pjbgravely Reader
5/10/14 9:48 p.m.

A few months ago I posted about my 2001 Dodge ram 1500 4X4 5.9L after it stalled an wouldn’t restart. The battery was dead after running at night in the rain with blower on full. I finally figured out that the alternator couldn’t keep up under high load and replacing the alternator seems to have fixed it.

After that it still stalled but it cranked fine on the restart. The truck also has a bucking problem from 3/4 full to 1/4 full. the bucking is like the engine shuts off for a full revolutions then try to make up for the down time. The weird thing is the truck never stalls or buck on the trip home, only on the way out. I attributed it it to home being mostly down hill.

I decided that the stalling and bucking had to be nonburnable goop left over from the mating of ethanol and water. I drained the tank completely. I tried burning the gas I took out in my old Gravely tractor which once warmed up will run on kerosine. The tractor had no power and kept stalling until I drained it out. Problem solved I thought.

I refuel it with Sunoco E10 because I had $1.50 off a gallon. The truck ran great for 2 trips with no bucking or stalling. I decided it was fixed so we went on a long drive to get some scrap metal. Out on the interstate the truck started bucking again. I decided to check later for a vacuum leak because it has a MAP sensor and the combination can cause surging.

I went up a large hill on the interstate at 70MPH, I was surprise that on cruise it dropped to 65 and the truck was empty. Going down the other side it stalled, in a one lane construction zone of course. I couldn’t restart because the neutral safety switch is being stupid again and only works in park. I coasted through the zone, pulled over, and it restarted immediacy. I continued on and it stalled 3 more times until I could get off an exit. The third time I restarted the low gas warning light came on ( I started the trip on 1/2) I stopped at the exit, saw no leaking fuel, and decided someone must have siphoned the gas and the fuel gauge stuck at 1/2 and it was stalling because it was empty.

At the exit is a gas station so I put in 10 gallons. I decided to put in E0 as it is one of the few stations that have it at I thought it was empty. The truck started right up, but the fuel gauge went to full. It wasn’t empty after all. The truck stalled trying to get out of the gas station.

On the trip home, I went back on the interstate and the truck ran perfectly. I got off, to avoid some one lane construction. I got back on and the trip was still uneventful. This trip was mostly uphill. I took it out today and it ran perfectly, no problems at all.

Could this be a fuel problem, I always fill the truck up with Sunoco because I can use $off from shopping at Price Chopper. I only fill up every 2 month or so. It still has 10 Gallons of E10 so the E0 I put in only drops it to 5%. I was just wondering if anyone else say something like this or maybe my truck is just possessed.

TLDR: 2001 Dodge truck stalled and bucked, maybe bad gas. E0 fixed it for now.

johnp2 Reader
5/11/14 1:58 a.m.

Might be worth a shot to change the fuel filter. If it hasn't been replaced in awhile it may be due anyways.

novaderrik PowerDork
5/11/14 2:33 a.m.

If it's like the 99 dodge that my brother had, it doesn't have a fuel filter that can be replaced... they designed it so you need a new pickup and pump assembly when it clogs up...

But, yeah, sure seems like a clogged filter to me.

Donebrokeit Dork
5/11/14 8:09 a.m.

I have a few questions,

What is you fuel pressure at the rail when the truck is at idle and at speed when the bucking starts

Have you checked for codes

Any deep dents in the floor of the bed

How rusty are the fuel lines

Any other gremlins (corrosion in the wiring) that you have fixed in the past or still searching for

Have you checked ( or changed) the fuel pump relay, inspected fuse box

Has the ignition coil been replaced

The quick list of things I would look for are bad or weak fuel pump, bad fuel pump relay, wiring going to the fuel pump, and maybe some kind of crap in the tank.

Paul B

pjbgravely Reader
5/11/14 9:03 a.m.

In reply to Donebrokeit:

MIL is off, no codes of any kind. MIL does not flash when it is acting up.

No dents in bed.

Fuel lines look good, may have been changed.

Tail light wiring was a mess, but I fixed it, other wiring looks fine.

I have checked the fuse box, it looks good, I will see if I can swap the fuel pump relay.

Ignition coil maybe the original.

I siphoned out the tank and found no dirt, just a fluid that doesn't run well in an engine.

Additional-- The stalling only happens at no throttle/decell. The bucking only happens at part throttle. The truck runs fine at WOT, this is why I didn't suspect a fuel pump issue. A few months ago the truck refused to idle. Cleaning the IAC fixed that.

My next step is to check for vacuum leaks and check the IAC. I am afraid I will find that they are the same problem and I need a new throttle body, as the IAC housing is the throttle body.

Right now the truck is running perfect, I am going to start using it as my DD for a new job that is a 1/2 mile from home. That should stress it out so maybe it will act up again. E0 at a station 10 miles from home is 65 cents more a gallon. If it makes the truck usable then It is worth the price.

Knurled PowerDork
5/11/14 9:06 a.m.

Ignition coils are a major Magnum weak point. So are crank sensors.

Another thing you can look at, which is pulling at straws but still worthwhile to look at on a Magnum engined Mopar, is to cap off the PCV and breather hoses and see if you are pulling vacuum in the crankcase (vacuum gauge on dipstick tube). The barrel style intake manifold has a plate on the bottom with a gasket that likes to die, causing a horrendous vacuum leak.

moparman76_69 SuperDork
5/11/14 9:08 a.m.

Drop the tank clean it out. and replace the strainer. Then try e10 from another station. The place you normally use may have water in their tanks.

iceracer PowerDork
5/11/14 12:40 p.m.

Being a Sunoco customer for years and have no problems with the E-10, look for another problem. One clue, when you switched to a different station for the E-0 and no problem, perhaps your regular station has a water problem.

pjbgravely Reader
8/25/14 9:55 p.m.

I finally got to repeat the trip that had to be aborted. I mad a few trips in different directions and it only stalled once. The blipping is a lot less and happens in the same place on each road which is leading me to believe it is caused by radio transmissions. I once had a fox body that stalled in the same place once a week with nothing ever found to be wrong. I am going to attempt to test it with a hand help CB radio.

The trip went fine with only small blips at each exit, ( may have been radar). It never stalled and I had a safe trip. I have been using Sunoco E10 since the first post. I did discover that the gas gauge is no longer correct and reads empty with 5 gallons left.

Recently the Sunoco station I use started selling E0. The truck doesn't need it, only a little TCO in the gas is needed to make it run smooth.

So I found nothing wrong, it must have been a bad tank of gas.

jmthunderbirdturbo Reader
8/25/14 10:11 p.m.

the malfunctioning gauge and the use of E0 tells me you have a fuel issue. likely tarred up the inside of your tank. try a quart of toluene to a FULL tank of E0 gas. DO NOT MIX TOLUENE WITH E10 OR E85. make sure the tank ONLY has E0 in it.

toluene sources: seafoam is my favorite, but you can get pure toluene for some pool chemical stores and hardware stores. be care full with the straight stuff, its nasty.