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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi. I have a 2011 Ram Big Horn that I bought new last summer, that just started rolling backwards about 4-6' while in park. We have a slight incline in our driveway, and when I got home wednesday I pulled in the driveway, put it in park and felt the truck roll. I pulled back up to where I had been parked and tried it again, same thing happened. Tried a bunch of different things 2wd, 4wd, putting it in park, drive, vehicle running and turned off. Same thing happened, the truck rolled back. The truck only has 3890 miles on it. Called Dodge, they got a case going, and had me bring it to a local dealership. They tried to replicate the situation to get it to roll but were unsuccessful. Hooked it up to a computer, but no codes showed up and couln't find anything. Any thoughts or experience with this happening?
Thanks
 

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Welcome to the RamforumZ

I think your going to have to find a hill close to the dealership, that is as steep as your driveway, try to make it happen for yourself. Then take a Tech for a drive.

Something is not right, the Parking Pawl should engage almost as quick as you place it in Park. Keep after the dealer to fix it.

A Parking Pawl is not very big, it is just a round pin that engages the gear to keep it from rotating, here is a picture of one
http://www.justanswer.com/chevy/0spv9-need-know-parking-pawl-79.html
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By the way, parking on anything that you can call a grade or a hill, a person should always use the Emergency Brake. A Parking Pawl should not be depended on to hold 2 1/2 tons of mass on a grade.
I apply my Emergency Brake before putting any vehicles in Park when on a hill or grade.
That way when i get ready to start off, i take the vehicle out of Park & then release the Emergency Brake.
If you try it one time, you will notice that it comes out of Park very easily, you don't have to jerk it out & you won't hear a noise like a bang or twang when the pressure is released.
 

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i have a 2011 ram 1400 with 6000 miles i just got done plowing my driveway yesterday and drove up the incline and went to put it in park same exact thing i thought i was on ice and sliding so i looked out the windows and sure enough it was the tires turning not sliding , i tried to re put it in park like 5 times nothing , then went out did some errands and it worked normal again no issues since then , weird i thought maybe snow or ice got jammed in the shifter linkage or something preventing it from going all the way in park , i dont know ill let u know if it happens again .
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Dodge had called back this afternoon to do a follow up and see what the dealership found, told him nothing was found and brought the truck home last night and it did the same thing again. He said the same thing, that i may have to actually have a tech in the truck with me in my driveway to see firsthand. I told him that i may end up just having to get it on video and e-mail it. He thought that was a good option, and then they will be able to see it and then maybe be able to look into the transmission. He said with warranty work there were certain protocols that had to be followed before they start taking things apart.
 

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Ram Tough :doh:. Man, the more I read, the more I wish I had a Chevy or Ford. I think these transmissions are made of thin gauge tin. I really question the reliability in the long haul.

OP: I hope this gets resolved for you. The next thing the dealer will tell you is that your driveway is moving, not the truck.
 

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Let us know how you make out with your problem... I would be interested in knowing what they (dealer) diagnose the problem as.... Keep us updated because it sounds like you are not the only people out there with this issue......Good luck and I hope it all works out for you.....
 

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Were you on snow or ice at the time?

All the 'Park' gear does is lock the driveshaft. If you have an open differential, the wheels can still spin in opposite directions, and the truck will move. If you park on a slippery surface, on a hill, use the parking brake.
 

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I would just use the emergency brake to keep it from rolling. I engage the emergency brake anytime I park the truck, even if on level ground. Never trust the Parking Pawl to hold the truck.

Darin
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
Yes there was snow on the ground, we got 10-12 inches over the course of the day today. It was not slipping or sliding. I had a GMC Sierra parked in the same driveway for five years and never had this happen, and never had to use the emergency brake. I would like to think that a new truck that cost 40k would not need to use secondary measures to keep from rolling down my driveway. I don't want to have to worry about having my truck roll over my wife or myself when we have to take my 2 year old out of his car seat, or worse roll over someone else if I'm parked on a street in a neighborhood somewhere. Yes it is a good practice to use your parking brake when you're parked on any incline, but I want to be able to think that a new truck would be able to park on a modest incline without being afraid of having it roll over someone and hurt them or even worse kill them. It is a scary situation, and I would hate to have to put m faith in an emergency brake and have to wait for it to wear out and fail.
 

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Gotta love how the first thing they do when you bring it in is hook it up to the star scan. I mean ok, if you have a rough running engine, dummy light or something similiar fine, but the truck rolling backwards?? WTF. I swear most "Techs" have lost the true old school mechanic way of doing things and aren't very good at troubleshooting. It's really a shame. What's next? Flat tire, oh I better get the scan tool first..LOL

BTW Good luck with your issue, that pawl obviously isn't engaging correctly..:smiledown:
 

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Yes there was snow on the ground, we got 10-12 inches over the course of the day today. It was not slipping or sliding. I had a GMC Sierra parked in the same driveway for five years and never had this happen, and never had to use the emergency brake. I would like to think that a new truck that cost 40k would not need to use secondary measures to keep from rolling down my driveway. I don't want to have to worry about having my truck roll over my wife or myself when we have to take my 2 year old out of his car seat, or worse roll over someone else if I'm parked on a street in a neighborhood somewhere. Yes it is a good practice to use your parking brake when you're parked on any incline, but I want to be able to think that a new truck would be able to park on a modest incline without being afraid of having it roll over someone and hurt them or even worse kill them. It is a scary situation, and I would hate to have to put m faith in an emergency brake and have to wait for it to wear out and fail.
I agree 100%-Doing what your truck is doing is a defect. This is a "No Brainer" situation and Chrysler should be viewing your situation as a very serious matter that should be resolved immediately. Safety is the issue here. How often does one set an emergency brake when parking with an automatic transmission? Yes, it may be a good practice, but I never do unless I'm hitching or unhitching my camper.

Maybe Transengineer can chime in on this one with some other advice.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
I would imagine that the mechanics are capable of diagnosing these problems, but since this is a warranty situation they were required to check with a scanner and see if any codes showed up. In my follow up with Dodge the rep said, that without being able to to replicate the rolling backwards, and no codes they basically reached a dead end, and were not allowed to start taking things apart without any kind of physical evidence of something being wrong. So, I'm left with the option of going back to the dealership, pickig up a tech, driving them back to my house and showing them in person. Or the other option, getting it on video and send them an e-mail in order to show them what is happening. Yes, it is very frustrating, but I can see that they heve to follow protocol. Just have to wait for the weather to clear up to get it on video.
 

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Did the PRNDL display in the dash actually show "P" when it was rolling down the hill? Did you hear any noise (clicks, bangs, pops, etc.) when it was rolling?

It would be best to have someone else outside the truck observe the rotation of the wheels as the truck moves (when it's sliding down the driveway). Is one of the rear wheels rotating backwards? If so, then the problem is the icy driveway. As someone else already noted, Park locks the driveshaft, but if one wheel is on ice, then it can turn backwards while the opposite wheel rolls down the hill.
 

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Just one note. The primary means of securing your vehicle against rolling while in park is the PARKING brake. Puting a manual transmission in gear or an auto shifter into Park are the secondary measures. Think about it. How much does you truck weigh? How big is the parking pawl? Parking pawls have been failing on hils ever since automatic transmissions were invented. While not common, it isn't an unknown event. That's why the brake is there. I haven't parked without using the brake for 30 years and haven't had my vehicles roll. Lots of my family refuse to use the brake and their vehicles often move a few inches.

Having said all that, a new truck shouldn't be rolling.
 

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In my 30 years of driving, I have never had a vehicle roll backwards while in park (or in gear, on a vehicle with a standard transmission and the park brake disengaged).
I'm one of those guys that hate to use the park brake.

Obviously the park brake is there for a reason. Reading what others have said in this post makes me want to always engage the park brake in my truck. I have a 3 year old daughter that I regularly have to put into her car seat.

Engaging the park brake is a good idea anyway as it prevents the cable from seizing (and thus having to endure unnecessary repairs.)
 

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The owner's manual tells you to always use the parking brake, and that's a good idea. The park pawl in the transmission IS strong enough to hold the vehicle in all "normal" situations. But if you're hauling a heavy trailer, and parking on a significant grade, I'd highly recommend using the parking brake, too! Likewise, if you're on ice, all it takes is ONE wheel to slip (with an open diff) and awaaaaay you go!

I drive a manual transmission Neon, and I've had it roll while parked in gear (with no parking brake). Fortunately, I was still in the vehicle (I wanted to see whether it would hold or not), so I just applied the parking brake. When I park on level ground, I just leave the trans in gear. But if I'm on an incline, I think, "Hmmmm... better use the parking brake on this one."

Best advice: If anything bad might happen if your vehicle rolled away, then use the parking brake.
 

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i just back into the habit of using the parking break when parking. in my last truck i never used it and when i needed it the cable was siezed. backing the boat down the launch and just putting it in park was what i was doing, maybe i was one of the lucky ones where it didnt roll back.
 

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I've got a question for the original poster. How do you know the tires were turning as it rolled back? You only looked out the drivers side window at that rear wheel and watched it turn? Maybe the passenger side was on ice and it was spinning the opposite direction? The driveshaft would still not turn but both rear wheels are free to spin in the opposite direction if one tire is lacking traction.

Just something to ponder....
 

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Discussion Starter · #20 ·
I had the door open, I could see both the front and rear wheels rotating. I also had my wife come out to witness the truck rolling. There is snow on the ground but it is not icy or slippery. I even parked our Impala in the same spot in the driveway and tried to see if there was a slippery spot there, but nothing happened after several attempts. I tried several scenarios to try to rule out different things. Again, yes, it would be a good practice to use your parking brake, but this is abnormal for a vehicle to be doing this. And a new one at that. It is not a steep incline at all, a baskeball would barely be able to roll all the way to the street.
 
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