Starts,Idols perfect Bogs down, no power upon acceleration 1997 1500,5.2 Gas,Auto.Could cause be bad Cat?

Asked by May 30, 2013 at 08:04 AM about the 1997 Dodge Ram 1500 2 Dr Laramie SLT Extended Cab LB

Question type: Maintenance & Repair

Bought truck in '08 w/24,000, now has 74,500,This has been a great truck, (still is)
other than new ball joints, I have had no trouble until about two weeks ago, I was on
hwy doing about 70mph turned on cruise control right when I hit set speed button bam
No Power engine didn't die just bogged way down, I put in neutral engine went right to
idol once I was on the shoulder I put back in drive and feathered throttle to get off
hwy.well not go any faster than 30-35mph.first inspection showed air cleaner bracket  
wasn't completely sealed on T/B, and short piece of vac line@T/B broken, rr vac line,
not sure if I cleaned T/B no change.Please note that about 8 months ago started
hearing raddling noises that a bad cat makes, noticed excessive fuel consumption and
didn't have the same zip, never a cel, until after it passed Ca.smog, code read misfire,
at which point I replaced plugs, cap, rotor @ 71000. It cleared code, but still wasn't
right.I read in your Q&A that a misfire condition will ruin the cat, to correct the misfire
then replace the cat to solve problem.How long would it take the misfire to ruin the cat?
and wouldn't you think the check engine lite would have come on when all this was
happening? I don't have a lot of dough and I really need my truck. Any help or input will
be appreciated. Thank you

35 Answers


The first thing I would do is change the O2 sensor(s). They get dirty and misread, causing a run rich condition. This clogs a cat faster than anything, but no code as the sensor is working correctly from an electrical stand point. With a little luck, the cat will gradually unclog, although you may well need a new one at this point. A sure way to tell if this is the case is to pull a plug or two and see what they look like. If the electrode is black, it is rich. The other thing I would look at is your fuel filter. If it is not new, I would change it. It could be restricting fuel flow, causing the lack of power. I have had that happen after a dirty tank of gas. The other thing it may be is a defective pressure regulator. Again, if it restricts flow, you may be starving the engine under wider throttle settings. Good luck. Hope one of those ideas helps. Try the fuel filter first, as it is cheap and easy.

8 of 8 people found this helpful.

97 dodge ram does not have a fuel filter

7 of 7 people found this helpful.

It may just have a fuel pump

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

My 97 dodge ram is doing the same thing that the guy on the top is taking about. Put a new tps and the cat clean anything else thanks

8 of 8 people found this helpful.

New pump and my oil pressure drops at idle New pump and sensor for oil any ideas thanks

10 of 10 people found this helpful.

Oh no, 98,5.9 Samething

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

Anyone HELP!!! PLEASE, I get this weird back fire action going too, like it's gargling, afters it gets going it takes off, but city driving sucks! It even dies sometimes.

21 of 21 people found this helpful.

Burning gas would be Rich, Right. But it sounds lean like it's going to die or it dies.

4 of 4 people found this helpful.

Ignition coil? Mine did the same thing. Gave a new coil and it runs fine now

5 of 5 people found this helpful.

I had the same problem with my 98 ram. I replaced the Idle Air Control solenoid (which was stuck open) and replaced the catalytic converter. I found it was clogged by removing the sensor. Runs fine now.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

Check for chewed wires. A squirrel chewed through mine. Good thing it stopped after the first one.

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

my 97 dodge when i give it gas seems to bog out.. and does not accelerate properly... feels like a misfire or something that is preventing it from properly accerate right

40 of 40 people found this helpful.

Wow 2 years and nobody has figured this one out? I'm having the same problem with my 97. IV replaced the Fuel pump/filter, tpcs, plugs, wires, cap, coil, cat seems fine...oh and I replaced the front o2 sensor. If anyone can help befor I light this truck on fire and watch it burn id appreciate it. Tonyotool@gmail please I really cant take much more of this pile making me feel like an ass everytime I drive it. Thanks

13 of 13 people found this helpful.

Ima try the iac next.

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

Your issue is your egr valve and throttle body. There is a carbon build up here this may help. flow-p0402-problem-solved-100593/

8 of 8 people found this helpful.

I recently picked up a 98 Dodge Dakota v6 3.9 model. I'm having issues it starts up fine and idols smooth but has a slight hesitation when I slam the throttle down it slowly rises in rpms I can tell it's not right. Once I put it into drive I can literally hold the brake an floor it, it just chugs an has no power, if I were to put it into 4wd it has more takeoff power for sure very strange. It has new plugs, cap n rotor, new cat, tried tps sensor, checked for vaccum leaks, cleaned the throttle body, fresh oil, cleaned air filter, added injector cleaner to fresh fuel. Not sure what to do, any clue?

10 of 10 people found this helpful.

Sam Could be a clogged cat. My 97 dodge ram did the same thing. Check your cat.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Okay...94 RAM2500 5.9! I had same problems. Was mind boggling. I checked and changed everything . EVERYTHING. Recently, I removed intake system and put in all new seals. I was consuming fuel and oil with no smoke or leak. Before changing seals I had changed the intake air sensor...$13. For 600 miles it ran beautifully. Now it does same thing. Starts, idles smooth, put it under load(manual)and about second clutching I get power loss...sounds like it it suffocating or staving for gas. Backfires thru intake after quarter mile driving. Plugs, MAP, IAC, TPS, ATS, FUEL PUMP PLUG WIRES, FUEL CAP, INTAKE GASKET SET. No truck to use for work. I am a carpenter. NOT a mechanic. No one in this entire town of 27,000 people can give me an answer that won't cost me $250 just to look at it. I don't need to pay a mechanic to tell me something is malfunctioning. I need an answer to the problem. Short of pulling the distributor...I have done everything possible. The temp sensor on intake is the clue. It fixed it for 600 miles. It was caked and lacquered over with carbonized oil. Thus, not giving info to fuel system. It was stuck at 34┬░ temp. The new one was nice...for 600 miles. Come on guys. Which guru has the answer?

10 of 10 people found this helpful.

8 months ago you probably have it long fixed by now. I had a problem with my 98 Dodge Ram 5.2. I had a major loss of power it felt like I was towing a big trailer everywhere I went. It turns out my catalytic converter broke inside turn sideways and was completely blocking the path of the exhaust. It was reading as a misfire but I ended up with over 10 psi before the cat. Just go get the cat checked it won't cost you anything at a muffler shop. Mine is fixed now and runs perfect

2 of 2 people found this helpful.

I had one bogging so bad it would die sitting at lights. Mine was a broken crankshaft pos sensor about 20$ on ebay. Trust me i tried all the other things iac map sens plugs cap etc.


2001 dodge ram 1500 v8 360 does anyone know y it's having a missing issue I changed out all kinds of sensors and it's still doing it can't seem to find the problem

5 of 5 people found this helpful.

i have 97 dodge 360 runs great but is dumping to much fuel and acts like it floods it out when i start it and has no power pulling hills i had a 14ft stock trailer with 1 horse and it killed the truck on any incline and is sluggish there are no misses back fires nothing just boggs i took cat off ( was clogged completly to where truck wouldnt even run) now i have straight piped from manifold back still dumping to much fuel and loss of power any ideas ? my check engine light is on the code reads incorrect purge flow i need answer soon as possible i need the truck for school can contact me at or text 1-740-589-0326 any help is appreciated

4 of 4 people found this helpful.

318 and 360 Rams are notorious for having intake gasket failure. Intake leaks can cause all sorts of problems that seem like it should be something else. You may want to check that.

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I totally rebuilt entire top rattles but it always has. Found no difference in how it runs with or without cat. New pump...all sensors...fuses...relays...filter is in inline filter on these models. Coil is next avenue...I know it isn't pick-up coil cuz it wouldn't run at all. You would think with a total T/B Rebuild and all new electronics that some change would come along...but no...not a lick of change. Mine is a 94 with 152,000 on it. Runs perfect in driveway. No bump or hesitation...purrs like a cat in heat. Plenum is clean...not one drop of oil leak or consumption. Clear clean plugs. New gas. I haven't worked in three months because I can't get out of the driveway. I don't need guess work...I need an answer with positive results. I am out of money so the $86.00 an hour mechanic is out of the question. Need an expert GURU that has positive results. Thanx guys.

9 of 9 people found this helpful.

98 dodge 1500 5.9 drives but after 2 mins acts like it ain't getting gas

15 of 15 people found this helpful.

1996 Dodge RAM 2500 v10 100,000 miles feels like its missing when driving at steady speeds. As soon as I give it more gas, it goes away. It only happens in OD. Like the gear is way too low for it. Any ideas?

3 of 3 people found this helpful.

Clogged headers

2002 Dodge 4-wheel drive the engine starts but idles real high then I put it in gear and idles real rough I accelerate and can't get it to go no faster than 20 miles an hour the Cadillac converter has been removed

Idle air control valve


ok i have a 97 doge ram 1500 with the 318 in it it was running fine then all the sudden it acts like it has now power i changed the plugs and wired as they was bad but still acts like it has now power i just got the truck so not sure what all to check i dont have alot of money to put into it

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Mine is a 2001 and is doing same thing, I primed the fuel rail once and it fixed it but 2 days later it did it again and has got worse I'll check the items yell listed thanks for the info

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

I have a 99 dodge Ram 1500 5.9 it has no power till 2500 RMP then it starts building power going up hills a 4cycl. can bet my dodge I have replaced Fuel pump, Fuel Filter, Cat,TP Sensor,IAC Senor, Coil, Spark Plugs, Wires, MAP Sensor Injectors Top Gaskets All Redone Crank Senor,Had both Solenoids replace in tranny,water pump and just had the whole motor replaced and it still has no power under acceleration till 2500 RMP any help Would Be Nice Have To Much Money In it already and don't know where to go I have been told that it could be the computer going because once in a while going down road my air bag light will kick on the only things that I can think of it being is the Computer or Wiring. PLEASE HELP!!!!!


Just bought a used puter for 94 2500 5.9 Magnum with manual tranny. I have changed or replaced EVERYTHING. Now, today I got white and blue smoke with excessive water flowing out of tail pipe. It stops after it warms up. However, I now found to able cause to that. Velvetune cover not leaking, but black oil residue around first port exhaust manifold at second cylinder. Cracked head? Maybe. Explains my oil loss and plug fouling on cylinders 2&4. Now I KNOW MY CAT IS RUINED. Backfiring occasionally...But not since new brain installed. Water temp staying about 40┬░cooler than normal. But no significant water loss. Battery also went t*ts up. So...A new head...Gaskets and dammit all! Sucking hissing sound is also annoying. 151874 miles. Engine runs and idles perfectly, until I travel but don't think highway driving will be possible. Last two thousand miles has been a nightmare. No codes whatsoever. Who knows...It may be a Ford or Chevy conspiracy. Good luck all and send me your feedback.


T DOG , south west FL. 2002 5.2 Ram Van, 234.700 miles no rebuild. only replaced A/C pump.and alt. recently started to skip and stutter after driving 5 miles. seemed like a fuel problem so I pressure tested at rail. 50 was the number running and static cold. not that checked the crank sensor and replaced it no change sat for a day and came back and pulled the crank sensor reset it and it seem to run very good drove about 10 miles and nothing. hum, going to go for a long trip will get back to this site TBA

1 of 1 people found this helpful.

Check your computer dodges are good for having bad computer

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