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Steering Noise: Loud Groan when Turning Wheel

Hyundai Sonata The Sonata has grown to be the premier mid-sized sedan of the Hyundai name with the many interior options and the powerful V6 engine.

Steering Noise: Loud Groan when Turning Wheel

  #1  
Old 12-21-2018, 11:12 AM
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Join Date: May 2017
Posts: 11
Default Steering Noise: Loud Groan when Turning Wheel

2006 Sonata GLS
141k miles

Listen to the following audio files:
Inside Cabin
Under PSrack

What you hear is the noise created every time we turn the steering wheel in either direction, lock-to-lock. To capture these two audio samples, I elevated the Sonata on jackstands and turned the wheel slowly back and forth. There is zero vibration, stiffness, or suspicious sensations felt in the steering wheel and when push/pulling the tires. I feel zero vibration when I rest my hand on the power steering housing and pinion-and-valve assemblies while inducing the noise.

The "Inside Cabin" is the actual sound--at actual volume--we hear inside the cabin. The "Under_PSrack" is the actual sound from the area immediately adjacent to the junction of the power steering housing and pinion-and-valve assemblies. Notice that "scraping" sound that follows the groan noise? That's the sound of fluid-churn inside the steering rack--a noise I've never heard from a rack before. (I checked the reservoir--it's full and there is no air froth.) Visually, the steering components appear okay: no wetness, bellows are intact, nothing loose.

This problem began four weeks ago with intermittent, though identical, noise inside the cabin. Now, the sound is constant and occurs regardless of ambient temperature, load/unloaded wheels, engine running or off. The noise is plainly coming from some steering component, but I cannot identify the specific source.

I welcome experienced ideas, suggestions, add'l t'shooting steps to help me locate the source of this problem.
 
  #2  
Old 12-21-2018, 04:27 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Iowa
Posts: 138
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Our '08 Sonata made some squishy sounds and over time developed leaks at the bellows. That indicated that the seals were gone. We had the rack replaced with a rebuilt one. It was different from your sound samples. But imagine the fluid being pushed passed the seals and possibly in either direction.
You could try flushing the whole system. Maybe new fluid is going to cure it. Hyundai and Kia want their customers to use their specific concoction of PS fluid. It's pricey, but at least you would know it is what supposed to be in there.
Or you could try Lucas Oil Power Steering Stop Leak. It contains stuff that swell rubber seals and makes them seal again.
 
  #3  
Old 12-21-2018, 05:21 PM
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Join Date: May 2017
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The sloshing noise coming from the somewhere in the steering assembly is genuinely weird--I never heard that sound from a rack before. It's obvious the fluid is low in what is 'sposed to be a sealed system. But there none of the typical symptoms of failed seals: wheel slop, stiff wheel response, poor wheel return, PS fluid leaks, low PS fluid and/or froth in reservoir, pump whine. Nothing. Just the noise.

Nevertheless, my intuition is I gotta a failed internal seal. I'd rather rebuild the rack than replace it, but I can't source a seal kit for PS racks, and Hyundai doesn't offer such.
 

Last edited by lothian; 12-21-2018 at 05:23 PM.
  #4  
Old 12-21-2018, 06:47 PM
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Join Date: Aug 2015
Location: Iowa
Posts: 138
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