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Can a brake controller (aftermarket tow setup) affect a 318 automatic

1841 Views 9 Replies 5 Participants Last post by  BlackSheep01
This is a 1999 Ram 1500 4x2 with 104,000 miles, 5.2 liter V8. Needs a new front bumper and a windshield. Drives fine in Low / Reverse.
Won't shift into L2 or D. It's an extended cab, white, with a camper shell & frame-mounted towing hitch -- don't know if it's a class II or III.
Don't know the brand or condition of the brake controller mounted on the cab.

If we can make this work it's a serious upgrade over the 189K 360 with the hole in the roof ..... :excited:

I know where I can get the bumper. I think I know where I can get a windshield.
I looked at a truck absolutely NO cleaner than this one earlier today for $5250 -- and it had more miles on it. This one's $1500.
I think this transmission would do fine to rebuild.
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It won't be the brake controller. Quick way to prove this is to disconnect the power lead from the battery to controller.
Does the speedo work?
It might just be a speed sensor that keeps the tranny from shifting.
Any fault codes? The 46RE has an electronic governor sensor and solenoid that can fail and the PCM controls the 3-4 shift solenoid and converter lock-up.
Do you mean that it stays in 1st gear? How does the ATF look on the dipstick? It needs some diagnosis, but still may need a rebuild.
Previous owner changed fluid & filter. Appears we have a clogged valve body. Shifts down fine but requires encouragement to shift up.
Estimated repair cost for the valve body is
If the clogging is from clutch material, it may still need a rebuild. Worn clutches and seals can cause late shifts as well, but so can the governor sensor/solenoid which is also in the valve body.
If the v/body shuttles and bores aren't too badly worn or scratched up, the v/body can be disassembled and cleaned with an exploded view diagram for reference. Use solvent and compressed air.
Don't tamper with the pressure regulator adjustment screw yet. Leave it where it is for now. If you do have to remove the screw, measure the length so it goes back to where it was.
if the TV cable isn't properly adjusted it can keep the upshifts from happening properly. One more simple thing to try before tearing into it.
um, I wondered about that TV cable ... can somebody point me to photos / exploded drawings to help with these questions, so I don't sound like a compleat idiot talking to her mechanic?

Ok. there's another question for this truck. The front bumper's dinged up so the latch won't shut the hood, so the seller pulled the bottom half the latch off (which we have).
Better to swap on the bumper from the 1998, or try to hammer out the front bumper from this truck? Price of $300 plus for a replacement piece is a complete nonstarter ......

Oh, and I have the VIN -- will that help tell which transmission this is? The truck sold in December as a salvage-title truck to the guy we bought it from ... but I don't know where he bought it.
Its previous owner was insured thru State Farm, which wrote it off as totaled even though the frame appears ok. The radiator support is fine, as is the radiator (and the heat and air both work
like they're supposed to, unlike the 1998 she's driving now).


Sure wish I'd found this when my kid's truck got clobbered last year ... but he's buying his dad's 2001 sport truck, so we're good there ...

This thing has a *lot* more cool stuff on it than the (essentially a poorly-kempt hard-worked) 1998 she's currently driving, and it *doesn't* have some of that 1998's features ...
like the highly iffy tranny, the gonna-need-a-ring-job-soon maybe a 318 / maybe a 360, the (newly discovered ) gas leak on fillup ... the really iffy heat / air ... heh. Yeah. The 1998 needs
a lot of TLC / lovin', and it's hard to do all the things it needs on a daily driver ......
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This video is for a Dakota V6, but is also typical of yours. The white clip is a horseshoe lock. The cable 'length' can then be adjusted, then the lock snapped back in place.
Your Ram 1500 club cab from Texas has the 46RE.
Thanks. This truck sat -- untouched -- at her mechanic's since I originally posted that. We're picking it up tomorrow, perhaps as a tow ...
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