Q: The steering shaft (I believe it's the intermediate shaft) disengaged from the steering column.

asked by on

My trucks steering wheel free spins. So took the bolt out of the bottom of the shaft that connects it to the splined shaft coming out of the steering box. When I push the shaft up it renegades and the steering works, but that leaves about an inch to an inch and a half gap between the shaft and the steering box. Now I could just shim the shaft up but. I would like to know why this is happening and what caused it. I want to fix it properly. It seems to be a safety hazard.
My car has a manual transmission.

Freely turning the steering wheel past the normal extent (travel limits), while the shaft is disconnected from the splined yoke will damage the "clock spring" in the steering column that the air bag relies on to fire. That assembly should be inspected and repaired.

The steering shaft has linkages that are fixed, by design, in position and you are right if you have to leave "gaps" anywhere in the assembly, such as where the yoke splines to the shaft coming out of the gearbox obviously something is broken or has moved out of position. It is going to be hard to guess at the fault without an in the field inspection and/or a better explanation of what you mean by the steering wheel just freely spinning. Such cannot happen unless the splines somewhere in the column assembly are basically completely destroyed on the linkage (typically a u-jointed splined yoke) or a complete break in the shaft. If you would like to have this issue inspected by an expert, a certified pro from YourMechanic can diagnose the steering problem in person so that this can be repaired.

Was this answer helpful?
The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details
  1. Home
  2. Questions
  3. The steering shaft (I believe it's the intermediate shaft) disengaged from the steering column.

Get an instant quote for your car

Our certified mechanics come to you ・Backed by 12-month, 12,000-mile guarantee・Fair and transparent pricing

Get a quote

What others are asking

Q: Slight steering wheel shimmy at 70 mph?

The tires could have irregular wear and/or internal belt damage as well as radial force variation. None of that can be balanced "away", excepting that there are road force variation machines that can be used to diagnose radial force variation...

Q: Q: I have a burning smell in my car.

This is not likely. A dirty cabin filter filled with old pine needles is more likely to cause a moldy smell inside the vehicle. The burning smell may be coming from a a shorted circuit somewhere in the car. Consider...

Q: Put the key in the ignition and the car will turn on, but the steering wheel will not turn...Locked in position.

It sounds as though the locking pawl is jammed in position. Sometimes that can happen if there is a side force on the steering when the lock is engaged. If the car is parked against a curb, or if the...

Related articles

What Causes Hoses to Leak?
While the largest part of your engine is mechanical, hydraulics plays a significant role. You’ll find fluids at work in a number of different areas. Your car's fluids include: Engine oil Transmission...
How Much Does a Mechanic Make in Vermont?
Automotive technician jobs in Vermont have an average mechanic salary of $37k, with some mechanics earning a salary of $53k.
P2103 OBD-II Trouble Code: Throttle Actuator Control Motor Circuit High
P2103 means there is a fault with the throttle actuator control motor circuit, likely due to a defective electrical component or part.