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Power Steering Rack damage caused by 6 inch lift?

Discussion in '3rd Gen Tundras (2014+)' started by GSXR1Kstang, Jan 8, 2016.

  1. Jan 8, 2016 at 9:08 AM
    #1
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    For Third Gen (Maybe 2nd Gen also) Tundra owners:

    I've been doing plenty of research of 6 inch lifts, mainly to prevent premature wear to other components. While I'm not sure on which OEM parts need to be replaced to prevent wear to minor parts, I was told something interesting by at the local Toyota dealer.

    One of the workers advised against getting anything above a 3-4 inch lift. According to him, the lifts (combined with heavier wheels), cause the power steering rack to bend. He claimed that they constantly have lifted Tundra's coming in with steering rack problems caused by the 4+ inch lifts. He also "claims" (although I smell BS on this one), that the motor has to be pulled out just to replace the steering rack

    Has anyone had this problem or know anything about it?
     
    Tj6818 likes this.
  2. Jan 8, 2016 at 10:02 AM
    #2
    T-Rex266

    T-Rex266 T-Rex Staff Member

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    I replied to ur other post, but anything up to 4" of lift is usually the safest.
     
    GSXR1Kstang [OP] likes this.
  3. Jan 8, 2016 at 10:13 AM
    #3
    PlatPro

    PlatPro New Member

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    2014 Platinum, TRD Pro Suspension , Truxedo Bed Cover, Vent Shade Rain Guards, Tint match windows,TRD Exhaust, Linex, Custom Dyno Tune, TRD SwayBar, and just started.
    The rack is of a car design. Yes they build it up for truck use but it is still a car design. Long term I would stay under 4" and 35" is really pushing the components at that angle. Most daily driver/ long term owners go with a 3/1 slight lift and level kit for best long run performance.
     
    GSXR1Kstang [OP] likes this.
  4. Jan 8, 2016 at 2:40 PM
    #4
    equin

    equin New Member

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    Looking underneath, I'm wondering if you could just unbolt the engine mount and carefully lift the engine a bit to get the rack out.

    As far as lifts go, I think a control-arm type lift that uses spacers, coilovers or a combination thereof, that's more than 3" places the suspension and steering geometry at too high of an angle. I think that may be where the rack damage is coming from, especially when adding the weight of bigger and heavier tires. I can see ball joints and CV axles prematurely wearing with increased angles also.

    I'm wondering if a bracket-type lift, where drop-down brackets are used, would still cause steering rack damage. I'm only vaguely familiar with those, never having installed one, so I don't know. I do know they retain for the most part the suspension and CV axle angles. I don't know if they retain the tie rod angles, though, but maybe they do? If so, then I guess the bigger and heavier tires from such a lift may still place added stress on the steering rack, but at least the angles would be at or near the stock geometry.
     
    GSXR1Kstang [OP] likes this.
  5. Jan 9, 2016 at 4:54 PM
    #5
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    Yea, I know you replied. I just wanted to ask the question in the proper section. Thanks!!
     
  6. Jan 9, 2016 at 4:56 PM
    #6
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    I did not know that fact about the steering rack being of a car design. That must be one of the reasons for the steering being so smooth.

    Isn't there anyone out there that sells aftermarket racks that are beefed up?? My wife had a Chrysler 300 that was constantly having rack issues due to poor design. I bought an aftermarket rack and never had another problem with it.

    So you think that 35" would be too big of a tire?
     
  7. Jan 9, 2016 at 5:04 PM
    #7
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    I know a lot of guys use drop brackets on 6 inch lifts, but none of them have Tundras.

    The closest I have to first hand knowledge of Tundras with 6" lifts is the dealer. My local dealer was selling lifted Tundras (brand new) and sending them to a place called Keystone Styling, located near Harrisburg, PA. That place was using Rough Country kits, and all the trucks that they did ended up being shit. Again, I wonder if it was them not installing the kits right or using Rough Country kits to begin with. Or maybe a combo of both. But I do know the trucks they were doing were coming back with rack problems.
     
    MotoTundra likes this.
  8. Jan 10, 2016 at 8:37 AM
    #8
    equin

    equin New Member

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    I've seen the drop-bracket lifts on 1st gen Tacomas, but not on any Tundras yet. Although they do retain the stock suspension geometry, I don't remember if that also applied to the tie rod ends and steering rack. Although these lifts do allow more room for bigger tires, they don't necessarily provide more ground clearance since the brackets supporting the suspension were lowered correspondingly, despite the bigger tires.

    I'm not familiar with the Rough Country lifts, and I don't think you can use a combination of spacers and coil overs alone to achieve 6" of lift up front by pushing down on the control arms. To achieve lift that way, you have to use available down travel, and there's only so much of it. Plus, you'll also risk breaking ball joints and CV axles if 4wd. But I could be wrong about that due to my unfamiliarity with the Tundra Rouch Country lift.
     
    GSXR1Kstang [OP] likes this.
  9. Jan 10, 2016 at 2:34 PM
    #9
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    I've seen a lot of pictures here of 3rd Gen trucks with 6". I wonder how those guys are fairing?
     
  10. Jan 10, 2016 at 7:09 PM
    #10
    LOTSOFTOYS

    LOTSOFTOYS Toyota Whisperer

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    I can verify what that dealer told u. We've done quite a it of steering related repairs on trucks woth larger the 3 inch lifts. Racks, pumps... they strain alot with those larger lifts/tires. As for the rack replacement, yeah it's under the engine. Real pita to replace
     
    MotoTundra likes this.
  11. Jan 10, 2016 at 7:27 PM
    #11
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    Thats unfortunate!! :-( What would you suggest? No more than 3-4 inches? And even with only 3-4, would 35s be too heavy??
     
  12. Jan 11, 2016 at 7:14 AM
    #12
    LOTSOFTOYS

    LOTSOFTOYS Toyota Whisperer

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    3 to 4 inches and 35s correct. No bigger
     
  13. Jan 11, 2016 at 7:25 AM
    #13
    GSXR1Kstang

    GSXR1Kstang [OP] New Member

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    So far, just a Westin Bull Bar and custom made Flowmaster exhaust.
    Ok, well thanks for the info! In spite of how disappointed I am in not being able to go with a 6, there are some plus sides to it. It's a lot easier to find a good 3-4 lift, and cheaper! And I won't have to worry about sacrificing ride quality and mpg!
     
  14. Jan 11, 2016 at 10:05 AM
    #14
    jberry813

    jberry813 The Mad Scientist Staff Member

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    Taking tire size out of the equation, with drop bracket lifts you actually swap tie rods (driver's side to passenger and vice-versa) and then attach the tie rod to the top->down rather than bottom->up. Meaning there's actually less stress on the rack in terms of geometry than compared to a 3" coilover/spacer lift. Blaming the lift is easy since it's not a Toyota product.
     
    jeremyd, texasrho83, GNTundra and 3 others like this.
  15. Jul 1, 2018 at 6:23 PM
    #15
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    So from the multiple thesis’s , what is the final verdict? Is there a good-fix?
     
    ARamirez73 likes this.
  16. Jul 1, 2018 at 6:30 PM
    #16
    ARamirez73

    ARamirez73 RIDIN' THEM RAILS TO ANYWHERE

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    :popcorn:
     
  17. Jul 1, 2018 at 6:33 PM
    #17
    ARamirez73

    ARamirez73 RIDIN' THEM RAILS TO ANYWHERE

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    Not knowing what I was getting into when I saw the one I wanted, '14 CM 4WD with 6" RC lift, and according to RC rep, since I've been looking underneath it since I bought it, it's a older model spacer kit because the rear crossmember is not cut out as per the instructions shown on their site, bought truck used mid '16 with 26000 miles now at 58200 starting to hear some creaking noises up front
     
    Les7311 likes this.
  18. Jul 1, 2018 at 6:36 PM
    #18
    ARamirez73

    ARamirez73 RIDIN' THEM RAILS TO ANYWHERE

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    Thinking noises coming from either upper or lower ball joints or UCA's to extended steering knuckles from kit and never taken truck serious off-roading
     
  19. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:35 PM
    #19
    jeremyd

    jeremyd 2014 Crewmax SR5

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    I have a 2014 with a 6 inch and 35's for the last 40000 miles. Zero issues. My buddy has a 2008 with the same lift, Zero issues. I don't think the steering racks are bending. Although I do believe the steering stops are not being installed/ welded which is most likely causing the steering rack leakage.
     
    Les7311 likes this.
  20. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:40 PM
    #20
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    ........ so if the rack is leaking, does keeping the PS fluid level at full causes any immediate concerns?
     
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  21. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:41 PM
    #21
    texasrho83

    texasrho83 Teacher in a Tundra

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    I wanna say @Blueeagle68 has spacers with Fox coils to get 8" of lift but his is a Pro Comp system IIRC.
     
  22. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:43 PM
    #22
    jeremyd

    jeremyd 2014 Crewmax SR5

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    If it's leaking slowly, it's collecting in the boot.
     
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  23. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:44 PM
    #23
    texasrho83

    texasrho83 Teacher in a Tundra

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    I've got a Readylift 6" kit & 35s (won't go any larger) on my '16 and am about to hit 40k miles. Zero issues here. Matter of fact, I just had the dealer check out the PS pump and steering to confirm.
     
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  24. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:52 PM
    #24
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    I noticed a drip on passenger side and at the lowest point on f sway bar. But couldn’t trace it.
    Where should I start the Dx?
     
  25. Jul 1, 2018 at 7:59 PM
    #25
    jeremyd

    jeremyd 2014 Crewmax SR5

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    Have you added fluid to the power steering reservior ? It doesn't dissapate. If you have. then most likely it's sitting in the boot.
     
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  26. Jul 1, 2018 at 8:14 PM
    #26
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    The reservoir is full.
     
  27. Jul 1, 2018 at 8:16 PM
    #27
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    If worse comes to shove, I see a DIY project. Already watching some YouTube vids which doesn’t seems hard.

    Am on a 6 inch RC w 4x4, and that part am scratching head.....
     
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  28. Jul 10, 2018 at 5:45 PM
    #28
    Les7311

    Les7311 Look up, what do you see

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    Well the dealership gave the Toy a clean bill of health.

    The rust protection sealant done last November is basically sweating from the extreme heat, and still in its curing state.

    Checkmate!
     
  29. Jul 10, 2018 at 6:16 PM
    #29
    trayday

    trayday New Member

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