I did this today and it made a big difference. It took about 3/4 of a full turn. It removed almost all of the play in the steering. Before I could turn the wheel about 30° in either direction before the wheels would respond, but now it is instantaneous.
Thanks to the dbtx for the original post and also to VaSheriff for the picture and Stewart for compiling the thread otherwise I might not have found it at all.
Great post!!! Thanks to the original poster, I see it's helped ALOT of people!!
I had posted my problem on another thread, regarding looseness in the steering AFTER removing my old Silent Armor tires, changing to new LTX-MS2's, having it realigned and the front end checked! And after going back to Ford 3 times, the looseness was definitely in the steering wheel play!
Thank you to the one who started this thread as it not only solved my problem, but probably can still help many others! Had it adjusted 1/2 turn and the truck handles better than new, tracks beautifully with no loose play at all! It still amazes me that the old Goodyears somewhat masked the problem and that the new Michelins magnified it, but whatever, the problem is resolved. Thanks to this Forum and this thread, I saved the cost of a new steering box, THANK YOU ALL AGAIN!
Did this last nite, and I'm wondering if I cranked mine down too much. I don't get any binding on tight turns, but the steering overall is much heavier (not sure if I'd say TOO heavy) and doesn't quite want to return to center going down the road. Pretty sure tightening the locknut cranked it down extra, I actually found the whole procedure a significant PITA. Truck was recently aligned but I'm sure my TRE's are due for replacement too.
OMG! I just did this tweak; saved my butt! I'm so happy with the steering of my Ex. What a difference!!!!! Holy crap!
Mechanics and suspension shops wanted me to spend thousands of dollars on steering dampeners and other stuff.
Instead I spend $5 on a couple of Heineken; my neighbour and I put in 20 minutes of time; and we had another couple of Heineken. Tough night. WAY better than thousands of bucks on "stuff" that I don't need.
I've done a lot of work on a lot of cars and trucks over the years and never have I solved such a significant problem with something so easy as this.
I know this thread is 8 years old but I just bought my 2005 Excursion v10 4v4 a few weeks ago to use as a tow vehicle for a 29' travel trailer we just bought. After a white knuckle 2 1/2 hour tow this past weekend I started searching for what was wrong with the constant wandering and came across this thread.
I spent no money and about 10 minutes to adjust the screw with the allen wrench about 1/2 turn and it actually drives in a straight line now, amazing. My son took it for a ride the other day and could not keep it in a straight line. His constant adjustments were making me motion sick and now he can't believe how much better it is.
The full test will be in a month or so when we take the travel trailer out again.
I'm brand new to FTE. Just bought my first diesel. An '05 Excursion Limited 4X4 with the 6.0. Love it so far, and FTE was a huge part of making the decision to buy it! Only relatively minor stuff needed at this point, but the biggest concern I've had is what I found referred to on here as "wander".
I was starting to feel like I would be needing the rear sway bar, upgraded shocks and possibly front sway bushings. The only problem I was having with the plan was that my truck rides terrific! Good handling on corners. Little body lean, etc. The only issue seemed to be the constant correction required just to stay in the lane... without a load. Hmmmm....
Then I finally find this thread. The great news? It's MUCH better. Just took a test drive and boom... Holding steady as she goes! The only bad news is what it cost me.
New dress slacks because I was too eager to try this before I left the office to drive home? $60.00
But totally worth it! I was already enjoying the site. Now, I'm addicted!
DBTX, I don't know if your name indicates you live in Texas or not, but if you're in West TN anytime soon, inbox me. I'd love to buy you a beer!
BTW, Here's a pic of my new (now even better) ride.
My 05 Ex Limited 6.0 handles just fine on good roads, it's the crappy roads Michigan is known for where things are not so great. When the road is rough, it can be felt in the steering wheel and it will not track so straight. A bump in the road has the steering wheel slightly jerking and the truck follows. Could this be the infamous rear steer?
At 200K I haven't noticed this problem with my Ex, but when I do I'll know where to start.
To the individual cringing at someone adjusting the steering box I honestly wonder have you ever mechanically worked on a vehicle? Even with all the computer stuff on vehicles today there are plenty of mechanical adjustments that can be done. If you're under the age of 40 it's likely you never adjusted the idle on a carburetor, points in a distributor, or valves for flat tappet lifters.
The steering box is likely a worm-gear drive system that the adjustment allows for varying tolerances in manufacturing and wear over time. They are factory spec'd but that may be just on the edge of good control so that after break-in time the mesh can be sloppy.
Cranking down on them without thought would be a NO NO, but following the OP instructions he warns the DIYer who will attempt this. Leaving the steering sloppy is not a good or safe option either.
It takes a lot to wear out a steering box, not just mileage, but poor road conditions jerking the steering in opposing directions. That is one reason the old vehicles had bad steering (besides substandard components or undersized). If you drive on the highway you're unlikely to do considerable wear to a box, but if you off road or travel highly uneven roads then a steering box will get more wear and tear and need adjusting.
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