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Old 02-19-2009, 11:32 PM   #1
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How to replace your power steering motor

My 05 Cobalt started having problems with the power steering at about 50k miles. It was pretty random, sometimes I wouldnt make it to the end of the block with it working an sometimes it would go 100+ miles of smooth operation. I decided that I wasnt going to pay the Chevy dealer the ridiculous prices I had heard being quoted ($1500 in some cases.) I bought a used column off Ebay for $100 and switched it out myself. It was an easy and straight forward procedure. Its been a month or 2 since i did this but I think I got everything in the right order. Oh and BTW, use this guide at your own risk. I assume no responsibility for damages.

Tools needed:
- 7mm socket
- 10mm socket
- 13mm socket

First, make sure your vehicle is parked with the wheels perfectly straight. I failed to do this and had to pull the column back out and reinsert it because the wheel was a little crooked when driving straight.

At this point it would be a good idea to unplug the battery because you will be unplugging the connectors to the column which include the airbag. I believe it is possible to do this without unplugging them, but I didnt want to risk damaging them by pulling on them too much.

Start off by removing the lower dash piece by your knees. It is held on by metal clips that are pretty strong, so you have to pull kinda hard. Make sure to unplug the connector for the trunk release. You can see the locations of the clips in the following pic.
Click the image to open in full size.

Remove the metal bar in the next picture by undoing the 2 7mm bolts.
Click the image to open in full size.

After removing that, remove the plastic cover on the column. It should be 3 7mm bolts. Unhook all the electrical connectors to the column. Unbolt the 2 13mm bolts Holding the column up and it should drop down. You should be able to access the 3 10mm bolts that attach the column to the power steering unit. They are in a triangle shape. Here is a pic that shows the bolt locations.
Click the image to open in full size.

You should now be able to pull the column out of the vehicle by pulling straight out on it. Undo the electrical connections to the power steering unit. Next, undo the bolt that connects the power steering unit to the steering shaft. The final bolt is a very long 13mm that is accessed through the left side(where the storage cubby thing normaly is.) It is a bit tricky to remove. Support the power steering unit as you remove this bolt because it will fall when the bolt is slid out. After lowering it you should be able to slide it out of the steering shaft, If not you might have to pry a little in between the "U" shaped attachment. Be carefull not to pull too much on the shaft as this might dislodge the rubber boot where it passes through the firewall and its kind of hard to pop back in. Here is a pic of the connection to the steering shaft.
Click the image to open in full size.

Putting the new unit in is the reverse of removing it, just make sure you take a break because holding the new power steering unit up while you slide the long 13mm bolt in through the side is no fun. It gets heavy pretty fast. After that everything goes together very easily. Make sure you have everything plugged in well before reconnecting the battery. Also make sure not to overtighten the bolts that hold the steering column cover on, as this will make it hard to turn the key on and off.

I apologize if I forgot anything and for any spelliing errors I may have made. I didnt really go through and proof read it. Feel free to PM or email me with any questions you might have or if you need any further pictures or explanation. Good luck!

Ed

Last edited by TommyP; 05-17-2012 at 09:41 PM.
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Old 02-20-2009, 02:23 PM   #2
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Great thread. Wish I would have seen this before I paid alot of money to have mine fixed.
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Old 02-20-2009, 02:55 PM   #3
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Thanks. I think GM should step up and issue a recall for this because this really can be dangerous if you dont have to strength to turn the wheel when it randomly clicks off. Its ridiculous for a major component to go out like this on a 4 year old car, but i guess GM has other problems to deal with right now.
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:02 PM   #4
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Yeah my wheel likes to pull and I have to have a fight with it. But it happens at random. EPS FTFL!!!!!!!!!! Doesn't even feel like the car has power steering at all. I want my good ol fluid power steering back. There's no possible way to convert it is there?
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Old 02-22-2009, 01:10 PM   #5
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hey man I have that back lash in the steering gear, and my needs to be replaced (like 850) this should fix that right?

oh and awesome post man
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Old 02-22-2009, 02:47 PM   #6
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Well, the problem that I was having was the power steering electric motor would stop working at random and "Power Steering" would display on the information center. I'm not sure what else it will fix.
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Old 02-22-2009, 04:31 PM   #7
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Theres actually a tsb on that i think
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Old 02-26-2009, 09:19 AM   #8
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Great how to, and thanks a lot for the help Ed
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Old 02-26-2009, 12:49 PM   #9
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Edit - I added a pic of where the splined power steering shaft connects to the steering shaft that passes through the firewall.

Chochoky86 - If your column came with the U-joint and steering shaft just remove that part. Just losen the bolt thats painted yellow in the pic and slide it out.

Thanks guys!
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Old 02-27-2009, 08:59 AM   #10
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Thumbs up

Quote:
Originally Posted by Loaded87IROC View Post
Edit - I added a pic of where the splined power steering shaft connects to the steering shaft that passes through the firewall.

Chochoky86 - If your column came with the U-joint and steering shaft just remove that part. Just losen the bolt thats painted yellow in the pic and slide it out.

Thanks guys!
Yeah, and thanks for all your help yesterday, I started pulling everything off but I got stuck with the long 13 mm so I left it like that because it was my friends b-day yesterday so we went out and as sson as I get out of work today I'll finish it. The 13 mm is all loose now I just have to pull it out and then put the new one in( hopefully it works) and put everything back together, so I might need to give you a all later on for some more customer service :-) but thanks a lot I really appreciate your help.

Carlos
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Old 02-27-2009, 10:07 PM   #11
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The operation was a total success!!!! Thanks again you saved my wallet!!!
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Old 02-28-2009, 10:12 PM   #12
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Easy than im told it is
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Old 02-28-2009, 10:20 PM   #13
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hey off topic, but do you happen to have any pics that show the clutch pedal position switch??? the 3rd pic shows the clutch start switch quite well. the clutch position switch i beleive is on the other side of the pedal at the top. reason i ask is cause i have to change mine, im told its a 0.4 hour job but i cant even see it under the dash.
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Old 02-28-2009, 11:50 PM   #14
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chochoky86 - Your welcome.

JCswoosher2 - Are you asking if its easy?

Sharkey - I dont have any pics from the other side but if you want I can take some. Did you pull off the trim under the column before taking a look?
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Old 03-01-2009, 08:01 AM   #15
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Loaded87IROC View Post
chochoky86 - Your welcome.

JCswoosher2 - Are you asking if its easy?

Sharkey - I dont have any pics from the other side but if you want I can take some. Did you pull off the trim under the column before taking a look?
Lol it was kind of a i want to subscribe to this page comment. But i may have to do this. Is it?
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Old 03-01-2009, 11:33 AM   #16
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Yeah its pretty easy. Its only a total of about 10 bolts. I would say it can be done in under an hour. Alot better than paying a shop to do it.

Ed
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Old 04-20-2009, 08:41 AM   #17
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Where can I get the part to perform this? Canada Eastcoast wise, Mine done good for awhile after replacing the wheel bearing which a mechanic told me that these things are computer smart and will shut down if another problem consists. But as soon as I took my snow tires off and put the 18's back on, I'm lucky to get 500 feet before the DIC starts dinging at me Power Steering. And it's not fun to try to take the corners with those friggen 18's and no power steering. So ya, where could I get the replacement part to perform this?
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Old 04-20-2009, 10:47 AM   #18
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There are a few places you could get it, but as far as I know the only way to get a new one is through a GM parts counter and you have to buy the whole column. Pretty expensive. Your other options are to check a salvage yard near you(saves on shipping) or to find one on ebay. I got mine from ebay for about 100 bucks. I took a quick look and found 2 on there right now. One is just the power steering unit you need and the other is the whole column, but its way overpriced. Here is the link for the power steering unit http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/COBAL...1%7C240%3A1318

Good luck and let me know if you need any more help!

Ed
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Old 04-20-2009, 04:16 PM   #19
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This is a common problem many people have to deal with. I had this part replaced under warranty at 20,000 miles. The invoice was somewhere around $500. Great way to save some bills doing it yourself.
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I have one and its no problem for me, but my wife hates it...well hates my car says its not practical, but for some reason loves to ride in it. I wish I could reflash my wife sometimes!
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Old 04-21-2009, 06:11 AM   #20
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Yes, it is far more cheaper to buy online, or a salvage yard, here in nova Scotia, I went to my local chevy dealer, and for the part alone, (Complete Column) for a 2006 Chevrolet Cobalt SS/SC 5 speed he quoted me a price of $569 and change. I then called Maritime Auto Salvage out of Truro Nova Scotia area, and they quoted me a price of $200 dollars plus tax for the exact same thing. No Brainer, but I am setting up an appointment anyways for the scan tool to find out why my power steering is triggering, whether it is complete faliure of the motor or something different.
Brother in law who is a licenced mechanic told me he would hate to see me drop all that money on something that may not need to be fixed. He continued to say that there are so many components tied into the power steering it's crazy, Like Gas sensor's. Steering sensors, brake sensors, and it goes on and on. He said if I had a bad sesor or a cheaper alternative other than my complete EPS/column, it could solve my problems. No Matter what, when this get's resolved I'll be sure to detail what was wrong, and all the synopsis, because as this makes so many balt owners mad, it makes me mad as well
"Why pay $30,000 for a car that is always F&$%ing up!"
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Old 04-23-2009, 09:30 AM   #21
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Cause: Checked concern of power steering not working. Found CODE C0475. Checked & found power & Grounds ok to Column
Correnction: Found Internal Fault in column

Part 19200751 / Steering Column / 569.56
Labour 108.00
Shop Supplies 10.80
688.36
+ tax 89.50
Grand total

$777.86

This is ridiculous. I thought of buying from a salvage yard, but.. am I going to run into this same problem again with an used part...
Blah
Sad day for the Cobalt's .. Well not really. Let's blame the genius who decided to get rid of Hydraulic, perfectly working power steering, and throw an electronic one in

LoL
That's alot of beer money..
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Old 04-23-2009, 11:00 PM   #22
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after seeing these pics of the column I whonder if there is any potential to shim the column out a half inch or so. Is there enough spline? Looking at some ebay pics it appears there is also a shaft with long splines at the connection of the upper collumn and PS motor gearbox.

I feel the wheel is way too far away from me when I'm sitting comfortably. no I'm not slouching the seat. I sit nearly verticle but I'm tall and it feels a bit like a gocart with the wheel and pedals so close in line. pitty there was no telescoping adjustment.

I know messing with the steering column like that is "unsafe" and probably illegal. spare me
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Old 04-28-2009, 01:37 PM   #23
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There is plenty of spline. I can snap of a few pics of the disassembled column if you need them.
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Old 05-05-2009, 05:39 AM   #24
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Thumbs down

Will I have a problem if I do decide to buy one from a salvage yard, the computer's Clashing, and not responding to this new unit?
From The Salvage yard, I purchase the whole column. I don't have to use it all, I can just de-tach the power steering component?
I need to know all this because it's the line between having this problem fixed this weekend by salvage, or waiting 3 MONTHS, until I can save up the dough for a brand new column.
The brother in law was saying he was replacing one in a tibouron at his work, and the computer clashed and was unresponsive. and I just don't want to run
into this problem if I by a second hand one from the salvage yard!
Gah! Damn Power steering!
Help me so I can get my balt easily around corners again
Becoming a pain in the ass to throw my body weight to make a turn around
a friggen pothole! and the 18's don't help my easy turning.
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:45 PM   #25
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Well....
I never got any respone on what would happen, so I went forth. Got the complete column from the salvage yard, and only used the PS motor. ( Round Black Cylinder). Held on by 2 bolts, and plugged into the module. Unplugged it from the module, ejected the 2 screws, Never even had to take my column out.. Just removed the plastic covering underneath my steering wheel. (Knock on wood. Have approx 45km's in now with no faliure, compared to this morning when I would only make it mere feet before PS faliure...)
Also smelled like burnt wires from the motor when I took the original off the car. Immedietly once we started the car and took it for a drive, just parked in a still position, I noticed a difference.. Let's hope this works... Let's hope..

Feels good to use one hand again
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Old 05-13-2009, 08:45 PM
CobaltSS
Chevy Cobalt




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