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A few weeks ago, the power steering sensor (steering wheel position sensor) began acting up. It began with the "phantom" shake, and the progressively got worse as time went on, until the electric power steering would only occasionally work and often shut off while driving.

I did many hours of research and it seemed that the only fix for this was to replace the entire steering column (many having reported a $1500 dealership repair). That was, until I found the Dorman replacement sensor which reduced the price of this repair to $155.

I was unable to find any How-To's on this, So I dove into it myself and thought I would post one here.

The part number is Dorman 905-524. Purchased new on ebay for $154.60. Total time to complete: 1 hour. You will notice some extra wires in my photos due to my remote starter.

You will need:
A Basic Socket Set.
A Torx Bit Socket (I forget the size, just buy a set).
A set of large snap ring pliers
A flat head screwdriver
The replacement sensor
A steering wheel puller (free tool rental at autozone)

Dorman How to manual: http://www.dormanproducts.com/digitalassets/document/905-524_IS.PDF

1. Disconnect the negative lead on your battery. You will be playing with airbag components, so I suggest giving it 15 minutes before moving forward from here.

2. Remove the steering wheel shroud. This is the plastic part behind your steering wheel. There are three bolts on the bottom.


3. Remove the plastic kick cover - Pry from the top and it will flip down.

4. Remove the metal kick plate - 4 bolts - one on each side.

5. Disconnect and remove the airbag. This is a complicated procedure and took me the longest. Use a 3mm (factory recommended) or similar tool and insert it into the hole in the bottom of the wheel. Push straight up. Hard. It will move a spring up and release the airbag. Pry on the bottom of the airbag with your fingers and it should release. If you have trouble with this, I strongly recommend watching the following youtube video which explains this well (wait till the end bit where he figures it out):



6. Unplug the rear connections from the airbag and put it somewhere.

7. Unbolt the steering wheel. Using an airbag removal tool (free rental at autozone), remove the steering wheel.

8. Mark the clockspring for alignment. I notched it in two spots to make sure I had it all correct. Then, remove the entire assembly. There is one screw on the top, one on the right side facing you, and one on the bottom. Pull straight towards you and it will come off.




9. Unbolt the top section of the steering column. There are two torx bolt holding it in.
Pull straight back on it to remove it and then put it somewhere.

10. Using a set of snapring pliers, remove the snap ring.

11. Remove the shroud from around the steering column. At this point ,you will have exposed the sensor in question.


12. Remove the inner circlip from inside the sensor. (Dorman PDF linked above does abetter job explaining this w/ a photo.

13. Unplug the sensor. Now, Using your fingers or a screwdriver on one side, gently pry the sensor towards you.

14. Now, its time to put the new part and in reassemble. Insert the new sensor where the old one was. Using your thumbs, push it down until it is seated. Once it it seated, you may remove the alignment clip.


15. Reinstall the shaft cover. Reinstall the snapring.

16. Reinstall the upper steering column. Bolt it up.

17. Reinstall the clockspring/turn signal assembly. Make sure it is lined up to your notches that you made earlier.

18. Install steering wheel. Reinstall airbag.

19. Install kickplate/plastic pieces removed earlier. Reconnect batteyr

20. Test Drive.
 

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Ok so I have a question I have a 2008 ford escape xlt V6 and my car cranks up just fine with no problem but my steering wheel hair doesn't turn at all I can go forward but I can't go left or right any ideas on what that might be
Read post # 77
Dorman makes a sensor
INot an easy job
 

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Damn they will not do anything about it. Did they know that you tried to attempt to fix it. my wife quit driving her escape and started driving my truck when we started first experiencing the steering issue. the escape sat for a while then I decided to let my old faithful commuter car (1989 ford escort) rest and drive the escape for a while. the steering would come and go. then not working for 2 weeks and my lower back started killing me. Then for a month strait it steered fine then the recall came out and I took it to our local ford dealer. and they acted like it would take 10 mins to fix which it took 10 mins to update the steering software. I am not entirely convinced it is fixed but it has steered fine with no issues for about 2 months and we commute about 100 miles a day round trip. I am sorry this is happening to you. I'm pretty sure this doesn't help anyone out but I just wanted to let you know they didn't take anything apart to "fix" our issue. I am pretty sure the recall that was mailed to us said different escapes or different issues will call for different. Before I herd about the recall I was a half of a second away from ordering a new steering sensor.
Unfortunately for you, you just let Ford off the hook forever with your repair.
Once Ford "flashes" the computer it's then considered the "repair " end of recall for that car. I know this for a fact because I now have a failed sensor with a C1963 code and a U0452, & b1676 (an ABS code because of the ground), due to the failed esp, they common ground the 2 systems so one reacts to the other. All of this is ignored because before I bought it used, the orginal owner who traded it in, had that HALF A.. repair done and now Ford has washed their very dirty hands of it. I'm waiting 3 weeks for a review board at Ford to accept or decline the repair, as told to me by a great service manager, who understands and actually sympathizes.
The flash was done at apx 95,000 miles, and 5 years old, funny that "Repair" lasted about the same time, now at 200,000 and 10 years it has completely stopped working and I had no prior knowledge of the problem, (past not disclosed until the failure of the steering) so BUYER BEWARE, they get to just drop a $700 problem in your lap.
 

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Unfortunately for you, you just let Ford off the hook forever with your repair.
Once Ford "flashes" the computer it's then considered the "repair " end of recall for that car. I know this for a fact because I now have a failed sensor with a C1963 code and a U0452, & b1676 (an ABS code because of the ground), due to the failed esp, they common ground the 2 systems so one reacts to the other. All of this is ignored because before I bought it used, the orginal owner who traded it in, had that HALF A.. repair done and now Ford has washed their very dirty hands of it. I'm waiting 3 weeks for a review board at Ford to accept or decline the repair, as told to me by a great service manager, who understands and actually sympathizes.
The flash was done at apx 95,000 miles, and 5 years old, funny that "Repair" lasted about the same time, now at 200,000 and 10 years it has completely stopped working and I had no prior knowledge of the problem, (past not disclosed until the failure of the steering) so BUYER BEWARE, they get to just drop a $700 problem in your lap.
Did this repair work for you? I might be in the same boat. I bought a used 2012 (I'm aware it wasn't part of the recall but built in the same kansas city factory) So deciding if I need to replace the sensor myself. I was driving today like 3 weeks after I got the car and the power steering went out on my way to get lunch. When I got back in my car the power steering was working again, no check engine light but I scanned it and got a C1963.
 

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Representative Brian Fitzpatrick
1717 Langhorne Newtown Rd. Suite 225
Langhorne, PA 19047

Dear Representative Fitzpatrick:

The purpose of this letter is to solicit your support in making Ford Motor Company accountable for addressing a clear safety related issue to a faulty power steering assembly on vehicles built by the company.

I have a 2009 Mercury Mariner Hybrid purchased new in Sept of 2009. It was under an extended factory warranty for the first 7 years of ownership.

On November 27th I was parking my car and heard a chime sound in the vehicle. The message on the dash indicated a power steering sensor fault. I very carefully (and with difficulty) drove the car a short distance home. Searching the web indicated that Ford Motor Company had a recall for precisely this problem in 2014. Seems it just took quite a while for my car to exhibit the problem. I immediately filed a report with the U.S. DOT National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (and found many other similar complaints). A copy of that report is in Appendix A.

Further searching the web indicated that hundreds of other consumers had the identical problem. Many indicated that Ford denied their claim under the recall number ( ). Most stated that Ford would only do a software update – not fix the problem. The cost of fixing the problem was reportedly in the $1,100 to $2,000 range.

I waited a few weeks to hear from NHTSA. As of today I have heard nothing.

On January 11th I had my vehicle towed to my local Ford dealer. Sure enough – the diagnosis required replacement of the entire steering column at a cost of $1,575.25. When asked about the recall I was told that Ford would only pay for the software update. Therefore, my experience was the same as many other consumers – Ford accepted no responsibility for their design flaw.

I did authorize repairing the vehicle (which is being done in the next few days).
However, I believe that Ford should be held financially responsible for all repairs. The company is fortunate that it is only for mechanical corrections – and not medical claims – I could easily have been injured or killed if this had happened at high speed.
Here is an example of what another consumer wrote about his experience with the steering loss issue:

“My Ford Escape 2009 started experiencing power steering issues and ended up with NO power steering. I have contacted Ford and they were of no help whatsoever. I then proceeded to contact NHTSA at 1-888-327-4236 and filed a complaint. The agent gave me a complaint number and suggested to contact the Federal Trade Commission at 877 382 4357, which I intend to do when their office opens. From my research this very issue has been recalled for my model & make both in the United States & Canada. My particular model VIN was not part of the recall. I have discovered that I am not alone in this power steering issue boat but Ford has not been proactive. I strongly suggest EVERYONE do the same complaint filings as I firmly believe that Ford - on their own - will not fess up to anything and will provide NO assistance.

You will note that it bears a striking resemblance to my complaint with NHSTA

“While driving a buzzer goes off on the car (usually indicates that I have to look at the dashboard for an explanation, e.g. low tire pressure warning). The power assist for the steering immediately cuts out and I have to steer with significant effort. This is not a big deal if I am going straight, a very big deal when I am turning which accounts for almost every event. This event last 2-3 seconds and the assist recovers. There is NO warning messages on the dashboard. It requires both hands to control the car for this short time - however at 30 mph the vehicle travels 50+ feet during this event. This happens every 2-3 months. . The date listed below is the last time this happened, i.e. today while making a left turn traveling at about 10 mph and last 3 seconds - enough time for me to safely complete the turn using both hands.”
On January 3, 2021 I called the Ford Customer Complaint number (800-392-3693) to ask Ford for assistance in covering all or part of the cost of the repair for my vehicle.

  • Told the story – mentioned recall #14S05 –
  • On phone for about 20 minutes
  • After being placed on hold repeatedly (by Alan) told that Ford’s only responsibility was to have the software reprogrammed.
  • Notified Alan that I filed a report with the NTSB – and would never buy another Ford.
  • This appears to be the end of the line for compensation from Ford.

I am a US Navy veteran now on Social Security and feel this is clearly a safety related issue and Ford should be forced to honor the recall to fix it. The company has gotten away with ducking responsibility and I seek your assistance in using our government to force compliance for myself and many others.
I am attaching several documents for your review.

  • Appendix A – My original complaint filed with NHSTA
  • Appendix B - Immediate email response from NHSHA
  • Appendix C – Ford Recall Notification
 

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I just completed the sensor swap. As a very inexperienced car repairer, this job was not easy for me. I got very stuck on the snap ring, and yes, as others have said, you need a BIG badass pair of snap ring pliers. My ring was kind of stuck, so I had to scrape at its edges with a pick, and eventually I used snap ring pliers with tines you could orient in different positions. Making it like a crab claw so the tines were hooked towards each other gave me so much more leverage. I also unfortunately striped the t45s, so I had to spent an uncomfortable afternoon wedging them back and forth until I basically rethreaded them by force. There is a very helpful video on YouTube that goes through all the steps. Looks easy and simple, but everything was challenging. However in the end I saved about 1300 dollars and have the satisfaction of doing it myself. Like another user reported, my steering feels easier going one way than the other, not by a huge amount, but it is noticeable. I hope the sensor is still calibrating, but even with that minor issue, steering is much improved. Thank you to everyone who has contributed to this great resource.
 
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