Chevrolet Full Size Cars 1979-1989

Power Steering Gear



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Fig. Fig. 1 Example of a common power steering pump and line mounting

Installation and removal of power steering gears is the same as that described for manual steering gears earlier in this section, but with the addition of disconnecting and reconnecting the hydraulic lines. When disconnecting the hoses, use of a line wrench is preferable in order to prevent stripping and damaging the fittings. Remember to cap both hoses and steering gear outlets to prevent foreign material from entering and contaminating the system. Capping the lines will also prevent excessive fluid loss from the pump and reservoir. Upon installation, the power steering fluid level must be topped off and properly bled.


The steering gear must be removed from the vehicle in order to adjust the pre-load.

  1. Rotate the stub shaft several times (from stop to stop) to drain the fluid from the steering gear.
  3. Mount the steering gear in a vise and remove the adjuster plug locknut.
  5. Using a spanner wrench, turn the adjusting plug clockwise until the plug and the thrust bearing are firmly bottomed (about 20 ft. lbs. (27 Nm).
  7. Using the scribe mark on the housing (next to the hole in the adjuster plug), measure counterclockwise ( 1 / 2 in.) and mark the housing.
  9. Turn the adjuster plug counterclockwise until the hole in the plug is aligned with the second mark.
  11. While holding the adjuster plug (to maintain position), tighten the locknut.
  13. Using a inch lbs. torque wrench and a 3 / 4 in. socket, turn the stub shaft to the right stop, then back 1 / 4 turn. Measure and record the drag, it should be 4-10 inch lbs.
  15. Rotate the stub shaft from stop to stop, then back to the center. Using the torque wrench, turn the stub shaft 45 degrees to each side of center and check the reading.
  17. Loosen the locknut and turn the pre-load adjusting screw clockwise until the over center (additional torque) reading of 4-8 inch lbs. (new gear, not to exceed 18 inch lbs.) or 4-5 inch lbs. (used gear, not to exceed 14 inch lbs.).
  19. While holding the adjuster plug, tighten the locknut.
  21. Follow the manual steering gear installation procedure, then be sure to properly fill and bleed the system.