Dodge Ram Transmission Problems (Major Issues Solved)

Dodge Ram transmission problems hit harder from the models of the 2000s onward. One of the many issues that the truck is plagued with and has received innumerable complaints from users is the wreckage in the Dodge Ram transmission system.

The issues range from jerky shifts to missing gears.

With this, you may be forced to ask, which Ram model is precisely suited for me? We can’t precisely point out which ram model you should be driving, as there are vital points to consider.

However, in this post, after extensive examine a list of Dodge Ram models with these transmission issues and solutions.

Dodge Ram Bad Transmission Years

These are the worst years that the Dodge Ram has ever produced regarding transmission issues. Each of the years highlighted has its problems.

You should, however, keep in mind that depending on the chosen drivetrain, not all trucks will have these issues.

2003 Ram 1500:

There are lots of complaints about the engine of the Dodge 1500 engine problems. However, these complaints are not significant, as it could be one problem here and combating another one there.

Many of the issues frustratingly always triggered the check engine lights, which is a pointer that the problem is severe.

The most pressing complaint about the 2003 Dodge is the dashboard quickly cranking at low mileage.

Nonetheless, it often gets so problematic that it moves from being just a cosmetic issue to a “failing dashboard” issue.

2010 Dodge Ram 1500:

The most common issues this year’s model faced were engine problems.

They included the engine abruptly turning itself off while a user was driving, lifters causing the camshaft to wear out, the engine refusing to start after being turned over, and several other minor issues.

Other issues many users battled with were drivetrains and electrical problems.

2001 Dodge Ram:

This could easily pass the worst model of the Dodge Ram in terms of transmission problems.

Many users often warn people to, in fact, stay away from this model, as it is laden with a lot of issues.

While it had other problems, the transmission issues seemed the most tedious.

You often get to deal with complete transmission failure at, on average, about 92,000 miles.

This also cost quite a lot to repair as it grossed about 2,000 dollars. It gets more frustrating, as the transmission problems require a total transmission rebuild.

Many users had to deal with constantly having to replace the transmission. The same model year had electrical and engine issues.

Several users also had experiences that had to deal with their RPMs fluctuating steadily. Another very persistent one was out-of-gear transmission shifting, which made the drive unbearable.

The transmission was, for some, not as bad, but for others, trying to move from the first gear to a higher one was an ordeal.

2007 Dodge Ram:

The 2007 model of the Dodge Ram was also plagued with some pretty mild transmission issues. This was particularly difficult as with other models.

They also had other transmission issues that required total replacements. Like other models, this ended up having to replace the entire transmission.

2015 Dodge Ram:

Fortunately, the 2015 model was not as bad as other models regarding its transmission problems.

However, the biggest problem most users had to face was the challenging shifting issues, which were typical at around 27,000 miles.

Users had a hard time shifting their gears from 2nd to 1st.

The force required to do this was so much that a common experience most drivers had was that another driver had rear-ended them because of the hard jerking of the vehicle.

The hard shifting issues weren’t easy to replicate because they didn’t occur all the time.

Due to this, some drivers could not adequately service the vehicle because whenever it was taken to a mechanic, replicating it was impossible.

The 2015 Ram transmission problems were rounded off with general shifting problems and noises.

Common Issues of Dodge Ram Transmission

These are common transmission issues with many Dodge Ram vehicles:

  • Slow gear shifts
  • Buzzing sound during reverse
  • Overdrive performance issues
  • Sluggish gear engagement
  • Difficulty with engaging and disengaging drive and reverse
  • Loud noise while driving.

What Are the Causes of Dodge Ram Transmission Problems

  • The speed sensor is bad: This causes the vehicles not to change their gears or pose some form of resistance when a driver is trying to.
  • Low transmission fluid: This is responsible for hard shifting issues or delays with shifting.
  • Bad solenoids or valve body: Faulty valves can initiate shift delays, or drivers experience bumps when trying to change from 2nd to 1st gear
  • Transmission cooler lines are leaking: This too is responsible for hard shifting or shifting delays or reluctance.
  • Early failure of gear clutch: This causes all vehicle gears to freeze, as they won’t shift and any gear reverse inclusive.
  • The car battery is low/ Faulty alternator: This causes the vehicles to get stuck in limp mode.
  • Issues with shift motor actuator: This makes it impossible to put your car vehicle in any gear.
  • Accumulator springs: This usually happens when the driver tries to shift gears from 3 to 4.
  • Issues with valve spring retainer: This can break, and when it happens, it causes the spring and boost valve to be displaced from their position. It also initiates issues with the pressure of TCC oil and causes the 4th gear to leak.

Solutions to Dodge Ram Transmission Issues

01. Fix fuel leaks

If you’ve noticed that your Dodge Ram has started slipping or having occasional bangs in gear, the first line of action should be to check for leaks.

You should park the vehicle and leave it idle for about 15 minutes. Then look under the car for oil puddles.

If you notice oil spots, there are chances your transmission cooler line is damaged, leading to consistent fuel leaks. The next thing to do is to check the transmission fluid level.

This should be done even if you don’t notice any leaks. If the fluid level is significantly low, it can cause banging in the engine and erratic shifting. This especially happens when you’re accelerating.

Here is how you can check and top the transmission fluid:

  • Park the truck on an evenly leveled ground
  • Engage the parking breaks
  • Start the engine while the brake pedal is still depressed to move the gear shifter across all gears.
  • Move the gear to park position while still leaving the engine running
  • On the dashboard, pull the hood release till you hear the hood pop open.
  • Lift and secure the hood with a rod prop, and ensure the support is strong enough.
  • Look for the transmission dipstick and drag it out.
  • Wipe it with a clean cloth
  • Reinsert and remove the dipstick again.
  • Determine the fluid level, and examine the cold range unless the vehicle had been warmed for at least 25 minutes.
  • If you notice the transmission is below the minimum level, top it with more fluid to bring it to a mark between the min and max levels.

Note that this procedure varies depending on the Dodge model. Some Dodge models lack a transmission dipstick. Hence, the owner’s manual should be relied on to carry this procedure out.

02. Carry out transmission relearn

Shifting and adjusting are electronically controlled by the ECU in newer models of Dodge Ram. Erratic shifting often occurs when shift values get out of the normal range.

To fix this problem, you need to carry out a transmission relearn. This takes care of the hard shifting issues.

You need a scan tool to carry out this procedure to be able to access the transmission module. Ideally, the ECU should learn and adjust the shift patterns, but it always doesn’t work that way while you drive.

03. Phish out transmission fault codes

In cases where there are no transmission leaks and the transmission fluid level is up to the right gauge, the next thing to do is to read the fault codes of the transmission control module.

You need to use a Dodge Transmission OBD-II scanner to carry this out. To do this, follow the steps below:

  • Locate the vehicle’s diagnostic port. This is usually under the dashboard, then plugs into the scanner.
  • Turn the engine on, but do not start it.
  • Now turn on the scanner and let it read the vehicle
  • Some vehicles require you to select your Dodge model. If it doesn’t, move straight to the Transmission
  • Select the trouble code. You’ll find it in the sub-menu.
  • Now scroll through all the fault codes, paying specific attention to codes displaying PRESENT status.

Once you’ve found the codes, it’s the first step to dealing with the fault codes. You can then dial a transmission shop to learn more about the code and how to deal with it.

Dodge Ram 1500 Transmission Problem

For Dodge Ram 2014, the most common transmission problem people complain about is feeling bumps when trying to accelerate or release the brake.

Some other users complain about the transmission not feeling like it has downshifted correctly. The relevant concern here is how early this happened for many vehicles, at about 13,500 miles.

Other users updated their PCMs and had their adaptive shift memory deleted from the transmission. This worked for some and failed when others attempted it.

Another common transmission problem with the 2014 Dodge Ram was acceleration pedal failure.

It works when a driver drives uphill, and suddenly the truck seems stuck and can’t go up any further. The onset of this problem is as early as 21,000 miles.

Dodge Ram 2500 Transmission Shifting Problems

These are common causes of Dodge Ram 2500 transmission problems

  • The transmission fluid level is low
  • The valve body is bad
  • Alternator is bad
  • Transmission cooler lines may be leaking
  • TCM software problem

How to fix Dodge Ram 2500 shifting problems

01. Fix the transmission sensor

If your Ram 2500 is not shifting properly, it is most likely your transmission sensor is bad. A loose sensor can cause excruciating transmission problems.

It causes the vehicle to struggle to shift gears. You can solve this issue by simply toughening the sensors.

However, if they are damaged, you need to call a mechanic to have them repaired or replaced.

02. Inspect and fix the relay

A faulty transmission relay would cause the vehicle to shift occasionally. You’ll notice them shifting from first to 3rd gear.

Before attempting to solve this problem, you have to first inspect the voltage from the transmission terminals.

If the terminals are working fine, check the electrical relay or wire. You then can have a technician take them out and run a connection using a new one.

How much does it cost to replace a transmission in Dodge Ram 2500

Dodge Ram transmissions are very complex, and replacing a bad transmission can be difficult. The cost of changing a 2500 Dodge Ram transmission can go over $3500.

This, however, depends on the vehicle. Transmission services like a fluid flush or fluid change are considerably cheaper and cost you around $150.

How long does the Ram 2500 transmission last?

The overall longevity of a 2500 transmission depends on how well the driver maintains it. Design flaws from the factory are also considered in this equation, along with hour-driving conditions.

But on average, you can find 2500 Dodge Ram lasting up to 180,000 miles, with the minimum being around 130,000.

A high-end transmission replacement can outlast that if all the design flaws from the factory have been dealt with.

Top Questions (FAQs)

How can the transmission of a Dodge 2500 be replaced?

To replace your Dodge 2500 transmission, you have to get the vehicle up from the ground to enable you to gain access to all areas that need unbolting.

You can lower the transmission to the ground using a Jack to install the new one.

Is it possible to drive with a transmission problem?

If you’re still able to manage some distance with your Dodge 2500, you may feel very relaxed about solving the transmission problem.

This is, however, not a good idea, as the symptoms could get worse, putting you in jeopardy.

How can I diagnose my dodge 2500 transmission issues?

Estimating the cause of your Dodge 2500 transmission problem, you can’t be so sure, except you have all the right tools or required expertise.

A good mechanic or a transmission repair shop would connect your vehicle to a computer and diagnose which diagnostic trouble codes are running.

Once they find out the problem, you can now carry out a full repair or replacement.

Rounding Up

Many Dodge Ram models, including the Dodge Ram 1500 and 2500, have pretty terrifying transmission problems.

These transmission problems tend to disrupt your ride or could even cause full-scale damage to one of your car components.

Diagnosing the problem begins with spotting the symptoms. We have highlighted some in this post.

Ensure you get the help of a mechanic if you aren’t sure how to fix your Dodge Ram transmission problems.