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Amedee, Dodge Technician
Category: Dodge
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Experience:  ASE certified tech advanced level specialist. Wisconsin certified emissions state inspector
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Dodge RAM 1500 SLT: hesitation..popping or lack..neutral..missfire

Resolved Question:

Dodge RAM 1500 SLT 5.9l 2002
Experiancing strong hesitation esepcially when cold , fells like a popping or lack of gas, if you put in neutral the engine revs fine.

New plugs, wires cap rotor.

Dodge dealer could find nother wrong but said was a missfire intermittant on 2 and 4 ??

Seems similar to when the cranck positon sensnor was failing.
Submitted: 4 years ago.
Category: Dodge
Expert:  Amedee replied 4 years ago.
Hello and Welcome to Just Answer. My name is XXXXX XXXXX I will try my best to assist you and your 100% satisfaction is my goal. I have been working on these vehicles for over 10 years so I am very familiar with this system and how they work. However, keep in mind, that I need some solid concrete facts/evidence/clues from you in order to give you a good answer about your vehicle. Please realize that all my answers are based solely on the info that you provide me with.

So you can feel this misfire or hesitation every time it happens correct? Does it happen more at idle or more under a load?

Have you checked engine vacuum when this happens?
Customer: replied 4 years ago.

Yes and it seeems more so when the engine is cold, almost like a lack of fuel.

It does not happen if there is no load - like in park, engine revs fine.


You hear almost like a backfire through the throttle body.

Expert:  Amedee replied 4 years ago.
Ok.. you could have a few things going on here. IF all of the tune up parts check out good, then it could be a bad camshaft or crankshaft position sensor causing your problem. Sometimes the intake gasket cracks causing a vacuum leak causing this sort of problem because it is an air or a vacuum leak. However, if this were the case, then the engine would have an idle issue and would be fine off idle. But your experiencing just the opposite.

If the cam and crank sensor do not seem to be an issue, then you have two other possibilities. Either an engine mechanical issue (valves not sealing) or a fuel delivery concern. You can try to add propane or starting fluid to the intake to see if that helps. IF not, I would check to see if the engine vacuum is fluctuating when this problem happens. If so, it is going to be an engine mechanical issue like cylinder heads/engine valves.

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