Autocare: Noise from steering column

POSTED BY CBT Team ON 25 August 2014

autocare 17

I own a reconditioned 2009 Lexus RX (third generation).

I am puzzled by the knocking noise from the steering column.

The noise only occurs when going through uneven/undulating roads at low speed (ie. vertical movement/vibration).

It does not happen when I am turning the steering, including 360-degree turning.

One mechanic advised me to change the steering column, which may cost me a small fortune.

Another told me to grease the joints.

From the United States Lexus Owner Club forum, it seems like there is a steering column design fault issue associated with this model.

What do you think?
Reply: The noise you are getting could come from several areas:

1. Worn end bushings on the steering rack which cause the rack to move up and down.

2. Excessive backlash on the steering pinion. This could be related to (1) above or just wear and tear.

3. Wear on the steering joints

There is a possibility of wear in the steering column bushes but like all the above, one needs to find the cause of the problem by a process of elimination.

Sometimes, unless one is actually driving the vehicle, it is not possible to be sure of the actual cause of the problem.