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Old 10-15-2014, 09:51 PM   #1
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Default 2000 Park Ave steering gear boot

The boot on the rack and pinion unit on my 2000 Park Ave has become severely distorted. It seems to drive fine but the boot on the passenger side does not compress and expand like an accordion any more. It sort of wads up in a knot .I suspect it will rip itself apart very soon. I checked the FSM and they make it sound like to replace the boot you have to remove the rack from the vehicle. Does anyone have any experience with this repair? Hoping there is a way to fix it without tearing half of the car apart.
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:05 PM   #2
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Is equalizing line(connects both boots) ok? Never seen that happen......

you have to break the band on the boot on the end of the rack, and remove the friction clamp from the other end of the boot........loosen the locking nut from the outer tie rod....remove the nut from the outer tie rod/knuckle......separate outer tie rod from knuckle.....count the number of rotations it takes to remove the outer tie rod from the inner.....remove the locking nut from the inner tie rod.......remove boot.....
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:10 PM   #3
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Are you indicating that you have done this on the vehicle? It looks to me like it could be done but, the FSM says to remove the entire rack to replace the boot.
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Old 10-15-2014, 10:52 PM   #4
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equalizing line??? Good question. It makes sense that the problem was caused by suction. I can see how air that was in the expanded boot would have to go somewhere when it gets compressed and I can see how that would cause the boot to collapse. I will check into that.
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Old 10-15-2014, 11:03 PM   #5
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yes it can be done on the car loosen the outer tie rod end nut just a haft turn pop outer tie rod end out a gear puller will pop it out with out messing up the rubber
careful count exact how many times you unscrew it so you don't affect the alignment
brake the bands with long cutters or long needle nose
pull old boot off
some big 1/4 wide black zip ties can be used to hold the new one on from
Lowes
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Old 10-16-2014, 12:40 PM   #6
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Strong zip ties do work pretty well, I had a band slip off somehow, so I just cut the band and removed it, then zip tied the boot back on, has held well for a while now.
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Old 10-16-2014, 09:54 PM   #7
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I looked for a transfer between the boots and could not see one.. Attached are pics of the boot in center, right turn, and left turn positions. I drilled a tiny hole in the affected part of the boot to see if maybe it was full of oil. A couple drops came out but nothing major. I am thinking about taking the tie rod end off, swapping the boot with an aftermarket boot that comes with zip ties and see what happens. Seems to me like something caused it to go bad and if I don't find the cause it will likely just happen again.. Any help is appreciated.
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2000 Park Ave steering gear boot-dsci0053.jpg   2000 Park Ave steering gear boot-dsci0054.jpg   2000 Park Ave steering gear boot-dsci0055.jpg  
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Old 10-17-2014, 09:58 AM   #8
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not knowing what zip ties comes with the new boot I would still get a few of the 1/4
black long ones from lows like a foot long there is not much room to get at the boot
{at lease on some cars I have worked on} if you have good access great
so I found the long ones can be snaked around the rack and pulled real tight with foot long needle nose then cut off with a razor blade same way or long knife
hope this helps
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Old 10-17-2014, 06:55 PM   #9
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Thanks, I found some replacement boots at Rock Auto and Advance Auto. I think I will give it a try. If I get lucky and replacing the boot is all I need to do then great! If that doesn't work I will have to figure out how too remove the entire rack and pinion and replace the whole thing.
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Old 10-18-2014, 01:58 AM   #10
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Let us know how it goes.
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