Updated at: 27-07-2023 - By: Lucas

Because of its capability to transport both people and cargo, the Dodge Ram 1500 is an essential tool for any jobsite. No experience is more demoralizing than being in the driver’s seat, cranking the engine, and hearing nothing more than a grating sound. My goal in writing this tutorial is to not only explain the most common causes of ignition failure, but also provide solutions to these issues.

It’s possible that the Ram 1500 won’t start and simply clicks.

Battery cables that are loose, corroded or have a drained or dead battery are among the most common causes of battery failure.

Why Your Ram 1500 Won’t Start & How To Fix It

1. Drained Battery

Drained Battery.

Usually, the clicking noise is caused by the battery not having enough power to run the starter. A battery charger or jumper wires can be used to recharge the battery to fix the problem.

Jumper Cables

The cheapest method is to use jumper cables, however this necessitates the use of another vehicle to provide a boost to your Ram. Keep the other vehicle running and as close to yours as you can. Plug in the red and black cables, with the red on the positive and black on the negative, respectively. Wait a few minutes after starting your vehicle before disconnecting the negative and positive cables.

Allow the alternator to fully recharge the battery by running the Ram for at least 15 minutes, but ideally 30 minutes or more.

Battery Booster

In the event that you’re experiencing battery-related troubles, or if you drive many vehicles as I do, booster packs are a must-have. When the battery dies, simply insert the booster pack on top of the battery to get the engine running. Jumper cables and battery boosters both work in the same way, but the latter is far more convenient. To recharge the battery, keep the car running after starting it.

Battery Charger

A battery charger can be the ideal choice if you’re not in a hurry. If you use this instead of a jumper cable or booster pack, you can recharge your battery completely without running your car.

The negative is that you’ll have to remove the battery and recharge it indoors if you don’t have a secure garden. Over the course of 12 hours, the process may be too long in some cases.

2. What Causes Battery Drain

When you keep your car’s parking lights, interior illumination, radio, or any other electric consumer running for an extended period of time, the battery will deplete. If it runs out of power, the starter and engine can’t start. It’s basically a much more powerful phone battery, but it runs out of power too quickly to start the engine.

Your alternator may have failed or a power leak may be preventing the battery from being recharged while everything appears to be off. You’ll need an electrician to fix a power leak, but the alternator may be replaced at home, albeit with difficulty. When we get to that part of the article, I’ll show you how to accomplish it.

3. Loose Battery Cables

Loose Battery Cables

Even if the battery is fully charged, the connection will be insufficient to transfer the entire amount of energy if the wires are slack. On rare occasions, terminal connector clamps can be freed by themselves.

The cables can be checked by opening the hood (or vehicle). Take hold of them, and if they begin to move, it indicates that the connection was not secure. Continue driving after tightening the screws using a traditional wrench.

4. Corroded Terminals & Bad Connectors

It is possible for corrosion to occur between a battery connector clamp and the terminal, which could result in a short circuit.

If you notice green dust or grain deposits on the battery terminals and connectors, remove the battery connectors. Reconnect the cables once they’ve been cleaned thoroughly with sand paper. Replace the connectors if it doesn’t work and they show significant indications of wear.

Tools You’ll Need:

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In addition to a replacement set of terminal connectors, you’ll need wire cutters with an integrated stripper and a set of wrenches. Alternatively, you can cut the wire with normal clippers and then remove the insulation with a knife.

Steps To Replace The Connectors:

  • Remove battery terminals, starting with the negative, then the positive wire.
  • Check if you’ll have enough wire to complete the circuit once you cut off the old connectors.
  • Use the wire cutter to cut the cable just behind the connectors to save as much wire length as possible.
  • Strip half an inch of wire on both cables.
  • Connect the red terminal to the positive wire, and the black terminal to the ground. Installation is simple – carefully slot the exposed wire into the terminal, then tighten the two bolts with a wrench.
  • Reconnect the battery, positive wire first, negative second.

5. Bad Alternator

The alternator takes over from the battery and recharges it once the engine is operating. If it fails, you’ll be forced to drive on battery power and may not even be aware that there’s a problem until you get to your destination. Restarting the engine will merely reveal that there is insufficient power to run it.

Because the serpentine belt must be removed in order to access the alternator, this is not a straightforward procedure. Serpentine belts on earlier automobiles are significantly easier to tighten, making this a simple task. When it comes to current vehicles, the serpentine belt is non-adjustable and requires the optimum amount of tension to work effectively. Please follow my example and leave the alternator replacement to a professional.

6. Bad Starter

Even if the battery is fully charged, your Dodge Ram 1500 will not start if the starter is defective. Starting the engine requires a starter, which takes the electrical current and converts it into a rotating motion. The engine may run on its own once the fuel air ignitions begin.

The most odd method of temporarily repairing the starter was taught to me many years ago now. The rear of the starter needs to be tapped with a hammer. The starter brushes will be pushed back into place, and it will work properly again. This method may work for a few months or even years, but if you don’t want to be stranded on the side of the road, I recommend that you replace the starter as soon as possible.


How much is a starter for a Dodge Ram 1500?

You may expect to pay roughly $200 for a starter for a Dodge Ram 1500, and the labor cost is only $50. More recent models will have higher component costs, whereas older models may have lower parts costs.

Where is the starter relay on a 2006 Dodge Ram 1500?

In order to get to the starting relay, you’ll need to remove the fuse box first.

Where is the starter on a 2011 Ram 1500?

The starter is positioned near the bottom of the engine on the driver’s side.

How long does a starter last?

Starting engines should last at least 100,000 miles, and some can survive for decades. There’s no way to know how long a starter will endure because wear and tear on the moving parts is the primary cause of failure.

How long does a car battery last?

How effectively a battery is maintained and cared for affects the battery’s lifespan. On average, the batteries can live between three and five years, although repeated discharges and extreme temperatures can shorten their lifespan.


An ignition that only makes a clicking sound should be appropriately identified. The apparent culprit is the batteries, but if you don’t check the alternator, starter, and wires, you’ll be wasting your money. If you can’t figure out what’s wrong with something basic and inexpensive, you can use the information in this article to help you fix it.