How To Buy A Steering Rack?

How To Buy A Steering Rack?

What Exactly Is A ‘Steering Rack’?


A steering rack is a significant part of the steering system. It is responsible for transferring the movement from the steering shaft to the tie-rod shaft using mechanical, hydraulic, or electrical systems. It is also liable for transferring direction command from steering wheels to wheels. This part converts the rotator motion given by the steering shaft to linear motion. The gear ratio present in the steering rack multiplies the turning force applied on the steering wheel and sends it to the wheels. The servo systems present in the rack offer hassle-free and effortless wheel rotation.

Categories of Steering Racks

Steering racks have been divided into three main categories: mechanical, hydraulic or electric. Let us go through the mechanical ones and move to electric racks used in present-day vehicles:

Mechanical Steering Rack


The automobile market consists of several types of steering racks. The rack and pinion are the most common steering racks that are now part of passenger cars and light commercial vehicles. Hydraulic or electric systems belong to this category of racks.

Hydraulic Rack


The driver is able to move the vehicle in a comfortable manner using a wide base and low-pressure tires. As a consequence more steering effort takes place due to tire friction. Steering torque can be reduced by surging the gearing ratio of the surging gear. Wide steering helps to turn the vehicle, thereby offering greater turning force to the vehicle. With these changes turning the steering wheels at low speeds becomes a hassle. As a consequence moving a vehicle skillfully amid congestion and busy roads becomes a concern. Various systems have been devised to minimize the steering effort and help the vehicle steer easily. There is only one way to increase the steering resistance and minimize the torque produced by the steering rack. Hydraulic pressure intertwines during the process.

Hydraulic pressure assists pioneer gear in moving the rack. The pressure applied depends on the resistance given to the rack. As the pressure increases, the steering force increases.

Electric Steering Rack


The electrically operating steering system supports the steering wheel via the electric motor. This motor operates a worm gear that receives input from the steering wheel. The circular motion performed occurring in the steering wheel is transferred to the worm gear by the steering shaft. There are multiple bearings between worm screw threads and worm screw nut threads. The friction caused by these systems is minimum; that is why turning the steering wheel is no longer a hassle. It is commonly installed in heavy-duty vehicles, including trucks and buses. This system would cause minimum impact on the vehicle which is in contact with the road.

Components of a Steering Rack

Buy a steering rack that consists of several components. Let us go through these components that are an integral part of the system:

Steering Gearbox

Converting the circular steering wheel to push and pull movement is the main job handled by the steering gearbox. It also minimizes the steering rotation force.

Steering Column

The rack and swivel ball are connected to the column using screws. The distance between the joints is generally managed using the steering wheel position.

Tie Rod End

You will find tie rod ends at the ends of the rod attached to the gooseneck with long intermediate and short rods.

Short Tie Rod

The connection from the command arm to the gooseneck is generally established with the help of a short tie rod. It basically forms a link responsible for moving the left and right arm of the command arm forward and backward.

Ways to Determine a Bad Steering Rack

The steering rack performs vital control mechanisms within the vehicle. The steering system performs its job dedicatedly while it is the steering rack that creates the issues. However, you will suspect the following symptoms in a bad steering rack:

Steering Stiffness

Present-day steering systems are generally supported by hydraulic or electric power steering units. The hydraulic pressure makes the system move faster and softer. More heat is dissipated by the system with the loss of hydraulic power. This makes the steering wheel stiff, and if such things happen, the first thing you should check is the steering hydraulic fluid.

Hydraulic Foaming and Leakage

Issues such as hydraulic foaming basically take place due to mechanical problems, including loose connection and wear & tear to the gaskets. These systems must be inspected for malfunction without any delay. In case there is a leakage, you will notice leakage in the gears as it overheats the steering box. Identifying a power steering leak has become easier than ever. It is vital to determine the source of the leak and buy a steering rack if the leaks get worse.

Steering Noises 

Poor maintenance and no lubrication is the prominent reason for steering wheel failure. The steering parts start rubbing against each other, ultimately resulting in overheating due to inadequate lubrication. In such a situation, high decibel noise will be generated by the system.

Vehicle Moving Sideways on a Straight Road

Your vehicle starts moving in either direction while driving on a straight road. This issue takes place when connecting rods on the steering box undergo wear and tear. If you come across such an issue, know that it is time to start searching for the best place to buy a steering rack.

Excessive Play by Steering Wheels 

Excessive play taking place in the steering wheels clearly indicates that there are issues with the steering rack. You tend to steer more while driving the vehicle skillfully. You would notice the steering wheel moving forward and backward while driving the vehicle.

How Much Will Steering Oil Replacement Cost?

The cost of the steering rack is affected by several factors. The make and model top the list, accompanied by the kind of steering rack you are planning to install. If you have been experiencing issues, know that it is time to buy a new one or find the best place to buy a steering rack. Good mechanical knowledge is expected while someone plans for a steering rack replacement. Know the charges well in advance as repair from a mechanic would burn a hole in your pocket.

If you have a rack that is damaged, you can still replace it. In case the condition has become worse, it is better to find the best place to buy a steering rack which is ‘The Auto Parts Shop,’ bringing top-notch car parts and accessories at reasonable rates.

How to Buy the Right Steering Rack For Your Vehicle?

Steering racks are commonly used by vehicles when they move. Due to excess use, these undergo wear and tear or fail completely. You can buy the steering rack by entering the make, year, and model number of the vehicle or using the OEM number. If you don’t have the OEM number, share the VIN number with the dealer and get the number.

Pro Tip: Always invest in quality, original & durable OEM parts.

Wrapping Up

Follow these guidelines mentioned above and find an appropriate part for your automobile.

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