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Dodge Dakota Electrical Problems



  • I believe the regulator on that truck is in the engine computer, not within the alternator itself.

    The two solutions I know of are:
    1. Replace the ECU
    2. There is an aftermarket kit that uses the old external Chrylser regulator so you don't have to replace the computer. It looks like the wiring harness is a Mopar part, but I don't know & I don't have any part numbers.

    Disclaimer: I haven't ordered from these people; I just happened to find their webpage. -kit.html

    Hope this helps.
  • soldout1soldout1 Posts: 1
    need two trace ground wire for starter on 2001 dodge dakota. I think the ground is keeping it from starting
  • pops37pops37 Posts: 2
    I see this is several months old but thought I would toss in an idea anyway. 1st ck to see if the LED on the other window switch buttons goes on and off when you push the window lockout off & on at the driver door. If not then maybe your window lock out switch is broke. 2nd if the LED lights work then you have power and the lockout switch is working. next is to remove the inside door panel (4 screws) on one of the doors and disconnect the switch connector then test the connection points. let me know if you do not have the pin outs and I'll post it for you.
  • I have a 2001 Dodge Dakota, SLP, 4.7 L, V8. I am having an issue with the drivers side bank not firing. I have checked the coils and PCM and they are fine. I do not have any engine codes other than when I have unplugged a coil or an injector. The engine will start but run rough and unplugging a coil or injector on the drivers bank does not change it. It seems to run better at faster RPM's. Has anyone had issues like this and any answers or suggestions. :sick:
  • pops37pops37 Posts: 2
    Howdy, just to be sure did you also unplug coil or injector in other side and was it worse? Have you cleaned (real well) the TB(throttle body) and IAC (idle air control). There are 2 capacitors in the circuit but I am not sure where they are located. Inspect all related wiring for cut, loose or questionable ground.
    good luck
  • I have a 2001 dodge dakota,and the dash lights will not dim, I replaced the light switch,removed the pos.batt. cable removed the ecm cleaned all connectors with a tooth brush and crc replaced the ecm and reconnected the batt. cable still unable to dim the dash lights, any ideas?

  • I have a 98 Dakota that the tail light isn't working. I've tried replacing the bulb and still nothing. When the head lights are on, the right tail light is out. When I brake, it lights up and when I turn on the signal, it blinks fast. I've changed one front turn signal bulb and changed the rear last night and it still does not work. Any help would be great...
  • tiffneytiffney Posts: 2
    Sorry for delay in response. New to this forum. We had the same exact issue with our 2001 dakota. Turned out we had to replace the computer. In the drivers side floorboard, there is a kick panel. If you remove the kick panel, your computer is under that. We had trouble finding one for a reasonable price. The cheapest one we could find was at for $263.09. Hope this helps.
  • 2002 Dodge Dakota: #1st problem: when headlights are on they intermittently flicker from low beam to high-beam then back to low-beam. Problem #2 occurred about a month later: that's when I noticed that the headlights sometimes blink off then back on. When the headlights blink off/on so do the interior lights. A few weeks later, problem #3. headlights quit working completely. The next day problem #4 occurred - power locks stopped working, as did the windshield wipers. for a short time, turn signals quit working but are okay now.
    What's going on: Is it the fuses (checked several fuses, they all seemed fine). A computer module? does my truck not like me anymore? I'm the original owner, the truck has just under 70k miles.
  • tiffneytiffney Posts: 2
    It sounds like the Central Timer Module (CTM). When the CTM is going out, it can affect many things, such as: interior lights, exterior lights, windshield wipers, turn signals, electric door locks, headlights, console lights, dome lights, door ajar sensor light, and can even prevent your vehicle from starting. That is just a brief list. If you have a diagnostic test ran on your vehicle, it will more than likely read fine until the CTM goes completely out. When CTM goes out, you will not be able to start or drive your vehicle. My suggestion, would be to replace the CTM. This should fix the problems you are experiencing.
  • Thanks, that really helps. I will quit playing around with fuses, etc... One more question, do I have to take the truck to Dodge Dealer for a new CTM? Or can I just go to a good reputable repair shop?
  • I have 2001 Dodge first if i moved my steering wheel to low it would make my blinkers, radio, and head lights not work. To fix this I would have to move the steering wheel problem solved........Now my headlights, tail lights, dash lights, and insides do not work at all.....I have checked all fuses they are all still good please someone help me with how to fix my truck!!!! :cry:
  • I found this post on another website site. I just tried it a few minutes ago. It helped. Power was restored to headlights, interior lights. Power was not restored to the auto door looks. That's all I checked so far. I'm just glad to have my headlights back working.
    I intend to replace the CTM, until then this was a good (if only temp) fix.
    "Often these CTM's will lock up and come back to life when power is removed from them. Remove the left sill plate, the panel at the bottom of the door opening. Then remove the left kick panel to expose the module. You will find it mounted to the sheet metal there, unplug it's three electrical connectors for a minute or two. Reconnect them and see if everything works. Most of the time the CTM will come back to life at least temporarily after this."
  • What kind of Voltage regulator did you buy? And, if you can, could you send me the diagram? I got a external for regulator, Napa said it should work. Bought the pig tail for it. but couldn't find any clear instructions on how to make it work.
  • Installed a new CTM yesterday and all of my electrical issues have been resolved. Bless you Tiffany, for your advice. I couldn't have done it without you. You really know Dodge trucks. Thank you, again! karenpsantee [Cost of repair 255.30 + 13.26 s&h. Labor cost $0, installed it myself in less than 5 minutes,not bad for a girl, huh?.]
  • deschtra1deschtra1 Posts: 2
    edited August 2013
    Door locks turned on and off while driving and parked; also intermittent wipers failed to operate(wipers operate ok except for intermittent feature); also key fobs will not operate door locks or panic button. replaced CTM module and everything worked but the key fobs(replaced all batteries in key fobs but they still will not lock opr unlock the doors0. What should I do next. Thanks
  • same thing happened to me. the fob needs to be re-programmed. I found instructions in owner's manual to do this, but have not yet tried to do it. My key fob is still in limbo.
  • RE 506 from 505. Tried reprogramming key fobs-tried numerous times but doors and panic buitton still fail to operate. Any new ideas? Thanks
  • Congrats! What exact model do you have? Where was the module located? I'm having a hard time with my truck as well.
  • I have a 2002 Dodge Dakota SLT Quad Cab. The unit is located on driver's side behind; behind the kick panel on the left side of the floor area . Remove the piece of floor trim along driver side seat, then remove the adjoining kick panel. Good luck. - kp
  • magickmagick Posts: 1

    I'm having two problems with my 2001 dakota, which may or may not be related. The first is that at night, when I open either of the doors, the headlights go out. At first the dome light came on, but now it doesn't anymore. The second is that the radio keeps resetting itself. We took it to a garage where they supposedly rewired and fixed the radio, but after a few months it started resetting more and more. Now it is almost every time we start the truck.

  • hey guy i have a 2002 dakota replaced the computer and it still want turn over with the key,no lights come on when i turn the key to the on positon ever thing else works checked the fuse no power to the starter fuse inside the truck can soneone please help.

  • schuyler1schuyler1 Posts: 4
    PLEASE I NEED HELP! I recently just purchased a 1998 Dodge Dakota V8 having electrical issues first off the driver side door won't work, the over head console, forward two dome lights, horn, doesn't work haven't checked AC, heater isn't as warm as it should and the after market CD player works but sounds like wires are shorting out through speakers. The guy I bought it from said he replaced the battery and fuel pump since he has had it. Runs and starts. I checked all the fuzes everything's good, took the door panel off connections are good, after reading this forum my guess now is the CTM? Does this sound right is their anything I can do to make sure. I live in Ketchikan Alaskan their is no dealer ships. Please Help?
  • schuyler1schuyler1 Posts: 4
    Is any one out their that might know? CTM or PCU?
  • schuyler1schuyler1 Posts: 4
    Driver side window, horn, over head console, doom lights, AC none will work, electrical issue 98 Dakota. CTM?
  • steverstever Viva Las CrucesPosts: 45,541
    Try cross-posting over in Edmunds Answers too.

    The speaker noise could just be bad speakers, but it's always a concern that something hooked into the wiring has caused other issues down the road. If nothing else, you could try disconnecting the player and see if you can reset things that way. has free wiring diagrams if you want to scour them for ideas.

    You could try calling some dealers (or maybe find an indy shop that repairs CTMs) and see what they say. Maybe that would save you a long ferry ride!

    Moderator - Minivan fan. Feel free to message or email me -

  • thecardoc3thecardoc3 Posts: 2,404
    You need to pick one of the above failures and trouble shoot to solve it. Do that repair and then see what problems are left and repeat. The Central Timing Module is part of the VTSS (vehicle theft security system) and does monitor the door switch inputs and sends their status on the communication bus to other modules that need that information. That would be part of how the dome lights themselves work, but only a part of the circuit. The CTM is a component that has seen its fair share of failures but it doesn't have anything to do with the drivers side window, the horn, the AC, heater, nor the overhead console. One thing that you definitely don't want to do is to go get a used one and try to install it. You run the risk of teaching modules on the truck that it then would have additional options that your truck might not have been built with.

    You do have a shop near you that is a sponsoring member of the iATN, The Auto Works on Tongass Highway. Three techs in All American Auto are also members.
  • rprefferrpreffer Posts: 2

    I have a 98 Dakota that the tail light isn't working. I've tried replacing the bulb and still nothing. When the head lights are on, the right tail light is out. When I brake, it lights up and when I turn on the signal, it blinks fast. I've changed one front turn signal bulb and changed the rear last night and it still does not work. Any help would be great...

  • rprefferrpreffer Posts: 2
    Hello 98 Dakota , I have a 2004 with the same problem. Front light s worked and flashed rapidly. The left rear marker light worked but no left turn signal nor brake light. Bulb and socket tested good. With the left signal turned on, I ran my hand along the wiring harness with no faults found. When I got to the flasher unit I pushed the box slightly to the left checking for loose wire . The slight shifting of the box slowed the rapid flashing and the rear unit is now working. I Thank GOD for fixing it with no big repair bill. Good luck.
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