Question about 2008 Hyundai Elantra

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Steering wheel locked up

I was driving then all of a sudden the steering wheel locked up. it would not turn

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Check your power steering fluid.

Posted on Jun 06, 2014

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It is most likely you just turned the wheel to the farthest limit of its travel, and the power assist cutout at that point.

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I doubt it's your 4x4. Most transfer case will start turning the front driveshaft, meaning that BOTH front wheels would try to turn.

Could be a brake pad/caliper locking up on your left wheel. That'll make that wheel turn slower resulting in the veering left.

Could also be a wheel bearing. However usually you'll hear a grinding noise to go along with that. And it'll pull rather consistently in that direction rather than suddenly.

Or, what first comes to mind is that your steering box is loose, or the gear inside the steering box is stripped in one spot. Or your front tie rods could be shifting or possibly ball joints. These would cause a sudden shifting/veering.

All of these things are front end related. And also very dangerous. Take it down to any alignment shop, have them put it on a lift, and diagnose immediately.

Worse case scenerio is that a front end part breaks and sends you out of control and into someone else. Please get it checked. A diesel Suburban could do a lot of damage.

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The steering lock consists of a hardened pin and it may not be releasing any more although it shouldn't interfere with the turning of your key, just your steering unless the Geo is done differently.
If it was mine, I would get a little rough with it and turn the steering wheel hard from left to right while trying to turn the ignition key. 
Even disassembly is not easy since the lock area is supposed to be secure so it cannot be easily defeated.

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