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Discussion Starter #1
I am wondering if I saw correctly about the newest recall on the 2500 and 3500 models . I looked it up on the ram trucks page and as of now there are no parts available yet , but the next line on the site says the nuts on the drag link will be welded to the adjusting sleeve if a certain criteria is met. Who is going to weld these? most of the service departments cannot even change oil without issues let alone weld . I for one will not let anyone that is not certified to weld do anything on my truck ,let alone the steering assembly. :SHOCKED:
 

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I wouldn't have them weld the jamb nut to the adjusting sleeve, that completely defeats the purpose of the jamb nut. I'd wait until parts are available, slightly loosen the lower jamb nut so that when you go in they replace the entire drag link assembly like the recall states.
 

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Is there an available image and published torque specification for the affected nuts?
 

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I am wondering if I saw correctly about the newest recall on the 2500 and 3500 models . I looked it up on the ram trucks page and as of now there are no parts available yet , but the next line on the site says the nuts on the drag link will be welded to the adjusting sleeve if a certain criteria is met. Who is going to weld these? most of the service departments cannot even change oil without issues let alone weld . I for one will not let anyone that is not certified to weld do anything on my truck ,let alone the steering assembly. :SHOCKED:
Thats amazing, I have the same issue with my dealership. Last week I had my truck in for the oil change service, not only did they screw that up, they never even mentioned the recall. Which after checking myself, does effect my truck.
 

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It seems like one way would be to drill & pin the rod using a castle nut to keep the nut from backing off.

If they weld it, it will no longer be adjustable & the assembly will have to be replaced
Can you imagine the mechanics thoughts when he sees the spot weld, when he goes to make a minor adjustment
 

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'18 RAM 3500 4WD Tradesman 6.4
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It turns out our 3500 is included in the drag link recall.
I just got done making the appointment and asked about whether welding the nut in place (which is the "fix" if the nut has not loosened at all) will compromise the future ability to adjust the drag link during alignment procedures. The service guy said no, it does not, because the sleeve (and thus the length of the drag link, which I assume controls the amount of toe-in primarily) remains adjustable "at the other end".
I haven't verified this by crawling under the truck myself because it's windy and snowing out there, but I intend to look it over real good personally so that I understand exactly what the recall fix involves. If welding the nut in place does in fact compromise the drag link adjustment, I will not accept that as a solution and if I have to loosen the nut myself to make them install a new assembly, I will do that.
I'd like to understand the difference between the existing assembly and the new replacement too. I'd like to know what characteristic the new assembly has that avoids the possibility of anything coming loose. The service people at my dealer have been very good about letting me poke around and watch what's going on, and they have always been willing to fully explain things.
I'll get back with what I find out,
 

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'18 RAM 3500 4WD Tradesman 6.4
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From what I have read , the weld prohibits turning the Adjustment sleeve at all. There is no alternate repair as of yet.
Hmmmm
That contradicts what I was told earlier today.

The service guy told me today that if there is a replacement assembly to install in those situations where the nut has measurably backed off from the original torque setting. He assured me that it's a "less than two hour" process either way. Said they've already done a few of them.
I intend to find out about this in detail before I take the truck in on the 22nd for the appointment.
 

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Welding the jamb nut in place prevents the drag link from being adjusted with both ends still installed (in the pitman arm and knuckle). It could however still be adjusted by taking the end out of the pitman arm and turning it out. That being said, it's a terrible solution and not one that I'd accept. Pulling it out of the pitman arm requires a puller and isn't an easy task as adjusting the drag link should be.

9thousandfeet, the draglink doesn't adjust the toe; the tie rod does that. The drag link adjustment is simply to recenter the steering wheel during an alignment, change in front end height/geometry, etc. So no, it's not something that needs to be adjusted often unless you're changing things on the front end but I'd still recommend keeping that adjustment easy if/when it is needed. When adjusting the drag link it's not cut and dry either; it takes trial and error to make it exactly right and have the steering wheel centered.
 

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'18 RAM 3500 4WD Tradesman 6.4
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9thousandfeet, the draglink doesn't adjust the toe; the tie rod does that. The drag link adjustment is simply to recenter the steering wheel during an alignment, change in front end height/geometry, etc.
You are correct, I got the drag link confused with the tie rod.
I agree that compromising the ability to adjust the drag link by welding the jam nut(s) to the adjusting sleeve is a piss-poor solution, and not one I'll be willing to accept.
If they have a replacement assembly with a re-designed lockup for the adjusting sleeve which will actually solve the issue while maintaining the ability to adjust the drag link, I'll go with that. Otherwise I'll just keep an eagle eye on it to make sure it doesn't come loose.
Seems to me that if the adjusting sleeve does start to turn so that there's a danger of separation, it would have to turn several complete revolutions before either end of the drag link separated from it.
I can't imagine you wouldn't notice the steering wheel being increasingly off-center when the truck is tracking straight for quite a while before that happened.
 

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'18 RAM 3500 4WD Tradesman 6.4
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OK, so I finally have it all figured out.
Dropped by the dealer today and chatted with the service manager.
Here's the deal, and it's pretty much what's already been said here.

They inspect the drag link adjustment sleeve and jam nuts. If they have not loosened at all, they tack weld both nuts to the sleeve. If they have loosened, they replace the drag link assembly, adjust the new sleeve to center the steering wheel, then tack-weld the new nuts to that new sleeve just the same way they do in the first option.
So the story I was given the first time around was wrong. There is no new part which actually solves the problem of possible loosening of the drag link adjustment mechanism. The "fix" as defined by FCA involves welding the jam nuts, both of them, to the adjustment sleeve regardless of whether they replace any of the the drag link assembly or not.

This, of course, completely disables any future adjustment of the drag link without grinding the welds away. While it's true that the drag link should rarely need re-adjustment—though plenty of things can happen that would require it—this is still a lame "fix" by any standards (and, just FYI, if it DID need adjustment, who would be on the hook for the extra cost involved is a question nobody at the dealership could answer) and it's just not something I'm willing to have happen to our truck, so I cancelled the appointment.

I inspected the drag link on our truck and there are no signs of looseness or movement of the adjustment sleeve at all, nor are there any symptoms of the steering wheel not being perfectly centered when the truck is tracking straight on the highway. So I made prominent alignment marks on the nuts and the adjustment sleeve with some paint which allows me to see at a glance if there has been any movement at all, and quickly crouching down and taking a look (which is easy-peasy) will become a regular addition to my weekly routine of looking things over, checking the oil and fluids and topping off the windshield washer reservoir etc etc.


I'm comfortable with this approach because first of all, the chances of a jam nut loosening at all—and both of them will have to loosen to allow rotation of the adjustment sleeve—are really quite small.
Then the chances of them both loosening and then having the adjustment sleeve rotate as many times as it would need to rotate for sudden separation of the drag link to occur, all without impossible to miss and increasing symptoms of steering wheel misalignment when driving the truck, are so many orders of magnitude smaller still that this issue doesn't concern me at all.

I'm moving on.
 

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Hello all, New here. Started searching online for information and found my way onboard.

I have a 2017 Ram 2500 crew cab short box 6.4 4wD with 21700 miles Tunkhannock PA

I just installed a set of new Cooper ATX3 tires because the original Firestones wore out but the Firestones did wear perfectly evenly. Shop #1 I then took it to shop #2 for a PA insp and it was on the lift with wheels off.

After the inspection I test drove the truck and looked underneath to see if there were any leaks from the oil change at the same time. I had gotten the steering drag link recall in the mail so I looked and dang the right nut was backed off 3/8 of an inch.

I asked the garage that did the inspection to watch if any more 2500’s like this came in and told them what to look for. Shop owner said “oh yes we have found a couple loose. They weld the nuts back together to fix at the dealer. We are very aware of that problem and we are totally on top of it” I said well better have a talk with your inspection mechanic because he just had it on the lift a couple min ago and missed it.

I grabbed the drag link and it would freely rock up and down in the threads where the right side link goes into the adjuster sleeve. This worried me about the condition of the threads in the sleeve so I called the dealer where I bought the truck new to do the recall. They are less than a mile from my house.

I told the service manager that the nut was loose so it would need a new drag link assembly per the recall when I made the initial call to the dealer. She said they are doing a lot of them. I waited two days until they had an opening this morning (Friday 4-12) I also told the service tech when I arrived that the nut was loose and it would need the link replaced. He said “oh it’s loose” like he was surprised. I don’t know how many have been found loose but this was very obviously backed off. Obviously she never gave him the message.

When I picked the truck up this afternoon they said they remove the sleeve to measure the thread ID and the OD of the threads on the drag links. Then they reassembled and welded it!!! I said let me talk to the mechanic because it’s pretty clear in the recall that it should be replaced. He came and gave me a story that this is the updated way of complying and the threads were ok.

I left and now the steering wheel is about 15-20 degrees to the left to drive straight. I drove down a couple different roads and both ways in front of the dealer to see if it might be road camber or crosswind. No go always the same. I called the dealer and got the service manager girl. I asked if the mechanic had test driven the truck before welding the nuts to the sleeve. She put me on hold and came back to say that yes it had been test drive. I said he must be blind because the steering wheel no longer is anywhere near straight to make the truck go down the road. She asked if I wanted to reschedule another appointment and I said “I want you to order another drag link assembly and call me when it is there before I bring the truck back in because you welded this one in place so it’s impossible to adjust” She said some BS like the manager will get in touch with you and that was it.
The one thing I loved most about this truck was that it drove totally straight. I never have had that before with a solid axle truck. It still drives straight just the wheel is off. I know I could grind the welds out to loosen the nuts but it just torqued me off he could not possibly have test driven it before welding the nuts in place. To be continued next week....

Recall 19V06184 Recall V06
19V6150 Weld Jam Nuts
Description: 21731
Checked vehicle for recall V06 road tested vehicle and checked torque all inspections pass. welded draglink nuts to sleeve to prevent from backing off. 19-vo-61-85 and 19-vo-61-50 SPECS WERE INSIDE DIAMETER OF SLEEVE IS 25.42MM. OUTER DRAG LINK WAS 42.95MM 26.82MM and 26.77MM ALL ARE IN SPEC. INNER DRAG LINK WAS 26.67MM 26.89MM and 26.89MM ALL WITHIN SPEC
 

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I grabbed the drag link and it would freely rock up and down in the threads where the right side link goes into the adjuster sleeve. This worried me about the condition of the threads in the sleeve so I called the dealer where I bought the truck new to do the recall. They are less than a mile from my house.
In order for either portion of the drag link to unscrew out of the adjusting sleeve it's necessary for both of the jam nuts to come loose from that sleeve, otherwise the sleeve cannot rotate. So if only one jam nut was loose, there should have been no change in the drag link length, or danger of things coming adrift.

That said, the dealership service people should have measured to ensure the drag link threads were deep enough into the adjusting sleeve, tightened the jam nuts then performed a full alignment check before welding the nuts by first centering the steering wheel and clamping in that position, then carefully checking the front wheel settings on both sides, adjusting the drag link and/or the tie rod as necessary

Only after passing that alignment protocol and torquing the nuts back to spec should the nuts have been welded.

They screwed up, simple as that, and it's such an inexcusable error there is simply no justification for it.
In your situation I would demand to speak with the general manager, explain the situation, and insist on new drag link assembly, a full alignment, all at no charge, a printout of the alignment specs, and then I'd lobby hard for a few free oil and filter changes or some other service coupons as compensation. Otherwise I'd escalate a full report of their ineptitude to FCA.
Crap like that is just maddening, and absolutely disgraceful.
 

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Discussion Starter #14
I was just told yesterday when I dropped mine off for another problem at the stealership that alignment was included in the recall. I told them expressly no welding and that if I see a weld on those nuts I was going to hook them up to the welder and weld theirs. https://www.ramforumz.com/images/smilies/hitfan.gifMy 2016 powerwagon has several sets of paint marks on from new and all still line up perfectly. The dealer also told me that it wasn't all of the trucks just a few but FCA and Ram didn't know which ones for sure, so that is why they are welding them all.
 

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It’s not as it seems on the surface. If the sleeve unscrewed you should easily feel something is wrong as this happens and it would not be fast.

If only one nut is loose like I had the sleeve can’t unscrew but with the loose nut there is a small amount of slop in the thread fit between the sleeve and the drag link. The jamb nut keeps pressure to the threads to stop this small movement. I don’t know when it came loose but with road vibration it had loosened up to the point where if I grabbed the drag link at by the loose nut I could move the link up and down about 3/8” It was rattling in the threads.

I think that’s why the recall says if the nut torque is loose then the link needs to be replaced. Also why the dealer gave measurements of the sleeve ID and the link OD. To show how much thread engagement is left. It’s not how far it’s screwed into the sleeve but how much damage the threads got running loose.

But I have not seen any other spec for how much is good enough. The numbers I posted above are they good or close to worn out. Welding the nut does not fix the sleeve threads. Anyone know the amount of thread overlap needed with metric threads?

I think the recall is pretty clear on replace if torque is not up to spec. Is there a revision that allows it to be only measured?

The alignment should not change from this only the steering wheel position when going down the road. I didn’t want any alignment changes because the truck drove perfectly straight and the stock Firestones wore out at 21K miles but they did wear perfectly even.
 

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I was just told yesterday when I dropped mine off for another problem at the stealership that alignment was included in the recall.
Ha ha...seems like everyone is getting different info depending on which dealer they talk to. I was told alignment was NOT included. The dealer said they would only check to see if the steering wheel was centered before they weld the nuts. They said I could get it aligned on my own dime, FCA will not pay, and then bring it back to them when complete. I'm not real comfortable having them weld anything at this point. I'll keep an eye on it. If it becomes a issue, throw a little thread lock on, tighten it down, call it a day....
 

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It shouldn’t affect the alignment of the front wheels. Only the steering wheel position to the front wheels. I wouldn’t want them to touch the alignment if it drives ok.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
I am a machinist by trade , was re-reading JET 764"s post above over again where the spec for threads were given. The way it seems there must have been a bunch of out of spec threads on the sleeve part or wrong material used (either spec wrong by engineers or lack of inspection by operators / qc at the manufacturing source/assembly at Ram ) which caused them to not hold the correct torque. Looks like assembly plant quality controls failed and did not keep accurate records on the lot numbers of the parts when used so now we all have to deal with this .
 

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Jet764, great find with much more information. I'm pushing towards not having this done even though I received the recall letter. Mine hasn't moved since new, see attached image with the factory alignment marks. Seems silly to weld the nuts and remove an adjustment point designed into the steering linkage. Am I missing something here ?
 

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