What Year Dodge Ram Transmissions Are Interchangeable? – A Guide In 2023!

To begin with, Dodge Ram transmissions are interchangeable depending on the year, model, and engine. Therefore, Understanding transmission interchangeability is crucial for replacement or upgrade purposes. 

Dodge Ram transmissions are interchangeable across various model years, including 1981-1993, 1994-1995, and 1996-1999, depending on factors like Transmission Tag and Compatibility.

Therefore, Let’s delve into the different year ranges, factors, and how you can change them to understand the interchangeability options better.

Factors To Consider Before Changing Dodge RAM Transmissions – Never Miss Any!

1. Checking the Transmission Tag: 

Examining the transmission tag and retrieving the part number is crucial to determining a replacement transmission’s compatibility.

Checking the Transmission Tag
source: dodgeforum

This information is essential in ensuring that the desired transmission matches the specifications of your Dodge RAM, thereby ensuring precise compatibility and optimal performance.

2. Using Parts Compatibility Checkers:

To simplify the process of finding interchangeable transmissions, consider utilizing parts compatibility checkers available both online and offline. 

These tools provide a convenient and efficient way to identify compatible transmission options suitable for your specific Dodge RAM model, year, and engine.

3. Engine and Transmission Computer Compatibility:

While a transmission may be physically interchangeable, it is essential to consider its compatibility with the engine and transmission computers. 

Engine and Transmission Computer Compatibility
source: autocomputerperformance

In some cases, reprogramming or replacing the computers may be necessary to ensure proper functionality and integration of the new transmission with the existing systems.

4. Lastly, consult with a Qualified Mechanic or Transmission Specialist:

It is highly recommended to seek advice from a qualified mechanic or transmission specialist. These professionals possess the expertise and knowledge to provide accurate information regarding interchangeability and compatibility. 

Moreover, they can guide you through the decision-making process, taking into account your specific Dodge RAM model, year, and engine requirements.

Interchangeability Of Dodge Ram Transmissions Based on Year Ranges – Let’s Find Out Now!

1. 1994-2001:

During this period, transmissions for Dodge Ram generally offer interchangeability. Furthermore, transmissions from different years within this range can be used interchangeably. 

source: cars

Verifying compatibility by checking the transmission tag and ensuring the part numbers match is essential. This step provides a precise fit and optimal performance.

2. 2002-2008:

Similar to the previous range, transmissions from 2002 to 2008 also exhibit a degree of interchangeability. In most cases, transmissions from different years within this range can be swapped without significant issues. 

However, there are exceptions to be aware of. For instance, the A518 transmission used in the 2002-2003 Dodge Ram 1500 is not interchangeable with the 46RE transmission used in the 2004-2008 Dodge Ram 1500. 

Nevertheless, it is crucial to consider these exceptions when seeking a compatible transmission for your specific Dodge Ram model and year.

3. 2009-2018:

During this period, Dodge Ram transmissions became increasingly specific to the model year and engine. Consequently, interchangeability is limited within this range. 

Transmissions from different years within this period are generally not interchangeable. Therefore, the increased specificity ensures that the transmission is precisely tailored to the unique requirements of the particular model year and engine.

4. 2019-Present:

For the most recent Dodge Ram models, interchangeability is once again limited. In summary, transmissions within this range are generally not interchangeable due to further advancements and specific design considerations.

2019-Present dodge ram
source: e.autokult

This ensures the transmission is optimized for the latest Dodge Ram models, providing the best performance and compatibility. Hence, By understanding the interchangeability based on year ranges, you can make informed decisions when seeking a compatible transmission for your Dodge Ram.

Moreover, Changing the transmission in a Dodge RAM is a complex process that requires careful attention to detail. Here is a step-by-step guide to help you understand the process:

Changing the Dodge RAM Transmission: A Comprehensive Step-by-Step Guide

1. Gather the necessary tools and equipment:

You need a transmission jack, floor jack, socket wrench set, torque wrench, fluid catch pan, and a complete replacement transmission compatible with your specific Dodge RAM model and engine.

2. Prepare the vehicle:

Park the truck on a level surface and engage the parking brake. Disconnect the battery to prevent any electrical mishaps during the process.

3. Raise the vehicle:

Use a floor jack to lift the front of the truck and secure it with jack stands. Ensure it is stable and positioned securely.

Raise the vehicle
source: dodgeforum

4. Drain the transmission fluid:

Place a fluid catch pan under the transmission pan and remove the pan bolts. Carefully lower the pan to drain the fluid. Dispose of the old fluid properly.

5. Disconnect components:

Disconnect the driveshaft, exhaust system, cross member, and wiring harnesses connected to the transmission. Take careful note of their positions and connections for reinstallation.

6. Support the transmission:

Use a transmission jack to support the weight of the transmission. It is crucial to have proper support to prevent any damage or injuries during the removal process.

7. Remove the transmission:

Unbolt the transmission from the engine, disconnecting all electrical connections, linkages, and the torque converter. Slowly and carefully lower the transmission with the jack, ensuring it is clear of any obstructions.

8. Install the replacement transmission:

Position the replacement transmission onto the transmission jack and carefully align it with the engine. Slowly raise the jack to guide the transmission into place, making sure it aligns with the engine mounts and the torque converter engages appropriately.

Install the replacement transmission
source: dodgeforum

9. Reconnect components:

Once the new transmission is in place, reconnect the driveshaft, exhaust system, crossmember, and wiring harnesses. Ensure all connections are secure and properly tightened.

10. Refill transmission fluid:

Locate the transmission fluid dipstick or fill port and add the recommended transmission fluid using a funnel. Check the liquid level according to the manufacturer’s specifications.

Lastly, Start the engine and allow it to warm up. Shift through the gears to ensure smooth operation. Check for any leaks or abnormal noises.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. Are manual transmissions interchangeable with automatic transmissions in Dodge RAM trucks?

No, Manual and automatic transmissions are generally only interchangeable in Dodge RAM trucks with extensive modifications. They have different components and mounting systems, requiring significant changes to the drivetrain and vehicle electronics.

2. Can I replace my Dodge RAM transmission with a transmission from a different vehicle, make, or model?

No, Replacing your Dodge RAM transmission with a transmission from a different vehicle, make, or model is not advisable. Using a further transmission may result in poor performance, compatibility issues, and potential damage to the car.

3. Which Dodge truck models and years had problematic transmissions?

The Dodge Ram trucks with complicated transmissions are the 2009 Dodge Ram and the 2010-2017 Ram models, including the 1500, 2500, 3500, 4500, and 5500. The issues primarily


Dodge Ram transmissions are generally interchangeable, considering factors like Transmission Tag and Compatibility from 1981-1993, 1994-1995, and 1996-1999 model years 

Hence, By considering the year model of your Dodge Ram, you can identify the appropriate transmission for your Dodge RAM. Happy Driving!


George Mason

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