Suspension  & Steering Problems

Link Rod
(Michael Benno)
Symptoms are creaking noises while steering. There was a TSB on these items. Apparently they are to be replaced with shorter (1.5mm) linkrods. You can tell by looking at the rods. New rods have an engraved line on the rod about 15mm from one end. The line wraps around the circumference of the rod. The old rods do not have this line.

For a short term fix, just remove the link rod (2 17mm nuts), remove the spring clip from around the boot, clean and pack with grease, reinstall all parts except for the nuts. They should be replaced with new ones for safety reasons.

Bad Handling
Symptoms: squirrelly handling and accompanied by strange noises while turning.

Steering Groan
Symptoms: groaning noise heard while steering, especially at slow speeds (lots of steering wheel movement).

Steering Pump Rebuild
The PS Pump on the 20v and urS cars is the same with different belts. The rebuild is straight forward and not complicated. The only difficult part is removing the pulley from the shaft (it is of triangular shape) and finding a hydraulic press to push the pulley back on. Purchase a seal kit from Audi, Part number 035 198 049A. This may be listed as for the s-car, but, as stated, it is for a 20v'er as well. To remove the pulley from the shaft, I used a standard pulley puller and pig iron to allow a straight puller to attach to a triangular shape. Heat up the pulley with a torch (you don't care about that old seal anyhow) and start using the puller to get it off. It takes a little time, but, it will come off. Replacement of the shaft seal is straight forward during the rebuild of the internals (see below) as the shaft slides out from the interior. Once you get everything rebuilt, do not reattach the front half, you need to press the pulley back on by securing the shaft and using a hydraulic press (believe me, you need about 20 tons of pressure to get it back on). To rebuild the internals, Richard Hoffman gave me this excellent writeup: If you aren't noticing any noise and didn't run the pump dry, then there will be no wear on any of the metal parts. Should cost $45-$60. I did the disassembly in my metal drain pan as the pump is full of hydraulic fluid and this saved extensive bench clean-up :) Just so you know, the S6 PS pump uses the same rebuild kit and the internals are identical to the CQ pump. The difference is in the mounting, the pulley, and the hose connections. It helps to loosen the front/center section of the core support just to get a little more room to work on the pump. Removal is straight-forward - loosen the mounting bolts, then it has a tensioner. The belt is a tight fit between the shroud and pulley. The fittings are 19, 22, and 25mm for the hoses (if I remember correctly) Once you've got it out, the pulley should come off first. I jammed a screwdriver through the pulley holes and used the appropriate allen wrench (5 or 6mm) and it was no problem. Now you can take off the big mounting bracket/shroud. 3 10mm bolts Now comes the messy part. I believe there are 4 10mm bolts holding the whole thing together. Pull apart the front section with the X-plugs first. Pull gently and gradually. Inside this section, you can see a brass ring and see the pistons as they are driven by the eccentric lobe. Try to keep the ring in there, its somewhat hard to put back. I cleaned everything out with spray carb cleaner. At this point, position the pump so that the surface you just exposed points up. The center piece can be lifted upwards but is held on by 4 additional bolts. You'll notice a large round O-Ring here and inside you will find the RSFH. That is, the rubber seal from hell. It's shaped like a big malformed letter H and has a nylong support. It sits in a rather odd piece of aluminum. This is where it gets a little fuzzy for me. The important thing is that you note the orientation of the aluminum piece with respect to the center section. These parts can all be cleaned in carb cleaner dip or with the spray. Brake cleaner also works but smells worse. The very bottom section now contains the vane pump for the power steering. The vanes can be pulled out and cleaned but you must put them back in the correct orientation. They can only go in 2 ways and one of them is right :) Basically they must sit flush with the top and bottom surfaces of the vane carrier. They look square but are in fact rectangular. It's easy enough to tell which is correct. If you put them in incorrectly, you will destroy the pump. Just take your time, make sure its good and clean, and inspect everything very closely. Reassembly is easy. The RSFH and its support go in fairly easily. Put just a drop of pentosin on the seals and smear it around. This helps keep them soft and keeps them from perma-bonding to the sides of the pump. The large o-ring has to be stretched into its little groove as you tighten the pump down. Then, when re-installed, fill the fittings with pentosin and turn it a few times by hand to get the pump "primed" To purge the system and ensure it is fully bled, turn the steering wheel lock-to-lock a few times with the motor shut off. Repeat with motor running, then top up the fluid. Repeat again and you should be good.

Steering Rack
Stainless steel sleeved rebuilds with a lifetime guarantee are available for about $150 (mention q-list) from Jorgen Automotive (800-333-0600). The info I have is from owners of the big cars (5K, 100, 200, V8), but they probably have them for our cars too. All 1990 Coupes use P/N 893 422 066 B, and all 1991 Coupes use 8A1 422 065 A. The sedan might have different P/Ns.

See also: Bushings, Suspension Upgrades

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