Since the early beginnings of the motor vehicle, a simple wheel has been used to point the car in the direction you want to go. many people are unaware of how this process of turning a wheel translates into actual steering. This process wouldn’t be possible without the steering column, a quiet piece of engineering that is normally kept out of sight. For the very best in safe handling and performance, be sure to visit Gary’s Automotive for repairs and replacements to your steering column.
Steering Column Service – The Basics
The steering column is a fairly straight forward part of a vehicle. The steering column is the section that connects your steering wheel to other steering components in your vehicle. The averages setup for a steering column revolves around the rack and pinion style of gears. Your steering wheel has a long shaft that runs to a smaller gear. When you turn your wheel to the right, the smaller gear at the bottom turns to the right as well. This piece of the system is the “pinion”. When the smaller gear turns to the right, it engages a long, flat gear known as the “rack”. Turning the wheel to the right causes the rack to move to the left, pushing the drivers wheel and pulling the passenger wheel to the right, which allows you to steer. This is a simplification of the system, as there are many smaller and more complex gears involved, as well as powered pumps to allow for easier steering. What makes a steering column especially important is that fact that it normally houses the workings and controls for your vehicles ignition, turn signals, windshield wipers, and in some older cases, The vehicle’s gear selector. In the 1950’s, the technology behind the steering column changed to allow for tilted and telescoping steering columns. The steering column also houses all the needed wires and assemblies for a working drivers airbag. What seems like a fairly simple piece of automotive technology actually houses some of the most complex. That’s why it’s important to get quality steering column replacement from experts.
Steering columns are one of the many vehicle systems that are slowly being replaced by “by-wire” systems. This means that the traditional mechanical linkages between the steering wheel and the vehicles wheels is being removed, and is being replaced with electronic systems. Rather than gears, steer-by-wire systems take feedback from the steering wheel and transmit it electronically to a motor near the wheels. This motor then steers the wheels. While not common in vehicles yet, this could very well represent the future of automobiles as more systems, including brakes and throttle systems, adapt the “by-wire” approach.
When Is It Time For Service?
Due to the large number of components in the steering column, pinpointing one problem can be difficult. Given that the steering column’s main function is to steer the vehicle, it shares some of it’s service issues with other steering parts in a vehicle. Things like a loose feeling steering wheel, trouble steering in a particular direction, vibrating or bouncing steering wheels, and vehicle drifting to one side or the other can all be signs of a faulty steering column. Other issues with turn signals, wipers or other components housed in the steering column can all be diagnosed by a simple question, do they work? If you continue to have trouble steering, controlling your vehicle, or some basic column functions like signal lights or windshield wipers aren’t working properly, then it’s time to book steering column replacement service with the professionals at Gary’s Automotive!
Book fast, low cost steering column replacement from Gary’s Automotive today!