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Steering knocking


Wayne87
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Hi, new to this.

My mrs recently bought a 2010 Auris 1.6 TR valvematic. I recommended her getting a Toyota as I've been an owner or two corollas and a 2006 celica gt, which I regret getting rid of.

Anyway. There is a pretty annoying knocking coming through what seem the steering column on the Auris. I've had it in our workshop today and had the speedo cluster out, steering cowling and the covers under the column. No free play or joint knackersd under the car either. It has an electric motor on the steering column, which not all Auris do I believe. There is no free play from any of the UJ's either. And it only knocks below 20 mph when the steering is lighter. Once above that and the steering becomes heavier, which I presume is the electric motors job, the knocking goes away and can't even be felt with a quick side to side shake on the steering wheel. 

Anyone ever had this problem or heard of anything like it?

Thanks in advance!

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19 hours ago, Wayne87 said:

Hi, new to this.

My mrs recently bought a 2010 Auris 1.6 TR valvematic. I recommended her getting a Toyota as I've been an owner or two corollas and a 2006 celica gt, which I regret getting rid of.

Anyway. There is a pretty annoying knocking coming through what seem the steering column on the Auris. I've had it in our workshop today and had the speedo cluster out, steering cowling and the covers under the column. No free play or joint knackersd under the car either. It has an electric motor on the steering column, which not all Auris do I believe. There is no free play from any of the UJ's either. And it only knocks below 20 mph when the steering is lighter. Once above that and the steering becomes heavier, which I presume is the electric motors job, the knocking goes away and can't even be felt with a quick side to side shake on the steering wheel. 

Anyone ever had this problem or heard of anything like it?

Thanks in advance!

Yes, the steering on my 2009 Auris has always done this in the time I've owned it.I got a Toyota dealer to look at it and they said it was a design fault with the gear teeth on the electric power steering motors on some early Auris models. The problem is the gear teeth don't quite mesh together properly which can lead to a click/clunk through the column when turning slowly. The cure is apparently a complete new electric PAS unit, which as the car was already well out of warranty and not bought from them they suggested not to bother and just live with it. The noise doesn't get any worse or cause a safety issue so I ignore it. The car has gone through 4 MOTs since then and it's never been mentioned.

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1 hour ago, yossarian247 said:

Yes, the steering on my 2009 Auris has always done this in the time I've owned it.I got a Toyota dealer to look at it and they said it was a design fault with the gear teeth on the electric power steering motors on some early Auris models. The problem is the gear teeth don't quite mesh together properly which can lead to a click/clunk through the column when turning slowly. The cure is apparently a complete new electric PAS unit, which as the car was already well out of warranty and not bought from them they suggested not to bother and just live with it. The noise doesn't get any worse or cause a safety issue so I ignore it. The car has gone through 4 MOTs since then and it's never been mentioned.

Thanks for the reply.

yeah this one does it when going over rough ground aswell, a pretty annoying chatter through the column. But as soon as I go over 25 mph it stops.

Im presuming the electric power motor on the rack is only in use at low speeds, is that correct? Running off of abs or speed sensors. A bit like an automatic version of the city button on fiats to make the steering lite? So the chattering seems to only be there at low speeds when the steering is lite, when the electric steering assist is being used. Does it disengage when the speed is raised then? The steering noticeably gets heavier (normal) once above 25/30 mph, that's when the chattering goes even with a quick side to side wiggle of the steering wheel.

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32 minutes ago, Wayne87 said:

Thanks for the reply.

yeah this one does it when going over rough ground aswell, a pretty annoying chatter through the column. But as soon as I go over 25 mph it stops.

Im presuming the electric power motor on the rack is only in use at low speeds, is that correct? Running off of abs or speed sensors. A bit like an automatic version of the city button on fiats to make the steering lite? So the chattering seems to only be there at low speeds when the steering is lite, when the electric steering assist is being used. Does it disengage when the speed is raised then? The steering noticeably gets heavier (normal) once above 25/30 mph, that's when the chattering goes even with a quick side to side wiggle of the steering wheel.

Mine has never done it over rough ground that I've noticed. With mine if you start the engine then turn the wheel from lock to lock (but only in one direction, can't remember which) you get a 'click.........click............click...........click' noise as the wheel is turned. The click happens each time the column passes a particular point. Stopping the engine, so the PAS is disabled, stops the noise, and there is no obvious play in anything. Increasing the road speed stops it too. As you say, I think the electric power assistance is turned off completely or very much reduced at higher speeds so there is no noise.

When I asked the Toyota dealer about it they came out with the classic 'Oh they all do that sir!'. Not quite true, but its not uncommon on the early Auris either. They showed me another Auris owned by a member of their staff which was doing exactly the same. People who complained within the original warranty period got a new steering column for free from Toyota, but no chance of that now unfortunately as it wasn't actually a recall.

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20 minutes ago, yossarian247 said:

Mine has never done it over rough ground that I've noticed. With mine if you start the engine then turn the wheel from lock to lock (but only in one direction, can't remember which) you get a 'click.........click............click...........click' noise as the wheel is turned. The click happens each time the column passes a particular point. Stopping the engine, so the PAS is disabled, stops the noise, and there is no obvious play in anything. Increasing the road speed stops it too. As you say, I think the electric power assistance is turned off completely or very much reduced at higher speeds so there is no noise.

When I asked the Toyota dealer about it they came out with the classic 'Oh they all do that sir!'. Not quite true, but its not uncommon on the early Auris either. They showed me another Auris owned by a member of their staff which was doing exactly the same. People who complained within the original warranty period got a new steering column for free from Toyota, but no chance of that now unfortunately as it wasn't actually a recall.

Our one doesn't make it like that. Seems fine going from lock to lock. It's literally if you shake the steering quickly and over rough ground. The fact it goes when the electric steering disengages leads me to believe it's this gear rattling about.

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9 hours ago, yossarian247 said:

Does it rattle at all when the engine (and PAS) is switched off? If not then does sound like it could be related to the power steering motor and gears. 

Hard to tell. The rattle is most prominent when doing very slow speeds over uneven ground. There is a slight knocking with the engine off shaking the steering wheel, but doesn't sound as bad as when the engine is running.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Quick update. Today I took the intermidate steering shaft off. The rattle/knock was still there, even a little be worse.

Seems to be coming from the electric power steering unit. In particular the shaft the attaches to the UJ on the intermediate shaft.

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  • 1 year later...

The issue is nothing to do with gear teeth or power steering motor. If you split the steering column, and slide out the steering wheel shaft from the bottom half, the play is in the lower shaft of the steering column, where it goes through the bearing. It jiggles about, and that’s what the knocking and clinking is. I repaired mine myself, using the smallest cable tie I could find, and pushed it into the gap, between the shaft with the splines, and the casing, feeding it the whole way around. Basically it just fills up the gap, and the knocking is gone. 

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Hi Ronan, I'm not sure if the MK2 Auris has the same steering column as your one, but I have just bought a MK2 column off eBay to help fix the same fault that is on one of our cars, so your post is very relevant. My fault might be different to the earlier posts, but the click which I can get at either end of full lock seems to stop if you leave the column adjustment loosened, so the steering wheel can move  freely in and out and up and down.  I've only tried this in car parks!

I'm not sure where you put the cable tie to take up the clearance.  Would you be so good as to describe where it went with reference to one of these photos of the column I have?  (Assuming it is basically similar to a MK1 column.)

Cheers!

P1120033.JPG

P1120034.JPG

P1120035.JPG

P1120036.JPG

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I think what you may be describing is a pretty well known issue on Auris/Corolla and Lexus CT200h. The problem appears to be wrong strength steel used in the bolt causing it to stretch and loosen. You can google it, there's plenty of information. Here's one video with part number for replacement bolt.

 I've had this on both our CT200 and Auris.

If this is not the issue you have, then please ignore 🙂

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Hi, thanks for the video.  I think I have the 'other' steering noise that is not the one shown here.  I have quickly checked those two bolts before and they seem ok.  

The surprise to me is how loosening the steering column adjustment, and leaving it loose, makes such a difference to the problem.  I was thinking it may be excessive play in the male/female splined section, which when the steering adjustment is loose causes the excessive play to be taken up by the shafts then slightly misaligning, because they are not supported so well, i.e. no noises when the steering is 'unclamped'.

Just a theory at the moment.

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Hi, your theory is right. Lack of lubrication cause that clicking noise. I had many Toyotas, some brand new too and after only few months driving they had started to clunk. Can’t be something that worn out so quickly, more likely wrong lubricant applied or lack of it. 

This is only one of the many cause to this widespread problem, together with loose bolt on the joint, etc 

 

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As an update, I have replaced this bit:-

 

P1120057.JPG

The old one (made in 2012) is on the left, the new one (2016) is on the right.

The knocking has completely gone at the moment.

Note that a steering wheel puller is needed for this, but this can be D-I-Y made with some steel bar or similar and a couple of the correct size bolts.

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  • 2 years later...
On 4/12/2019 at 3:24 PM, APS said:

I think what you may be describing is a pretty well known issue on Auris/Corolla and Lexus CT200h. The problem appears to be wrong strength steel used in the bolt causing it to stretch and loosen. You can google it, there's plenty of information. Here's one video with part number for replacement bolt.

 I've had this on both our CT200 and Auris.

If this is not the issue you have, then please ignore 🙂

Hello I have a knocking on my Auris mk 2 that no one yet has found the cause. \where is this bolt located in the vehicle and did this resolve ?

 

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Welcome to the steering knock club.

Knocking happens on the splines of u-joint, down in the foot well.

Just turn the wheel around until you see the bolt.

Doubt it will fix the issue, you need to undo the bolt, take the splines apart, clean, and apply fresh lithium grease.

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On 4/12/2019 at 3:41 PM, Gerg said:

Hi, thanks for the video.  I think I have the 'other' steering noise that is not the one shown here.  I have quickly checked those two bolts before and they seem ok.  

The surprise to me is how loosening the steering column adjustment, and leaving it loose, makes such a difference to the problem.  I was thinking it may be excessive play in the male/female splined section, which when the steering adjustment is loose causes the excessive play to be taken up by the shafts then slightly misaligning, because they are not supported so well, i.e. no noises when the steering is 'unclamped'.

Just a theory at the moment.

Gerg I have just posted and seen your problem, does it sound the same as mine. What di you have to do and purchase, looks a bit of a big job for a non mechanic ?. Has it resolved yours completely ?

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1 hour ago, DelToy said:

Gerg I have just posted and seen your problem, does it sound the same as mine. What di you have to do and purchase, looks a bit of a big job for a non mechanic ?. Has it resolved yours completely ?

No, your problem is much, much more obvious than mine.

On our car there was only a click at the extremes of steering wheel rotation.

The noise never came back on that car; I still get to drive it occasionally.

I'm no expert on suspension noises, but I'd be looking at an anti-roll bar drop link having failed (having play in the knuckle). It's not mentioned on this forum as a regular failure at all, though. 

But first, I'd empty the car of all my belongings just to see if that helps!

Or, it could be the strut (shock absorber) being loose at its top attachment (but this is unlikely if nobody has touched the car since leaving the factory). 

This thread has similar symptoms to yours, but I don't think Fostel (the original poster) has found a fix yet!?!

So might be worth seeing what he has done so far, maybe?

c

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3 hours ago, Gerg said:

No, your problem is much, much more obvious than mine.

On our car there was only a click at the extremes of steering wheel rotation.

The noise never came back on that car; I still get to drive it occasionally.

I'm no expert on suspension noises, but I'd be looking at an anti-roll bar drop link having failed (having play in the knuckle). It's not mentioned on this forum as a regular failure at all, though. 

But first, I'd empty the car of all my belongings just to see if that helps!

Or, it could be the strut (shock absorber) being loose at its top attachment (but this is unlikely if nobody has touched the car since leaving the factory). 

This thread has similar symptoms to yours, but I don't think Fostel (the original poster) has found a fix yet!?!

So might be worth seeing what he has done so far, maybe?

c

Looks like I have found it, it appears the problem was the same as APS fix I took both the 12mm bolts out and sprayed them, put them back in and it seems to have resolved. The constant knocking on my vid was when i drove down a gravel bumpy road slowly. I have tried bumpy roads tonight and so far sound seems to be at bay. 

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  • 1 month later...
On 9/21/2021 at 6:08 PM, Gerg said:

This thread has similar symptoms to yours, but I don't think Fostel (the original poster) has found a fix yet!?!

So might be worth seeing what he has done so far, maybe?

c

Thanks for linking. @DelToy issue sounds pretty similar to mine.

I've got my thread updated after today's MOT.

There is a play in the inner rod but I doubt it causes the knock that intensified in last year and 3k miles.

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On 9/21/2021 at 9:59 PM, DelToy said:

Looks like I have found it, it appears the problem was the same as APS fix I took both the 12mm bolts out and sprayed them, put them back in and it seems to have resolved. The constant knocking on my vid was when i drove down a gravel bumpy road slowly. I have tried bumpy roads tonight and so far sound seems to be at bay. 

Is it easy to access the bolts or do I need to remove some things

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