5.9 Limited Low Speed Steering Column Creaking Noise? - JeepForum.com
 
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post #1 of 13 Old 05-06-2018, 12:58 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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5.9 Limited Low Speed Creaking Noise--Fixed!

Hey guys, I started a new thread on this issue as it doesn't appear to be in the suspension or steering linkages.

So, to re-cap, about 2 weeks ago I started hearing a low speed creaking sound coming from the front end, which can be felt in the column, but the noise and the tactile feel don't really coincide with each other. It's like along with the creaking noise there is an unassociated "rustling" kind of feeling in the column. Both go away above 5mph.

It occurs while going straight (starting or stopping) or with the wheels turned in either direction and moving slowly as in a parking lot.

No noise when turning the steering wheel while stopped, or jouncing the front end when parked.

Can't be heard from outside the Jeep, only inside.

It's getting progressively worse day by day, but there are no other issues associated with it, such as in steering and handling which are still perfectly fine.

Today with the Jeep stopped and still running, when I shut off the engine, there was a momentary creak, same as I heard before when driving at low speeds!

Any ideas what this crazy sound is?!

Thanks!

Mike

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post #2 of 13 Old 05-06-2018, 02:39 PM
kg6mov
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I would try putting the front axle on jack stands so the tires are off the ground, then turn the steering wheel lock to lock with the engine off.

If you can get the sound to happen then, you might be able to locatge it better. It is possible it’s in the joints in the steering shaft or column.


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I heard someone yell "mall crawler" from the back porch. I'll go see who said that. Be right back.
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post #3 of 13 Old 05-07-2018, 09:24 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkm5 View Post
Hey guys, I started a new thread on this issue as it doesn't appear to be in the suspension or steering linkages.

So, to re-cap, about 2 weeks ago I started hearing a low speed creaking sound coming from the front end, which can be felt in the column, but the noise and the tactile feel don't really coincide with each other. It's like along with the creaking noise there is an unassociated "rustling" kind of feeling in the column. Both go away above 5mph.

It occurs while going straight (starting or stopping) or with the wheels turned in either direction and moving slowly as in a parking lot.

No noise when turning the steering wheel while stopped, or jouncing the front end when parked.

Can't be heard from outside the Jeep, only inside.

It's getting progressively worse day by day, but there are no other issues associated with it, such as in steering and handling which are still perfectly fine.

Today with the Jeep stopped and still running, when I shut off the engine, there was a momentary creak, same as I heard before when driving at low speeds!

Any ideas what this crazy sound is?!

Thanks!

Mike
Hi Mike,

You got some great advice here. Just to chime in, if you decide to get this looked at by the dealer, let us know. We'd be glad to escalate your inquiry to a Case Specialist for further handling.

Jasmine
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post #4 of 13 Old 05-07-2018, 01:41 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Thank you Jasmine!
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post #5 of 13 Old 05-07-2018, 02:11 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Quote:
Originally Posted by kg6mov View Post
I would try putting the front axle on jack stands so the tires are off the ground, then turn the steering wheel lock to lock with the engine off.

If you can get the sound to happen then, you might be able to locatge it better. It is possible itís in the joints in the steering shaft or column.

Thanks kg!

The coupler joint at the top looks good, the lower one is covered by a heat shield which I'll remove shortly to inspect.

The top joint does look dry (as in no visible lubrication), and I can't find anything in the FSM for maintenance or lube of these joints.

Any recommendations? I was thinking maybe white lithium grease but I'm not sure how to get it inside the joint. A light oil might be able to wick it's way in there.
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post #6 of 13 Old 05-07-2018, 03:16 PM
kg6mov
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The assumption from Mopar seems to be that those joints don’t need to be maintained, certainly they’re past their expected life at this point.

Note, you can get a new steering shaft, as well as an upgraded version if it does end up being the issue.

White lithium would be a good plan I think.


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1984 F250, 460 BB, T19, work truck/future tow pig
1987 Mercedes 300D Turbo, the diesel daily, 30mpg in style

Quote:
Originally Posted by Texas ZJ1 View Post
I heard someone yell "mall crawler" from the back porch. I'll go see who said that. Be right back.
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post #7 of 13 Old 05-07-2018, 03:47 PM
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I've heard of people tying strips of cotton rags on the iron cross of a u-joint and soaking in it ATF. The ATF will wick into the caps where the roller bearings are. I wouldn't expect it to last long though.

-Tim
(2) '96 4.0s
#1-'10-'18
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post #8 of 13 Old 05-08-2018, 09:46 AM
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Thank you Jasmine!
You're most welcome, mkm5.

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post #9 of 13 Old 05-12-2018, 09:30 AM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Well, I found the source of the noise!

Looks like it's the double cardan joint at the front of the t-case; maybe the internal socket ball. The cardan joints themselves are tight, no slop. No grease fittings anywhere to be found. The FSM says this joint is not serviceable, but I don't see why it could not be disassembled and repacked with grease.

Anyone done this before or have a replacement part to recommend?

Thanks!

Mike
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Double Cardan Joint.pdf (343.6 KB, 0 views)
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post #10 of 13 Old 05-12-2018, 09:45 AM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Is this supposed to be a grease fitting?

I can't find this on mine.

My guess is the joint got dried out from power washing underneath numerous times this winter.
Attached Files
File Type: pdf Double Cardan Joint 2.pdf (347.6 KB, 5 views)
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post #11 of 13 Old 05-12-2018, 02:08 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Well, maybe it's not the double cardan joint after all.

I can really get it to make the noise with input into the rear driveshaft near the t-case. Sounds like a bushing or body creak.

Driving me crazy!

https://youtu.be/Sddvkkr_2_s
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post #12 of 13 Old 05-13-2018, 06:22 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Well, I finally found and fixed the issue!

It was the Transfer Case Torque Shaft creaking in the Torque Shaft Bracket which is mounted on the floor pan under the driver's seat near the sill. Any lateral input would cause the creaking sound which the bracket would transmit through the floor pan like a little echo chamber.

I tried greasing it last night and it got better, so I disassembled the plate that attaches to the bracket with two bolts, and slid it over the torque shaft and greased it up with white lithium and put it back together; no more noise!

It's kind of a pain to get that plate off with everything installed, but I got it done.

Hit the trails shortly after and all is good now.

Total cost = $0

PITA factor = 6/10

Bonus: The transfer case shifts very smoothly now!

Here's a pic of the bracket when I greased it last night before taking it apart to do it properly this morning.
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post #13 of 13 Old 05-13-2018, 06:31 PM Thread Starter
mkm5
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Fortunately, there is a gasket between the plate and the bracket, otherwise this might have been more of a pain to fix.
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