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  #1  
Old 04-10-2012, 04:37 PM
Smitty21 Smitty21 is offline
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Default 5.9 Underpowered???

Hello all. I recently bought a 2001 Ram 1500 QC with a 5.9. The more I drive it the more I think that it should have more power than it does. I love the truck and it has low miles at 83K, but it seems to have much less power than my previous 1997 Chevy pickup. Is there any think I could do to wake up this motor, or are there any issues that might be causing it to be a dog? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:15 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty21 View Post
Hello all. I recently bought a 2001 Ram 1500 QC with a 5.9. The more I drive it the more I think that it should have more power than it does. I love the truck and it has low miles at 83K, but it seems to have much less power than my previous 1997 Chevy pickup. Is there any think I could do to wake up this motor, or are there any issues that might be causing it to be a dog? Any help would be appreciated. Thanks.
What makes you think it's under powered? Describe whats going on
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Old 04-10-2012, 06:32 PM
Smitty21 Smitty21 is offline
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The big thing that grabs my attention is that it is seems to always downshift going up a hill, even a gentle slope. Its got a 3:55 gear ratio and the chevy I had was a 3.42 both with 265/75/16 tires. I live in Iowa so there are really no giant hills. I feels a little slower off the line too, but I can attribute that to a different torque curve.
Do all the 5.9 down shift that easlily? It almost feels like I am pulling an empty trailer.
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Old 04-10-2012, 07:26 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty21 View Post
The big thing that grabs my attention is that it is seems to always downshift going up a hill, even a gentle slope. Its got a 3:55 gear ratio and the chevy I had was a 3.42 both with 265/75/16 tires. I live in Iowa so there are really no giant hills. I feels a little slower off the line too, but I can attribute that to a different torque curve.
Do all the 5.9 down shift that easlily? It almost feels like I am pulling an empty trailer.
Sounds like the throttle valve cable is out of adjustment causing early upshifts which makes it seem slower off the line, and would contribute to a early downshift. I would give that cable adjustment a shot and see if that helps. Either it be a 5.9 or 5.2 there is more then enough power to move the weight of the vehicle, unless you are having engine or fuel problems which are also possible. You should check the fuel pressure, it should be 43 PSI when the engine is running and when you turn the engine off it should drop to 35 PSI and hold. If the fuel pressure is low like 35 when engine is running then you will have a slightly lean fuel mixture which actually won't always throw a code, it's not until the fuel pump dies and you have no fuel does the engine throw a code lol (ask me how I Know ha)

But I don't think it's the fuel pump to be honest because it's nearly as common as a out of adjustment throttle valve cable.

I have my van and I was having some weird erratic shifts almost like gear hunting, I had adjusted my cable for higher shift points, so it shifts at redline. Now the thing takes off like a rocket, the only problem is it kills on fuel and it's very sensitive at low speeds (hard to keep it 35 wants to go faster).
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:23 PM
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Well i figured it should be able to move itself a little easier than it does, but it get around good enough that it wasnt a glaring issue.

How do you adjust the throttle valve cable?
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:29 PM
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Something does sound out of whack. I have a 360 4x4, moving up from a 318 2wd and the 360 has noticeable more power than my old truck. I've had a GMC with a 350 and a F150 with 351 and the 360 is definitely comparable. Does sound like your transmission is shifting funny (unless it is the OD that is kicking out, which would be understandable going up a hill). Try adjusting the kickdown.
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Old 04-10-2012, 08:31 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Smitty21 View Post
Well i figured it should be able to move itself a little easier than it does, but it get around good enough that it wasnt a glaring issue.

How do you adjust the throttle valve cable?
I have a PDF of instructions on another thread for this
http://www.ramforumz.com/showthread....952#post768952
It's somewhere in their. Anyway's try adjusting for redline shifts, this will bring out the true power but it's not going to be nice when around town.
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Old 04-11-2012, 08:34 AM
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Might want to try this as well:

http://www.ramforumz.com/showthread....ghlight=spacer

Reading it, it might not make a difference but it doesn't cost anything to try.
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Old 04-12-2012, 08:49 PM
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i had a 5.9 in my 96 ram and man the thing was friggin powerful...quick for a stock motor (just exhaust upgrade) and it seemed like it could pull down a house if the chain wouldn't break...you may have an issue...
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Old 04-16-2012, 11:50 AM
Smitty21 Smitty21 is offline
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Thanks for the good ideas so far.

So I tried the throttle valve cable over the weekend and it didnt seem to help much. I also took the truck on a long trip over the weekend and noticed that the kickdowns happend much more when the truck was in cruse.

I also checked the tranny fluid and it looked pretty dark and smelled a little funny so I changed the fliter and that seemed to help a little. It still seems a little weak though. I noticed when going up a hill if I kicked it down and floored it at about 50-60 it really wouldnt climb in speed.

Do you guys think a weak tranny could be causing it?? Do you have any other ideas?
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