idler and pitman replaced and now steering wheel not straight

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  #1  
Old 03-30-11, 03:32 AM
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idler and pitman replaced and now steering wheel not straight

This posting is for an 01 awd Yukon.
I had a shimmy in my front end so I brought the truck down to my freindly neighborhood discount auto repair shop and had them replace the idler and pitman arms.
After replacing these 2 parts, the steering wheel is not straight now.
Can someone comment on what needs to be done so that my steering wheel is straight. All comments are appreciated.
 
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  #2  
Old 03-30-11, 04:37 AM
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Take it back to them and have them reinstall the pitman arm so the steering wheel will be straight.
 
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Old 03-30-11, 04:39 AM
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That's pretty basic stuff to check post-repair; surprised it was missed.
 
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Old 03-30-11, 08:44 AM
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Old 03-30-11, 04:53 PM
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Some pitman arms are not keyed and can be put back on out of whack. I lived this nightmare with P*P B*YS. When its all done, do yourself a favor and check it. Put your wheels straight, turn your steering wheel counting the turns left, center it again, and count the turns right going lock to lock. Someone who has no clue can screw it up and then try and compensate with adjustment.
 
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Old 03-30-11, 06:13 PM
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they did not lock steering wheel doing pitman. and i mean - not simply lock it with steering column lock. i mean - using seat belts tied tight to the wheel so that it does not move an iota during procedure.
 
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Old 04-01-11, 10:38 PM
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So I called the shop and I spoke to the owner and he said to bring it in for a wheel alignment. I told him that it didn't need a wheel alignment but insisted that that's what the Yukon needed. I told him the pitman arm was installed wrong but he insisted that theres no other way that it could have been installed. Are these keyed so that theres only one way on?
The pitman arm on this truck is splined, 1 spline off and it's off.
Please comment.
 
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Old 04-02-11, 03:00 AM
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How much is the steering wheel off by? If I remember correctly [painter not mechanic] there are splines, space, splines, etc.
 
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Old 04-03-11, 03:33 AM
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If straight is at the 12 oclock position, the steering wheel is at the 11 oclock position now
 
  #10  
Old 04-03-11, 07:38 AM
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Originally Posted by zizanio View Post
If straight is at the 12 oclock position, the steering wheel is at the 11 oclock position now
ok, ok, hold on, partner. what is straight? with wheels straight - or appearing so - steering wheel is cocked to the left? or to drive straight, steering wheel is held to the left?

book says to have steering gear removed complete with pitman. have relationship between pitman and steering gear stud marked ONLY IF THE OLD PITMAN WILL BE REINSTALLED.

ok, i think i know where issue might have come from. during steering gear removal, RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE INTERMEDIATE SHAFT COUPLER TO THE STEERING GEAR INPUT SHAFT MUST BE MARKED, or it will not align with steering column right. this is for 1999-2006 pick up trucks, with recirculating ball steering, which should be no different for your truck. and yes, they emphasize in big bold print to have steering wheel absolutely secured in place. for a different reason, but yes.
so, unless your boys somehow managed to pull pitman off the steering gear WITHOUT steering gear removal - and i had my sights on this piece a year ago, when i replaced my idler arm, and it is VERY HARD to do - then they possibly skipped a spline on steering shaft. or moved steering gear during pitman removal/reinstall.
what i am afraid will happen is they will rig alignment so that it drives straight, you get off their back, but will be paying for new tires every 1.5 year from now on.
GET 2ND OPINION, IN WRITING, then go back to that shop and BE PRESENT at repair. or tell them to refund you and take truck place else and BE PRESENT at repair.
of course, if the 2nd opinion confirms it was screwed up.
 
  #11  
Old 04-05-11, 01:37 AM
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When the wheels are straight, the steering wheel is at the 11 o'clock position.
 
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Old 04-05-11, 12:57 PM
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I replaced the A/C evaporator in my Caravan and to do so, the whole dash and steering wheel has to come out. There is a steering shaft that connects to a shaft going to the pitman arm and these can rotate relative to one another until you have reconnected them. If the steering wheel is not oriented straight when this connection is made, the wheel will not be straight when the wheels are. It is off a bit on my van because I didn't get it just right. Not sure if the Yukon has a similar configuration but it is possible that something similar is occuring.
 
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