pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
100,600 miles
Total Complaints:
28 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. not sure (21 reports)
  2. replace the in-tank fuel pump (2 reports)
  3. connect coil wires correctly (1 reports)
  4. new fuel pump (1 reports)
  5. replace hydraulic lifters (1 reports)
  6. replace wiring harness (1 reports)
2003 Dodge Ram 1500 engine problems

engine problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2003 Dodge Ram 1500:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2003 Dodge Ram 1500 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #28

Jul 252017

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 54,000 miles


Was slowing down to turn left on the street I live on and power steering and brakes went out even though the vehicle ignition was still on and the radio was playing. I tried putting the vehicle in Neutral, Drive, 2, 1, and back in Drive but still had no engine power and just kept rolling. This is extremely dangerous. If my petite wife had been driving the truck (as she does on many occasions when I need our other vehicle for better gas mileage on longer trips), I have no doubt she'd likely hit a curb, tree, or Lord forbid, another vehicle because of not being able to control the steering while powerless in a turn.

Will someone have to die before this issue gets fixed?!?!

- , Mc Minnville, TN, US

problem #27

Mar 042016

Ram 1500 SLT 5.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 158,230 miles

I've got a 03 Hemi Ram that started stalling randomly and has got worse. I've replaced the camshaft position sensor, crankshaft position sensor, IAT sensor, MAP sensor, fuel pump, one coil pack, alternator, and battery the problem still continues. On Friday it stalled 7 times on a 32 mile ride home from work.

- , Chesterfield, VA, USA

problem #26

Feb 092016

Ram 1500 SLT 5.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 73,200 miles

It has died while turning and also just idling at a stop. It has also surged and almost died. definitely dangerous.

This has happened about 7 times now. Other wise the truck has been great.

- , Bermuda Dunes, CA, USA

problem #25

Sep 262015

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • 220,000 miles


I just wanted to mention that I read it could be the catalytic converter. Try disconnecting the O2 sensor near it, that one or both could be another problem.

- , Dawsonville, GA, USA

problem #24

Nov 202013

Ram 1500 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 119,990 miles

Replace your hydraulic lifters. I bought mine with the popping, missing, low power. I paid $3000 at a auto wrecker. Previous owner stated "Heads needed to be rebuilt" It only had 119,990 miles when I picked it up. It was advertised as a builder runs and drives. I drove it home some 40 miles and noticed the lack of power. I took the valve covers off and found tow rockers off. I replaced them and did compression test. Several cylinders showed way low. I found that previous owner replaced coils as well from the misfire codes. I tested the engine and rockers popped off again.

I went to Autozone and picked up replacement hydraulic lifters for $160 and replaced them in a couple hours. The only other thing I did was replace the water pump. I now have 170,000 miles on it. I did research on these 4.7L V8 engines and the oil pickup in the pan get restricted. If you run low on water you can get pretty hot and dry in there. The lifters get damaged. I paid a total of $300 bucks for parts and a couple hours of my labor and I have put 50,000 miles on it with no problems. I feel like I stole the truck from the previous owner!

- , Pollock Pines, USA

problem #23

Jul 272015

Ram 1500 LST 4.8lV8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 143,586 miles

Had a tune-up done to truck as I have only had a couple of months and computer was giving a code for the fourth plug miss firing. Took home ran great. The next day was making a left turn and truck died. Kept stalling at stops, at idle, and driving down the road. No engine light and computer not giving a code. Replaced PCM per answer guy I paid online for. Computer gave code for fuel pump so I replaced. Then gave code for crankshaft positioning sensor and code for camshaft positioning sensor so I replaced them. Then gave code for idle air controller so naturally I replaced well not me my friend the mechanic. After all this still having same issues.

Took him a while to figure it out but the wiring harness that is under the fuse box was corroded and loose. Could have been the problem from the start. Computer wasn't giving code for this just something he thought to check on his own. So before you spend a lot of money on parts you DON'T need try asking your dealer or mechanic to check the Wiring Harness under the FUSE BOX. Hopefully this helps anyone with the same problem. Happy motoring

- , Westfield, MA, USA

problem #22

Aug 102015

Ram 1500 5.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles


Too bad the customer had multiple shops, dealers, other work on and not fix it. He even had the engine replaced with a new one.

- , Duluth, USA

problem #21

Aug 082015

Ram 1500 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,500 miles

I have a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500. Truck died and took a few minutes before it would crank. Check engine light came on and code was for cam shaft sensor. Replaced censor and I thought it solved problem. Now when I crank truck it idles real rough and dies when ever I am stopping. Check engine light is not on. Have read several complaints with people with same problem and don't know where to start. Is it the TPS, EGR valve, oxygen sensor. Help.

- , Memphis, TN, USA

problem #20

Mar 012014

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 112,000 miles

I have a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 with the 4.7L V8. I have been having this problem with my truck for a couple of months now. I will start the truck up no problem but when I come to that first stop it begins. The rpms will bottom out but until this past week it would continue running, but now it will die. Sometimes, if the truck doesn't die, after the rpms bottom out, they will all of a sudden surge and accelerate me unexpectedly. This is most dangerous when pulling out into traffic.

I thought it may be dirty fuel, dirty injectors, spark issues, so . Right now notable symptoms include the check engine light reading of down-flow O2 sensor, the bogging, the surging, and no cruise control, and the occasional engine cutting off. I have changed the throttle control sensor, O2 sensors, checked the gaping on the spark plugs, and used fuel and fuel injector cleaners. The mechanics at the shop I have been using say they have been unable to replicate the issues and they can find nothing wrong. Definitely a priority to get this fixed.

Update from Mar 7, 2015: I decided after a week of the local Chrysler dealership having the vehicle for maintenance, to cut my losses now that I am $1000 poorer and no closer to an answer. The guy I sold it to agreed to contact me once he fixed it because he claimed to have an idea of the problem/solution. 3 days later he called me and said the issue was fixed and that the fuel pump was the culprit. I returned to one of my memechanics and asked how much it would have cost to change and he said close to $800. That was if they ever found the problem in the first place. I am glad I got out of it when I did but now I am smarter should it happen again in the future.

- , Ft Riley, KS, USA

problem #19

Feb 242012

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 139,000 miles

I began having problems with my engine stalling during idle/low speed approximately six months ago. The problem went away on its own and has now reappeared. The check engine light works but does not come on. When starting the vehicle it begins to idle rough and the RPM gauge is all over the place and the engine stalls. It always starts right up, but this issue concerns me as well. I know Chrysler has got to be aware of the problem and I also feel that they are not wanting to give a recall on this engine problem and the defective dashboards in the Dodge Ram trucks. Unless they do something to remedy these situations to the people who have already spent their hard earned money on their products... I will never buy another Dodge, Chrysler, Jeep product again.. looks are not everything...only vanity. I'll be looking for GMC or Chevy soon. Left feeling used and abused after calling the dealership to no avail.

- , Okeechobee, FL, USA

problem #18

Oct 012010

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 48,000 miles


Less than a year after buying my truck it began to stall and then completely shut off at stop lights. I tried taking it to the dealership but they claimed it wasn't covered because it was due to lack of regular maintenance. I had driven it less than seven thousand miles since pulling off their lot. Thankfully we found a guy to take off the throttle body and clean it for $25. Since then it has not gotten to the point of cutting off. But every couple of months there will be a day, especially if I am low on gas and/or stopping on a hill, that it will start to stall and shudder. The chemicals you can buy at Walmart to clean the fuel system help but they only put it off for a little while. This is not something I expected to hit around 50k miles.

- , Forest, VA, USA

problem #17

Oct 312012

Ram 1500 5.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 144,000 miles

The lightning bolt started flashing once a week, then became more frequent, once a day. I have to pull over, shut the engine off and restart to reset the sensor. If I don't pull over and restart the engine, the truck loses power and hesitates. Has something to do with the throttle position sensor. Seems like there are a lot of complaints on this.

- , Pottsville, PA, USA

problem #16

Jul 272012

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 76,000 miles

I have an 03 dodge ram with 76,000 miles that has been a nightmare. Most recently, when accelerating, the truck loses power for about 30 seconds, almost like it died, then kicks back in and runs fine. Changed the TPS, no luck. Put seafoam in tank for water in the gas, no luck. This is a dangerous situation when pulling out into traffic and not having any acceleration when you are half way out in the road. Definately a safety hazard that needs to be recalled!!

- , Carroll, IA, USA

problem #15

Feb 092012

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 132,000 miles


- , Bremerton, WA, US

problem #14

Jul 012012

Ram 1500 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 125,000 miles

I have a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500 4.7, last summer while driving on a 350 mile trip, the rpms started surging up & down, I stop to get fuel & it would not start back up. The dealer changed the cam sensor & the evac valve & it didn't fix the problem. I've taken it back 4 times & they say everything is ok, no engine codes. Now its stalling & surging more & more. Can someone please tell me whats the problem. Because Dodge has no idea.

- , New Orleans, LA, USA

problem #13

May 012012

Ram 1500

  • Automatic transmission
  • 111,433 miles

Was slowing down on a curve and the truck just died.I had to put in park,turn key off and restart. I was on a downhill blind curve. It had no lights on,all gauges had great readings,before this happened. What is up with this?

- , Davy, WV, USA

problem #12

Jun 022011

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 151,000 miles

Stalls out at red light & stop signs. Put it in neutral and it starts right back up. Someone please help me.

- , Leland, MS, USA

problem #11

Mar 072011

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 68,972 miles

My truck has done this many times. It will begin to chug then die. No engine codes are shown and it starts right back up. The first time it stalled I was slowing down from 80km/h and turning onto the highway. Every time you start the truck from cold it has an erratic idle, and is chugging until warmed up.

- , Toronto, Ontario, canada

problem #10

Apr 012011

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

when your decelerating the truck just shuts off. Changed plugs,pvc valve.air filter and checked the gas cap. There are no codes in and out of the shop still can't find the problem. I call dodge and as a dodge owner since 84 no response. Thank you dodge back to the shop I go.

- , Homestead, FL, USA

problem #9

Aug 112010

Ram 1500 SLT 4.7L V8

  • Automatic transmission
  • 85,000 miles

I own a 2003 Dodge Ram 1500, 4.7L V8. This year 2010, at approximately 85,000 miles, the engine started dying at random, usually when decelerating, the rpm's also surge up and down several hundred rpm. I first took it in for a tune-up which didn't solve the problem. Took it back, they changed the air control valve, did not cure the problem. Have taken it to the dealer several times, left the truck with them for 2-3 weeks, they witness the problem but their (excuse) computer doesn't get a read on the problem. The dealer says they contacted Chysler about the problem but I still have the problem. Is bad when the dealer you purchase a vehicle from cannot repair a life threatening problem! Cannot believe there hasn't been a recall? This was the first & the last Dodge I will purchase!

- , Port Lavaca, TX, USA

Read the next 8 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?