Water in Steering Box

There is water in the steering box of my TO-35, but there is no drain plug. I thought about drilling and installing a plug on the right side where there is a blank spot. I don’t want to remove it from the tractor. Any thoughts? February 20, 2015.

If you have water in the steering box and its been in there for any length of time there is a good chance the recirculating balls in the worm drive have rusted and pitted. If that happens the only solution is to replace that recirculating ball nut steering gear/shaft. The water usually gets in when the seals under the steering wheel go to pot. Water leaks there also tend to take out the upper bearings. If it has manual steering, You can probably drill the casting and tap it for a plug but I believe you should be able to drain the steering box by simply removing one of the bottom bolts from the seal caps on either side of the gear box. The fill plug is located on top of the casting under the battery carrier. Its a slotted plug and because its located under the battery it often is corroded. You may have to drill the original plug and remove it with an easy out. Replace the slotted plug with a hex socket plug. Coat the threads with anti-seize compound and fill the hex socket opening with heavy grease or wax to keep it from being damaged by battery acid in the future. The grease or wax can be easily removed when you need to remove the plug.