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2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag)


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RootPC
Novice

Aug 4, 2023, 1:18 AM

Post #1 of 10 (1386 views)
post icon 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

This is going to be a copy-paste from another forum I posted on, so sorry if the edits confuse people.

Good afternoon, I have a 2013 Ram 1500 Express 5.7.

I've been battling some fuel and electrical issues since I've bought the truck. Had a nuked engine when I bought it (half the cylinders where disabled due to a solenoid being bad, then found out via the truck wanting to throw up the engine while driving that one or more pistons had nuked. Replaced the engine with a new crated OEM, installed by the dealership).
Also changed the fuel pump due to it not reporting correctly. After getting it changed, it reported (seemingly) correctly for a few weeks, then it started misbehaving again (the gauge would show pegged Full, Half, or Empty, no in between. Dealt with that for a year or 2, then took it in again, and the dealership found that the tank had sucked itself in a bit. So I bought parts myself (used tank, filler tubes, another fuel pump)
At some point before this I had the main harness connector located along the frame under the driver's seat replaced because the latch was broke and the previous owner had it zip tied to keep it from becoming loose.
I also replaced the TIPM.

Anyway, with all that in mind, I'm still getting a P0463 and U1403, and the gauge does not report correctly (floats between half and full)

I do have other codes relating to electical (practically all lights report Circuit Short To Battery or Open, though they all work except the 3rd brake light, and the fog lights intermittently flickering)

Any ideas?

Edit: Also, while sitting here, I have noticed that it seems to "struggle" (blower fan for AC and Heat slows, lights dim) and then it seems to report fuel level correctly for a minute or so before dropping again

Edit 2: when it does report empty, it takes 17-23gal to fill on a 32gal tank

Edit 3: Just installed new Morimoto lighting, and my 3rd brake light still flashes the reverse lights once and then turns off. Doesn't turn on when in reverse or I have the bed light button on. This was happening before the install too, but I had figured it was the old unit, but apparently not.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Aug 4, 2023, 3:29 AM

Post #2 of 10 (1369 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

Both of those have to do with the fuel level signal being plausible.

It depends on what type of fuel tank setup you have. If you have a single saddle tank it has 2 fuel level sensors and it takes an average of the two to calculate the actual fuel level. One of them could be bad or there could be a problem in the wiring going forward.

The lighting issues you have could be unrelated although they could be related through a wiring harness problem. With the wiring issues you have already dealt with I have to question if this truck had previous water damage. That could mean this is only the beginning of numerous electrical problems to come in the future.



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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.



RootPC
Novice

Aug 4, 2023, 4:52 AM

Post #3 of 10 (1357 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

I have no knowledge of any previous water damage, but my knowledge only goes as far as me buying it from the dealership in '19.

Would there be anything I can post from bluedriver that would help with diagnosing exactly where to fix things rather than trial and error.

And with the fuel tank sensors, would a P# help determine what to look for? I'm fairly certain the fuel pump sending unit is good, but if there's a secondary sensor to look at, I'm willing to bet that's it. People have been suggesting the cluster is bad but I'm personally 99% sure that's fine.

Is there any surefire way to determine water damage? The only ground point that was bad on the frame was the one fuel filler tube ground, that was completely frayed and not connected.

Thanks for the input though, a lot more helpful than what I've gotten so far haha.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Aug 4, 2023, 5:00 AM

Post #4 of 10 (1352 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

You already know what the code means. There is a communication issue between the level sensors and the PCM. The problem can be anywhere in between.

You mentioned repairing a plug. Was there an issue with the repair? Is there another plug in the route that could have a problem?

Yes, the other sensor could be bad but there's no guarantee to that.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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.



RootPC
Novice

Aug 4, 2023, 6:09 AM

Post #5 of 10 (1343 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

I will have to look more this weekend at it. Not sure if it's worth mentioning but I will anyway, the horn is very weak as well.

Here are all the current codes, just for reference.

I may try to find someone local that specializes in automotive electrical, though I'm not holding my breath on that because I'm in a fairly remote location.

Again, thanks for the pointers, I will reply in a day or 2 with any information as to finding more connectors.

One other thing I just observed this morning, the 3rd brake light does work, it's solely the reverse/bed light that seems to short out after activation.









(This post was edited by RootPC on Aug 4, 2023, 6:41 AM)


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Aug 4, 2023, 6:24 AM

Post #6 of 10 (1333 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

I removed your images for the time being as they are too large for the thread. Reduce the size by about 50% before reposting them.
That's easy to do within the imaging posting tool.


It appears you have a ton of lighting problems. My best guess is you either have a pinched or shorted out harness somewhere or a bad Body Control Module. These lighting failures have to be related somehow.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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.



RootPC
Novice

Aug 4, 2023, 6:35 AM

Post #7 of 10 (1327 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

Resized, will edit the original reply in a moment.

The strange thing about the lighting issues being reported is I don't physically have any lighting issues, all the lights appear to be functional, besides the 3rd reverse light/bed light and fog lights.

Will try to trace to which point all these lights connect to and go from there. I have had a suspicion that the BCM/PCM could be to blame but any time I suggest that to any repair shop that the truck has been to, it gets shrugged off and ignored.


Hammer Time
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Hammer Time profile image

Aug 4, 2023, 6:41 AM

Post #8 of 10 (1320 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

I don't think there is any concern with the PCM but the BCM controls all that lighting. It could even be a programming issue with the BCM. Someone could have slapped the wrong one from a junkyard with the wrong programming. When you don't know the history of the vehicle, anything's possible.



~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

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.



RootPC
Novice

Aug 6, 2023, 8:06 PM

Post #9 of 10 (1147 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

Didn't get to checking the wiring this weekend. Helped a friend with their truck.

I can say though, weird experience. My friends dad is pretty good with electrical so I explained everything and showed him around the truck. The gauge was inaccurate and bed light wouldn't stay on. License plate light was flickering a bit too. Then all of a sudden, without doing anything, everything started working. Gauge was accurate, bed light was on, though not full power and a little flickery. Kept working through several cycles until this afternoon, suddenly the bed light just flashed again, gauge was reporting exactly half or exactly 3/4 tank instead of just below full.

I ordered a new BCM from a place that requests VIN so its programmed correctly, figured even if it ends up not being that, might as well. Already past the point of no return with this truck, just throw more money as it. I know it could just be corroded connectors.


(This post was edited by RootPC on Aug 6, 2023, 8:13 PM)


Tom Greenleaf
Ultimate Carjunky / Moderator
Tom Greenleaf profile image

Aug 7, 2023, 11:02 AM

Post #10 of 10 (1072 views)
Re: 2013 Ram 1500 multiple electrical issues (fuel gauge, 3rd brake light, airbag) Sign In

? You might be working too hard at this. It's a "chassis" truck, the bed isn't grounded unless those are there and connected. Fuel necks grounded too as is gas tank.

Add ground wire (cables) will do no harm, rust proof those with grease.

Hope it's that's silly and it could be! No ground for fuel tanks, necks is dangerous, they need to be or IDK make a spark would be funny,

Tom







 
 
 






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