Truck won’t run but will crank?

I have an 02 Dodge Ram 1500 and I just replaced the head gaskets, I put everything back together and now it won’t run, it will barely crank, I need help

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hey Aj.

When it does crank will it idle at all, or does it shut off immediately?

Was this not an issue at all before you replaced the gasket?

Is that the only repair you made?

Were the head gaskets blown, just prior to being replaced?

Did you operate the truck with a blown head gasket for a while before replacing?

What other symptoms were you experiencing with the truck, leading up to this repair?

Did you have difficulty putting everything back together?

And, have to ask, is this a kind of work that's familiar/within your experience?


It won’t run at all, and it started right up before I replaced them even when the head gaskets were blown, and yes that was the only repair I made, along with replacing all the gaskets like timing cover, water pump, fuel injector o-rings, intake manifold gaskets, and the valve cover along with throttle body gasket, they were blown about 3 days before I parked the truck and made the repairs, I had a rough idle along with a multiple random misfire, and I lost a few miscellaneous bolts that really didn’t matter and honestly no, I don’t have much money to pay someone to do it but I had an experienced mechanic talk me through it along with a chitons book-Aj


Thx for that info, Aj.

First thing I can tell you is it'd be extremely lucky if anyone can zero in on what your problem likely is. There are simply too many possibilities and unknowns in the mix.

If the truck was ok except for an issue with the head gaskets before the repair was done, then one has to assume that something occurring during the repair has created your current issues. Replacing gaskets correctly isn't too tough, but going through the steps of removing and reinstalling the components involved, correctly, is a different story. Also, in my experience, there's not a lot of bolts involved here that really don't matter.

You could double check all your vacuum hoses and connections, electrical wiring and connections (those disturbed during your repair), and it might not be a bad idea to check your ignition timing.

Sorry for not being more helpful. Maybe another member can offer additional insights. Good Luck.


One more thing - I just found that it would've been quite easy to mess up the timing during your repair. Rather than try to explain it, you'd probably benefit much more by checking out a series of videos found on youtube, called Dodge 4 7 L Engine Cylinder Head Replacement Part One by Howstuffinmycarworks. As the repair is made you'll see the correct step by step method and consider how this might've differed from your project.

And, for the record, I am not trying to promote anything by making this referral - just trying to pass on something thought to have potential in helping.