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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hey guys, I just got my coupe back together after a series of rear end improvements (31 spline, welded torque boxes, etc). While I was at it I had the chance to replace my old 03 Cobra rack that had a TON of play in it with another 03 Cobra rack I sourced from MPS (Mustang Parts Specialties). Even though the old rack had play in it, the power steering was totally fine. I reused the old pump of course and when I went to drive the car, it literally felt like the power steering wasn't there. It was nearly impossible to turn the wheel. Anyhow, I drove the car around the block figuring it might purge air from the system (I knew it wouldn't) and came back. I swapped the pump with a spare from a friend... same exact issue. At this point I thought for sure the new rack was somehow clogged, bent, whatever so I reinstalled my old rack just to troubleshoot and now the exact same issue is happening with the old rack!!

I have a power steering cooler, I bypassed that to troubleshoot, did nothing.

I removed all the lines and blew them out with compressed air, there was nothing in them.

One thing to note... when I first started the car after I installed the replacement 03 Cobra rack, I forgot to fill the p/s reservoir up... maybe I damaged the pump? But that wouldn't explain why the second pump was doing the same thing. BTW - the second pump I'm 99% sure is good... came from a good friend who just parted his car out.

The only thing I can think of is that I have two bad pumps?? Doesn't make any sense. One thing to note, I removed the pump fitting from the reservoir to inspect and found no debris inside. The spring, plunger, and fitting all seem to be fine. Can the plunger become clogged somehow??

This is the way I reinstalled the pump internals, is it correct? BTW - this picture shows the large fitting without the main o-ring. The parts shown in the picture are spares... I have the main o-ring installed on the fitting that is actually on the car.

 

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Does the wheel return to center on its own, or do you have to turn it back?
 

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Discussion Starter #3
The wheel does not return to center with either of the racks or pumps. I'm thinking this must mean the pumps arent working?
 

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The steering system doesn't need or have any influence from power assist to center itself, so if you physically have to turn the steering wheel back to center after a turn while rolling along the road, I'd have to say something is seriously binding in the rack, balljoints, outer tie rod ends, or steering shaft. Have the pumps been loud, or quiet?
 

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you have it installed correctly...assuming you have both seals on the outlet fitting...I only see one there on your spare part picture..

this has me wondering as you have swapped both pumps and rack...I know the luxury ford setups come with a VAPS system...which basically adjusts the spool valve depending on engine speed thus providing full PS @ low speeds and less PS @ high speeds to give the driver better feedback..

Let us know what you find...
 

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I had the no center problem a couple of weeks ago when I installed a '00 GT rack with new fox inner/outer tie rods; I had the toe out a little when I installed it. My steering felt over assisted and the wheel didnt center. A quick trip the the alignment shop fixed both of those problems. Just my two cents.
 
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