1986 300E DIY Power Steering Box Seal Replacement

Just thought I would share this. The upper seal (where the box connects to the steering wheel shaft) had leaked. I had purchased a seal kit for about $80. At the weekend I decided to go for it. It
turned out to be a pleasure to work on this. I disconnected the driver side steering rod (used a small puller to disengage the ball joint). That enabled me to remove the arm from the box without having to undo the passenger side steering rod. I had marked the shaft and the arm with a small cold chisel so that I could reassemble at the same place. I then undid the allen bolt securing the steering wheel shaft to the steering box. This took quite some effort but fortunately I had an allen key with a long shaft. I disconnected the lower pipe. I couldn't reach the upper pipe so I disconnected the other end of that at the pump. Last I undid the three mounting bolts from behind the driver side wheel. It was good to find that after 21 years not one bolt or nut was rusted up. Everything came apart beautifully. I eased the steering box off of the steering wheel shaft and the whole thing came out without any hassle.
I plugged the pipe connector by pushing an pencil eraser onto it. This cut the eraser to make a plug just the right size.
I cleaned the whole assembly in a tray with Tide washing liquid and dried with an old towel.
Next I pried out the old seals (using a very small screwdriver) This was the hardels part as I had to be careful not to score the shafts or the barrel. One seal wwould not move. I had to hammer the screwdiver into the metal part of the seal so that I could then prose the seal out.
I usd the old spring clips and a small punch to tap the new seals in, and replaced the new spring clips.
Reassembly was straightforward except that I made a comical blunder. When I straightened up the steering wheel before connecting to the steering box I got it upside down i.e. 18- degrees out. It wasn't till I had reassembled everything and I I got into the car for the test drive that I reasised.
You gotta laugh eh?
It took a couple of days for the air bubbles to disappear and now the steering box is quiet and smooth. I had got used to driving without power steering and had to relearn not to yank at the wheel to turn.
Just gotta find an evening to put the wheel right - trouble is I am getting used to it as it is and I get a laugh each time I look at it.
Hope this helps anyone who might have the same problem - the job is very DIY possible.
SR
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You must replace those 3 steering box bolt that you took off from driver side wheelwell, they are one time use bolt... supposed to be torqued to 60lb/ft.
Just want to tell you as it is an safety issue.
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