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Dodge Ram: Problems & Solutions



  • lariat1lariat1 Posts: 461
    I had a 98 and the transmission used to slip a little when I went over about 20,000 miles between transmission services. If you tow with your truck it is a good to get the transmission serviced every 15k - 20k miles. If you have it done at a dodge dealer they will adjust the bands in the transmission and the slipping/vibration should go away.
  • 02ramman02ramman Posts: 62
    Hello all,

    I have been having a rough idle, stalling,and revving up issue on my 02 Ram 1500 QC 4.7L/auto.
    The rough idle has happened since new (purchased 15 Sep 01). Died two months later and has died at least three times since then. It has also revved up to about 900-1,000 RPM twice, causing truck to lurch forward. (yes my foot was on he brake). I've noticed it only does this when:

    The A/C is NOT on

    Pulling up to a stop light or stop sign after running it on the highway

    I now have 11,900 miles and have taken it to the dealership and kept them posted on all problems. the dealership service dept has been outstanding, they have changed the tranny filters/fluid because chrysler thought it was a premature lockup of the torque converter and flashed the PCM with an update in Feb. This took care of the dying.... for awhile. Now it is back and getting more consistent. Last week they hooked up a "copilot" to my vehicle. (It is a recorder for the PCM) I was able to get it to idle rough ( pull down to 200-300) and turn it back to them.

    I have been researching message boards on Edmunds,, and and have seen this complaint come up frequently.

    Today my service dept told me chyrsler came out with a memo stating they know about this problem and are working it. They believe it is a computer/evap problem and there is no time frame for a fix.

    I believe this problem is a safety issue and contacted Chyrsler cust. serv. I told them the same and asked for a "timeline" for a fix. I Also contacted the NHTSA about this.

    If ANYONE is having this problem, PLEASE contact your service dept and get this written up. I don't know if it is happening on all, but there are a lot of posts. My service dept has only had a couple of these complaints but it could be that most everyone is using their A/C constantly or that it has only happened once or twice.

    Overall I'm extremely happy with my new QC and it's safety features,but since I have children, I am concerned about this idle problem. Please post if anyone is experiencing this.
  • peppe1peppe1 Posts: 54
    My 02 QC 4.7L auto also has the rough idle and pull down at stops after running it at speed but it has only stalled once backing up my driveway.
    However when coming to a stop the last down shift with my foot on the brake seems to cause the engine to rev too 900/1000 rpm's but this does not happen after I stop.
    You are right about this only happening when the AC is off. When it is on all things seem to work ok.
    Keep us posted on the fix or outcome!!
  • 02ramman02ramman Posts: 62
    Thanks for responding. Hopefully yours will never die again. It didn't concern me much on mine, but after several dying episodes I'm losing faith! Mine Revs up only after it has been at a stop. It starts to pull down then catches itself and over-compensates.

    I will post the outcome/fix when I get it.
  • lariat1lariat1 Posts: 461
    The temporary revving of the engine when you come to a stop is normal, it is caused by the transmission releasing the output and causing the engine to unload as a result the RPM jumps a bit then settles down, when the A/C is on the engine maintains a load and does not rev as much. I hope this helps a bit.
  • 02ramman02ramman Posts: 62
    You are correct when coming TO a stop.

    The problem I'm having is AFTER I stop, the RPM's drop to 500-600, pulls down to 200-300 seconds later, and then Revs up to about 900-1000.

    Chrysler believes the problem is coming from the EVAP canister purge valve staying open too long (it should only be open above 40 MPH) and not closing at idle. This is like having a vacuum leak and for some reason (Chyrsler is trying to figure out) why the PCM/purge valve/idle air control valve is not compensating quick enough.

    Turning the A/C on sets the idle at 600 RPM no matter what. That is why it doesn't die or rev up when it is on.

  • peppe1peppe1 Posts: 54
    Thanks for the response the revs on mine does seem to be the engine unloading and I am not at all worried about it. however if it starts responding like 02ramman's then I will worry a little more. 02ramman don't lose the faith Dodge Truck are still the best out there at this time I did all the research two years ago before I purchased my first (01 QCSport Ram)then traded up for the 02 QC. The only thing that I struggled with both times was the choice of 2wd or 4wd and both times chose 2wd and then six months later got 4wd envy!! LOL But could not justify the cost increase(3-4G's) to frequency of use for a 4wd in my area.
    Keep use updated on the fixes!!
  • 02ramman02ramman Posts: 62
    Yeah you're right. I had a 96 ram 1500 clubcab. Had a lot of recalls, but only replaced a fuel injector(under warranty)and the fuel sending unit. It had 56,000 miles on it and didn't have a rattle one!
    I would not own a Ford (crash tests not good), Chevy (owned one before and all it did was squeak and rattle), and the Tundra is too small. I'm sold on the Ram. Maybe I should just get the 5.9 or wait for the new HEMI!
    I hear ya on the 4x4. The 4x2 does well on bad roads, just need a little weight in the rear and take it easy.

    Will keep everyone updated

  • bigfurbigfur Posts: 649
    Fire it up morning or evening, idles at 500 for a few seconds, then srops to 250-300. will die when backing up all the time. getting REALLY sick of it...anyone with a clue what is wrong???
  • KCRamKCRam Mt. Arlington NJPosts: 3,516

    Several causes to this

    - throttle cable - this was recalled for 94-96 trucks, but the older cable was used on some 97s as well. If you've never changed it, get ti checked, it may be ready to snap.

    - fuel system - inspect fuel lines (might be crimped), fuel filter (clog), fuel pump, injectors.



    Smart Shopper and FWI Message Boards

  • Has anyone heard that dodge is going or considering replacing this engine with a new hemi?
  • obyoneobyone Posts: 8,054
    When did Dodge come out with this motor?
  • The ABS and Brake lights came on in the dash of my 1999 Dodge Diesel pickup while driveing. I drove it about 200 miles afterward to get home with no apparent problems.
    Any suggestions on the cause.
  • New meaning for the word TOUGH. Dodge advertises their trucks as being RAM TOUGH, a friend bought one and has had the transmission replaced twice in 30K -- his TOUGH luck!
  • All,

    Have read a few posts about the mirrors snapping off and had the dealer tell me of a few also. And guess what? My passenger side mirror broke today! Just sitting in the vehicle, windows down, engine off and POP! The mirror is still on the vehicle, but it no longer has detents to hold it out straight. It just flops around! Can pull it up about 2 inches and the only thing holding it on is the wires to the defroster/mirror adjustment motor. Should have a new one in about a week. (national backorderd, 1,620 of them is what a dealer told me).

    I have NEVER folded my mirrors since I got it and have not hit anything either.
  • My ABS and brake lights came on in the dash on my 1999 Diesel Dodge while driving. I drove about 200 miles afterward to get home, with no apparent problems showing up. Any suggestions on the cause?
  • Just got off the phone with the dealer today. Chrysler Engineering is writing the software patch to fix the pull-downs/rev ups/stalls. They have no time frame but I was assured that as soon as they get done they need to test it on their vehicles (ones they have at HQ that are doing the same thing) to see if it works and to see if it causes any more problems.

    Don't help any of us now, but hopefully this won't take too long! By the way to keep it from stalling in the interim they stand by using the A/C or defrost.
  • wlm26wlm26 Posts: 33
    About a week ago I was driving on the highway and a lady literally pulled up beside me to say she really loved my new 02 Ram QC 4x4, but that it was leaning to the right. I pulled off to look and she pulled off as well, and sure enough, the entire right side was leaning to the right. I took it in to the dealer and here's what they listed on the work order: "Cause: 02250240 Suspension, Front Height-Adjust (B) 1064 WC40. Anyone know what this means???? Also, at the bottom they listed this: 15054 Ride Height out of specification left 2.0", right 1.5" (2 full inches?!?!?!?!?!), adjusted both to 2.3", adjust front suspension ride height. Now for the life of me, I'll bet my next paycheck that the truck is now lower up front than when I got it!!! Also, they stated that they have absolutely no clue as to why this might have happened. PLEASE, IF ANYONE HAS ANY INSIGHT TO THIS PROBLEM, LET ME KNOW!!! I can be emailed at, or if you've had this same problem, what actually fixed it, because I'm almost positive all they did was adjust the torsion bars on my truck, but they adjusted them the wrong direction!! And I'm thinking this is going to happen again!!! Does anyone know what the ride height should actually be on an 02 Ram QC 4x4 Sport with the 20" wheels????? Thanks in advance!!! Oh, and sorry about creating the new topic post. Obviously I thought there would be a thread specifically for 02 Rams, but this is cool.
  • The procedure for height measurement(from the service manual for a 4x4) is as follows:
    1. Check to see if the tires are inflated to specs. Bounce the front end.
    2. Measure the distance from the ground to the center line of the lower control arm bolt front tip.
    3. Measure the distance from the ground to the center line of the front spindle.
    4. Subtract the first from the second and the difference should be 58mm(2.3in)
    5. If the difference is greater than 61mm(2.4in) then tighten the torsion bar bolt until the spec is reached.
    6. If the difference is less than 55mm(2.1in) then loosen the torsion bar bolt.
    7. Always get to the right height by raising the bar if it is to high then lower it more than enough so you can raise it to the proper height. (Clockwise to raise)

    So there is not really a measurement that is the ride height but it is the difference between two heights.
    Hoe this helps!!
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    >>Has anyone heard that dodge is going or considering replacing this engine with a new hemi? <<

    Yes, Chrysler has announced that the new hemi engine will replace the 360 motor in 2003, although the hemi introduction date will be just after the 2003 intro date.

  • emaleemale Posts: 1,380

    to the best of my knowledge dodge has said that the hemi will replace the 360 in the heavy duty trucks, but, has never said the hemi will replace the 360 in the 1500. however, with annual hemi production expected to exceed 440,000...and only a small portion of those expected to go into the heavies...there will be plenty for the 1500s...what is odd is that dodge has never publicly announced that the hemi will be available in the 1/2 ton when of course it will...very odd!!
  • wlm26wlm26 Posts: 33
    Yes, that helps CONSIDERABLY!!!! I placed the order for my manuals today, but it's great to know there are guys out there who are willing to help a fellow out. I'm jumping right on in to see if the dealer set it right because it really is lower than when I bought it.

    Again, thanks a million!!
  • dustykdustyk Posts: 2,926
    I have read that Chrysler is quoted as saying that they will be phasing out the LA series completely. The 318LA is gone in all ground vehicle platforms, although it is still being used in auxilary power and marine applications. But this, too, is temporary. Since this market is relatively small in comparison, I suspect that Chrysler has built what it needs to supply marine and stationary power manufacturers what it needs for a short duration. And that is probably because Chrysler wants all of it's 4.7 production to go into trucks and one possible car platform.

    I know for a fact that Dodge has announced to fleet buyers that the hemi will be available in the 2003 RAM 1500 series, although it will be introduced "sometime" after the model introduction. One automotive news source says that it will be March of '03 when this occurs.

    From a production perspective, it just doesn't make sense for Chrysler to continue the 360 motor while building the hemi. Industry reports indicate that they will be expanding the hemi series into as many as 5 variations of both horsepower and cubic inch displacements. The new hemi design is considerably more efficient and can develop more torque.

  • There seems to be a considerable amount of confusion with the available/future engines in the Dodge Ram. Here's a brief overview. The last generation of Rams were available with the last generation of Chrysler Magnum engines, namely the 3.9L V6 (175HP), 5.2L V8 (230HP)(318Ci), 5.9L V8 (245HP) (360Ci), 8.0L V10 (488Ci). ALL of these motors are completely OUTDATED, overpolluting, and underpowered relative to the competition. They are slowly being phased out and replaced by the new generation of Magnum and Magnum-HEMI motors. In their places are the 3.7L V6 (210HP), 4.7L V8 (235HP), 4.7L HO V8 (265HP), 5.7L V8 (345HP). As of right now, the 3.9L V6 and 5.2L V8 are history, the 5.9L is still available in the Ram 1500 through the first quarter of 2003. The 5.7L HEMI will debut in the Ram 1500 OffRoad edition in January and will be phased into the rest of the lineup as the 5.9L is phased out. The 4.7L HO will not be available in the Rams for at least another year. The 5.7L will also be the base motor in the 2500/3500HD models along with the 5.9L Cummins/Cummins HO Diesels and the carryover 8.0L V10. As for the V10 there are three possible scenarios, 1) they keep it as is and slowly phase it out; 2) they upgrade to the new 8.3L version as found in the 2003 Viper; 3) they drop it and replace it with the rumoured (and much more powerful) 6.1L HEMI (based on the 5.7L design).

    This new generation of motors will have a number of versions as they will show up in the next generation of LH models codenamed LX (ie: 300M, Intrepid, Concorde - renamed the New Yorker). These cars will be available with the 3.5L V6, 4.7L V8 and in some instances the 5.7L HEMI (ie: the new 300M). These cars will be rear drive and will have some Mercedes parts incl. transmissions, stability aids, electronics...

    As an aside: the old generation of Magnum engines (3.9L/5.2L/5.9L) will still be offered on the Dodge Ram Vans and Wagons until the vehicles are eliminated sometime next year; the old 3.9L V6 and 5.9L V8 will still be offered on the Dakota until it's redesign in a year or so.
  • wwhite2wwhite2 Posts: 535
    a TSB 21-11-97 deals with that reverse buzz problem transmission problem . The tsb lists necessary dodge parts and how to do the job
  • As someone who had this TSB done last May, I expected it to fix the problem. My 2001 1500 was back at the local dealer for the same symptoms this week. Dealer heard the noise, but doesn't know what else to do besides the TSB. Calling Chrysler directly generated more of "I don't know".

    Dealer's advice-watch the fluid for anything unusual and do the 30k mile service.

    Dave Huber
  • akjbmwakjbmw Posts: 231
    Would you be the same Dave Huber who was stationed in Hawaii circa '77 to '81? If so...
    See profile for email address...
  • 'Fraid not....I would have been seven years old.

    Although a trip to Hawaii sounds nice...:-)

    Dave Huber-Pendleton, Oregon
  • akjbmwakjbmw Posts: 231
    Over twenty years in the Navy, I met a lot of good folks. Lost track of most of them.
    Thanks for the response.

    Umm, oh yeah.. Got to watch those new Trucks for longevity. Must have a preference for those WaterCooler Meeting conversations... ;-)
This discussion has been closed.