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1996 Dodge Ram 1500 No Spark

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New User

Sep 2, 2018, 5:12 AM

Post #1 of 2 (277 views)
1996 Dodge Ram 1500 No Spark Sign In

I have a 1996 Dodge Ram 1500 5.2lt ExtCab 4x4

Here is my issue:
We bought this truck knowing it didn't run at the time, was told it just died. When I got it home, I put a new battery on it and grabbed a can of starting fluid for first test, figuring if it was a fuel issue it would fire and if it was an electrical issue then it wouldn't fire... No spark... So we started at the top, replaced the coil, spark plugs, wires, cap and rotor... still no spark... replaced the crank position sensor, all the relays and fuses, even if they were good, didn't take any chances... still no spark... noticed the ECM was from a junk yard so we replaced it with a pre-programmed one from O'Reilly's... still no spark... next we replaced the entire distributor... sadly still no spark... we noticed that the throttle body was missing a couple screws holding sensors on so we decided to take the safe route and totally rebuilt the throttle body including replacing all the sensors on it... Alas we still have no spark, even checked to see if coil was getting power and and according to the volt tester the wires into the coil have no juice at all... So other than a wiring issue, what am I missing?

Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Sep 2, 2018, 5:28 AM

Post #2 of 2 (268 views)
Re: 1996 Dodge Ram 1500 No Spark Sign In

Yep, the parts cannon approach isn't much help, is it?

All "crank, no start" conditions are approached in the same way. Every engine requires certain functions to be able to run. Some of these functions rely on specific components to work and some components are part of more than one function so it is important to see the whole picture to be able to conclude anything about what may have failed. Also, these functions can ONLY be tested during the failure. Any other time and they will simply test good because the problem isn't present at the moment.
If you approach this in any other way, you are merely guessing and that only serves to replace unnecessary parts and wastes money.

Every engine requires spark, fuel and compression to run. That's what we have to look for.

These are the basics that need to be tested and will give us the info required to isolate a cause.

1) Test for spark at the plug end of the wire using a spark tester. If none found, check for power supply on the + terminal of the coil with the key on.

2) Test for injector pulse using a small bulb called a noid light. If none found, check for power supply at one side of the injector with the key on.

3) Use a fuel pressure gauge to test for correct fuel pressure, also noticing if the pressure holds when key is shut off.

4) If all of these things check good, then you would need to do a complete compression test.

Once you have determined which of these functions has dropped out,
you will know which system is having the problem.


We offer help in answering questions, clarifying things or giving advice but we are not a substitute for an on-site inspection by a professional.

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