really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
91,134 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 3500 lights problems

lights problem

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2003 Dodge Ram 3500 Owner Comments

problem #4

May 202014

Ram 3500

  • 94,535 miles


Directionals suddenly started blinking fast. Right & left directional don't opperate, right rear taillight doesn't operate, front left headlight does not opporate, both rear brake lights don't opperate, checked all bulbs by certified mechanic. All bulbs are in good condition. Tested all electrical & lighting lines, certified mechanic concluded that the integrated fuse box is defective & needs a brand new replacement. No corrosion present. Ordered fuse block from dealership, parts dept. Confirms these blocks are on national back order, with 1000's of orders placed. Called Chrysler, they said they can't help as there's no vendor making this part yet. If I got a used part for $400, it'd be an old defective fuse box & I'd have exact same safety issues. Apparently many 2003-2005 Dodge Ram diesels currently have this same electrical problem.

- Oshkosh, WI, USA

problem #3

May 012011

Ram 3500 6-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
Trailer lighting for 2001-2005 Dodge Ram light duty (1500-5500) trucks with integrated heavy duty towing package relays can fail if accidental connection to mis-wired trailer, but are not repairable and parts are not available to replace the integrated power module (ipm). The relays for such are inside a sealed portion of the ipm, and cannot be replaced. There are no fuses or serviceable parts to protect against this failure. This failure results in non- or incorrectly-working trailer lighting which can result in motor vehicle accidents and injury or death.

- Mesa, AZ, USA

problem #2

Oct 192009

Ram 3500

  • 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 #1

Sep 072007

Ram 3500 6-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
The contact owns a 2003 Dodge Ram. The contact parked the vehicle in her driveway. She exited the vehicle and left the driver side door open. She then heard a loud pop and noticed that the vehicle was moving. She was unable to enter and stop the vehicle. The contact was struck several times by the driver side door. She was pinned between a metal post and the door of the vehicle. The contact was able to free herself and sustained injuries to her midriff, back, and head. The powertrain, speed, and failure mileage were unknown. The current mileage was 46,900. Updated 01/17/08 the dealer stated the right brake lamp is inoperable. The consumer has provided all medical documentation and repair invoices pertaining to the incident. Updated 01/17/08

- Purdy, MO, USA

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