2007 Dodge Ram 1500 Hard Starting

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Old 02-25-15, 03:42 PM
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2007 Dodge Ram 1500 Hard Starting

I really dont know how much info I will be able to provide here cause its kinda a mystery. Just not many clues to go on.

Anyway I have a 2007 Dodge 1500 Ram with a 5.7 Hemi with 151,000 miles. Over the last couple of days, its been hard to crank. It "possibly" could be cold (freezing) weather related. The truck is parked outside, not in a garage or under a carport.

A couple of days ago, I got ready to head for work & the engine would turn over as normal... engine/starter etc all spins well. It just wouldn't hit & crank. I would try it for 10 seconds or so at a time for 4 or 5 or 6 times, then all of a sudden it would just hit & start right up. No spitting or sputtering or anything... when it hit, it started.
I drove to work & it ran fine, again, no problems. Not sluggish, not sputtering, etc. Then at 5 pm when I got off, same thing, it would just spin over fine, but not crank. After about 5 or 6 times of 10 second intervals trying to start it, it just started out of the blue. Once started, ran fine. No problems.
The next day, I needed to run into town & same thing. Finally started & I ran to town & left it running while I shopped, then came home. Once home, I shut it off, waited about 5 seconds & tried it again. Immediately started right up, no problem. So, about every 30 minutes for 3 hours, I went back out to try it & each time, it started right up. Then after 1 hour the last time... total 4 hours... I tried it for the last time & still cranked fine.

The three times it did not start normally, I believe it was at or below freezing. I know it was below freezing a couple of times. It was near freezing but not quite freezing, when I did the 4 hour long restart tests.
I have tried it a couple of times today, while not quite freezing & it started fine.

Now, does this mean that freezing temps are the problem? No. But its the most likely scenario, I think. Additionally, I am leaning more to an electrical issue than a fuel issue. Again, It doesn't mean its the case, but it just didn't seem like it was a fuel issue because it never spit & sputtered when trying to crank... or at anytime for that matter. It was like when it started, it immediately started, No "trying" to start or "almost" started.

So based on this long post (sorry).... any ideas? What may cause a Dodge Hemi not to start when below freezing?

Thanks for any relevant info.
TC
 
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Old 02-25-15, 04:34 PM
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I'm in Michigan, and have entertained myself once in a while looking at some of the weather in other places. With the arctic blast that we've been having, 15 below with 40 below wind chill, we've been running below places like Fairbanks and Prudhoe Bay, Alaska quite often. But the wife's car and my truck have started every day, and even the diesel in my JohnDeere fires when needed, so no, I don't think that the cold alone is doing it. First off, how old is the battery? Have you had it load tested? With the computers used in vehicles today, the more demand is placed on the battery supplying a certain amount of power at critical points like start up. Ironically, I just came in from putting a new battery in my 2008 Dodge Ram, not because anything was wrong, that I know of, but because it was past time.
 
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Old 02-25-15, 05:00 PM
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The battery was put in the vehicle last year & I have not had it load tested, but since its consistently engaging the starter & turning the engine over at normal speeds for about 10 seconds each for 5 or 6 times each, I doubt the battery has any effect on the issue. If it was sluggish or became slugging in turning the engine, I would agree the battery could be bad. But at this point, there is nothing to indicate to me there is an issue with the battery.

I appreciate your input.
 
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Old 02-25-15, 05:41 PM
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Just a WAG, but change your fuel filter. You could have moisture in the line and it is freezing in the filter stopping the flow for an immediate start. Once it gets warm, it flows normally.
 
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Old 02-25-15, 06:10 PM
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Hey Chandler,

This was one of my first thoughts, that possibly there was some water in the fuel & it was freezing somewhere along the fuel system. However, I thought it a bit strange that just by turning the key & turning the engine that anything would generate enough heat to thaw out the frozen spot of water in the fuel system & all at once allow enough fuel that it would just start up without any "almost start", "start & die" or "sputtering" while starting or something. So I discounted any frozen water etc related problems that would cause this. I mean once it started, I could just race the engine up, or just put it in drive & take off... no hesitation, nothing. It was just hard for me to understand how it could just "all at once" thaw out & be good... Just go from nothing to all good just that quick.

I agree, it was my initial thought & I might be missing something but I don't think its fuel related in that respect. I hope you can elaborate enough to convince me that, our common thought was right.
At that point I could just change the fuel filter, add some fuel stabilizer or something to remove the water & just run all this tank dry & then refuel... That's a lot cheaper than some other alternatives I've thought about.

Thanks for posting your thoughts. I appreciate it
 
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Old 02-25-15, 07:18 PM
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I'll still have to say it appears to be delayed fuel delivery, whether it be trash or water in your fuel filter, or your fuel pump's failure to provide full initial delivery. Maybe some of the others have had similar situations arise. They will chime in.
 
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Old 02-28-15, 11:27 AM
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Can someone tell me where the fuel filter on this truck is that needs changing?
 
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Old 02-28-15, 11:52 AM
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Am 98% sure that it's with the fuel pump, in the tank. Before going there, you might consider calling your local auto parts stores, as some of them will run a free scan, which may or may not confirm that the problem is the filter, but it might point you in the right direction.
 
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Old 02-28-15, 11:53 AM
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I don't know about your particular truck but often they are on the frame rail. You should be able to follow the fuel line until you spot it.
 
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Old 03-02-15, 05:39 PM
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Update: new fuel pump installed in the tank - $415.00

On this truck, the fuel pump, fuel filter & fuel level sensor (fuel gauge) is all one unit.
 
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Old 03-02-15, 07:29 PM
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Replacement lift pumps for the Cummins 5.9L is in the tank. No thanks. I removed original pump,which was inadequate and replaced it with a racing pump. Easier to access on the rail.
 
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Old 03-03-15, 05:05 AM
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There is always a filter on the in tank fuel pump's pick up tube but I can't imagine that being the only one. The jeep I used to have had both the intake filter and one on the frame rail.
 
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Old 03-03-15, 05:50 AM
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Most I have seen subsequent to the one in the tank is along the rail too. Just have to trace it from the tank. It would seem a maintenance item like a filter should not be inside the tank. Gee, $400 everytime you need to change a filter???

Incidentally did changing the pump help any????
 
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Old 03-03-15, 04:01 PM
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Keep in mind that the $415 was what the shop charged me. The bill showed I think $220 for the pump assembly & the rest labor.

I just picked up the truck yesterday evening & it started fine then... drove it home & parked it over night.
This morning, went out, turned the key & it fired right up. So, I'd say, so far it has fixed the problem. We will see over time. Supposed to get below freezing here again this week so.... I'll see

Thanks for everyone's input. I do appreciate it!
 
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Old 03-03-15, 10:39 PM
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It doesn't sound like you had a filter issue. You had an electric fuel pump failure.

If you had a clogged filter issue.... when you need more gas flow... like on the highway.... the engine would starve for fuel.
 
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Old 03-04-15, 04:55 AM
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You might want to check the bill but I'd think they would have also replaced the fuel filter [on the frame rail] along with the fuel pump. It would be a separate item from the fuel pump. Normally the filter on the end of the fuel pick up isn't much more than a strainer.
 
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Old 03-04-15, 07:13 AM
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Thanks Mark. I actually talked to the shop owner (small shop) & we discussed what he found & what they replaced etc. They did not replace any other filter, for example on the frame rail. I asked if he noticed any reason why the pump quit, I.E. dirty, clogged, something broke etc & he said no. It probably just wore out with 151,000 miles on it. Some last longer but its not unheard of at this mileage. It was just time for it to go.

I do have a few other piddling things I need to get done, one being a tune up so at that tie, I'll make sure I get the fuel filter on the frame rail changed as well. Thanks for bringing that up. I appreciate it.
 
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Old 03-04-15, 10:02 AM
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Electric fuel pumps often get noisy in the weeks prior to them failing .... not every one notices though. Fuel pumps generally last a long time although the one on my wife's merc died about 40 miles after the warranty ran out. Because it was fairly new, the parts stores didn't carry one and the dealer charged about $400 just for the pump
 
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