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Dodge Ram 1500 Performance Module

Diagnosing the Dodge Ram 1500 Performance Module

After carefully considering the risks of installing a Dodge Ram 1500 performance module, you took the plunge so you can unleash a powerful engine from its pre-programmed restraints. Now, if your pickup isn't improving in fuel efficiency or increasing your horsepower, don't give up and think that you've spent all that money or possibly voided your vehicle's warranty in vain. Before reaching for the phone to ask for a mechanic or a refund, find out if the performance chip is indeed causing these issues.

Your fuel emissions increase

If you fail your state's emissions test after installing a performance module, then your performance module may not necessarily be in need of a repair. One of the unfortunate side effects of installing a super chip is that your Ram increases its fuel emissions as its engine performs better.

Your starter acts up

Problems with a performance module can occur because of a misstep during the installation procedure. So you need to review what you did and did not do during the process and fix any issues that you see. If you did not disconnect the battery before installing the chip, then your Dodge's computer might not have calibrated correctly because of static discharge. The computer might have retained the information from previous chips or its own programming, so you'll need to reset it. The chip could have been installed backwards or it could have bent during installation, so you'll have to ask for a replacement module. Or, the problem might simply be in an incorrect connection or a loose wiring harness between the performance chip and your Dodge's computer.

Your check engine light turns on

If your check engine light comes on after installing a performance module, get an OnBoard Diagnostics (OBD) scanner and plug it into the port located at the driver's side of the dashboard. Owners of Rams that were made from 1996 to 2001 can find it just above the gas pedal. Meanwhile, those with 2002 to 2008 trucks need to feel for theirs to the left of the hood release handle and pry the plastic cover open with a flat blade screwdriver. After plugging in the scanner, turn on your electrical system but don't crank your engine on. Write down the codes that the scanner will show you. Check online or consult the scanner's manual for what this code means.

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  • How to Get the Most out of your Dodge Ram 1500 Performance Module

    You can expect a Dodge pickup to haul heavy loads with its strong body and powerful engine. However, you can't always assume that your truck can reach the engine's full potential or be as fuel efficient as other vehicles. Fortunately, you can install a Dodge Ram 1500 performance module that can increase your engine's efficiency. This aftermarket accessory isn't cheap and it could void your vehicle's warranty, so you need to make sure that you're getting the most out of it. Here are some tips to help you maintain your performance module:

    • Reset your Ram's computer

      After you've installed the module, you'll need to restart your engine's existing computer whenever you change any of your truck's parts with an aftermarket performance product. You need to do this so that the computer learns about the new additions and it can change its settings accordingly. In any case, it's an easy step to do, just remove the negative terminal cable from your battery and wait for twenty minutes before reconnecting it.

    • Pass your emissions test

      Because the module increases your engine's performance, it can also increase your Ram's emissions. If you live in a state that requires emissions testing, then you'll need to ensure that your truck passes its standards. Remember these tips to make sure you pass. First, schedule the exam on a sunny day because driving in poorer weather conditions takes longer. Make sure your battery is at its peak condition and that your engine oil is clean. Finally, before you park your Ram at the testing center or garage, make sure the engine is filled with premium gasoline and that it has warmed up with a 20 minute drive.

    • Program your module according to your desired performance gain

      What you will get out of your Dodge Ram 1500 performance module will depend on what you program it to do. All you need to do is use the power level switch to change things up. If you want more miles per gallon, you can program the chip to reduce the amount of fuel injected into the cylinder. Meanwhile, if you want to make use of your turbo charger, you can program the chip to adjust the timing and amount of turbo boost to provide. Finally, if you want more power, you can have it to make a richer air-and-fuel mixture to boost horsepower.