Ram 1500, 2500, 3500, 2WD and 4WD, 2001-2005

Starter

Print

Removal & Installation



  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions Section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:

    Negative battery cable
     
    Starter mounting bolts
     
    Starter solenoid harness connections
     
    Starter
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Connect the starter solenoid wiring connectors.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter and tighten the bolts to 50 ft. lbs. (68 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the negative battery cable and check for proper operation.
  6.  

3.7L & 4.7L Engines
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions Section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:
    NOTE
    If equipped with 4WD and certain transmissions, a support bracket is used between front axle and side of transmission. Remove 2 support bracket bolts at transmission. Pry support bracket slightly to gain access to lower starter mounting bolt.


    NOTE
    On the 3.7L engine, the left side exhaust pipe and front driveshaft must be disconnected.



    Negative battery cable
     



    Starter mounting bolts
     



    Starter solenoid harness connections
     
    Starter
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Connect the starter solenoid wiring connectors.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter and torque the bolts to 40 ft. lbs. (54 Nm).
  4.  
  5. On the 3.7L engine, the left side exhaust pipe and front driveshaft
  6.  
  7. Install the negative battery cable and check for proper operation.
  8.  

3.9L, 5.2L, 5.9L & 8.0L Engines
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions Section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:

    Negative battery cable
     
    Starter mounting bolts
     
    Starter solenoid harness connections
     
    Starter
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Connect the starter solenoid wiring connectors.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter and tighten the bolts to 50 ft. lbs. (68 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the negative battery cable and check for proper operation.
  6.  

5.7L Engines
  1. Before servicing the vehicle, refer to the Precautions Section.
  2.  
  3. Remove or disconnect the following:
    NOTE
    Depending on drivetrain configuration, a support bracket may be used.



    Negative battery cable
     



    Starter mounting bolts
     
    Starter solenoid harness connections
     
    Starter
     

  4.  

To install:

  1. Connect the starter solenoid wiring connectors.
  2.  
  3. Install the starter and torque the bolts to 50 ft. lbs. (68 Nm).
  4.  
  5. Install the negative battery cable and check for proper operation.
  6.  

Solenoid or Relay



The starter relay is located in the Power Distribution Center (PDC). Refer to label on PDC cover for relay location.

  1. Disconnect and isolate negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cover from the Power Distribution Center (PDC) for relay identification and location.
  4.  
  5. Remove starter relay from PDC.
  6.  
  7. Check condition of relay terminals and PDC connector terminals for damage or corrosion. Repair if necessary before installing relay.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. View of the battery (1) and PDC (2)

    View of the battery (1) and PDC (2)
  8.  
  9. Check for pin height (pin height should be the same for all terminals within the PDC connector). Repair if necessary before installing relay.
  10.  

To install:

  1. Push down firmly on starter relay until terminals are fully seated into PDC receptacle.
  2.  
  3. Install PDC cover.
  4.  
  5. Connect battery cable.
  6.  

  1. Disconnect and isolate the negative battery cable.
  2.  
  3. Remove the cover from the Power Distribution Center (PDC).
    NOTE
    See label affixed to underside of the PDC cover for starter relay identification and location.

  4.  
  5. Remove starter relay from PDC.
  6.  

To install:

  1. Position the starter relay in proper receptacle in PDC.
  2.  
  3. Align the starter relay terminals with terminal cavities in PDC receptacle.
  4.  
  5. Push down firmly on the starter relay until terminals are fully seated in terminal cavities in PDC receptacle.
  6.  
  7. Install the cover to PDC.
  8.  
  9. Connect the negative battery cable.
  10.  

Testing & Troubleshooting



Any troubleshooting of the starting system should start with checks of the following components:



Battery condition
 
Wiring and connections at the battery, starter motor and solenoid
 
Starter relay
 
Wiring at switches: clutch pedal (if equipped), Park/Neutral position switch (if auto), ignition switch
 


CAUTION
Before performing any of the tests below, make sure that the engine will not start accidentally by disconnecting and isolating the ignition coil wire (gasoline engines) or unplugging the fuel shutdown solenoid wire harness (diesels). ) or Park (auto trans.), parking brake applied.

  1. Ensure that the battery is in good condition and fully charged. Simply checking for voltage across the terminals will not indicate battery condition. A load test is required. This requires special equipment, but a local garage or parts store may be able to help. Check the battery and clean the connections as follows:
    1. If the battery cells have removable caps, check the water level. Add distilled water if low. Load test the battery and charge if necessary.
    2.  
    3. Remove the cables and clean them with a wire brush. Reconnect the cables.
    4.  
    5. Check for voltage across and battery posts and across the clamps to ensure that clamp connections are making good contact.
    6.  

  2.  
  3. On manual trans. models, disconnect the clutch position switch and connect a jumper across the harness connector to simulate depressing the clutch pedal.
  4.  
  5. Connect the voltmeter leads to the battery positive terminal and the starter solenoid battery cable stud. Turn the ignition switch to START and hold it there. If the meter reads above 0.2v, suspect bad contact at the solenoid battery cable stud.
  6.  
  7. Connect the voltmeter leads to the battery negative terminal and a good ground on the engine. Turn the ignition switch to START and hold it there. If the meter reads above 0.2v, suspect bad connections of the battery negative cable or internal corrosion of the cable.
  8.  
  9. Connect the positive lead of the voltmeter to the starter motor housing and the negative meter lead to the battery's negative terminal. Turn the ignition switch to START and hold it there. If the meter reads above 0.2v, suspect poor starter-to-engine ground.
  10.  
  11. If the above tests do not reveal the cause of the problem, proceed to component tests, following.

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. On diesels, disconnect the fuel shutdown solenoid before doing any work on the starter motor

    On diesels, disconnect the fuel shutdown solenoid before doing any work on the starter motor

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Checking for voltage drop across the battery clamps

    Checking for voltage drop across the battery clamps

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Testing the battery positive cable voltage drop

    Testing the battery positive cable voltage drop

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Testing for ground circuit voltage drop

    Testing for ground circuit voltage drop

    Click image to see an enlarged view

    Fig. Checking starter ground

    Checking starter ground
  12.  

The battery, starting, and charging systems operate in conjunction with one another, and must be tested as a complete system. For correct starting/charging system operation, all of the components involved in these 3 systems must perform within specifications.


CAUTION
On vehicles equipped with airbags, refer to Chassis Electrical, before attempting any steering wheel, steering column, or instrument panel component diagnosis or service. Failure to take the proper precautions could result in accidental airbag deployment and possible personal injury.



Battery - Visually inspect battery for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded cable connections. Determine state-of-charge and cranking capacity of battery. Charge or replace battery if required. Note: If equipped with diesel engine, a dual battery system may be used, and both batteries must be inspected.
 
Ignition Switch - Visually inspect ignition switch for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Clutch Pedal Position Switch - If equipped with manual transmission, visually inspect clutch pedal position switch for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Park/Neutral Position Switch - If equipped with automatic transmission, visually inspect park/neutral position switch for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Starter Relay - Visually inspect starter relay for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Starter Motor - Visually inspect starter motor for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Starter Solenoid - Visually inspect starter solenoid for indications of physical damage and loose or corroded wire harness connections.
 
Wiring - Visually inspect wire harnesses for damage. Repair or replace any faulty wiring, as required.
 

Cold Cranking Test

The battery must be fully-charged and load-tested before proceeding.

  1. Connect volt-ampere tester to battery terminals. See instructions provided by manufacturer of volt-ampere tester being used. Note: Certain diesel equipped models use dual batteries. If equipped with dual battery system, tester should be connected to battery on left side of vehicle only. Also, tester current reading must be taken from positive battery cable lead that connects to starter motor.
  2.  
  3. Fully engage parking brake.
  4.  
  5. If equipped with manual transmission, place gearshift selector lever in Neutral position and block clutch pedal in fully depressed position. If equipped with automatic transmission, place gearshift selector lever in Park position.
  6.  
  7. Verify that all lamps and accessories are turned off.
  8.  
  9. To prevent a gasoline engine from starting, remove Automatic ShutDown (ASD) relay. To prevent a diesel engine from starting, remove Fuel Pump Relay. These relays are located in Power Distribution Center (PDC). Refer to label on PDC cover for relay location.
    CAUTION
    If equipped with diesel engine, attempt to start engine a few times before proceeding with following step.

  10.  
  11. Rotate and hold ignition switch in the START position. Note cranking voltage and current (amperage) draw readings shown on volt-ampere tester.
  12.  
  13. If voltage reads below 9.6 volts, refer to Starter Motor in Testing. If starter motor is not OK, replace faulty starter motor.
  14.  
  15. If voltage reads above 9.6 volts and current (amperage) draw reads below specifications, refer to Feed Circuit Test in this section.
  16.  
  17. If voltage reads 12.5 volts or greater and starter motor does not turn, refer to Control Circuit Testing in this section.
  18.  
  19. If voltage reads 12.5 volts or greater and starter motor turns very slowly, refer to Feed Circuit Test in this section.
    NOTE
    A cold engine will increase starter current (amperage) draw reading, and reduce battery voltage reading.

  20.  

Feed Circuit Test

The starter feed circuit test (voltage drop method) will determine if there is excessive resistance in high-amperage feed circuit.

When performing these tests, it is important to remember that voltage drop is giving an indication of resistance between two points at which voltmeter probes are attached. Example: When testing resistance of positive battery cable, touch voltmeter leads to positive battery cable clamp and cable connector at starter solenoid. If you probe positive battery terminal post and cable connector at starter solenoid, you are reading combined voltage drop in positive battery cable clamp-to-terminal post connection and positive battery cable.

The following operation will require a voltmeter accurate to 1/10 (0.10) volt. Before performing tests, be certain that following procedures are accomplished:

  1. Battery is fully-charged and load-tested.
  2.  
  3. Fully engage parking brake.
  4.  
  5. If equipped with manual transmission, place gearshift selector lever in Neutral position and block clutch pedal in fully depressed position. If equipped with automatic transmission, place gearshift selector lever in Park position.
  6.  
  7. Verify that all lamps and accessories are turned off.
  8.  
  9. To prevent a gasoline engine from starting, remove Automatic ShutDown (ASD) relay. To prevent a diesel engine from starting, remove Fuel Pump Relay. These relays are located in Power Distribution Center (PDC). Refer to label on PDC cover for relay location.
  10.  
  11. Connect positive lead of voltmeter to negative battery cable terminal post. Connect negative lead of voltmeter to negative battery cable clamp. Rotate and hold ignition switch in START position. Observe voltmeter. If voltage is detected, correct poor contact between cable clamp and terminal post.
    NOTE
    Certain diesel equipped models use dual batteries. If equipped with dual battery system, procedure must be performed twice, once for each battery.

  12.  
  13. Connect positive lead of voltmeter to positive battery terminal post. Connect negative lead of voltmeter to battery positive cable clamp.
  14.  
  15. Rotate and hold ignition switch in START position. Observe voltmeter. If voltage is detected, correct poor contact between cable clamp and terminal post.
    NOTE
    Certain diesel equipped models use dual batteries. If equipped with dual battery system, this procedure must be performed twice, once for each battery.

  16.  
  17. Connect voltmeter to measure between battery positive terminal post and starter solenoid battery terminal stud. Rotate and hold ignition switch in the START position. Observe voltmeter. If reading is above 0.2 volt, clean and tighten battery cable connection at solenoid. Repeat test. If reading is still above 0.2 volt, replace faulty positive battery cable.
    NOTE
    Certain diesel equipped models use dual batteries. If equipped with dual battery system, this procedure must be performed on driver side battery only.

  18.  
  19. Connect voltmeter to measure between negative battery terminal post and a good clean ground on engine block. Rotate and hold ignition switch in the START position. Observe voltmeter. If reading is above 0.2 volt, clean and tighten negative battery cable attachment on engine block. Repeat test.
  20.  
  21. If reading is still above 0.2 volt, replace faulty negative battery cable.
    NOTE
    Certain diesel equipped models use dual batteries. If equipped with dual battery system, this procedure must be performed twice, once for each battery.

  22.  
  23. Connect positive lead of voltmeter to starter housing. Connect negative lead of voltmeter to negative battery terminal post. Rotate and hold ignition switch in the START position. Observe voltmeter.
  24.  
  25. If reading is above 0.2 volt, correct poor starter to engine block ground contact.
  26.  
  27. If equipped with dual battery system (certain diesel equipped models), connect positive lead of voltmeter to positive battery cable clamp on battery located on left side of vehicle. Connect negative lead of voltmeter to positive battery terminal post on battery located on right side of vehicle. Rotate and hold ignition switch in Start position. Observe voltmeter. If reading is above 0.2 volt, clean and tighten battery cables at both batteries. Repeat test. If reading is still above 0.2 volt, replace faulty positive battery cable.
  28.  

 
label.common.footer.alt.autozoneLogo