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Old 12-08-2010, 03:08 AM   #1
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Default Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Updated!

Eversince I bought my car I noticed that my steering column is about 1/2-3/4 an inch to the left. I'm talking about when I look thru the steering wheel top hole to the gauge cluster, the whole wheel and column is to the left. You can also see from the column plastic cover that its moved to the left and there's a big gap on the right. Has anyone experienced this?

I already checked the column and loosened the bolts and tried to pull it to the right and bolt it back up, but it didn't move much.

Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.
Click the image to open in full size.

So little by little checking every bolt and piece of the steering column, I took it apart. This is what I found:

I took these off in hopes of being able to move the bracket, but it won't move.
Click the image to open in full size.

Then here's what I need to move to the right so I can center the wheel and column, but how?
Click the image to open in full size.
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:17 PM   #2
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Pics are up.
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:33 PM   #3
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

is it the steering column thats off to the left or the dash that has shift to the right?
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Old 12-08-2010, 01:58 PM   #4
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Loosen the nuts holding it on and slide it into place and tighten them
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:10 PM   #5
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Quote:
Originally Posted by 2k.civic.si View Post
is it the steering column thats off to the left or the dash that has shift to the right?
I doubt it's the dash because its already centered on everything, centered between the doors and fit right by the center console.


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Loosen the nuts holding it on and slide it into place and tighten them
Which bolts are you referring to?
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Old 12-08-2010, 04:34 PM   #6
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

The NUTS holding the column in place, just loosen them enough to adjust it and re tighten it when its in place where it should be, if not the column may have been in a accident and the shaft may be bent, but that would cause shiesty steering so I doubt it
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Old 12-08-2010, 05:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dynasty21 View Post
I already checked the column and loosened the bolts and tried to pull it to the right and bolt it back up, but it didn't move much.
Quote:
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The NUTS holding the column in place, just loosen them enough to adjust it and re tighten it when its in place where it should be, if not the column may have been in a accident and the shaft may be bent, but that would cause shiesty steering so I doubt it
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Old 12-09-2010, 11:42 AM   #8
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Anyone else?
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:10 PM   #9
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

if you already loosened them and re positioned the column then the next step would be to take it out and inspect it. if thats not it then start checking the dash.

is there any gaps around the outer edges of the dash around the window and where it meets with the doors. was the car in an accident before you purchased it? do you see any rouge or uneven areas under the hood? under the car that would suggest and accident or wrinkled areas? the best thing to figure out why something it wrong is to start taking it apart and you might notice something that was loose or not there. was this car modified when you purchased it? maybe the took the dash out while doing some work to the car.

i know ive had my dash out 2 times since i got the car 8 months ago. i had to replace the steering column since the idiot that owned it before me had a lugnut holding the steering wheel on and when i put the new in i forgot to put the little plastic sleeve on. it has a little plastic nub that sits in a little hole in the column and it made my whole column sit off to the left. sorry about my discription. i think its pink or tan colored and its about 2 inches tall if i remember correctly. it sits in the ring that holds it upright and hols it to the steering column mount on the firewall. hope this helps.
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:39 PM   #10
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Either your column is bent or the dashboard frame is bent.

Again if it was the column most likely you'd feel it in the steering.

Personaly I think your dash frame is bent from people pulling themselves into the car with the steering wheel, was the previous owner heavy set?
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Old 12-09-2010, 04:47 PM   #11
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Yah I would just have to take the whole column off and check, there are no signs of tampering down there.
The dash is perfectly centered between the door panels and the center console.
It has not been in an accident before and there are no wrinkles or repairs whatsoever anywhere on the car. Everything is straight.
Ok, I'll have to check that rubber thing, can I see it without taking the column out?


Damn I would hate to take the dash apart but I guess I'm going to. No, the dude was about 150lbs.
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Old 12-10-2010, 03:04 AM   #12
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Updated!
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Old 12-10-2010, 04:45 AM   #13
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Its not too hard to bend the dash frame, its flimsy piping I've seen it done before.

You could take the dash off but then how are you gonna straighten it back there is nothing to line it up to?

I would try taking the column out completely and drill the holes out a bit to give you enough play to push it over in place
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:36 AM   #14
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

I was thinking if I was to drill out the 2 mounts right above my knees (where the black screws screw onto) that are inside the plastic column where my alarm light is, 1. I think it would be pretty hard to drill out cuz it's hard steel but possible and 2. how about the mid mounting point that's right above your shin, there is no room or play at all to move it left, right, up, and down. It's straight bolt on into place. And if I do drill the part right above my knees, it will still not move right because the bolts above my shin will then need to be taken off and left off for it to move and bolt to center.

So if I take off the dash, is there any adjustment on the dash bracket that will allow for adjustment?
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Old 12-10-2010, 07:48 AM   #15
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Quote:
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I was thinking if I was to drill out the 2 mounts right above my knees (where the black screws screw onto) that are inside the plastic column where my alarm light is, 1. I think it would be pretty hard to drill out cuz it's hard steel but possible and 2. how about the mid mounting point that's right above your shin, there is no room or play at all to move it left, right, up, and down. It's straight bolt on into place. And if I do drill the part right above my knees, it will still not move right because the bolts above my shin will then need to be taken off and left off for it to move and bolt to center.

So if I take off the dash, is there any adjustment on the dash bracket that will allow for adjustment?
you shouldnt be drilling anything! it goes in a certain way and if it doesnt than something is wrong! you need to get a service manual of the internet and start removing the column to see whats wrong. drilling things does not solve problems it just makes things worse or look terrible.

look for that plastic ring i told you about. when i was missing it it pushed my whole column off to the left. does your column feel like its got play like when everything is bolted up and complete can you yank the wheels to other directions? the braket the im talking about has the upper side mounts to the column mounting brace on the firewall and the other side is a half circle piece that has a bolt on each side to clamp the column to the bracket. when you tilt your wheels it holds it in place and the plastic ring alowas it to slide. it should have a black colored ring and a tan colored ring.

look for this and let us know if the tan ring is there and if so is it in correctly? the dimple should sit in the little hole in the column housing. i had to put it in twice before i realized the dimple was there and it kept falling out until i put it in correctly. after i put this ring in it put my column in the correct location and it tilted correctly.
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Old 12-10-2010, 08:04 AM   #16
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

so i had to take a pic of my manual with my phone so sorry about the quality. but the retaining clip is what you need to look for. it is supposed to be inside the pivot mount. as in the pivot mount clamps onto this retaining collar. and if you look at the top left end of the column you can kinda see the hole the dimple sits in. that retaining clip should be 2 pieces of plastic. 2 rings. make sure this is all there and good and if it is there and in the correct position than move on from there. this is that best advice i can give you right now.


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Old 12-10-2010, 09:58 AM   #17
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

drillin the mount holes out a little for adjustment isn't gonna hurt anything, it is just a suggestion if op doesn't feel like replacing the frame under the dash.
He could try bending the frame back but I don't see how he is gonna line it up correctly with the dash off, and taking the dash off almost seems unnecessary.


Sorry if its been said but have you tried another column?

If it was a POS id jus say take the driver seat out and find a spot to pry it into place with a pry bar lol but OPs car looks mint
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Old 12-10-2010, 10:57 AM   #18
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

I saw and have that plastic ring, yes it is exactly what you described it to be, 2 pieces and it has a piece that extends up and has a notch for it to fall in place in the hole of the column, and it is bolted up inside the column pivot. Mine is white in color.

I have not tried another column, but I feel it will bolt the same way, "off to the left."

As you can see in the very last picture, there's room for the metal bracket (silver color) to move right on the white metal bracket.
Click the image to open in full size.


If I can move the silver metal bracket to the right, the column will be centered.
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Old 12-10-2010, 12:29 PM   #19
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Id try another column jus to eliminate concern
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Old 12-10-2010, 04:58 PM   #20
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Can someone check the last pic for me on their cars, It's not hard at all, just adjust the lever of the column to lower your wheel and you should see with a flashlight where those to bolts are, can you tell me if they are centered or on the left side like mine?
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Old 12-11-2010, 04:58 AM   #21
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Centered
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Old 12-11-2010, 06:56 AM   #22
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

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Can someone check the last pic for me on their cars, It's not hard at all, just adjust the lever of the column to lower your wheel and you should see with a flashlight where those to bolts are, can you tell me if they are centered or on the left side like mine?
if yours are all the way to the left like that and the column is still off to the left then there is a problem. you need to get another column from the junkyard of someone parting a car out and try it. if that doesnt fix the problem then the mount on the firewall is f**ked. you need to start eliminating certain things and the column is first on the list. good luck!
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Old 12-11-2010, 03:20 PM   #23
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

It's to the left because those mounting bolts are to the left. If I can move those bolts which are welded to the bracket, therefore if I can move the bracket right, it will center. Maybe I'm not understanding but it makes sense that now it's on the left because the bracket is to the left. I need to move my column right to center it.
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Old 12-12-2010, 02:30 PM   #24
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

Any more ideas?
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Old 12-14-2010, 02:21 AM   #25
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Default Re: Steering rack not centered! NOT the wheel, but the steering rack.

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Any more ideas?
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