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Old 03-24-2005, 09:23 PM   #1
Mark Fahey
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Default Intermediate shaft question

I'm going to try to lube the shaft rather than replace it since it doesn't seem as if the new one is any better.
My question is what to lube. I pulled back the boot and only see the universal joint. When I did a search for the replacement procedure, I didn't see anything in the illustration that indicated a place to grease.
Do you have to pull the shaft to lube it?
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Old 03-25-2005, 10:41 AM   #2
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Default Intermediate shaft repair

Hi: I had posted a repair procedure some time ago to fix this problem. refer to "intermediate Shaft recall" approximately on page nine of this section on an email written by compyelc4 dated wednesday Nove 3 2004 and you will see the step by step procedure to pull out the shaft, lube it, and then re-install it. I now have 70,000 miles on my car and still no clunking noise reapperaing. Remember to use WD 40 or similar on the non greased us joints and then use axel bearing grease on the actual u joints as well as the actual steering shaft. Work the gease into the u joints until it feels smooth to you when you flex each u joint. Good luck
jim
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Old 03-25-2005, 11:18 AM   #3
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-and Jim, if you don't mind me adding a comment, BE DARN SURE to work the new heavy grease into the slip-joint splines very thoroughly. -this is the area that is going to cause a "stick/slip" situation to exist, and the new heavy grease should prevent it.

The tech bulletin on the Impala HQ site explains quite well how to force grease into the splines.

Harry
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Old 03-25-2005, 12:30 PM   #4
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Thanks for the tip. I had tried replacement and lubrication as search terms to go with intermediate shaft.
This is an excellent step-by-step that I'm going out to tackle now. Since it is snowing outside, I don't feel guilty about not doing outside work.
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Old 03-25-2005, 01:15 PM   #5
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Slight snag just now. The steering column has a clear cover over it, possibly from when the dealer tried regreasing the shaft. At any rate, the cover/boot does not want to pull up from the firewall no matter what I have tried so far.
If I have to pull the steering column, I may decide to abandon ship. It just seems like there is a fair amount that can go wrong if you screw up.
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Old 03-25-2005, 01:15 PM   #6
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Slight snag just now. The steering column has a clear cover over it, possibly from when the dealer tried regreasing the shaft. At any rate, the cover/boot does not want to pull up from the firewall no matter what I have tried so far. The lower bolt was a snap but the inside boot seems to be another story.
If I have to pull the steering column, I may decide to abandon ship. It just seems like there is a fair amount that can go wrong if you screw up.
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Old 03-25-2005, 07:10 PM   #7
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Mark, from my only experience on removing and replacing the intermediate shaft on my 2002, you definitely SHOULD NOT have to remove the steering column.

Here is kind of what I found out: from under the car, I slipped the clear boot up off of the rack&pinion snout, just far enough to get to the clamp bolt on the lower joint. I removed that bolt. Then, if you want, (-I did, but not sure it'* necessary) you can remove the four bolts from the firewall side that holds that whole boot assembly on. At that point, with some twisting and turning, you can slip that whole boot assembly off, and out of the way.

You will also have to remove that bottom cover, under the dash, near the brake pedal, to expose the upper joint, and remove that bolt too. At about that point, you can remove the whole intermediate shaft assy, and take it over to your work bench and check it out.

I'm saying that 99% chance all you will need to do is remove all of the factory white grease from the slip joint/shaft splines, and replace with good heavy grease.

It has been well described, as I think it was Jim? has stated.

BY THE WAY, the GM shop manual makes it VERY CLEAR, that you want to have the wheels pointed straigt forward, and the steering wheel LOCKED in position while you do this whole operation. -something about not messing up some sort of sensor coil up in the steering wheel area ??? -beats me,,, but I did as they said, and all worked out just fine.

From my experience, the universal joints themselves were just fine, and didn't need any attentention at all. My whole problem was with the cheap/wrong grease in the splined shaft and tube.

Hope that helps. (-the Impala Headquarters technical bulletin on the intermediate shaft should help you too.)

Harry
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Old 03-25-2005, 07:12 PM   #8
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Mark, from my only experience on removing and replacing the intermediate shaft on my 2002, you definitely SHOULD NOT have to remove the steering column.

Here is kind of what I found out: from under the car, I slipped the clear boot up off of the rack&pinion snout, just far enough to get to the clamp bolt on the lower joint. I removed that bolt. Then, if you want, (-I did, but not sure it'* necessary) you can remove the four bolts from the firewall side that holds that whole boot assembly on. At that point, with some twisting and turning, you can slip that whole boot assembly off, and out of the way.

You will also have to remove that bottom cover, under the dash, near the brake pedal, to expose the upper joint, and remove that bolt too. At about that point, you can remove the whole intermediate shaft assy, and take it over to your work bench and check it out.

I'm saying that 99% chance all you will need to do is remove all of the factory white grease from the slip joint/shaft splines, and replace with good heavy grease.

It has been well described, as I think it was Jim? has stated.

BY THE WAY, the GM shop manual makes it VERY CLEAR, that you want to have the wheels pointed straigt forward, and the steering wheel LOCKED in position while you do this whole operation. -something about not messing up some sort of sensor coil up in the steering wheel area ??? -beats me,,, but I did as they said, and all worked out just fine.

From my experience, the universal joints themselves were just fine, and didn't need any attentention at all. My whole problem was with the cheap/wrong grease in the splined shaft and tube.

Hope that helps. (-the Impala Headquarters technical bulletin on the intermediate shaft should help you too.)

Harry
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Old 03-25-2005, 07:13 PM   #9
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:( Sorry for the "double posts" -don't know what happened,,,
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Old 03-26-2005, 11:40 AM   #10
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Thanks again for the advice. While I've been deciding what to do, I went ahead and pulled and cleaned the throttle body. It was amazing how much junk had accumulated in it in 70,000 miles. The upper manifold is crudded up as well and I'm assuming it is all from the PCV system. Makes me not even want to think about how much is in our old Caravan with 205,000 miles.
I had picked up on the advice about the steering wheel and in fact, on what I assume is the replacement boot on the interior, there was a big warning decal about possible damage to the SRS system.
From what I can determine, that interior boot isn't going anywhere as it seems to be attached to the firewall. I'm not wild about cutting the boot but it looks like the best option at this point so here I go.
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