It is important that no tears exist in the rubber gaiters which protect the steering rack as this would allow the lubricant to escape and dirt to enter the unit with obvious and expensive consequences. If damaged, the gaiter can easily be renewed as follows:
Remove the track rod end and locknut from the track rod, as detailed previously, noting the number of turns required to unscrew the track rod end.
Slacken the small and large clip securing the gaiter to the track rod and the steering gear housing respectively . In some cases, a wire retaining clip may be used to secure the gaiter to the rack housing.
Place a drip tray under the steering gear to catch the oil which will be released when the gaiter is removed. Detach the gaiter from the rack housing and slide it down and off the track rod. Allow the oil to drain from the steering rack. It is important to drain out as much oil as possible to prevent overfilling when refilling the steering gear.
Discard the old securing clips along with the damaged gaiter.
Use the new clips supplied with the gaiter kit when reassembling.
Apply a light smear of grease to the inside surface of the new gaiter where it will contact the track rod and the rack housing. Position the securing clips on the gaiter and slide the gaiter up the track rod and into position at the rack housing.
With the rack centralised, inject 113 pint (0.2 litres) of SAE 90 EP gear oil into the rack housing at the new gaiter. Slide the gaiter into position on the rack housing and secure with the retaining clips.
Ensure that the gaiter is located correctly on the housing, and that its smaller end engages correctly in the groove in the track rod. Also ensure that the gaiter is not twisted or strained before tightening the retaining clips. Turn the rack slowly from lock to lock to distribute the oil through the housing.
It should be noted that, while the car is jacked up with the front wheels clear of the ground, the rack must not be moved forcefully from lock to lock, otherwise the rack gaiters may be ruptured or displaced by the hydraulic pressure in the unit, or damage may occur to the internal components of the assembly.
Assemble the locknut and track rod end to the track rod, using the same number of turns required to remove it. Reconnect the track rod to the steering arm and secure with the retaining nut. Tighten the rod end locknut, then refit the road wheel and lower the car to the ground.
Finally, have the front wheel toe-setting checked as detailed previously.