Pickup trucks are miraculous vehicles. Trucks fun to drive, full of capability, and extremely powerful. And when you’re looking to get a used truck, its reliability is paramount. How do you know the used truck you are getting will make it for the long haul? But with so much available information, avoiding used trucks with the most problems is easier than ever.
Consumer Reports compiles research, data, and surveys to provide consumers with the most reliable information in selecting a new vehicle. After gathering research on vehicles between the model years 2007 and 2016, they’ve created a list of the used cars you should stay away from. Here are the trucks that earned the “never buy” label.
Overall, Ram pickup trucks receive average reliability ratings, with varying degrees of capability. The Ram 1500 is the most standard of Ram’s truck models, with heavier-duty options in the 2500 and 3500.
Findings by Consumer Reports indicate that some Ram 1500s are more reliable than others. For example, model years 2014 and 2015 received poor reliability ratings, citing problems with electrical systems and in-car electronics, engines, fuel systems, and power equipment.
However, out of all tested years, the 2016 Ram 1500 received the worst reliability rating of all. This model year received poor ratings for its issues with body integrity, as well as exterior paint and trim. Consumer Reports also shows that the 2016 model year received poor ratings for its power equipment and in-car electronics, as well as its laundry-list of recalls.
Chevrolet Silverado 2500
Chevrolet is an iconic American company that makes iconic vehicles. Its most-famous pickup truck, the Silverado, first hit the lineup in 1998. Since then, the Silverado developed into three distinct pickups: the Silverado 1500, 2500, and 3500.
But while the Silverado 1500 scores pretty average reliability ratings, Chevrolet’s upgraded 2500 seems to have more unreliable years than reliable ones.
While Consumer Reports rates 2011 as its worst year, the Silverado 2500 received less-than-average ratings on model years 2007 through 2010. Model years 2011-2014 received even worse ratings, while 2016 received the worst of all.
Though engine problems don’t seem to be much of a concern, owners cited problems with the transmission, drive system, electric system, suspension, brakes, exhaust, and worst of all, its fuel system.
While Ford is known for creating some of the most well-known vehicles in the country, many out of its lineup did not score well on Consumer Reports’ research.
The F-250 received poor ratings from the years 2007-2010 and only received average ratings from 2011-2016. The 2008 F-250 scored the worst out all years, reporting 17 potential trouble spots for consumers, according to Consumer Reports.
Included in these trouble areas are its engine, transmission, and brakes. In fact, many owners claimed severe problems with the 250’s brakes, including vibrations or squeaking, problems with its anti-lock system, and complete brake failure.
Compared to other pickup trucks of the same model year, the 2008 Ford F-250 wins the least reliable spot. Other model years reported problems with the F-250’s drive system, electric system, fuel system, and climate system.
GMC Sierra 3500
GMC is known for its advanced lineup of SUVs, crossovers, and trucks. The Sierra pickup truck is one of its most popular and best-selling vehicles. Consumer Reports ranks model years 2011 and 2013 as the GMC Sierra 3500‘s worst years, but the 3500 struggles with reliability in a variety of other model years as well.
Out of all the years tested, most model years scored average reliability ratings or less. The biggest issues cited, like in the 2015 Sierra 3500, included major engine problems, as well as issues with the fuel system, suspension, and body integrity. The smaller Sierra 1500 scored higher in almost all areas of reliability, proving that sometimes bigger isn’t better.