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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
The rack on my 2001 Subaru Legacy has started to leak (a lot). I've read a lot of mixed reviews about various "remanufactured" steering racks and a lot of people recommending buying a new OEM one... But a new OEM one is like $800 which I don't really wanna spend.

I saw that Gates sells a seal kit for $45... Which seems more attractive than $250 for a questionable reman or $800 for a new one.

Anybody ever done one of these? How hard is it? Did it leak again afterwards? Need any specialty tools?
 

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The only experience i have with a rack leaking and needing rebuilding was on a 90's Mazda I had about 25 years ago. But when they pulled it apart to repair it there was some wear on the shaft where the seals sat that needed building up and grinding back to get it to size again. I am not saying this is the case with yours, but just that there may be more going on inside than just a few seals... or there may not.
 

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I hope you're good with orings. The hardest part is getting the orings on there as they are a super tight fit to seal the 6000psi or what have you. I've done a couple. I give it a 50/50 but that's a 50% chance you save 800. Go for it and let us know how it goes.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
I think I'mma buy a used one on ebay for ~$100.

From what I'm seeing and reading, steering racks seem simple enough to disassemble/reassemble - and then they either leak worse than before; or don't work at all. I don't need that hassle.

Also, my car is an Outback model with an obnoxiously over-assisted 19:1 ratio. The Legacy GT unit interchanges and is 15:1 for firmer, quicker steering...also decreases turning radius of the car because it achieves more angle, from what I've read.
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
And if the seals have let go, it's possible the shafts would need some love too, but that's easy to visually inspect.
Indeed.

The car has only 175k miles on it and the inner tie rod accordion boots are in good shape... In my experience, a failure is really rare so long as it isn't run dry and the boots are kept in order. But here we are.

My other Subie is 6 years older, lived in rust-country, and has nearly double the mileage... And it's happy as a clam with its original steering rack.
 

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Yeah agree with @Theneil300
When I was doing the “get acquainted” stuff right after I got my IS, I replaced my leaky rack with a remanufactured unit. I believe I got it from DetroitAxle on eBay. If you send your old rack back, it activates the “Lifetime warranty”. You just pack it in the box and there’s a prepaid shipping label. Hope to never have to make a claim, but there is that option.
 

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Yeah agree with @Theneil300
When I was doing the “get acquainted” stuff right after I got my IS, I replaced my leaky rack with a remanufactured unit. I believe I got it from DetroitAxle on eBay. If you send your old rack back, it activates the “Lifetime warranty”. You just pack it in the box and there’s a prepaid shipping label. Hope to never have to make a claim, but there is that option.
That's the first time I ever hear anything good from that company, glad it worked out for you.
 

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I have not rebuilt a rack. I just replaced them tbh. The cost was more than trying to rebuild one of course but I always feared if I went through the trouble of pulling it out and reinstalling it rebuilt by myself that it would be worse.

turns out others have confirmed my fears lol.
 

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I have not rebuilt a rack. I just replaced them tbh. The cost was more than trying to rebuild one of course but I always feared if I went through the trouble of pulling it out and reinstalling it rebuilt by myself that it would be worse.

turns out others have confirmed my fears lol.
I'm pulling mine out of my truck tomorrow so maybe this weekend I'll pull it apart and see if it's rebuildable.
 
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