To steering rack experts, bellows question. 1997 Accord - Drive Accord Honda Forums | radio-pro.ru
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post #1 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 06:51 AM Thread Starter
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To steering rack experts, bellows question. 1997 Accord

170k miles on car. 2.2 liter.
I need to replace the driver's side "rubber" bellows as it is torn (see generic bellows, HRK parts in attachment).
The passenger side bellows looks ok.
Regarding the passenger side bellows: leave well enough alone, or replace it also?
Thank you!

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post #2 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 07:03 AM
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I am not an expert in steering racks. But I have lived long enough to strongly believe the adage: "As long as you are there anyway and everything is apart, you might as well replace XYZ too."

I know there is a chance you can damage something or strip something out, but if something is going on in there you don't know. As long as you are lying under the car with all your tools- just replace it.

Steering rack experts will chime in, I hope- as I do not know the risks/negatives of swapping out a seemingly good boot.

YOU obviously are a DIY-er.....not to challenge you, but in your experience, haven't you ever had to go back and do something over because "it looked OK at the time"? This is like people who do timing belt jobs and do NOT replace the tensioner- "Oh, it looked OK." 20,000 miles later they blow their engine and post here about never buying a Honda again and going back to Pontiac.

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post #3 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 07:05 AM
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When replacing a part that's on both sides I like to replace both sides at the same time, like sway bar links, bushings, wheel bearings, etc. Especially if the other side is accessible when taking things apart to get at the worn part. Not sure if you'd have access to the right one when doing the left, though.


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post #4 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 07:12 AM Thread Starter
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Thanks for the replies, I agree in principle.

However, replacing the passenger side involves working on the other side of the rack.

To rephrase my question:

Once the driver's side fails, will the passenger side bellows fail soon also or is it likely that the passenger side could last several more years?

I'm not sure, but it seems that the driver's side bellows undergoes more "stress" than the passenger side and therefore is more likely to fail earlier than the passenger side.
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post #5 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 07:15 AM
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I'm not sure what the lifespan of a passenger vs driver side one is. But if it were my car, since I do not know the answer to that question, I would replace both just to be safe.


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post #6 of 8 Old 11-30-2017, 07:18 AM
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Good clarification....

Each is equally exposed to the elements....if one side failed because of additional stress over many years, that is one thing. If it failed because of heat/cool cycles, road salt, stones getting kicked up and hitting it, etc....then swap it out.

These are rubber, no? Rubber degrades over time, becoming less pliable. 1st Generation Miata guys replace their radiator and all rubber hoses every 5-7 years as routine maintenance.
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post #7 of 8 Old 12-05-2017, 11:28 AM
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This isn't a 'while you are in there part.' It's double the work to do the other side as well. Not like you have to pull the rack to change this, nor is it challenging. Replace as needed, but if it will give you peace of mind do both.

Just make sure do it quickly, otherwise inner tie rod end will get contaminated and also require replacing.

My .02.

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post #8 of 8 Old 12-15-2017, 06:25 PM Thread Starter
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Ended up just replacing the driver's side bellows. Carefully inspected the passenger side and it still looked very good. hopefully will last several more years.
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