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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have an 09 Ram with 97k miles.

The steering is doing something odd... if I move the wheel left or right from center there's a subtle clicking sound with tactile feedback from the steering wheel. Once the wheel continues to be turned, it does not appear again. On the surface, this would seem like slack in the steering from a tie-rod.

I replaced the worn tie-rod ends and the issue persists. Raising the vehicle front and grabbing the front wheels at 3 and 9 and also 12 and 6 doesn't show any play from inner/outer tie rod ends or ball joints, and an inspection confirms that the inner tie rod ends seem to be ok.

The steering rack was replaced under warranty (it was leaking) in 2019, but the issue started after that.

I also feel like the car wanders a bit at higher speeds, almost like the steering has some play.

What else could this be?
 

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Doubt you would get any codes for loose steering , does it pull on certain roads ? Where I live there are a few roads that have really high crowns , in the right hand lane my truck will pull to the right and will pull to the left in the left lane . Anyway maybe once you get the clicking stopped things may settle with the rest. If you still wonder on the road how are the tires ?
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 · (Edited)
Doubt you would get any codes for loose steering , does it pull on certain roads ? Where I live there are a few roads that have really high crowns , in the right hand lane my truck will pull to the right and will pull to the left in the left lane . Anyway maybe once you get the clicking stopped things may settle with the rest. If you still wonder on the road how are the tires ?
I read that a bad clock spring often triggers a few codes, but maybe mine isn't at that point yet.

Tires are pretty new, alignment recently done after changing tie rod ends.

It does sound like the clicking is coming from right underneath the steering wheel, so that would explain a bad/worn clock spring. However, what doesn't make sense right away is that normally you'd get a code with that failure or at least have problems with the horn/steering wheel buttons... maybe something non-electrical has cracked/failed like the plastic housing, causing mechanical interference.

Next step is to see if the lifetime Chrysler care warranty covers that...
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
Turns out it's nothing close to the clock spring, it has a bad: left front wheel hub (cuausing a clicking sensation), lower steering shaft, upper steering assembly and rack-n-pinion which together accounts for the vague steering feel. basically, the whole steering is toast. The warranty only covers some of this (not wheel hub + upper steering assembly). The rack-n-pinion was replaced just 2 years ago... that's sad.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 · (Edited)
Turns out it's nothing close to the clock spring, it has a bad: left front wheel hub (cuausing a clicking sensation), lower steering shaft, upper steering assembly and rack-n-pinion which together accounts for the vague steering feel. basically, the whole steering is toast. The warranty only covers some of this (not wheel hub + upper steering assembly). The rack-n-pinion was replaced just 2 years ago... that's sad.
So even with the Lifetime added care plus warranty coverage, repair is $1100. Without warranty... it was over $3500. Insane. I would have done the hub myself but I need the truck and don't have time to fiddle with a repair. I'll do the other wheel with a MOOG (better quality) in a few weeks.
Added care plus lifetime is tricky... it only covers hubs on FRONT WHEEL DRIVE cars... what a pisser.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Got the truck back, it’s definitely wandering less and the clunking/clicking is gone.
steering is funny that way I guess, every little problem gets translated into vibration of the wheel and it becomes hard to determine where the problem actually is.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
Here's a funny one... the tie rods ends needed replacement some time ago and I installed some Moogs. The dealer said this was a wear item and wouldn't be covered with my Lifetime added care plus. The documentation doesn't say it's covered either. That was all before this clicking stuff got more proncounced and I needed an entirely new steering setup (rack, lower and upper assembly). So today I did an oil change prepared to grease the moogs and low and behold the moogs, with about 1 month of usage, were gone replaced with factory Chrysler tie rod ends. So basically I got screwed on that one... granted the tie rod ends aren't an expensive part, but, still,they were only a month old and they were not supposed to be covered under the warranty.
It's all a bit of a shell game.
 
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