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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have a 2013 Challenger RT 6 speed with 40k miles on it, original owner. The problem is when I take a fast, and sharp left hand turn the power steering feels like it cuts out. The steering gets extremely heavy and takes 2 hands to make the turn. It only happens once in a while. It also happened in a parking lot going slow. I noticed lots of steering issues on here, some even sounding close to this but I haven't seen any definitive answers. Please help I really don't want to start throwing parts that cost a thousand dollars a piece at this problem. It had the alternator recall performed, which I know was related to causing power steering pump damage. Not sure if this is related. The car has been absolutely babied and has never had any damage. I'm the only person who has ever driven the car.

Thanks

Jon
 

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Probably not it, but my first thought is tire inflation. At least rule it out.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Probably not it, but my first thought is tire inflation.
Tire pressure is good. It's been happening for a while. I thought it was just the road I was feeling because I drive a tundra too that has very light steering. But this is definitely messed up
 

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I have a 2013 Challenger RT 6 speed with 40k miles on it, original owner. The problem is when I take a fast, and sharp left hand turn the power steering feels like it cuts out. The steering gets extremely heavy and takes 2 hands to make the turn. It only happens once in a while. It also happened in a parking lot going slow. I noticed lots of steering issues on here, some even sounding close to this but I haven't seen any definitive answers. Please help I really don't want to start throwing parts that cost a thousand dollars a piece at this problem. It had the alternator recall performed, which I know was related to causing power steering pump damage. Not sure if this is related. The car has been absolutely babied and has never had any damage. I'm the only person who has ever driven the car.

Thanks

Jon
If there is a power steering fluid reservoir is the level ok?

If low while you can add fluid -- you should not drive the car with low power steering fluid this can ruin a perfectly good power steering pump and in doing so fill the power steering fluid system with metal debris which in most cases means a full replacement of the power steering system: pump, tank, hoses/lines, and rack. At any rate if the fluid is low the problem is almost certainly a leak. This may or may not play a role in the car's steering behavior. One leak point is a rack seal. In some cases the fluid can leak out past the seal but get caught by the dust boot that covers the seal.

For steering problem diagnosis all I can offer is and it is not much is (and I picked this up from when a previous car of mine developed a steering problem, but I can't recall the symptoms now) is to with the tires properly inflated and on a parking lot with room driving slowly with the car going straight make a u-turn. Makes no difference which direction you pick you'll do u-turns in both directions before you are through.

As the turn completes let the steering wheel find its "center". Note the position the steering wheel ends up. Take a pic. Do this at least 2 more times.

Then repeat the above u-turning in the other direction. My info is if the steering wheel doesn't return to the same position each time there's a steering problem. In my experience it proved to be the steering rack. While I no longer remember the miles I know they were under 36,000 for the rack replacement was covered by the car's new car warranty.

But a steering rack can fail at any time.

Now the problem might not be with the rack but at least you have something to report when you take the car in.

Oh, if you suspect or want to eliminate the possibility of loose hardware you can with the front wheels pointing straight ahead and the engine off and the parking brake on and the transmission in P or gear have a helper move the steering wheel back and forth while you look and listen (and keep your hands clear!) for any slop/play/noise from any of the steering hardware/linkage.

This can also be done on an alignment rack which allows the front tires to turn -- on turn tables -- and one (a tech at least) can observe the steering hardware behavior. 'course, if he has any time with these cars any cars really he problem knows what's going on.
 

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most likely something is binding under load / heavy load.
You need to get it in the air, rotate the wheel lock to lock, look for interference and then 'flex" the suspension (trans jack or similar) could be a bushing gone bad, something is bent, or out of simply spec.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Thanks for the good tips! The only thing I'm worried about is that it's intermittent. I don't want to take it to the dealer or a mechanic and have them say they found the problem but I end up replacing something like the power steering pump and that doesn't fix it. I almost wish it would break completely so I KNOW they can find the problem. There are a lot of people complaining about left turn power steering issues on this car. I'm surprised that it isn't a design problem with a TSB or recall at this point.
 

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Discussion Starter · #9 ·
FROM NHTSA

"HAD TO REPLACE RACK & PINION STEERING AT 40,000 MILES. DIFFICULT TO STEER ESPECIALLY TO THE LEFT. ON ONE OCCASION WHEN EXITING A LEFT HAND CURVE THE VEHICLE DID NOT WANT TO TURN BACK TO THE RIGHT. I HAVE GOOGLED THE PROBLEM AND HAVE LEARNED THAT THERE HAVE BEEN NUMEROUS REPORTS OF SIMILAR PROBLEMS BUT DODGE HAS NOT ISSUED A RECALL. I WAS ADVISED THAT MINE WAS NOT COVERED UNDER WARRANTY SO I HAD IT REPLACED VIA AN INDEPENDENT MECHANIC. I HAVE ATTEMPTED TO RECEIVE REIMBURSEMENT FROM DODGE BUT THEY REFUSE. AT TIMES WHEN THE VEHICLE WAS STOPPED OR MOVING SLOWLY, IT LITERALLY TOOK BOTH HANDS TO TURN THE STEERING WHEEL. THE VEHICLE HAD 22,000 MILES WHEN I PURCHASED IT. I THOUGHT THE STEERING WAS JUST "STIFF" BUT NOW I REALIZE THAT THERE WAS A PROBLEM WITH THE STEERING WHEN I BOUGHT THE VEHICLE. I COULD NOT BELIEVE THE DIFFERENCE AFTER REPLACEMENT OF THE RACK & PINION. I CAN NOW TURN THE WHEEL WITH ONE FINGER. THIS APPEARS TO ME TO BE A SERIOUS SAFETY ISSUE AND QUESTION WHY DODGE HAS NOT ISSUED A RECALL, PARTICULARLY WITH AS MANY CASES I ALONE HAVE FOUND OF SIMILAR PROBLEMS."
 

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intermittent is odd..as I noted previously, could be something out of wack that is only encountered under specific conditions or load, angle, etc.
Could also be that the system needs to be "burped" for air..which if there is an air bubble in the fluid system, that bubble can travel around and then once and again, it will cause the intermettant issue. Racks do go bad as well. start with eliminating the simple possibilites and work from there.
 

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I have a 2013 Challenger RT 6 speed with 40k miles on it, original owner. The problem is when I take a fast, and sharp left hand turn the power steering feels like it cuts out. The steering gets extremely heavy and takes 2 hands to make the turn. It only happens once in a while. It also happened in a parking lot going slow. I noticed lots of steering issues on here, some even sounding close to this but I haven't seen any definitive answers. Please help I really don't want to start throwing parts that cost a thousand dollars a piece at this problem. It had the alternator recall performed, which I know was related to causing power steering pump damage. Not sure if this is related. The car has been absolutely babied and has never had any damage. I'm the only person who has ever driven the car.

Thanks

Jon
I am having same issues with my car I am bringing to shop tomorrow I will let you know what they say
 

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odds are the internal seals on the steering rack are failing - fluid gets by the seals and you lose the power assist

it might be change if its cold vs. warmed up (internal parts will contract / expand with temperature.

GM used to have issues with their rack and pinon racks - when cold they'd lose assist and after warming up, it came back - it was dubbed "morning sickness" back in the 80s - 90s

I had a similar experience where the seals blew out in the steering rack and one direction has power assist and the other it didn't

the '11 - '14 have electro-hydraulic power steering systems (with a conventional hydraulic p/s rack)
 

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I would start by checking the fluid level, the pump and reservoir is in the front of the right wheel well. If full, then probably a rack problem. I remember the "morning sickness" as well, it wasn't limited to GM only.
 

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I am having this same issue when I do a hard u-turn to the left. Steering wheel bucks and is very hard to turn. First mechanic told me my steering rack was leaking when I was in for a rotor replacement. He showed me the leak on the drivers side rack assembly. This was about a year ago. Quoted me $900 for a rack replace since it's all one part number. Dodge Dealer wanted $2300 (crooks).

A/C went out so I took it in this week and asked them to diagnose power steering issue. They said there is NO leak in the power steering system. Turns out the wet spot on the rack was from something dripping from above.

Electro-Hydrolic steering system had an error code and they reset it to no avail. It did nothing.

I also had them check the control arm bushings as I have been getting a creaking sound over speed bumps. Seems like a common issue for the Challenger but I am getting my lower control arms replaced. (Not cheap). The bushings are not separate from the (2011) R/T control arms. All in one unit with arm, bushings and ball joint.

Let's see if this corrects the hard steering issue. I will see when I pick it up today. Its gonna be 2 grand for the a/c repair and 900 plus alignment for the control arm replacement. 200 each for the part plus labor.

This all started at about 70-75k miles. (I'm at 81k now).

I will post an update. Hopefully this helps someone else as well.
 

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Man, those are some high dollar repairs! Hope it works out and stops hitting you so hard.
 

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Man, those are some high dollar repairs! Hope it works out and stops hitting you so hard.
Thanks. You and me both.

I can't complain too much as I've had it since 45k miles (37k miles in 5 years) and beyond these issues, all I have replaced is the (factory recall) alternator (no charge other than towing when it died but I had AAA), a new battery and the front rotors/breaks (rotors were warped). 10 year old vehicle so you expect the a/c to go out around this point. They are replacing the compressor and evaporator. I just hope this control arm replace fixes my steering issues. Not real fun to drive right now.
 

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FROM NHTSA

"HAD TO REPLACE RACK & PINION STEERING AT 40,000 MILES. DIFFICULT TO STEER ESPECIALLY TO THE LEFT. ON ONE OCCASION WHEN EXITING A LEFT HAND CURVE THE VEHICLE DID NOT WANT TO TURN BACK TO THE RIGHT. I HAVE GOOGLED THE PROBLEM AND HAVE LEARNED THAT THERE HAVE BEEN NUMEROUS REPORTS OF SIMILAR PROBLEMS BUT DODGE HAS NOT ISSUED A RECALL. I WAS ADVISED THAT MINE WAS NOT COVERED UNDER WARRANTY SO I HAD IT REPLACED VIA AN INDEPENDENT MECHANIC. I HAVE ATTEMPTED TO RECEIVE REIMBURSEMENT FROM DODGE BUT THEY REFUSE. AT TIMES WHEN THE VEHICLE WAS STOPPED OR MOVING SLOWLY, IT LITERALLY TOOK BOTH HANDS TO TURN THE STEERING WHEEL. THE VEHICLE HAD 22,000 MILES WHEN I PURCHASED IT. I THOUGHT THE STEERING WAS JUST "STIFF" BUT NOW I REALIZE THAT THERE WAS A PROBLEM WITH THE STEERING WHEN I BOUGHT THE VEHICLE. I COULD NOT BELIEVE THE DIFFERENCE AFTER REPLACEMENT OF THE RACK & PINION. I CAN NOW TURN THE WHEEL WITH ONE FINGER. THIS APPEARS TO ME TO BE A SERIOUS SAFETY ISSUE AND QUESTION WHY DODGE HAS NOT ISSUED A RECALL, PARTICULARLY WITH AS MANY CASES I ALONE HAVE FOUND OF SIMILAR PROBLEMS."
That is discouraging, I steering problem as well and most answers I have seen is "Replace the Rack". My 2016 SXT has 25,500ish miles.
 

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The
That is discouraging, I steering problem as well and most answers I have seen is "Replace the Rack". My 2016 SXT has 25,500ish miles.
'15+ SXT/RT/ and some SRT Challengers went to total electric assist.

Yes, expensive to replace and last that I've heard, still not field serviceable. Total $3k +
 

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'15+ SXT/RT/ and some SRT Challengers went to total electric assist.

Yes, expensive to replace and last that I've heard, still not field serviceable. Total $3k +
That is my understanding as well. Mine also acted strange this morning, I havent been driving it without power steer but this morning I had an issue at work that I had to address in person and with my wife out of town I had no choice but to drive it. Got in started it and had no error, drove perfectly fine to work and back. Just went out and started it again and bam same issue. Very strange, the only variable is just the ambient temp. We have been 90+ degrees everyday since it started happening, this morning it was only 75 when I left. Back up to a little over 80 when I just checked again. Probably not really relevant but work has taught me to use critical thinking when addressing problems and those were just some additional observations I had after driving today.
 

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That is my understanding as well. Mine also acted strange this morning, I havent been driving it without power steer but this morning I had an issue at work that I had to address in person and with my wife out of town I had no choice but to drive it. Got in started it and had no error, drove perfectly fine to work and back. Just went out and started it again and bam same issue. Very strange, the only variable is just the ambient temp. We have been 90+ degrees everyday since it started happening, this morning it was only 75 when I left. Back up to a little over 80 when I just checked again. Probably not really relevant but work has taught me to use critical thinking when addressing problems and those were just some additional observations I had after driving today.
it could very be likely that either the internal circuit board has failing components (temperature can bring this out, either cold or hot temperatures) or the motor itself.

There's three different connectors going to the steering rack
  • one is the high current supply to the motor that provides the steering assist
  • another is probably the controller circuit
  • the other is likely the steering angle sensor that tells the system what the driver is doing

one observation (somewhat related) - I was bringing my '16 out to a dyno event (to see what my recent cam swap / tuning results were)

I pulled the fuses to disable the ESP / ABS system and that put the power steering assist into a different mode (with warning messages for "Service Power Steering" and I had less power assist, but it wasn't as if there was none (which would have been very high effort to drive). So different systems are inter-connected to the electric power steering system...
 
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