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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We just bought a 1999 Ram 1500. Yesterday it wouldn’t start after car wash.... 3 hours later it did so we came home.... it started at 8am then again at 10am..... but 11:30 it was dead again.
All the lights come on but no sound like it’s tryingnto start.....12:30 it started.... any ideas?This is my first Ram....
 

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That is your trucks way of welcoming you to Chrysler's fun exciting world of bullshit intermittent electrical problems! :D

First check your battery terminals. Make sure the wires going to them are secure and that you cant move them by hand. Make sure theres no black marks, or chafing in the wires that could indicate that its shorting on something.
When it wont start, pop the hood and look around the battery and starter area for any electrical arcing while someone tries to crank it.

If that all looks good, you just need a new starter. Water and crap eventually gets inside of it and shorts it out until it dries out. The same thing happened to my jeep when I got lazy with a few oil changes.

Out of curiosity, what kind of car wash was it? If it was a self-serve, did you spray the engine bay?
 

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Discussion Starter · #3 ·
Thanks for responding New Territory for me
It’s actually my sons Ram we got for him so to answer your question
He washed at a self serve and only hit the honeycomb grill grate but probably got moisture into the engine area.... I also would mention that we noticed some slippage in the transmission at 40 mph and from what I see on line it could be the transmission linkage between the gear lever and tranny..... it may need adjusting
Thanks again
 

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No problem!
You're fine spraying the grill, those things are designed to get wet from driving through rain. You just don't want to spray the engine and its electrical harnesses or ignition components directly - some people do that to make the engine bay look pretty, and that can aggravate problems.

I'm a little concerned about the transmission slipping. If the truck wasn't abused by the previous owner, a fluid and filter change might fix it. Other than a manual kickdown cable that might still be present on the '99s, nothing is user-adjustable on those transmissions.
 

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Open the hood & let the Sun heat up the engine compartment

I always carry a miniature can of WD-40 with me, both for my Harley Davidson & my trucks ,, WD stands for Water Displacement

I also carry a spray can of CRC 5103 Quick Dry Electronic Cleaner - 11 Wt Oz. , less than $5.00 at Walmart
It is great for cleaning corrosion from places like automotive bulb sockets & the male & female electrical connectors that are every where on our trucks
 

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If the engine was hot when you washed the truck and water got to the back of the engine it causes steam. The steam them rises into the distributor cap and forms water droplets. Take off the cap and let it dry.
 

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If the engine was hot when you washed the truck and water got to the back of the engine it causes steam. The steam them rises into the distributor cap and forms water droplets. Take off the cap and let it dry.
You sir, just made my day. I literally laughed out loud. Must of been alot of steam!

I dont think its even a water intrusion issue in this case - starters (and alternators) can get less accepting of minor splashes when they get old, and if they're filled with junk accumulated over the years, they can do weird issues like this.
 

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I actually had my 78 power wagon do this due to the bad seal on the cowl. Rain fell on the back of the motor/trans. Luckily the second gens are so far back we don't have to worry about it unless water get's in there some other way.
 
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