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With the recent snowfall in the northeast and a season full of wintry storms ahead of us, many people are considering throwing a plow onto their pickup trucks to make a little extra cash. What if you don’t have a truck to use for plowing, or don’t want to wreck the transmission on your personal truck? What then? You might want to consider buying a used pickup just for plowing. These are the best trucks for snow plowing, and you just might be able to earn some money with them.

A black 2020 Chevy Silverado 2500.
2020 Chevy Silverado 2500 | Chevrolet

What is a good truck for plowing?

A 2020 Ford F-350 parked in a field.
2020 Ford F-350 | Ford

A good pickup truck for snowplowing is one that can handle the workload that you give it without requiring too many repairs – or repairs that are expensive. Popular Mechanics says that any truck you use for plowing should be able to “carry the load of the plow system out front without significant impact on handling…”

In addition, the truck should have a serious alternator so that you have enough electricity to power your plowing equipment. It also needs a reliable engine with a great transmission. Four-wheel-drive is an added bonus. Popular Mechanics recommends only half-ton trucks: the Ram 2500 and up, Ford F-250 or bigger, Chevy Silverado 2500 and so on, as well as the Toyota Tundra. Here are the most reliable recent model years for those trucks.

While it can be tempting to buy a pickup truck that’s already been used for snowplowing and comes with the equipment, you don’t want to do this. You don’t know what kind of wear and tear a used snowplow truck has seen, and replacing the kind of worn out parts that tow trucks get can really add up.

The Ram 2500, 3500, and 5500 are some of the best trucks for plowing

If you’re looking for one of the best used pickup trucks for snowplowing, the Ram 2500, 3500, or 5500 may be your best option. Each of these are solid pickups capable of heavy-duty work.

The Ram 2500 is a great option. Out of recent Ram trucks, the 2019 and 2020 Ram 2500 trucks have the best reliability scores according to Consumer Reports. They each score a 3/5. In addition, their transmission scores are a 5/5.

A used Ford F-250 or F-350 is one of the best pickups for snowplowing

Both the Ford F-250 and F-350 make excellent choices for snowplowing. The reliability rating for the 2021 Ford F-250 is a 4/5 and the transmission is also a 5/5. In addition, the 2019 and 2020 reliability ratings are 3/5 and the transmission ratings are also 5/5.

The 2020 Ford F-350 is also a great option. The 2020 Ford F-350 scores a 4/5 for reliability, though the transmission score is only a 2/5

The Chevy Silverado 2500 and 4500 make great snowplowing trucks

Both the Chevy Silverado 2500 and Chevy 4500 are some of the best trucks for snowplowing. The 2020 and 2021 Chevy Silverado 2500 get good reliability ratings, at a 4 and a 5 respectively. Likewise, their major transmission ratings are a 4 and a 5. There aren’t any reliability ratings for the Silverado 4500 on Consumer Reports.

The Toyota Tundra has a wide range of choices for plowing

Most of the Toyota Tundra‘s recent model years have excellent reliability ratings. Every year since 2012 has at least a 4, though most have a 5. Only the 2017 and 2019 Toyota Tundras score a 4. In addition, they all have excellent major transmission ratings as well. Each model year since 2012 has a 5 for major transmission with the exception of the 2012 and 2017, both of which score a 4.

If you’re looking for the best truck for plowing, you do have a lot of options. You’ll have to consider what your priorities are: budget, a solid transmission, or excellent overall reliability. Try to weigh what you’ll realistically earn against what you’ll spend to purchase your truck and pay for upkeep and repairs. That will help you choose the best truck for your plowing needs.


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