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Dodge Ram - II

meredithmeredith Posts: 578
edited March 2014 in Dodge
This topic is a continuation of....

Topic 460 Dodge Ram.

This topic has been split for performance
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  • markcordmarkcord Posts: 113
    The current Kelly Safari DTR's I am running are 33x12.5x15 on an 88 GMC with 2" suspension lift.
    I installed these about a year ago but am getting the impression that they will last quite a while. The BFG's that I got 45K out of were driven mostly in the city (so lots of corners). Were it not for the sidewall separation problems I would have purchased them again. I plan on going to 33x12.5x16.5 Kelly DTR's on my new V10. My suspicion is that "sako" is experiencing minor tire rub on his 2500 because of wheel depth and/or offset. When I get my Kelly's they'll be mounted on 8" wheels (as they currently are on my GMC).

  • eric16eric16 Posts: 38
    Got a call from dealer with a price on a 2000 Ram 2500 Qcab 4X4 Cummins, the prices was 75.00 off of what the web site listed. So the rumor about the option prices being rolled over from 99 must right.

  • I have 1998 Ram Quad cap 4X4. I have been noticing a loug ping when I shift from park to reverse. I also have noticed hard and abrop shifting. Is this just a normal Dodge Transmission or is there something wrong? I have had it to the dealer a couple of times and they have not found anything. any comments please
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    Some drivers get this if they normally park on an incline. A recommendation is to start the truck, then shift into Neutral during warm up - this permist better fluid flow than Park and should cut down on the hard shifts.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • We will soon be placing an order for our new 2000 3500 quad cab, but have a few questions and would really appreciate any advice we can get!!
    Will be using the truck much of the time to haul a 11 foot truck camper that will weigh in at about 3500 pounds. On occasion we might also pull a small trailer. Which engine should we order for our truck the v-10 or the 5.9. If we do get the v-10, does anyone have a guess as to the mpg with it and the camper and with the truck solo?
    We appreciate any and all input.
  • which engine,
    The only issue with the V-10 is gas mileage to my knowledge. But it's a b-i-g issue, at 8 miles per gallon. The 3500 comes with a 35 gal tank, so figure about 280 miles between stops, in reality its less if you aren't intending to refill when you have only fumes left. Plenty of power, quiet, and gas stations are everywhere. ( They better be with this hog...) People buy the V-10 when they don't want to deal with the extra noise that accompanies the diesel, or the smell of the exhaust. There is no warmup period or cooldown period required after a run as there is with the diesel. Turn it on and go, and when you get wherever you're going, shut it off, simple as that. That fairly well presents the + and - of the V-10 I think.
    Aside from power generally equal to the V-10, you have the great gas mileage available with the Cummins. Another big factor is the proven reliability and longevity of this fine engine.
    The vast majority of 3500 owners opt for the diesel for all their pulling requirements. It is a true workhorse, and can loves to run under constant load all day long without a whimper.
    I have a new 99 3500 Cummins, and I love it.
    It rides beautifully, gets 17 mpg back and forth to work, and 20 mpg on the highway. Your's will be a little different, admittedly, as they are upping the torgue and HP for 2000 for the Cummins, so with the premise that there is no free lunch, I suspect that the mileage figures may drop slightly, but they will still be twice as much probably as the V-10.
    I have about 5000 miles on mine, and there isn't a drop of oil anywhere on or under this engine. It's a beautiful machine.
    For rearends, my guess would be that you should opt for the 4:10, if that is available for 2000.
    Even though the output is higher for 2000 and the Cummins will no doubt pull your load down the highway with the 3:55, you should select your rear end for other conditions that will load down the truck with your camper, such as long steep grades, or mountain hills. It will lower your top speed somewhat, but it will cruise all day at 75 at 2400 RPM with the 4:10's.
    There is a very knowledgable person monitoring this and other topics by the name of "kcram". He has all the specs you need and some very good advise. I'm sure he will offer his own personal brand of guidance to help you in your decision.. This is my two cents worth.

  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    thanks rk :)


    A 3500-pound camper will be right at the load limit of a 3500 QC, so low-end power will be an issue in terms of getting moving. You don't mention your choice of transmission. If you have no qualms about driving a stick and can hold out until January, get the ETH-code Cummins and the 6 speed manual - it will not even flinch with that camper on its back, and even 4.10s, as rk said, will not destroy your fuel economy. If you're looking to order now, I would say the ETC-code Cummins with manual or the V10 with either trans will get that load moving. Your decision will be fuel economy savings vs. purchase price - spend the $4000 up front for 50-100% better fuel economy and higher resale value, or spend less now and pay much more in operating costs (fuel in particular). The Cummins with automatic will be the weak link of the bunch, since it has noticeably less torque than the V10 or the manual-trans Cummins.

    The other criteria is hills. If you travel them, get the Cummins with either transmission. The turbocharger will keep you in proper power and air pressure, while the V10 will begin to gasp.

    Granted, no Dodge dealer will let you strap on your camper to a truck in stock for a test drive, but as a recommended to rk, drive the various combinations and make a seat of the pants evaluation. Obviously all the trucks will be slower with the load, but the relative differences will be the same.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • stecksteck Posts: 1
    I just bought a 1999 Dodge 1500 Quad Cab with the 5.2 engine and short box. It seem to sit higher than a lot of pickups I have seen. Is there an easy way to lower the truck and make it look a little nicer and be easier to get in and out of. It's two wheel drive with an automatic and 6400 lbs GVWR. It has P245/75 R16 tires and wheels.
  • goldrushgoldrush Posts: 20
    Hi all,

    Still reading but not posting much. Just thought I'd update again. Have 5600mi on my 99 QC Cummins w/ 6 spd. Have had no problems. Towed a 4500 lb trailer/load yesterday in the mountains. Went up hills in 5th with no problem and mileage was 17.8. The truck rode like a car with the trailer weight behind it and the cummins seemed to love the extra work! I love this truck.
  • I tried starting my truck and putting it in neutral and that seamed to help the loud ping. kcram have you heard of any problems with the transmission of the 5.9. a couple of times my transmission will down shift 2 - 3 gears when I step on it at 60-65 mph. Almost like I was on ice and the wheels were spinning. Don't get me wrong I love my truck but it is the first I have owned. Is it just me, am I to use to a cars transmission??????? Do I have new truck owner paranoia????

  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    The 46RE automatic did have some problems about 3-4 years ago (early "deaths" on 95 and 96 Rams with the 5.9 V8 and the 46 trans were well above average), and some torque converter changes were made. Sounds like your TC is out of adjustment, or the bands may need to be tightened up. Don't buy the "normal" or "they all do that" line, because they don't. Ask for a full transmission service (pan gasket, screen cleaning, band adjustment, new fluid and filter) and ask them to look carefully for more than usual shavings in the pan. That would signify a problem beyond what a road test would show.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • sakosako Posts: 25
    i dropped my 2500 4x4 qc cummins off to get the 33/12.50x16.5 tires put on. i'll pick it up tomorrow. i'm posting this 'cuz in an earlier post i said i needed to lift the truck 2" for this tire & rim combo, but in reality you just need to install what they call a leveling kit to the front end due to the tire rub when turning(this adds about 2" of lift to the front), this may be as aluded to earlier by others, that my rims are the real culprit, because of width or offset or both. i'll try to scope this out when i get my truck back, 'cuz i don't know the rim width or offset.
  • ladyblueladyblue Posts: 326

    I have the same noise when I put my '99 Ram 1500 in reverse. Not all the time - just occassionaly - but then my truck is newer than yours. I will be interested to see what the outcome of your problem is.

    Community Leader/SUV Conference
  • brett039brett039 Posts: 56
    Well, I finally did it! Just bought my new truck. And I might also point out that I've been a loyal Ford truck owner for 10+ years and this is my first Dodge. I love it so far (only 1 1/2 days...) and get a real "kick" out of the diesel sound.

    I have some questions but let me give you the specs on the truck. 1999 2500, QC, 4x4, Shortbed, Cummins, Auto, 3.54 LS.

    I've been reading these postings for over a month now, so I'm aware of the pluses and minuses of the Cummins. Could someone give me some info on the proper "care" for my diesel? "Do's and Don't" to make it last longer, etc. I have always taken very good care of my vehicles and want to continue the habit. The type of info I'm looking for is... Warming-up before driving, frequent starting and turning off, etc. I don't want to treat it like a gas engine because I know they're two completely different "animals". Any advice / comments welcome.

    Thanks in advance...

  • sakosako Posts: 25
    picked up the eweminator 'n by golly it sure looks nice with those 33" tires & weld rims. kinda like a ram should, i thinks. ok the rims are 16.5 x 9.75 and the offset is 4 5/8". this combo requires the leveling kit i mentioned earlier to avoid problems. i'm not sure but you might be able to use 285/75r16 'n not have to buy the leveling kit, but i'd be doing my homework beforehand to make sure. judging by the tach 'n speedometer it looks as if this new combo did nothing to alter the speedometer reading. i'll update if i find out this not true. rammin' it
  • Here's my suggestions:

    > Do fill up at stations that get a lot of traffic. One's that don't get an accumulation of water in their fuel tanks that will find it's way into yours.

    > Do read your owners manual and be loyal about following recomendations.

    > Do allow your engine to warm up before you take it out. I allow the needle to move off the 140 mark before starting off to work. If you are towing a large load or otherwise intend to load up the Cummins immediately after departure, make sure it is at full operating temperature. In the summer, I start the truck about 5 - 7 minutes before I leave, in the wintertime I will buy the special Cummins Bra for the front which allows you to restrict the air intake to the grill to maintain proper operating temperature and allow for quicker warm-ups.

    > Assuming you change your oil at the 7500 interval, make sure you have the auto trans oil and filter changed. After the first time, repeat the auto trans procedure every 12,500 miles.

    > Due to the Turbo, you must allow time for cool-down, otherwise you risk damage to this unit.
    This is especially important after a hard run, either towing/hauling or running fast on the Interstate. My last mile coming home is at 40 mph on a level road, so I give it about two minutes to cool down. Pulling off the Interstate after running 75 - 80 mph, it will take 10 - 15 minutes to get the temperature down. ( Summer ) I use the instrument guage to guide me, but there are devices made to measure temp directly off the Turbo, such as the one by TST.

    > Do use a wintertime fuel additive at each fillup if you live in the cold climates.

    > I'm sure there is a bunch of other stuff, but read farther back in the topics, because kcram has answered this very question posed by myself and others before. It's like Ragu Spaghetti Sauce, it's in there...
    Also, check out the Cummins RamPage website, there is a wealth of answers to your question, and others you haven't thought of yet in their FAQ's.
    You can send them e-mail (takes about a week for a reply), or, they actually prefer you call them with your questions using their posted number.

    Here's the TST site:

    Here's the Cummins site:

    Remember: Big boys can't have their toys without debt :-)

  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516
    in particular, this may help lgemmine

    The 2500 and 3500 will offer larger tires for 2000. This makes the 4.10 axle MUCH more economical than the 1999-and-earlier trucks. mathematically, the 2000s with 4.10 axles are equivalent to 1999s with a 3.73 when equipped with factory tires. Beginning with 2000s, I am going to change my recommendation to the 4.10 for all Cummins and V10 buyers.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • kcram,
    I realize there will be an increase in both torque and HP for the Cummins for 2000, but what else besides a software upgrade are they changing, if anything?

  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    So far, that's it. It may very well be the Cummins uprate kit that they are offering for 24V/manual transmission combos right now. The uprate voids the warranty because it exceeds the 5 speed's torque capacity, but the 6 speed manual can handle it with no sweat.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • I was just wondering if anyone knows which is correct. I own a 1998 1500 sport quad cab with the 5.9 liter v8. my owers manual says I should run regular unleaded gas (87 octane), one technigition at the dealer says I should run 89-92 octane and another says the 87 is fine. does anyone know which I should run in my dodge?
  • brett039brett039 Posts: 56
    Thanks, rlkrueger, for the info on the proper care for the Cummins Diesel.

    Now I have a few more questions that popped up over the weekend. Any comments/advice from anyone would be appreciated.

    I have a 2500 w/Cummins, Auto, 3.73 LS. I will be towing a 5,000# trailer soon and was wondering if I should tow with the O/D off on the highway? When I got on the highway with it turned off (no trailer), the RPM's seemed way too high at 55+ MPH. I only felt the tranny shift 2 times (e.g. in 3rd gear). Does turning off the O/D simply eliminate the 4th gear or should it still shift into 4th?

    I used to run my old bronco with the O/D off to eliminate the excess stress on the tranny by constantly shifting in and out of high gear.
    I've read about the Dodge Auto Trans having problems in the past, so I want to take every pre-caution to keep this from happening to me.

    I take numerous trips through the mountains towing my boat, so I know I need to take this into consideration.

    Also, how long should I wait to tow my boat? I've had people tell me a break-in period isn't needed before towing and others tell me to put 1K miles on it first. Currently, I'm taking the safe approach and waiting to tow.

    Brett (New and Proud Ram Owner!)
  • jcmdiejcmdie Posts: 595
    I have essentially the same unit as you - a '98 quad cab 4X4 sport with 5.9. I have used regular 87 octane gas - just like the manual reccemends, since I got it 21,000 miles ago. No problems with it. Always go to a station that has a good turn around on thier gas. It will have less sediment, water, and be fresher. The only exception is never get gas right after the station got a shipment because the fresh fuel entering thier tank will stir everything on bottom.
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    The TSBs are only performed when a problem is determined, and that won't be observed until someone drives it regularly, so only saftey recalls are perfromed on lot vehicles, not TSBs.

    As for what they are:

    18-11-99 reprograms the Cummins ECM (the engine computer suppled by Cummins) to make sure you're getting the proper fuel and airflow settings for correct torque output.

    18-02-99 reprograms the Mopar computer for the automatic transmission settings. This cures a problem where the torque converter will frequently lock and unlock in 3rd or 4th gear when it should stay locked. One would feel surging and erratic rpms under this condition.

    18-08-99 adjusts the cruise control system to prevent a "surging" feel while using cruise control.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    oops, forgot to answer your earlier post.

    First, you have either 3.64 or 4.10 axles (I'll guess 3.54 if you did not specifically ask for or see an option listing for the 4.10).

    Definitely leave OD off when towing. Your Cummins has more than enough power, torque, and efficiency to not need the extra speed of OD, and all the tranny will do is constantly shift back and forth.

    You "felt" two shifts, but the second one was not a shift at all - it was the torque converter locking. This does cause a reduction in rpm because now you essentially have a direct mechanical connection like a manual transmission.

    As for break-in, the official word from both Cummins and DaimlerChrysler is no break-in is necessary, but almost everyone I know with a Cummins waits til about 1000 miles, changes the oil, then hooks up the hitch :)

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • cdeancdean Posts: 1,110

    the break in probably isn't as critical to the engine as it is to the transmission and rear end.

    Definitely tow in 3rd, not in OD. The problem with the transmission is not that it will shift too much; it might, but the Cummins is strong. Shifting doesn't cause stress, it causes excess heat, that makes your oil less protective. But the main reason you should tow in 3rd, is that your transmission gets more oil flow, better lubrication, and better protection in 3rd because of the higher RPMs. It would tow fine in OD, but all the torque generated at low RPMs by the Cummins would cause stress levels that are too high for the amount of oil being circulated at those lower RPMs. hope i didn't confuse you. Just tow in 3rd, and enjoy!
  • madmackmadmack Posts: 39
    Is it a good idea to get the 4 wheel anti-lock brakes? I ordered a 4x4 2500 QC with the diesel. Advantages ....Disadvantages?
  • kcram,
    Just had the 18-11-99 and 18-02-99 installed today. The Mech said it added about 15Hp and increased the torgue. It immediately improved throttle response I noticed.
    Also, he said Cummins is coming out with a 7.3L, that must be the one installed in the "SnowMaster" or whatever that thing is called.
    Question: Is there a web site where I can obtain current TSB's for my vehicle?

  • Without sounding dumb can someone explain to me what a tsb is and is it only for the Cummins???
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    4WABS is only good if you live in an area with lots of traffic and you have no intention of ever leaving paved roads. It is actually detrimental off-road.

    rk and skippy,

    TSB - Technical Service Bulletin. A TSB is issued when vehicles exhibit a common problem amongst any particular model, but it is not deemed to be a safety hazard, nor will every vehicle so equipped encounter the problem. They are issued by the manufacturer, and are not limited to any one specific make, model, or engine.

    To see all the Dodge Ram TSBs from 1994 to now - my source, by the way :) - click here to my friend Dave Fritz's excellent Dodge Ram site. Once there, choose Frames or Non-Frames, then click on the "Technical" link.

    Nothing in the Cummins press releases about a new industrial engine, but it's possible. The only reason I would doubt the size is because of the displacement - it would split the B and C series engines (the Ram uses the B5.9, there are aso B3.9 and B3.3 four cylinder engines) - the C is 8.3 liters. A new agricultural version of the C8.3 was announced this spring - that may be the engine the service guy had been thinking of.

    Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
  • brett039brett039 Posts: 56
    Thanks kcram & cdean for the responses.

    Yes, kcram, you were right. I have the 3.54LS rear end. Ford uses the 3.73. Too many years owning a Ford Truck! It won't happen again!!!

    After reading your response concerning towing in O/D... Went for a quick drive (empty) with O/D off. At 55mph the engine is showing 2200 rpm. The Cummins red lines at 3200. Doesn't that seem high for only 55mph? That engine will be 'humming' right along if I try to run at 70mph. It feels like it needs to shift again but won't. I don't feel the torque converter unlocking and locking, it just seems like there should be one more gear and it's not shifting.

    With the O/D off, roughly when should the transmition be shifting into each of the gears.
This discussion has been closed.