Power steering problem

Hey guys - I have a 99 Silverado, 4x4, 5.3L with the 4l60e. In the past couple of months, I noticed my power steering would tighten up for a few seconds and then return to easy steering. This always occurs sitting
still, like pulling out from a parking position. Well, it finally gave it up. It is not driveable! There is no steering. Its not like the tightness you'd feel if it throws a belt. It is super tight. It takes all the strength I have to turn the wheel a half turn and the tires move about an inch. I was sitting at idle, in drive, and it made a little noise like the idle speed changed for a second. I thought the belt came off. Well, the belt is on with good tension, the power steering reservoir is full. The pulley turns easily and no strange noises. So, what do you guys think? Is it the power steering pump or a steering box?
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================ The pump.
A guess, only a guess.......in case of a real emergency contact a landbased shop for real world diagnostics.
(pump preasure)
As a side note......... I changed out a steering column in a Ford SuperDuty last week that had a similar symptom but not the complete failure. It had "extreme stiffness" on turning, with an "occasional" bindup. (no power) The bearings were bad in the column.
anywhooooo..... my guess is still ...the pump, but, only a guess.
~:~ MarshMonster ~sips his crownroyal......mmmm......good stuff~ ~:~
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wrote:

I'm betting the pump. I've seen several where the shaft actually sheered off inside the pump and the only thing holding the shaft/pulley in the pump was the belt. Take the belt off and pull forward on the p/s pulley. If it comes out in your hand, that was the problem. -- Old Crow "Yol Bolsun!" '82 FLTC-P "Miss Pearl" '95 YJ Rio Grande BS#133, SENS, TOMKAT, MAMBM
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wrote:

It could be. My 2000 K3500 was recalled for a possible bad shaft on pump a few years ago and it was replaced for free. ----------------- TheSnoMan.com
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Yeah, when I was at the dealership we did quite a few of them. -- Old Crow "Yol Bolsun!" '82 FLTC-P "Miss Pearl" '95 YJ Rio Grande BS#133, SENS, TOMKAT, MAMBM
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Old Crow wrote:

You won the bet. The shaft was broken. Pretty easy job, but I wish I had more tools and a good shop.
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wrote:

I've always had plenty of tools, but I know what you mean about a good shop. Lived in this place about 7 years before I built my shop. I *hate* working in the dirt. -- Old Crow "Yol Bolsun!" '82 FLTC-P "Miss Pearl" '95 YJ Rio Grande BS#133, SENS, TOMKAT, MAMBM
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