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Power steering rack replacement

What is a power steering rack? How difficult is it to replace?

My vehicle: 2002 Kia Sedona Mini van 140,000 miles/Front wheel drive

The steering wheel is connected to the steering rack (power or otherwise), the steering rack is connected to the wheels via the tie rod ends. It’s not easy to replace. How did you get from needing a tie rod end to needing steering rack so quickly?

A power steering rack is very difficult to replace. Unless you are the caliber of DIYer who has removed and installed an engine or transmission, you probably don’t want to take this on yourself.

If you need a power steering rack, don’t put it off. It is a safety issue that warrants biting the bullet and paying for a proper replacement.

Instead Of Asking About Particular Components, Why Not Describe What’s Wrong With The Vehicle ?

I’m wodering what Keith was wondering when he asked, "How did you get from needing a tie rod end to needing steering rack so quickly? "

According to Kia, some 02 - 05 Sedonas develop increased steering effort needed to turn the wheels and noise or rattle, usually first noticed at low speed, often sympteoms of a bad rack.
It would be a shame to replace the rack because of these symptoms only to find that the problem stems from the intermediate steering shaft, as Kia says is often the case.

What’s wrong with the car ?
Why did it go into the shop to begin with ?
How is it being diagnosed ?


I took the van in this past weekend to the dealership to have all the belts replaced and the crank shaft sensor replaced. The dealership does a full 27 point inspection of the vechile as part of the service. During this inspection is when they found that the driver side tie rod end is beginning to go bad and should be replaced down the road and that the PS rack was also beginning to show signs.

I have had the van since last Aug when I bought it used from a used car lot. I took it to the local Kia dealership now 3 times. First was for oil/trans fluid changes back last Dec. In Feb I had them do a full allignment and now this past weekend the belts/sensor work. It was at this last visit where the tie rod/PS rack was listed on future work needing to be done. The dealership said the tie rod replacment would be $150, the PS rack about $550. Given these are not “engine” issues I am hoping my other local mechanics might be able to do the work for a bit cheaper as I can buy the parts and they install. I have not noticed any driving issues with the van at all, run real well and no problems steering at all.

The last time I had a PS rack replaced (about 1994), the cost was about $1,200. $550 sounds like a pretty good deal. I doubt you will find a better one.

" . . . and that the PS rack was also beginning to show signs."

That’s really vague. I’d see if I could find out what “signs” they’re referring to, here.
Is it leaking fluid, getting tight, making noise, developing play or a rattle ? I’d want them to show me.

The point I’m making is that it could be a bad intermediate shaft (know issue for theses vehicles) or it could be a rack, depending on what’s wrong. A quick diagnosis could be incorrect also, based on what the symptoms are. A rack is expensive, parts and labor wise, a steering shaft, relatively cheap.


I believe they said they saw a small sign of fluid whatever that means.