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Old 12-16-2021, 01:59 PM #1
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Driveable w/out power steering belt?

I went in to change out the bushings on the power steering rack, sway bar and end links. I had been dripping a little ps fluid onto the skid plate but figured it was from a seal or fitting so I just added some lucas ps stop-leak to get by until I could get a new rack. When I pulled off the mounting bracket with the bushing on the rack I got a surprise! the outer casing of the rack under the bushing was corroded almost through and there was my leak. Until I pulled it off, the bushing was actually helping but now the fluid is basically running out.
So my question is this. Can I pull the power steering belt off so that I don't burnout the pump and still drive it while I'm waiting for the new rack?

Also a caution to those of you who live where they salt the roads, check that bushing because if it is worn/ loose, salt can and will get in and set there and eat away your rack!
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Old 12-16-2021, 02:38 PM #2
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Interesting question. You know, you can just try it out on some slow residential streets and see if you can effectively still steer the vehicle without the assist from the power steering system. I've driven vehicles that didn't have power steering, like the 68 Bronco I owned back in the 80's, but I've never tried to drive a vehicle that has power steering, but the power steering system has been disabled.

Maybe someone who has tried it will chime in and be able to give you a concrete answer.
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Old 12-16-2021, 02:42 PM #3
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Yes interesting - I would think the gear ratios are different, get those muscles ready! Let us know how it "turns" out...Luck.
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Old 12-16-2021, 02:42 PM #4
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You can give it a shot, but it's going to be hard to steer. Not impossible, but youre really going to have to muscle it.

Vehicles that came with manual steering have specific manual racks and steering ratios to help a bit.

Manually steering a power rack is pretty tough haha. Let us know how it goes!
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Old 12-16-2021, 02:44 PM #5
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You can drive it, drain out the fluid and disconnect the lines so the fluid in the rack isnít working against you while youíre trying to steer, you can also pull the seals out of the rack to make it even easier. This is pretty common for people who want to depower racks on track cars so Iím sure it will work on the 4Runner
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Old 12-16-2021, 02:56 PM #6
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Thanks for the replies. I've got a fairly long driveway so I think I'll drain the rest of the fluid as @RandyBobandy suggested and see how it goes there before taking it on a public street. Will removing the belt have any affect on the radiator fan?
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Old 12-16-2021, 03:06 PM #7
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Thanks for the replies. I've got a fairly long driveway so I think I'll drain the rest of the fluid as @RandyBobandy suggested and see how it goes there before taking it on a public street. Will removing the belt have any affect on the radiator fan?
You will be fine to remove the belt as well. Like others have said it will be very stiff. Much stiffer than a manual rack, but it's doable and not as bad once you get moving.
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Old 12-16-2021, 06:33 PM #8
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Update

Well, the answer is yes but you better eat your Wheaties, and you need to very cautious giving yourself time and room for any turn from a stop.

Next question. Is this adding a ton of undo stress on the rag joint?
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Old 12-17-2021, 09:10 AM #9
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I've done this on a 3/4 ton truck pulling a 30' camper up an 8% grade with lots of S curves. The bearing went out on the P/S belt tensioner and burned the belt off. I now carry a can of spinach with me when I go places. It is doable, but...........
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Old 12-17-2021, 06:25 PM #10
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I did it for two weeks. It's not bad once you get rolling. Parallel parking in the city will require some muscle, but again you want to have a bit of a roll going. Maintain your distance and you will be fine. I can only speak for this when running 265/70/16 tires.
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Old 12-20-2021, 05:39 PM #11
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I did it for two weeks. It's not bad once you get rolling. Parallel parking in the city will require some muscle, but again you want to have a bit of a roll going. Maintain your distance and you will be fine. I can only speak for this when running 265/70/16 tires.
Thanks, that's good to know. I'm running the same tires. The new rack arrived today so hopefully I can get this done over Xmas break.
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