Dear Doctor: I have a 2000 Dodge Ram 2500. For the past couple of weeks while driving in Florida it shuts off for no apparent reason. If I try to use the hazard lights they just grind without working — like it has a low battery. A couple of times I was able to restart in neutral while still moving. Do you have any clue as to what this could possibly be? John
Dear John: The first step is to check the battery and charging system, even though there are no problems turning the engine over during start up. The second is to check all battery connections, including the connections at the engine block and chassis grounds. The low battery-like symptom you describe indicates a voltage or connection problem. Your Dodge should be checked with a factory scan tool. The aftermarket scan tools are not able to go into the computer as deep as the factory scan tool can. Some other possibilities are the automatic shut down relay and the crankshaft sensor; however, these would not make the indication of a low battery.