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Old 03-16-2012, 06:43 AM
led86 led86 is offline
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Default Looking at buying a 2002 Ram 1500

Hey all, new to the forums but not to Dodge. I have owned a few dodges before ranging from a 2007 Dodge Caliber to a 93 Dodge Ram D250 diesel 5 speed. I am not too up on the early years of the 3rd gen though and was hoping to get a little help.

I am looking at buying a 2002 Dodge Ram 1500 quad cab with the 4.7L and 5 speed manual trans. Information on common problems seems erratic at best in a google search, so I thought I would post here. Are there any specific problems to look out for on this year of Ram?

I have looked at the truck and driven it already and was very impressed with how quiet and how nicely it drove for the mileage it had. Its got 235000 KM on it. I know for sure the parking brake needs work, its no engaging, and there are some slight issues with the interior. Radio seems to work but the display has crapped out possibly. Also, the ABS light flashes while the key is on and while driving. Beyond that, there doesn't seem to be any issues with the truck.

The current owner has replaced the engine computer, the fuse box (apparently a common problem is erratic electrics due to problems with the fuse box, or so I am told), engine rad, and rear springs. The engine runs great with no odd sounds or shuddering and the clutch and trans feel great as well, though I did notice a slight whining from the trans in 1st and 2nd gear, but so slight it almost couldn't be heard if you weren't listening for it. I chocked it up to regular manual trans noise that I have heard in many vehicles.

Any advice on what to look out for would be great. I appreciate any help. Thanks
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Old 03-20-2012, 07:57 PM
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Well I can see this place is a lot of help.
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Old 03-20-2012, 09:02 PM
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The brakes were one of the worst (and recalled) things on this generation. Factory rotors tended to warp fairly quickly. 4.7's also seem to suffer from engine sludge build up from condensation, but using a good synthetic oil seems to help keep this in check.
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Old 03-20-2012, 09:30 PM
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I would check all of the ABS connections for the brake light that is flashing, unless you know it's the E-Brake. The only other thing I would keep an eye on is rust, I'm in Michigan and a I know a lot of Ram's from about 02-05 are rusting at the rear fender tire wells. If it's not showing any signs being in Ontario, that's great. Sounds like the guy took good care of it, I'd run a carfax type thing on it just to make sure of no accidents, and call your local dealer and check up on it's history back when it was under warranty to see what else had been done to it. Good Luck!
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Old 03-23-2012, 09:35 PM
canoeman16 canoeman16 is offline
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Pull the oil filler cap and look for tell tale signs of sludge. I used synthetic oil, drove mostly highway miles and after 135000 miles was rewarded with a blown engine and lowsy gas milage. Now I am trying to find another engine or just dump the truck. Not sure which way to go. Oh yeh, you need to replace an '02 engine with an '02 engine - no other year fits. Check very carefully before you buy. Sludge is a huge issue - wish I knew that before I bought mine. Good luck.
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Old 03-28-2012, 10:46 PM
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Well unfortunately I lost out on the truck, sold on the 20th before I got the replies to this thread. I ended up buying a beautiful 2000 Ram 1500 Sport 4x4. Thanks for the replies though guys.
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