\

The question I have…is the cost.

You said $700 for the rack…then $1000 of you throw in the alignment…That’s an awfully expensive alignment. Something special about the alignment on this vehicle??? I’ve never had an alignment cost more then $50.

Well, they want to get all they think you will pay!!

MikeInNH,
To be more clear, it was a rough quote, $600 to $1000 and I guessed $100 for an alignment. If I am looking at $1100 then I will look harder, on the $600-700, then I will easily go for the fix.

Looking at the cars in my price range, I am getting a more specific quote as everything I have looked is being priced firmly above edmunds prices/conditions.

The mechanic I first talked to didn’t like some rebuilt racks and likes some others. Quite possibly he didn’t like something about it as he seemed to be pointing me towards another car. He might just be too busy.

Do you know where it is leaking fron ? Make sure ir is the gear and not a line/hose or a transfer pipe on the gear. These would be a much easier fix. The gear can be replaced by unbolting the the rear cradle mounts and lowering the rear of the cradle but this is tough without a hoist. Find a shade tree mechanic and get a gear from the junkyard. There won’t be much resale in a car with no PS.