It may be an oldie, but the Dodge Ram V10 engine withstands the test of time. So much so that it manages to deliver all the power needed even for modern vehicles.
This is why it has earned its spot as a decent and reliable engine. With an excellent service life, there’s a lot the V10 engine has to offer.
However, some problems may arise along the way. Like other engines, this one can be a bit of trouble unexpectedly.
Thus, you’ll find the most common Dodge Ram V10 problems you may experience with this engine.
When you have the whole picture, dealing with engine problems gets easier.
Make sure to read all of the information, the symptoms, and how to spot these problems.
This way, you’ll have the opportunity to act quickly and prevent further damage.
Let’s begin, then!
Dodge Ram V10 Common Problems
For this section, I’ll cover some of the most common problems found with the V10 engine.
Surprisingly enough, this type of engine doesn’t really have that many issues that occur regularly. At least, it doesn’t have as many as other engines.
But nothing is perfect. During its lifespan, the Ram V10 engine can give you some trouble with specific issues.
So let’s talk about those issues, the symptoms, and the potential solutions you could try.
Keep this information in mind the next time the engine starts going rogue.
Let’s not wait any longer then. These are the common Dodge Ram V10 engine problems.
Cylinder Head Cracking
Cracked cylinder heads are a far too common issue for most engines. This also includes the Dodge Ram V10, though it doesn’t occur that often.
However, it might happen when least expected.
So how can you tell the cylinder head is failing? Easy! By spotting some of the symptoms that this issue carries out.
Symptoms of Damaged Cylinder Head
Multiple symptoms signal the cylinder head is having issues. Once you know them, spotting the problem is quick.
You must know how to identify these signs to act quickly and prevent further issues.
Here, I’ll talk about the potential accidents that cracked cylinder heads could cause. Now, let’s focus on the symptoms.
Worry about your cylinder heads if you experience the following:
- Sudden coolant level drops
- Unexpected oil level drops
- Poor engine performance
- Smoke emanating from the exhaust
Potential Solution #1: Take the Engine to a Garage
The easiest, quickest, and less troublesome solution. Also, the most expensive one.
A specialized garage should have the equipment to take care of this issue quickly. Professionals can repair and recondition the cylinder head to make it work once again.
The average cost of this service can be as little as $75. Nonetheless, the price can also go over the hundreds of dollars depending on several elements.
For instance, professionals will have to consider the cylinder head value and the damage.
Potential Solution #2: Fixing the Crack Yourself
A mechanic will for sure take care of the issue for you. But what if you can do it yourself? Well, you can, and doing it is also easy.
Several products could help you fix a cracked cylinder head. Some of those are compounds called Stop Leak or K-Seal.
These are excellent for that purpose, as they can repair cracks and leaks in cylinder heads that would cause coolant loss.
Applying the compound is easy. Usually, all you have to do is shake the bottle with the product and pour the substance into the crack.
And that’s it! The reason these products are so effective is that they feature sodium silicate.
In practice, this substance is antifreeze and compatible. You can use it to seal cracked cylinder heads, blown head gaskets, and cylinder blocks.
Things to Consider
This is an effective method to fix cracks in the cylinder heads. However, you must be careful while applying the substance.
Make sure to read the instructions thoroughly. Otherwise, some issues may arise with the engine.
- Some of the substances need you to flush the engine entirely before the application.
- Other products only work with fine cracks, so keep this in mind as well.
- If you’re dealing with large cracks, the chances of the compound working are low.
These products can also discolor antifreeze. While this is not a big deal performance-wise, it can affect your skill to diagnose issues based on the antifreeze’s condition.
This is another problem that the V10 engine experiences from time to time. Unlike the previous one, this isn’t as common, but it still happens.
Therefore, preparation is vital to deal with it if this problem starts to affect the engine.
The engine hesitation is a bit of a strange term, so let’s talk about what it means quickly.
Engine hesitation refers to the sudden loss of power in the engine. Considering these engines are super old, this is something that you may notice over time anyway.
Constant use and high mileage lead to wear and tear, which leads to this problem.
How to Diagnose Engine Hesitation Problem
You could either take the engine to a mechanic or run a diagnosis yourself. This isn’t easy, but not super complicated either. These are some tips on how the procedure goes.
- To run a diagnosis, you can use a scan tool to check the engine computer. This will display any fault codes, including the misfire codes.
- You also have to check the sensor response. The scan tool is capable of doing this after taking a closer look at the different PIDS sensors.
- If the values are not within range or the sensor doesn’t respond correctly, you have to test the sensors. Use a DVOM or scope to do this process.
Additionally, other diagnostics may be necessary. For instance:
- Looking for vacuum leaks.
- Checking/cleaning the EGR valve.
- Running fuel pressure and volume measurements.
- Spark plugs inspection with possible removal.
- Using the scan tool to check whether the engine runs lean by inspecting fuel trim readings. Lean mixtures can come from vacuum leaks, and they have a significant effect on Dodge V10 idle problems.
Potential Solution #1: If a fuel-related issue is causing the problem.
After running the diagnostics, you’ll have the chance to determine what’s causing the problem. If it’s coming from fuel-related issues, this is what you want to do:
- Clean the fuel injectors.
- Fix the vacuum leaks.
Potential Solution #2: If an ignition-related issue is causing the problem.
Alternatively, there may be some issues related to the ignition process. If this is the case, try the following:
- Replace all spark plugs as well as the wires.
These are simple yet effective solutions. However, if the problems remain, make sure to contact a professional to get assistance.
With the right tools, specialized professionals can single out the problem to find the root.
Is the Dodge Ram V10 Reliable?
This is a question that often pops up, primarily because of the bad reputation that follows this engine.
Realistically, it’d be safe to assume that this engine is reliable due to how few problems it has.
As seen here, you’d only have to deal with just a couple of issues during the engine’s service life.
The tricky part is when you start to compare this engine to others. Take the 5.9 6BT Cummins, for example.
This engine is one of the best ever made, at least within its type. Created with a passenger diesel design, the engine is reliable like only a few others.
Plus, the specs of the Dodge Ram 5.9 Cummins are remarkable. For starters, the engine holds up decently even after surpassing the 300,000 miles threshold.
When comparing this engine to others, you’ll notice that only half of them would accomplish this fantastic feat.
Going back to the Dodge V10, it’s easy to tell why it remains a reliable engine even to this day.
It has been around for years, and it continues to deliver a solid performance in the modern era. So much so that some cars are still going even after 150,000 ran.
In terms of longevity, the Dodge V10 doesn’t compare to the 5.9 Cummins.
Nonetheless, the Dodge Ram is indeed a reliable engine. With little to no problems caused, you’ll enjoy a lot of fun times on the roads.
Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)
What is a Dodge V10 engine?
The Dodge 8.0L V10 came as part of the Chrysler LA family of engines. It has a platform based on the 360 CID V8.
Nonetheless, the V10 has lengthened stroke and a couple of cylinders added to the build.
Because of the engine’s longer stroke length, the engine puts out a low-end torque.
For years, the V10 engine stood as one of the best. However, it eventually became somewhat outdated.
This is because of the engine’s large size and the technology. Over time, newer engine models proved to be more efficient than this one.
Is the V10 engine a powerful engine?
First released in 1994, the 8.0L V10 engine delivered fantastic power.
At maximum capacity, it provides a remarkable amount of 300 horsepower with 450 of torque. However, later models produced up to 310 horsepower.
This is why the 10V engine is such a great pick, considered an outstanding choice for trucks.
While it does have some problems, these aren’t as consistent as those seen in other engines.
Plus, proper maintenance will keep these issues under control for the duration of the engine’s lifespan. Treat it properly, and the engine will last longer.
Are there Dodge Ram V10 transmission problems?
Dodge trucks released in the years 1999 to 2003 had a rough time dealing with transmission problems.
This is because they featured the Dodge 45RFE automatic transmission. These systems used to have significant reliability issues.
This transmission system was present in several Dodge vehicles. The list includes the Dodge Durango, Dodge Ram, and the Dakota.
However, these models used a smaller V8 engine instead of the V10.
The 10V engine also had this problem slightly, but not to that extend. Therefore, this engine offered a significant improvement to the predecessors.
How long does a Dodge Ram last?
The average miles of a Dodge Ram is around 200,000 miles. Past beyond that point, the engine will start to display a significant power reduction.
But that doesn’t mean that getting there is hassle-free.
In some cases, the engine begins to experience issues as soon as it hits the 70,000 miles.
These issues can be either overheating or poor oil circulation. This is why getting the right truck is super important.
Not all of them within this line of Dodge Ram models have that issue. Some work better than others and may not even show these symptoms so soon.
Do V10 engines have a good balance?
Sadly, this is not the case. Due to its configuration, the V10 engine doesn’t have a perfect balance.
This is also because the cylinder banks work as a straight-five engine, creating an unbalanced rocking couple.
AS a result, the V10 engines often use balance shafts. These help a lot by reducing the vibrations that the engine would experience otherwise.
Despite all of this, the engine manages to perform consistently. It can go past 150,000 miles without giving you headaches. Thus, you can still count on it to power up your vehicle.
Sounds easy, right? The engine already does an excellent job of performing well without any problems.
This is one reason why people love it and why it’s a solid and reliable engine.
Even better, you can reduce the risks of these problems happening with thorough maintenance.
If you’re dealing with these Dodge Ram V10 problems, put in practice the tips mentioned here.
They’re simple, quick, and easy methods to take care of those issues.
Lastly, if none of that works, get a professional to assist you with an in-depth inspection. This way you won’t miss any details.
If you care for it, the V10 engine should continue providing solid performance for years.