LOOKING TO BUY, advice please

Discussion in 'General Discussions' started by RAMblin Rod, Jan 4, 2017.

  1. RAMblin Rod

    RAMblin Rod Junior Member

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    I'm looking to buy a quad cab for my growing family. The 3rd gen range of years seems to fit my budget the best. That being said, what should I be looking for? What are things to watch out for, i.e. common problems to see if they've been addressed on a used vehicle or something major or catastrophic to avoid that someone may be trying to off-load onto a potential buyer?
    I'm not looking to piss in anyone's cheerio's, but let me know if the 5.9 is 'more reliable' than the 4.7, etc. This isn't to incite 'your engine sucks, mine is better because that's what I have' kind of crap. Just coming to the pro's because you have pride in ownership and have potentially seen it all...
    I've seen a recall regarding 2wd ball joints or something like that. Should I avoid the 2wd? I don't need 4x4 although nice to have in a pinch.

    I'm in the Pacific Northwest too. Salt isn't much of an issue here...yet.
     
  2. OnSale

    OnSale Senior Member

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    Well for starters, you need to decide what year range you want. The 3rd gens go from 02-08 (09 for the 2500/3500) and there was a major facelift begining with the 2006 models. So from 2002-2005 they are known as the 3Ga (3rg Gen A) Rams. From 2006-2008 (2009 for 2500/3500) they are known as the 3Gb (3rd Gen B) Rams.

    They only made the "limited edition" Rumble Bee and Daytona models in 04 & 05. They only made the SRT10 model from 04-06.

    So once you decide which sub-gen Ram you want to buy, you then need to decide want engine to buy. Either the 4.6L 6cyl, 5.7L 8cyl Hemi or the 5.9L Cummins Diesel. Once you figure all that out, let us know. Than me and some other members on here would be able to give you much better tips that would be specific to that motor or year that your looking at.

    But just going off the entire 02-08 3rd Gen Rams, I would try to buy a lower mileage 3gb, an 06,07 or 08. They look the best, have a TON of updated features that the early 3rd Gens do not have and just all around is a better, more solid truck (in my opinion).

    ANY truck you go to look at, make sure you start the truck when it's completely cold and hasn't ran for atleast 6+ hours. Then make sure to listen for any "taps" or "knocks" that the cold motor could be making. Everyone says Hemi's always end up with a loud knock or tap and they call it the "Hemi Tap". I have not seen or experienced this, but I've read about it alot. Also, you want to make sure to check the exhaus. Be sure to smell the fumes for the scent of oil, antifreeze, etc.

    *** This is a big one!!! *** Make sure you check that the Low Beams, High Beams, Turn Signals, Brake Lights etc all work properly because I myself had this problem and when I googled it, it seemed that 100's, if not 1,000's had the same issue. What will happen is one of your lights will stop working. Most common is the passenger side low beam. No matter what you do it won't turn back on. What happened is the trucks computer (Called the TIPM) has internal failures. It costs just short of $1k for the TIPM and another $300- $400 to install it. You can put a used one in and dealers (so they say) can't "reflash" or "reset" it for you. Your stuck paying for a new TIPM or driving with whatever light is out. In my case, my 2006 Ram 1500 Quad Cab Short Bed SLT 4X4 5.7L Hemi had 9 internal failures (1 Active, 8 Inactive) for my electrical system for my trucks lighting system. It all started with my passenger low beam going out and I couldn't fix it even though my volt meter showed power flowing to it. Turned out to be a bad TIPM. At the same time my Heater Core went and my trans started slipping and stalling. The truck had 179k miles but looked almost brand new. But it was falling apart so I traded it in and ended up getting $100 less for it than what I originally paid for it.

    Anyways, sorry about my long ass post. Just keep an eye out for the normal stuff and on top of that, check the valve cover gaskets, ask when the plugs were last changed, check for oil or antifreeze leaks, like i said check the entire electrical system and if you can, bring a OBD2 scanner and scan the truck as the CEL might not be lit but there could be "pending codes" that just haven't shown yet but are on their way to being an issue. I'd you don't have a scanner, Auto Zone will scan any car, any time, 100% free of charge.

    Good luck searching for your first Ram. If you find any that you plan on going to look at it, let us know first what year, model, miles, price and features it has and we can narrow down the common problems and tell you if it's a good deal or not.

    Sent from hell via TapATalk
     
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  3. lonestar21

    lonestar21 Senior Member

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    If I were you I would look into purchasing a crew cab if you want it for the family. Quad cab is just too small

    Good luck
     
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  4. RAMblin Rod

    RAMblin Rod Junior Member

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    I was hoping a quad cab would get me by with car seats for the time being.
     
  5. RAMblin Rod

    RAMblin Rod Junior Member

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    OnSale,
    Thank you for your valuable intel and personal experiences. That is precisely what I'm after. As for what I'm after. Nothing fancy. Honestly, I see plenty of these around $5k range that seem 'decent' to me. Example:https://portland.craigslist.org/clc/cto/5906727718.html

    That said, I'm looking for the most fuel efficient 1500 possible (not that it varies much), a rear slider window would be nice, 4x4 is nice but not necessary. I had a '96 Ram 1500 years ago and loved it. Just never used it...now I have a family and need to get out of my b2300 king cab.

    My budget is $10k or under. I'd like to stay around the $5-6k range and save some coin for any major repairs if necessary
     
  6. OnSale

    OnSale Senior Member

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    What kind of mileage are you looking to fall into? 110k-150k? Under 100k?

    Also, that truck you linked too.... the seller doesn't list the mileage. My guess is because it has well over 200k miles on it.

    Good deals are out there. When I was looking for my first truck and had a $10k budget, I found my 2006 Ram 1500 SLT Quad Cab 5.7L Hemi 4x4 with 173k miles on it and the dealer was asking $13k for it. I ended up getting it for $8,700 cash on 09/19/16. Here are some pictures of it the day I bought it:

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    It was SUPER clean for an 06. No dents, no major scratches, barely any rear quater rust and the little it had was only bubbling, not showing. The motor ran STRONG and the drivetrain was solid. I put about 6k miles on it in about 3 months and in those 3 months I paid about $1500 in repairs; all 16 spark plugs, rear pinion seal, pass. side valve cover gasket + more. At the end of the first 3 months, about 6k miles, it ended up having major mechanical issues. Like $3000 worth of repairs. Like I said earlier, The TIPM had 9 internal failures, my Heater Core was about to blow up and while trading the truck in, I went to move it on the lot and put it into Drive and when I hit the gas the rpms revved up and it didn't move (tranny was slipping) so I put it in reverse and the truck stalled. It was literally falling apart as I was trading it in lol.

    So I traded it in, they gave me $8,600 for the truck which is NOT bad considering they were the dealer who diagnosed the $3k worth of damage so they knew it needed work. I got to keep a few parts off of it that I put on, but aside from the rims and a few other small things I took off of it, this is how it looked when I traded it in:

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    So in the end, I realized I should have just bought a newer truck with less miles and a huge, long warranty. After the trade in value ($8,600), I also put down the $2,500 cash I would have used to repair my 06, I haggled the price down and also got an employee discount but in the end I got my 2012 Ram 1500 5.7L Hemi with 32k miles and an extended bumper-to-bumper warrenty (100k/5yrs) and I only owed a difference of $4,000 lol. My payments ended up being under $160/month for 38 months.

    Here is my "new" 12' Ram 1500 Reg Cab ST 5.7L Hemi the day I bought it. It already had a Lund Tri-fold Tonneau Cover, Flowmasters Dual Exhaust and a K&N 63 Series Intake:

    [​IMG][​IMG]

    And here is what it looked like after only owning it for 7 days and putting over $2k worth of parts onto it lol:

    [​IMG][​IMG][​IMG]

    Moral of the story; you could think your getting a killer deal (like me when i bought my 06) and think the truck is rock solid (it was when I bought it. I had a Ram mechanic do a 128 point inspection and it passed 100%), and you still can end up with a major headache, huge repair bills and you end up selling it. I did not want to spend $16k - $25k on a truck when I first was looking, but after everything that happened, and all the money I lost on mods and repairs on my 06, I should have just bought and financed a "new'er" truck from the start.

    I ended up losing all the money I put in mods on my 06. Swapped in 04 Laramie Black Leather/Grey Suede Heated Power Seats, Smoked Projector Halo Headlights, DTMoto Smoked C-Bar LED Taillights, Hood, Bumper & Bed Vinyls, EAutoGrille's Mesh & Rivet Black Grille and all kinds of other mods I don't even remember right now.


    Anyways... good luck.

    Have you considered putting your $10k cash down on a used 2014/2015 Crew/Quad Cab 4x4 with around 30k miles for anywhere from $20k to $23k and financing the remaining $10k- $13k? This way you get a factory warranty, peace of mind that your kids are in a safe truck, and your payments should only be maybe $200/month if you do 4 or 5 years with a low interest rate.

    I dunno... just an idea I thought I'd pass along... I sure know that I wish I did that from the start.

    Sent from hell via TapATalk
     
    Last edited: Jan 4, 2017
  7. justin13703

    justin13703 Senior Member

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    Correct me if I'm wrong here but I don't believe the 3rd gens have a crew cab option? I thought it was just regular cab, quad cab, and mega cab.
     
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  8. MADDOG

    MADDOG CTD Driver Staff Member

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    He's right. Quads are nice when the kids are little but they soon outgrow a quad.

    Get a crew cab if possible.

    Stay away from the 4.7L engine. It is underpowered for a 2.5T truck and top end oiling issues are common. The 5.7L Hemi V8 has good power, is quite reliable and will serve you well.

    There aren't many issues to deal with. NHTSA only issued 7 safety recalls on the 2007 Ram trucks, 1/2T to 1T. There were about 40 technical service bulletins issued. Speaking of that, get the VIN from any truck you get serious about and run it through a Ram dealer's service department for a service and repair history.

    Otherwise, just inspect it carefully and go from there.
     
  9. ST-8

    ST-8 Senior Member

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    My opnion there lying in that add about gas mileage lol, I would get a Hemi just for the extra 110hp for only 1mpg loss 4.7s are a good engine as well both use the same trans. 5.9s are good but you'll only find those in 02-03. The front suspension on 2wds aren't bad but ball joints seem to need replacing around 60k. I've replaced all my ball joints an tie rods few years ago an still is going good, but my rack an pinion will need replacing soon( I drive it pretty hard tho) that seems like a fair price to me on that truck.

    If you have a b2300 then I would imagine you could make a quad cab full size work just fine lol.

    An your wrong onSale it says 150000 in the listing.

    Only way I'd buy a newer style ram is if it was brand new, to many horror stories on the vvt hemis chewing up cams you can keep that an $500 a month for it.

    Hard to cough up 10k an still have a payment no matter how little it is. My dad made me save quite a bit before he would co sign with me on this my ram way back when(2009) an when I found this truck an went to buy it I didn't put anything down an walked out with a truck an 3k in pocket still in case of problems insued. Which just turned into mods an beer money LOL
     
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  10. RAMblin Rod

    RAMblin Rod Junior Member

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    What years are the vvt horrors you speak of? Here is another pretty good example of something I'm tempted to pull the trigger on
    https://portland.craigslist.org/clc/ctd/5941556798.html

    If I did cash, I'm certain I could get that knocked down to maybe $11k or $11,500.
     
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