Popular New Cars
Popular Used Sedans
Popular Used SUVs
Popular Used Pickup Trucks
Popular Used Hatchbacks
Popular Used Minivans
Popular Used Coupes
Popular Used Wagons
Do the first one at 3000 - that will clear out any dirt and buildup from break in. Then extend your intervals 1000 miles per change until you get to a point where you're comfortable with the condition of the oil. Remember, frequent stop-and-go does put you in the heavy duty schedule.
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
The system is cycling on and off just as it did before the first recharge.
I heard through the grapevine that there may be a problem with the system addressed by a recall or a TSB. Anyone have any experience with this.
Sidebar: My truck exhibits the same harmonic bounce at 40 - 45 mph on smooth roads. I originally thought that it was due to a tire problem. I do have the steel wheels.
I still dig the truck even though I have had to replace the pittman arm, EGR and both doors.
First of all lets get the follow straight because it affects every part of this discussion: When you go around a corner all four wheels turn a different speed. If you had all wheels driver via gears (no differential) then ether the tires have to slip, or the gears brake. Therefore differentials of some sort are needed to allow the wheels to slip. A normal differential when one wheel is on very slippery pavement (ice on one side) will give power only the the wheel on the slippery side. The other wheel may have plenty of traction, but it will get no power.
4wd is part time, generally you are rear wheel drive, but can shift to 4 wheel drive. When in 4 wheel drive mode there is no differential in the middle. When you go around corners the wheels must have so little traction that they will slip. The times to use 4wd is are the times when all the wheels will slip so this isn't a problem. The probelm with 4wd is you need to decide when to be in it or not.
Awd is full time, you don't need to think because it is always on. This isn't as good as you might think. Because the wheels turn at different rates (even left front and right front) awd has to have a differential in the middle so that the gears don't brake on dry pavement. This would be worse than 2wd because if any wheel is on ice it will get all power and the rest will get none. Therefore the differential in the middle is designed to always give power to the rear wheels, and if (and only if) they slip to the front wheels get power. Ideally the front wheels are on dry road and can use this power. (the technial details of this center differential are not worth discussion, but they won't work normal differentials)
Now we get to differentials. There is posi-traction, lockers, limited slip and open. Most cars are open, it is a simple design and works so long as things aren't too slippery. It is the one that gives power to wheel with the least traction.
Posi-traction and lockers are essentially the same thing, just controlled slightly differently. They are a standard open differential with some mechanism to jam the gears. When things get slippery you engage the mechanism, jam the gears, and both wheels are driven exactly the same speed. The wheel with traction will then get you out.
Limited slip is more complex, there are clutches in the differential that engage when one wheel is turning significantly faster than the other. When going around a corner the wheels turn close to the same speed and it doesn't engage, when one sheel has no traction it starts to take all the power, but it then spins faster and the clutches engage and force the other wheel to spin almost as fast. Unfortunaly it doesn't work quite as well as I've laid out, sometimes it will engage in a corner (not good, but the clutches will slip so broken gears are uncommon). When the traction to either wheel is bad it may not engage enough. The clutches eventially wear out, and than you have an open differential. When braking they can do strange things if one wheel would normallly lock up and the other spin. However it is a common option, so the negatives are not horrid. If you get one make sure you know how it changes on road driving.
None of these are of any use if there is no traction what so ever. All of them will allow you to get places where you cannot get back out of. They do not affect your braking or stoping distances at all. Worse they all make ice almost disappear so you feel confidant driving fast, until you need to stop fast. I see a lot more than expected 4wd/awd cars in the ditch when it snows because the driver forgot that the brakes are no better and the road is bad even if they can accelerate.
My advice is 4wd, but I'm not sure which differential. awd seems as good, but if you drive in 2wd you are less likely to drive too aggressivly. Even if you do, when in 2wd you often aren't going as fast, so you don't get as far in, and 4wd has a better chance of getting you out without help. (remember, this is a chance, you can get stuck in 2wd such that 4wd won't get you out)
I'm not sure what differential to recomend. If your into serious off-roading lockers are the only way to go. (but if that were the case you probably wouldn't have asked this question.) For very minor off roading a normal differential is good enough. Some have reported that with limited slip they can get through in 2wd what 4wds and open differentials can't, but they are good off road drivers. Limited slip is more avaiable, and good enough for anything less than a serious only off road vechical.
My 94 Ram had the same maladies with the A/C.
They replaced two condensers and one evaporator.
When I finally "got their attention" on this problem, they filled the freon system with a special dye, which is how they found the evaporator. You should make sure they use the same techique to find out where your freon is going. It is repairable. Because you have a 95, might I suggest you bypass the dealer (your warranty is probably up ) and take it to an A/C Specialty shop, if you have any in your area.
You won't pay for inexperience in properly diagnosing this problem, and there is a good chance you won't need to come back.
I have explored this problem to great lengths. What I have been able to find is that this is a normal condition when the vehicle drops into OD. This is the torque converter trying to lock. Chrysler has admitted that this is a condition of the vehicle but there is no fix yet.
The condition is apparent when the truck drops in OD around 42 MPH and lasts until 58 MPH. It seems like the truck is in the wrong gear.
As I said Chrysler is looking at it but has no fix and is not sure they will have one. At least they tried to quit me down by extending my warranty to 70K at no charge. So we will see. If anyone wants more detail let me know.
The problem I previously described on my 99 Quad 4x4 is not the same as what you are describing. I purposely turned O/D off and my truck still bounced. With O/D on made no difference. My 97 did exhibit the same behavior you are discussing though. Felt as if the truck was having to work too hard at too low an RPM and therefore shuddered periodically. I also got the same story. Dodge is aware of the problem and is working on a repair. I'll believe it when I see it! How did you get them to extend your warranty? Had you complained numerous times about the shudder, enough to make them think "lemon law"? Was the offer of the additional warranty your idea or the dealer's?
Also, does anybody have any information on the number to call to obtain the tolerances for the axial and radial runout limitations for Dodge wheels? This item was discussed in a previous post, and the information would be very useful. Thanks again for any information. David.
The information is greatly appreciated!!!!!!!!
While they may cosider this aa acceptable feature I wanted to make sure they don't get the idea I accept it.
I have been forceful in a business sense, never having to threaten anything Yet
I recently purchased a 1999 RAM Quad Cab 2WD and I love it. But my front brakes seem to be wearing unevenly. I sometimes get a loud noise that sounds like sheet metal ripping apart. It dosen't happen all the time, just once in a while. But my breaks do squeak constantly. I was told that this is normal. I was even shown a a memo from Dodge stating that squeaking is normal.
But here's something that I recently noticed. I looked at the undercariage of my truck and I notice a lot of rust on the cast iron parts. Is this normal?
Manufactures do not want the liability of random idiots with lockers/limited slip on the front end killing themselves when the system engages. Besides only the most serious off roaders will find the difference between 3 wheels spinning (locked rear plus 4wd to one front wheel) vs 4 (both differentals locked) significant.
For engaging lockers and posi-tractions: I know many lockers are manually engaged. I'm not sure how posi-traction was engaged, but I don't recall my boddy doing anything to his posi postal jeep. I was kinda young then though. For sure some systems are manual, might be some automatic that I don't know of.
Please reply to my email directly or post to this session.
I didn't mean to imply that I was anything but business-like. I am all business, but I document, check and recheck information and specs. This dealer knew that I had done my homework, and I could verify my results as well as present these results as a package to the next higher power if I wasn't satisfied as a customer. No threats were ever made.
Unfortunately, there are some dealers who rely on the customer only going so far, or giving up and living with less-than-acceptable work. I am not one of those...
Try this site for TSB's and other info. It is the one used by kcram as a source for this info.
Here's a more direct route:
Thanks again for your help.
The dealer also replaced the front steering stabilizer in an attempt to correct a knock felt periodically in the steering wheel. Seemed to help some, but certainly did not fix the problem! I think this is going to be a tough one to fix because you can't hear anything, you can just periodically feel some feedback through the steering column/wheel. Does anyone out there have any experience with this problem. I would like to have the dealer take care of it once-and-for-all, rather than having to take it back several times for hit-and-miss type repairs. Any info would be greatly appreciated. Thanks. David.
They are frequently out of round, out of balance, and/or wear prematurely from incompatibility with the Ram's front suspension.
BFGoodrich, Michelin, Bridgestone, and Cooper all work MUCH better on the Ram. I swapped the OEM Goodyear Wrangler AT to Cooper Discoverer LT, and the difference was almost embarrassing. Went from the Coopers to Bridgestone M773 commercial all-terrains, and I found the perfect tire for my 3500 4x4. I have had a full set of 6 of these slabs of rubber on my truck, and you cannot find any treadwear - not even sipe sealing from summer heat.
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
I have already talked to what many people say is the best place to buy tires locally, and I didn't want to pay the difference ($200.00) to switch to a Firestone Wilderness AT. Once I get this situation straightened out with Goodyear, I may reconsider. I will also look to other suppliers. I have consistenly heard this about Goodyear tires. You have to wonder if they (both Goodyear and Dodge) hear it?
Make sure you are getting all rebates also. The 99 models have a $1000.00 customer rebate, and possibly a dealer incentive also (not currently listed on Edmunds).
One comment only. The forum you are in is a portion of the Edmunds website. You can get a
** very ** accurate total of just what your dealer paid for that truck you are looking at from the Edmunds site. Then you can compare what you know to be Invoice Cost, with his "claim" of his invoice cost. Be prepared...
I agree with kcram, the GoodYears aren't a great tire, and imbalance in common, I know from experience. If you can't afford to follow kcram's suggestion right now, then go back to your GoodYear tire rep, and tell him the tires themselves are out of balance and you want replacements. On the 1500, you shouldn't have to put more than 2 oz's of weight on any wheel to get it right. Make sure you eliminate the wheel as part of the problem, however, so you know what portion of the imbalance is due strictly ot the tire. You can do that by mounting the tires on a test wheel, preferably a new steel rim. Check for eccentricity of the tire, and side to side wobble as well as balance. If it isn't right, don't accept it.
My GoodYear dealer took my factory tires and exchanged them for new GSA's even-over because I had less than 100 miles on them. But the new GSA's were also found to contain defects, and we went through 8 different tires before we found 4 that were not only round, but in balance. So I can attest to the GoodYear problem.
There's another trick I use to get the balancing even closer. While on the Coates machine, mark the wheel and tire so the marks align. Now read the Coates estimate of weights required. Deflate the tire and rotate 90 deg. clockwise. (using the marks as reference) Reinflate and run the test again. By repeating this test, I have been able to find an exact relationship of wheel-to-tire that will allow the slightly out-of-balance condition of both the wheel and tire to counteract themselves, thereby requiring a maximum of 1-1/2 Oz's of wieghts on my GSA 245-75's. It takes some time, but when you get it right, you'd think you were running on ball-bearings.
Also just purchased a 1999 Dodge Ram quad cab 1500, 5.9 liter with all the bells and whistles. I just hit 300 miles on the truck and have felt the same vibration type feeling in the steering wheel, I have no idea what it is but seems to happen most when I apply the brake. I'm going to take it in and have the dealership check it out sometime in the near future. The only other complaint I have is the rear back seat rattles a little bit on the "backrest part".
I've got a 1500 4x4 with the 5.2L. So far, I've gone more than 14K with no problems at all. Fuel economy sucks compared to the Chevy V8's, but that's my only complaint.
Thanks for the TSB links. I really appreciate it.
I have the 99 Quad 4wd with the 5.2. I would go for the 5.9 if I had another chance. So if you can swing it get the 5.9 I have heard it gets slightly better MPG and its more power. But hey its a truck its going to suck gas.
I am not sure where you live and if you even have a need for the 4wd. BUT on resale the 4wd is in your corner.
I would outline your needs. Do you plow, tow, offroad, haul etc. Determine your truck needs and then make sure its outfitted to meet them. There are advantages to each little aspect, especially the motor, transmission and gear ratio aspect.
On another note. I agree that the Dodge seems to have more room inside as compared to the Chev. I have always owned a Chevy truck and with the purchase of my Dodge switched over. One good reason I had was that the 99 GMC/Chevy is a re-engineering. I would be hesitant to be the guniea pig until they hammer out the quirks. Sure it comes with a warranty but who wants to have their new truck in the shop.
Good luck either way. And do your research.
I can't tell you what's wrong with your truck, but be aware the steering shaft universal goes bad with some regularity. I went through 4 on my 1500. It results in excessive play, and when going over uneven surfaces, causes a "thunk" that you can feel through the steering wheel. Feels like something is about to let go underneath.
What you have heard and read is true. The Ram steering system requires a lot of attention (along with the front suspension on 4x4s). This is one of the few complaints of the truck since its redesign - strength and durability were somewhat compromised for "carlike ride and handling".
In addition to the steering shaft, keep a VERY close eye on your front track bar. You WILL be replacing it, and a few Ram owners have noted that the NAPA track bar has held up better than the factory replacement.
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
I checked the steering shaft personally and did notice the universal approximately mid-way between the firewall and the steering box (enclosed in a rubber sleeve) was loose enough that it could possibly be causing my problem. I do not know if this is a normal condition, but when I take my truck "BACK" in for this problem "AGAIN" I will make them aware of it. I just want the ding-dang thing fixed!!!!! Thanks again.
When you get tired of having your friendly Dodge dealer put new steering shafts on your truck, check out this site. It looks like it mught be a solution.
Hi I've been "lurking" here for a while learning all about the Ram. Getting ready to buy a 2000 Ram 1500 4x4 QC 5.9L auto.
Your note about the Ram steering and front suspension "needing a lot of attention" and "You WILL be replacing the front track bar" gives me concern. Can you quantify this? Does it add significantly to the annual maintenance? How soon after it's new? I don't plan to do any off-roading, just commuting 30 miles highway to work and tow a light travel trailer occasionally.
Is this front suspension problem enough to make me seriously consider a Ford? (Blasphemy here in the halls of the Ram!!!!!)
Thanks everyone for good information.
I will be taking delivery of my third Ram soon
(my 2000 V10 left the factory yesterday). I've been through a 96 and a 98 with no front end problems. There is hope!
Please note that there are a few bits of incorrect info (minor details that have been changed for 2000). They're correct in some places, and old 1999 info in others, so be careful.
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
As 4myjob said, it depends on how you use it. I beat the crap out of my truck. I also have a very nose-heavy Cummins diesel. My track bar went at 18,000, and next major checkup, I'm having it inspected again (I'm at 50K miles right now). If you're driving it lightly, you may not have any problmes at all. But something as seemingly oblivious as crossing the same rough railroad crossing at speed on your way to and from woerk can wear the front end down quicker than you might expect.
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
Question: were the track bar at 18,000 and shocks at 8,000 miles covered by the standard warranty? Although, as someone pointed out, you would probably want to replace them with something of better quality anyway, I would be inclined to do a warranty replacement as long as the warranty lasts...(?)
Community Leader/Smart Shopper Conference
I posted a message a few weeks ago asking about a known problem with 1995 Ram air conditioning systems. As suspected and verified by a later posting, the evaporator was leaking.
Dealership replaced the evaporator, suction line and some other doo-dad and the system is now quiet and very frosty cold.
The servive manager said that he has seen a few evaporator failures but not as many as in the Intrepid.
I'm just starting the search for a new truck and have found all of the postings very informative. I like what I see in the Ram 2500 with the Cummins.
My question is this: How much difference is there in maneuverability and handling between the short box and long box. Eventually I would like to get a camper but realize my camper usage would likely be limited to about a dozen times a year. Can you get campers to fit the 6' box? My wife would be driving the truck a lot and we are a little worried about the size of the truck "around town".
Thanks for all the great information to date!
If I was getting a regular cab I would have gotten the 8 ft bed.
Depends on the camper, and your other uses for the truck.
Standard slide-ins require an 8' bed as you know. You can probably get something shorter, but then you can't get the "normal" convieniences that come with the 8' size.
As Richram stated, the QC + 8' bed seems like it takes forever to get around a corner. It will not fit within the standard Mall or Shopping plaza parking lines, so you will either take up two spots or find yourself parking way out on the end once you realize what a good "target" it makes sticking out.
Your total weight-carrying capacity is lower on the longbed QC due to the additional frame length.
As for your other needs, if you are an avid home-construction person or woodworker and find yourself hauling 8' standard lumber and sheet rock often throughout the year, maybe the 6.5' length would come up a little short.
If you like to travel great distances over the highway 2 -3 weeks a year for vacations, you will find the longbed version a noticably smoother ride due to the extended distance between the axles, limiting the "see-saw" activity with a shorter vehicle.
Short of any specific needs for an 8' box though, I would suggest a pull-behind camper behind your 2500/QC/Shortbed. With the Cummins, you have terrific towing capacity (select the rear-end based on your towing needs), you can park normally when going to the mall, and don't have to worry about miss-judging corners. ( You've seen the one-wheel-over-the-curb routine? ) That is my suggestion.