hardly worth mentioning
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 2
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
78,787 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2003 Dodge Ram 2500 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Dodge Ram 2500 Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #26

Jul 032011

Ram 2500

  • 81,000 miles


Truck has the same electrical issues as the recalled newer trucks. It melted the fuse box and the truck wont run. I have replaced the fuse box, computer, all coils, all plugs, all wires, throttle body over $3,000 and the truck still does not run. Only has 81,000 miles on it. It was towed to a Chrysler dealership and towed back out of the dealership because they could not tell us what is wrong with it. After $3,000 of lets try this I can not afford any more lets try this or that. This is a common problem and most people think they broke a valve in the hemi motor. I have run a compression test and this is not the case. My issue is electrical and I don't feel as thou I should have to spend any more money trying to figure it out when the dealership cant. The truck was under warranty the first time it was brought in for an electrical issue. Which they could not find anything wrong, and then it escaladed to the point of not running any longer. Started by melting fuses then melted the fuse box. And who knows what else it took out. When scanned it brings up different codes each and every time. Dealership charges for each and every wrong part that is replaced and then rescanned and they also charge labor for each wrong part replaced. Vehicle was running fine. Driving 2 miles down a dirt road speed of 25mph, vehicle started to miss and just continued to get worse to the point it will not idle. You can not hold a steady fuel pedal and keep it running it stalls. Passenger side airbag is recalled and not available, tie rod assembly is recalled not available a few months ago when I asked at the dealership. I currently own a 2003 2500 hd yard ornament. How can Chrysler get away with this?

- Capac, MI, USA

problem #25

Jan 012013

Ram 2500 6-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles
Multiple breaks in the vent portion of the dash cover with missing pieces and the main dash component is completely cracked through on the passenger side. With the ventilation system on, pieces of plastic and deteriorated insulation blows freely in the cab of the truck. With the dash continuing to crack and break apart pieces of plastic have dropped below the dash and could potentially could expose and cause wiring problems with the electrical system. The cracked dash is a danger to the eyes of anyone riding in the vehicle with the ventilation system circulating condition air. I fear that the dash will act as shrapnel in the event of air bag deployment....updated 07/30/15

- Irving, TX, USA

problem #24

Oct 032014

Ram 2500

  • 142,311 miles
While searching for a fix for my dash which just cracked I found several reports of after the dash cracked where electrical issues arise. As in headlights not working at all or when switching to hi beam. I also saw a video on this issue from a news broadcast and when Chrysler was questioned about this there was never any response while the public was requesting a recall. From what I can find out just in the hour I was looking this up this would apply to just about every Dodge Ram made between 1996 and 2006. My truck is garage kept and I keep it in excellent condition so for this to happen due to sitting in the sun it's entire life I might understand but there is no way this should have happened to mine. My father was a mechanic for Chrysler for over 20 years and this is just plain cheap made products. Which from what I can find out could and most likely will lead to some safety issue with the vehicle. Since I can not find anything more out with regards to what the NHTSA is doing only monitoring the issue?? the broadcast I saw was from 2012, I would think something would have become of this by now for sure after seeing that video. Yet at that time the news channel stated your doing nothing.

- Cochranville, PA, USA

problem #23

Jul 012010

Ram 2500 6-cyl Diesel

  • 107,000 miles


The front passenger window cannot be controlled by the passenger sitting in said set and can only be controlled by the drivers main panel. This is a safety issue in the event the driver is incapacitated and the passenger must escape through the passenger window. My other concern is that there must be a circuit malfunction in the control module which could burn and start a fire in the drivers door.

- Issaquah, WA, USA

problem #22

Sep 032013

Ram 2500 4WD 6-cyl Diesel

  • 166,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500. The contact stated that all the gauges in the vehicle failed and all the warning lights illuminated on the instrument panel. The contact mentioned that the windshield wipers also failed. The failure would recur intermittently. The vehicle was taken to a dealer where the failure was unable to be replicated. The manufacturer was notified of the failure. The vehicle was not repaired. The approximate failure mileage was 166,000 and the current mileage was 180,000. Updated 04/22/14 updated 04/23/14

- Galena, MO, USA

problem #21

Jan 132014

Ram 2500 8-cyl

  • 105,145 miles
Blend door will not work, common failure in models 02-06, poor design breaks after a year or so...cant defrost windshield when windshield frost due to snow or cold temperatures. Unable to remove foggy windshield on rainy days.

- Louisville, KY, USA

problem #20

Oct 172012

Ram 2500 6-cyl Diesel

  • 89,881 miles


The defroster will not activate-found tsb 24-004-03 relates to this issue. Chrysler should have recalled these vehicles for repair due to numerous number of failures and safety issue related to not having de-ice or defrost capability.

- Azle, TX, USA

problem #19

Sep 252012

Ram 2500

  • 93,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500. The contact stated that while driving 45 mph, the vehicle began to lose power and the electronic control warning light illuminated. The vehicle then stalled with the illumination of the check engine and the overdrive warning lights. The contact disconnected and re-attached the battery. The vehicle was restarted and was able to be driven. The vehicle had not been diagnosed by a dealer or an independent mechanic. The failure and current mileages were 93,000.

- Allentown, PA, USA

problem #18

Sep 302010

Ram 2500

  • miles
When I turn signal to left makes right signal comes on, when you turn right signal on makes left signal comes on. The lamp out light keeps coming on and going off when you turn the left signal on then off again. I checked none of the lamps are out. Has been took to dealer twice and had the wiring harness in the steering column fixed, it quit for a while and then starts the same thing again.the dealer claims using the tilt on the steering wheel is the cause of the problem. I think the problem is in the turn signal arm because it affects the signals and the wipers. I have talked to other Dodge owners who are experiencing the same problems. I feel there should be a recall on it because it could turn into a safety issue.

- Morehead, KY, USA

problem #17

Aug 142008

Ram 2500

  • 65,000 miles
The ventilation system failed as is common with these vehicles. Due to weal parts, the, "doors" that control air flow through the ventilation ducts broke. I have slowly replace each of the four doors as they failed. As they went out it affected every aspect of ventilation, including the defrost. After doing some research it is evident Dodge was fully aware of this issue but made no improvements to the system, continuing to sell these vehicles to an unsuspecting public for several years.

- Green River, WY, USA

problem #16

Apr 172012

Ram 2500

  • 128,000 miles


The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500. The contact stated the ignition switch caught on fire and damaged the entire ignition. The wires inside the ignition were severely corroded. The contact stated that prior to the fire, the vehicle was exhibiting several electrical issues. The cause of the fire was unknown. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure and the current mileage was 128,000.

- Borden, IN, USA

problem #15

Mar 012012

Ram 2500 8-cyl

  • 95,000 miles
There is a persistent low voltage drain on the battery. It stays dormant for, at times, as long as 3 or 4 days without appearingand ranges from 1amp to 2 amps totally draining a otherwise almost brand new 8050 cold cranking apm international brand battery. Contacts in the doors and all major components have been disconnect in the debugging process. I already know of at least one other Dodge Ram 1500 with the same symptoms. The battery has been replaced with a new one during the trouble shooting process. This is an intermittent issue which is proving to be very elusive. All systems that have been added on after market have been totally disengaged with no definitive result.

- Stanley, VA, USA

problem #14

Aug 092011

Ram 2500

  • 137,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram. The contact stated the wire connecting the ignition wire melted causing the windshield defroster to malfunction. The wire melted due to the size of the terminals to the connector. The lack of a defroster made driving very difficult for the contact. The contact took the vehicle to the dealer stated the wire that connect the ignition to the blower motor needs to be replaced. The contact stated the vehicle was unsafe to to drive due to the impaired vision. The failure mileage was 137,000.

- Otwell, IN, USA

problem #13

Jul 082009

Ram 2500

  • 147,000 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500. The contact stated the instrument panel exhibited a fracture that interfered with the gauges. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for inspection or repairs. The manufacturer was contacted and a claim was filed but no further assistance was offered. The failure mileage was 147,000.

- Auburn, GA, USA

problem #12

Nov 222010

Ram 2500

  • miles
Traveling home from work on I-65 near elizabethtown, ky when all of a sudden my vehicle went to 90 mph within seconds. I first tried to hit the brake to take off the cruise, that did nothing, I then pushed in the clutch and the engine screamed and the speakers blew, still going 90 mph I manually turned off the cruise and that slowed it down. There is a recall, but Dodge/Chrysler will not honor because the ECM needs replaced not reprogrammed. Dodge wants $3,473 from me to fix. My truck according to Dodge had the recall done, but obviously the problem is not fixed. I don't want to die or kill someone if my truck goes out of control again. I don't think it should matter if it needs reprogrammed or replaced. A recall is a recall and admits to a problem. This recall refers to vehicle speed control recall#69118 called Chrysler 18007638422 spoke to brian BO52 and local dealer swope Dodge in E-town they ran a test to find the problem which is the ECM needed "replaced". this would not need replaced if the speed control worked properly. Thank you

- Upton, KY, USA

problem #11

Oct 192009

Ram 2500

  • 200,000 miles
Poor reliability of electrical control and distribution system causes numerous and sometimes intermittent failures of exterior safety-related lighting such as headlamps (low beam and high beam), taillamps, turn signals, brake lamps, and trailer lamps. Problems seem to be exacerbated if vehicle is not operated for a few weeks. Dealer is quoting repair cost in excess of $2000 for replacement of the power distribution center, which is reportedly not a serviceable unit. This high repair cost will undoubtedly cause owners to "take their chances" and continue operating vehicles in an unsafe condition because the repair is so costly and the problems are intermittent. Some users have reported needing to complete this repair more than once over the vehicle lifetime, which further confirms there is an inherent reliability problem with this vehicle's electrical system. Other users report similar issues with windshield wipers reportedly due to the same unit failure. Because Dodge Ram pickup trucks have at least ten different model categories and multiple model years for reporting in the NHTSA online reporting structure, the complaints are spread out and the concentration of problems endemic to this vehicle may not be readily apparent to ODI investigators. Complaints may be reported under "1500", "2500", "3500", "Ram", "Ram 1500", "Ram 2500", "Ram 3500", "Ram quad cab", "Ram pickup", "Dodge truck",..., all due to the same module failure. Complaints are also spread out among many different complaint categories, further diluting the recognition that there is one fundamental root cause of a dozen or more different failure modes.

- Rochester, MI, USA

problem #10

Jan 022009

Ram 2500

  • 30,000 miles
2003 Dodge Ram 2500 cracked dashboard. Vehicle has 31K miles. Power windows malfunctioning, airconditioning blower malfunctioning. Dodge dealer will attempt to replace at owners cost. Check engine light on for power steering sensor problem. Sensor will have to be replaced.

- Saint Cloud, FL, USA

problem #9

Nov 222008

Ram 2500

  • 81,000 miles
Electrical problems. Do not have any front turn signals. Left headlight works on bright lights only, right headlight works on dim only. No left rear turn signal or, brake light. When using turn signal left headlight flashes. Have checked fuses. Have replaced multifunction turn signal no good. Have replaced every bulb on truck. Still does not work.

- Urbana, OH, USA

problem #8

Oct 132008

Ram 2500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,130 miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram 2500. While driving 35 mph in the rain, the windows fogged up. The defogger switch and air conditioner would not switch over to defrost the windows. The contact went to the dealer and they stated that it was a damper door in the air vent, which tells the air whether to flow towards the door or the floor. If the door breaks, there is nowhere for the air to flow. Tsb number 24-004-03 was referenced. The dealer stated that this was an electrical failure, which only covered 12,000 miles; therefore, the contact has to pay for the repairs. The failure mileage was 45,130. Updated 11/12/08. Updated 11/14/08.

- Jacksonville, NC, USA

problem #7

Dec 012005

Ram 2500

  • 38,000 miles
Several cracks have spread across the dash. No reason for these to have happened and the last one seemed to have completely formed in a day or so. Also have intermittent electrical problems, which from the many reports on the internet seem to be common.

- Lavernia, TX, USA

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