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  #1  
Old 09-29-2010, 04:18 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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Exclamation severe RPM drop & stalling - 97 Ram, 5.2L

Just bought my first dodge a few weeks ago... I dont attribute this to it being a dodge, I attribute it to having 124k miles on it... my point is that I know ZERO about dodges and really need some advice.

The truck is almost undrivable at this point...

Yesterday it didnt seem to do this, it may have and I just never noticed, but its never died on me, and today its died 4 times in 8 miles.

Symptoms:
driving normally (any speed) and I take my foot off the gas, dont do anything else, and the RPM will drop to zero. If I am going slow enough, the engine will just die. If I am going fast enough, the engine/transmission turning over will keep it running.

Info:
  • 1997 Dodge extra cab
  • 5.2L engine w/124k miles on it
  • Automatic trans
  • appears to be bone stock

What I have done:
popped the cap and looked at the air cleaner - its clean.

What I suspect:
  • bad throttle position sensor?
  • Vacuum leak? (though I cant HEAR any vacuum leak)
  • bad 02 sensor? - doesnt seem likely as the truck runs perfectly fine when I am on the gas
  • plugged fuel filter? - doesnt seem likely as the truck runs perfectly fine when I am on the gas

Thanks in advance... ANY help or direction would be GREATLY appreciated
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  #2  
Old 09-29-2010, 04:24 PM
RootBeer RootBeer is offline
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Fuel filter and/or TPS would be my first guess.
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Old 09-29-2010, 04:39 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RootBeer View Post
Fuel filter and/or TPS would be my first guess.
TPS was my first hunch... I will have to do a search, but are there directions/DIY on here by anyone on cleaning/setting the TPS on a 2nd gen ram?
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  #4  
Old 09-29-2010, 04:48 PM
RootBeer RootBeer is offline
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Go to Autozone or the like and buy a chilton's manual or other service manual for your Ram. Very handy to have.
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  #5  
Old 09-29-2010, 04:56 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RootBeer View Post
Go to Autozone or the like and buy a chilton's manual or other service manual for your Ram. Very handy to have.
Thats my next stop... if I can get there. lol
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  #6  
Old 09-29-2010, 05:05 PM
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Internal vacuum leak due to a blown plenum pan gasket or the IAC motor and passages may be dirty.
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:13 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RamTech View Post
Internal vacuum leak due to a blown plenum pan gasket or the IAC motor and passages may be dirty.
With the pan gasket blown, wouldnt it smoke and idle rough? I havent owned it long enough to know what the mileage is or if it burns oil yet.

it doesnt seem to smoke, even on startup and when its sitting at idle, it idles and runs nice and smooth.

I did find the "Throttle body cleaning procedure" thread, so I will probably be doing that when I get home tonight.
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:36 PM
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Typically, you won't notice any smoking and you won't always have a rough running condition with a blown plenum pan gasket but you will see oil consumption between 1-2 quarts between oil changes @ a 3000 mile interval.
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Old 09-29-2010, 05:49 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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Quote:
Originally Posted by RamTech View Post
Typically, you won't notice any smoking and you won't always have a rough running condition with a blown plenum pan gasket but you will see oil consumption between 1-2 quarts between oil changes @ a 3000 mile interval.
hmm... ok. How do I know if thats the problem? (how do I identify a blown gasket?)

I just ran to the auto parts store and grabbed a Haynes manual and when I tried to start the truck, it took 3 tries. then died once on the way there. Then when leaving the store it wouldnt start without me holding the gas down (about 1k rpm) and wont hold an idle at all anymore without me holding the gas down (about 1k rpm)

I am going to go get a replacement IAC after work (wife's car), but if I have a blown gasket, it would be nice to get and fix that at the same time as cleaning the TB and replacing the IAC. I am assuming its relatively similar to a chevy in pulling off the intake, replace gasket, bolt intake back on and your good to go?

Any suggestions on how to prolong the life of the plenum gasket once I do replace it?

Thanks for the help guys... if you cant tell, I am learning all I can right now.
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  #10  
Old 09-29-2010, 11:36 PM
Topdown Topdown is offline
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thanks for the info guys... I replaced my IAC and viola, problem gone. I havent looked at cleaning the whole TB yet, I didnt have much time tonight so 30.00 and about 30 minutes to fix the problem was about right. Something tells me the previous owner knew the truck had a problem and didnt know the solution... so passed the problem off on an unsuspecting new owner.

but, thats ok... 30.00 and a little of my time and he is out a great truck

Thanks again for the advice and help. I am still curious on how to detect the blown gasket, but with any luck, I will have a little bit of time to figure that out and plan it to be fixed.
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