Very tight steering when turning right

Got an 1987 buick parkavenue for a graduation gift from my parents (I knew it had mechanical problems but I wanted the car) when i try and turn the wheel to the right it’s very difficult. Absolutely no issue turning left though. It’s got a pretty bad power steering leak in one of the hoses could that be the problem I’ve had a couple people say its the rack but I personally don’t think so.

It’s anyone guess, until you replace the leaking power steering hose.


Replace the hose, refill the power steering fluid, and see if it helps. You have to do that anyway. Also, check that the other steering and suspension components are not overly worn or damaged. If these steps don’t work, you might consider replacing the rack. If you aren’t a mechanic, tell the one you take it to about the symptoms and let him analyze it and recommend a repair.

I guess I am missing something here. What would possess parents to give a graduation vehicle as a present that may have dangerous steering problems .

Zach, don’t mess around and have this repaired before you harm yourself or someone.


Steering racks with “morning sickness” (very stiff steering in cold weather, before they were driven a bit) were common on GM cars of that era.

But yes, get the obvious fault fixed and go from there.

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Again, +1!

The hose has to be replaced in any event, so that’s where to start. I don’t see Park Avenue model listed under 87 Buick btw. Are you outside the USA?


So the model is the Electra then. Park Avenue is just the options package. I see.

Yours is a good guess.
However I would recommend that in addition to replacing the hose you get a good look-see of the car’s front end. There are other possible causes such as a binding ball joint or tie rod end that could be the cause, and these can be dangerous. You should get it all checked out properly.

“Morning sickness” & “Black Rack Disease” were common shop names for rack an pinion failures back in the 80s. Just as @shanonia described the problem made the car undriveable when first started in the morning and after a few minutes idling the stiffness faded somewhat. The plastic seals on the pressure control hub would get hard with age and usually the one controlling right turn failed first. In the late 80s I replaced a couple of racks each week.