Steering Problems

Asked by May 03, 2008 at 09:03 PM about the 1997 Dodge Stratus 4 Dr ES Sedan

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

When turning the wheel, it won't turn back automatically on its own.  You have to manually turn it back to being straight.  What can this be?

10 Answers

1,145

out of power steering fluid?

2 people found this helpful.
2,550

check the p/s pump for proper operation

1 people found this helpful.
570

both those guys are wrong you need new tires.. they have what is called tire pull and you need to replace them to correct that problem

2,550

good possibility..perhaps start with new tires on the front and get an alignment...

315

Davids right, if it was a power steering problem you would probably only really notice it while the car is stationary. The fact that the problem exists while the car is moving means it has to be with the tires.

1 people found this helpful.
40

The two big possibilities that immediately come to my mind are upper strut mounts and bearings, or sludge build up in the steering rack. The upper bearings or mounts are the primary pivot points and if they are seizing, then that will most certainly limit or restrict the wheels ability to return to center normally . This type of condition is usually accompanied with a rubbing, clunking or grinding noise in the area of the upper strut. The other problem is just as common, but considerably easier to remedy. Check the quality of your p/s fluid, and if possible, try to determine if it'd the right fluid type and that's at the right level. Follow the OEM instructions to Drain enough out (I just use a turkey baster from the dollar store for this.) fluid from the steering resevoir, and fill it back up with Lucas Oils Power Steering Stop leak and Conditioner. Once your fluid levels have returned, raise the front of the vehicle, and turn the steering lock to lock about 5 or 6 times. this willl help to flush the crud out of the P/S system and too help loosen up the overall feel for the steering. Worked on my Windstar w/ rack and pinion steering. Total cost $35.00, with beer included. Quote my wife was given for replacing the front rack which the first garage wanted to do was $1,978. nothing to loose except a bit of time. I'd use it again in a heartbeat.

10

or maybe its a rack and pinion thats whats wrong with mine

1 people found this helpful.
10

or maybe its a rack and pinion thats whats wrong with mine

20

There's a 99.9% chance that the LOWER (and possibly upper if equipped) BALL JOINTS are bad. I'm a professional mechanic, and am AMAZED by some of the stupid responses you've gotten, such as "bad tires"... LMAO! Other potential possibilities are bad tie rod ends (although you usually can tell if they are bad pretty easily, a worn/binding steering rack, or worn/binding front struts and or strut mounts. As I recall, i've seen many Stratus's over the years with bad lower ball joints, many that fail and the wheel basically comes almost off the car. The "binding" that you are referring to is a major HINT that you need to get your vehicle inspected by a professional tech (like me, for instance). Quit being a cheap bastard and take your car to a shop and get it fixed! The life you save, could be your own... Good luck, AJ

2 people found this helpful.
30

I don't know.

3 people found this helpful.

Your Answer:

Stratus

Looking for a Used Stratus in your area?

CarGurus has 460 nationwide Stratus listings starting at $1,800.

ZIP:

Dodge Stratus Experts

  • #1
    Tom Demyan
    Reputation
    1,130
  • #2
    Chris Daigle
    Reputation
    660
  • #3
    curry22
    Reputation
    590
View All

Related Models For Sale

Used Dodge Avenger
81 Great Deals out of 3,348 listings starting at $2,490
Used Honda Accord
719 Great Deals out of 103,450 listings starting at $849
Used Ford Mustang
308 Great Deals out of 40,433 listings starting at $1,000
Used Chevrolet Malibu
623 Great Deals out of 51,869 listings starting at $1,550
Used Chrysler Sebring
16 Great Deals out of 2,021 listings starting at $1,795
Used Dodge Neon
405 listings
Used Chevrolet Impala
517 Great Deals out of 26,173 listings starting at $995
Used Ford Taurus
205 Great Deals out of 16,251 listings starting at $500
Used Dodge Durango
345 Great Deals out of 24,042 listings starting at $1,750
Used Ford Focus
533 Great Deals out of 75,634 listings starting at $799
Used Nissan Altima
867 Great Deals out of 62,119 listings starting at $1,000
Used Honda Civic
487 Great Deals out of 44,964 listings starting at $1,150

Used Cars For Sale

2005 Dodge Stratus For Sale
96 listings starting at $1,800
2002 Dodge Stratus For Sale
45 listings starting at $2,489

Content submitted by Users is not endorsed by CarGurus, does not express the opinions of CarGurus, and should not be considered reviewed, screened, or approved by CarGurus. Please refer to CarGurus Terms of Use.