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E36 M3 (1992-1999) {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999


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Old Sat, Sep-02-2017, 08:19:17 PM   #1
M-technik-3
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Default Very strange steering issue

So yesterday, I took an E36 out for a test drive, owner said the steering was super tight and tough, I was like yeah ok drive a car with no PS too myself.

Get in the car drive to bottom of driveway and attempt to turn right, that right attempt to, pull the wheel with some serious effort thinking it was just low on fluid and the pump might be cavating NO drove up the street mile and come back thinking WTF is wrong with this car. Made an offer based on this car is not safe to drive on street until it's fixed.

Reservoir had fluid in it and there was no leaks under the car, hoses reversed or wrong banjo bolts? It's feels like it's binding then lets go then binds again. Strange.

Thoughts? Opinions
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Old Sat, Sep-02-2017, 08:49:16 PM   #2
westopher
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

Are there any sounds involved? I had HORRIBLE low speed steering when my front strut mounts went bad because the shocks were binding so hard.
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Old Sat, Sep-02-2017, 09:32:48 PM   #3
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

No none, it's odd. I know it's going to have to go on the lift and figure it out. Thought it might have to do with the E46 M3 wheels in 18's but not even at speed did the issue go away.
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Old Sat, Sep-02-2017, 10:32:15 PM   #4
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

I've experience this on someone's M3 with a completely blown out power steering system. It just needs to all be replaced.

Fluid in it doesn't mean anything. Someone could have run power steering fluid in and burned up the pump (calls for atf). Just expect to replace everything and possibly the rack. Not a huge deal.
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Old Sun, Sep-03-2017, 12:23:58 AM   #5
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

Yeah I gave a lower number based upon this, I hope it's just that nothing more. Thinking of putting an faster rack in it.
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Old Wed, Sep-06-2017, 03:08:59 AM   #6
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

I just refreshed my steering shaft I was experiencing similar issues with my 97 coupe. Except I was getting a springy noise when turning.

I changed my clock spring and I still had the issue. So I assumed it was the rack power steering pump. But I change my rack less than a year ago and the pump was silent. I put the car on the lift and when I looked at the firewall where the steering shaft protrudes from I saw a rusty spring and circle. I read on a forum the that s a bearing that seizes up and makes it hard to steer. So to test it out I soaked the bearing in JB80 and then took the car for a test drive the noise was gone and the steering was free.

I changed the upper and lower bearing and while I was in there I replaced the rubber flex joint for the rack to the shaft with an all metal u joint from the e34.

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Old Wed, Sep-06-2017, 07:57:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

Oh I hope it's not that bad would rather just swap out power steering pump and I had just ordered a ZHP 712 rack last week.
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Old Sun, Sep-10-2017, 10:26:54 PM   #8
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

There's an adjustment on the rack that people tighten...compresses the pinion to the shaft and causes this. Also, there's solid chance the CV joint in the steering arm is seized. Mine was on half the joint and would bind at three points in travel.

Used Z3 rack and new shaft made the car feel new.

All info https://www.bimmerforums.com/forum/s...2#post29718722
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Old Sun, Sep-10-2017, 11:50:09 PM   #9
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

yeah That is a thought as well and a simple check. My ZHP rack arrived yesterday for it.
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Old Mon, Sep-11-2017, 10:51:35 PM   #10
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Default Re: Very strange steering issue

i tried no PS once. it was a huge mistake. i then screwd the alignment changing parts and the car felt terrible, i didnt even want to take it out of the driveway. anything wrong in the steering is over exaggerated without powersteering,
the upper steering shaft ujoint likes to seize as well, id assume it can get very very tight.

its easier to diagnose with the parts in your hands. just tear it down move it all around. if its a mechanical issue itll be quickly apparent. it its the rack there cheap to replace now.
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Discussing Very strange steering issue in the E36 M3 (1992-1999) Forum - {Euro - S50 B32 321hp @ 7400 rpm} {U.S. - S52 B32 240 hp @ 6000 rpm}
Total Produced: 71,212 - Years Produced: 1992 to 1999 at BMW M3 Forum.com (E30 M3 | E36 M3 | E46 M3 | E92 M3 | F80/X)