98 Dodge Ram 5.2 trouble starting when wet or damp


Old 07-10-10, 08:10 AM
Thread Starter
Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: iowa
Posts: 19
Smile 98 Dodge Ram 5.2 trouble starting when wet or damp

I have a 1998 Dodge Ram with a 5.2 L engine with 89,000 miles on it. Bought the truck new and have had very good luck with it. My problem is that I have taken it to the automatic car wash a couple of times and it seems to have trouble starting after that and seems that something is wet. Once I get it started, it misses and the check engine light comes on until I let it run for a while and it seems to dry out and be fine after that. I also had it happen this past weekend when we had heavy rain and very humid conditions. Also when I started it this weekend, I had a terrible squealing sound from the belt, turns out that my auto spring belt tensioner was bad, replaced it and everything works perfectly now.

My question is could the bad spring tensioner have caused my problem all along or are the two deals unrelated? If they are unrelated, any suggestions from anyone as to how I could proceed to find my apparent misfiring problem due to moisture? Has anyone else had this same or similar problem? Thank you to all, I appreciate it!

Duane Gordon
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Old 07-10-10, 04:54 PM
Unclediezel's Avatar
Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Northeastern PA.
Posts: 2,230
Absolutely NOT....

A wet belt will ALWAYS squeal, so before you get too confident, be patient..... A bad tensioner will usually blow apart before it wears out. You did get a new belt with that Right?????

Now, For the wet rough running.......Mopars have had this issue for a hundred years....The solution, Distributor cap , rotor, plug wires and an Ignition coil. When the cap is off, look at the pick-up, if its white and furry, it goes too.
These parts have progressively gotten worse in design over the years, and the aftermarket parts arent nearly as good as factory quality..(Which as mentioned is horrible to begin with). It will usually get you by for a few years until it starts over....Just the nature of the beast I guess.....

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