1. Welcome to PlowSite. Notice a fresh look and new features? It’s now easier to share photos and videos, find popular topics fast, and enjoy expanded user profiles. If you have any questions, click HELP at the top or bottom of any page, or send an email to help@plowsite.com. We welcome your feedback.

    Dismiss Notice

Ram 3500 cummins problems

Discussion in 'Ram Trucks' started by Ty27, Jan 3, 2015.

  1. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    We own a 2003 Ram 3500 dually with the cummins 5.9 in it. recently it has been getting hard to start. If it sits over night even plugged in, the next morning it's crank crank crank for a while then it finally starts and if it runs all day it acts like it normally does. We replaced the batteries and the fuel filter about a week ago because it already needed it. Does anyone have an idea of what maybe going on with this truck? Help will be appreciated!
     
  2. Dogplow Dodge

    Dogplow Dodge 2000 Club Member
    from NJ
    Messages: 2,933

  3. dstifel

    dstifel Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 188

    Probably injectors
     
  4. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

  5. dieselss

    dieselss PlowSite Fanatic
    Messages: 10,957

    Does it have glow plugs?
    IS the block heater working?
     
  6. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    That's what we were thinking, but wouldn't it run bad all of the time? The truck runs fine once it starts.
     
  7. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    it doesn't have a glow plug but does have A block heater. We didn't have it plugged In on one of the nights it got cold and the fuel lines froze up so we got some diesel 911 and put in the tank and fuel filter and after some cranking it did start because the lines unfroze. The next night we did plug it in and it did start so I think that may eliminate that solution
     
  8. Robinson_Cnst

    Robinson_Cnst Senior Member
    Messages: 145

    These engines have grid heaters to pre heat the incoming air. Looks like two toaster elements in the intake horn. Those heaters use to 30 amp solenoids. Check your grid heaters. Also check the plug on the block side of the block heater. I had my wire come out before.

    Exactly how cold was it when your fuel line froze. I see your in Missouri, I'm in IL and have never had gel or frozen line. Buy quality diesel with no bio. Change that filter and add some anti gel to your tank. Try those things and get back to us.

    I have an 05 Cummins and IL weather has never kept her down. As long as your fuel is good, filter is clean and your heaters are working they should always start.
     
  9. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    It was probably around 15-20 degrees that morning and the truck was inside in a warm shop then it was took outside and then the lines froze. We buy our diesel from a new gas station from the town that we live by, and the gauge said it had a little water in it. We will look into that wire, it could have came out when we got new batteries. Could it be possible there could be a leak in a fuel line so it's allowing air to get into the fuel system? We did notice a little fluid on the frame the other day and smelled like diesel, but we think we spilled some diesel 911 on there when we put it in the filter.
     
  10. Robinson_Cnst

    Robinson_Cnst Senior Member
    Messages: 145

    Do you drain your water separator often? If you get water in your fuel from a station, it's time to buy elsewhere. Usually shell will sell road diesel without bio and with additive.

    how did the truck start when it was in the heated shop. Should have fired right up.
     
  11. dstifel

    dstifel Senior Member
    from Iowa
    Messages: 188

    When injectors start to go will start hard especially after the truck is really warm from my experience. They run fine once it's started
     
  12. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    We have drained our separator and it still does it. The truck was at the local boss dealer when it started in the shop and it started fine because it was outside when we got there. The mechanic there said it started fine that morning then the lines froze up after it had been outside awhile ( the temperatures were still in the lower 20's ) so we got diesel 911and unfroze the lines then it started. We did see some type of liquid on the truck frame a couple nights ago and thought it was diesel cause it smelled like it. So we thought maybe there is a tiny hole in the fuel system somewhere. Would something like that create a hard starting issue?
     
  13. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    Well we have done a Little more research and found out that we may have a relief valve in the banjo fitting stuck open for the return line to the gas tank causing a loss in fuel pressure in the engine. After this storm that is supposed to get here tonight, I will play mechanic on The truck and figure it out! Thanks to everyone's help on our issue with our cummins!!
     
  14. jhenderson9196

    jhenderson9196 Senior Member
    Messages: 615

    Hook up a scan tool and check the rail pressure while cranking. My guess is it'll be less than 5000psi, which is the requirement for the computer to fire the injectors. Get an injector line cap and cap the lines one at a time untill the the truck starts. That's your bad injector. Plugging the truck in warms the components enough to close the tolerances in a marginal injector, but not forever. If it was your prv , plugging the truck in would make no difference.
     
  15. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    Ok... Will do. We will try and figure out problem and/or solution and I will update the thread when we figure it out.
     
  16. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,112

    Have you ever put a lift pump in it? I run an Air Dog on my 01. I think your 03 may still use a VP44 injection pump, if so they need a good lift pump.
     
  17. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    It has been converted to be directly in the tank. The dealer installed the lift pump, we didn't do it. It is still working though, because the truck runs fine once it starts. We have tested it and it's filling the fuel filter so it is working. What i was getting at with the fuel line issue is there could be a little pin hole somewhere causing just enough fuel leakage to let air in which would make it lose pressure. But once it starts the hole is small enough to not have that big of a difference. It just makes a difference after it sits for a long enough time.
     
  18. maxwellp

    maxwellp PlowSite.com Addict
    Messages: 1,112

    I had a leaking 6th injector line that made it start hard after it would sit for a few days. Would not leak so much as to leak to the ground. Don't feel for injector line leaks if it is running, it can inject the fuel right into your skin.
     
  19. Ty27

    Ty27 Senior Member
    Messages: 428

    Ok thanks for the info and warning... Always like to play it safe! We will look more into it after the rain/snow mix we are supposed to get tonight.
     
  20. jhenderson9196

    jhenderson9196 Senior Member
    Messages: 615

    The injectors leak internally not externally. It's a common rail not a vp44.