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Chevrolet Suburban Years To Avoid and Why

There are many types of Chevrolet Suburban, also known as Chevy or Chevrolet Suburban. One of them is a full-size SUV solely owned and produced by the Chevrolet Motor division under General Motors.

Unfortunately, there were some deficiencies in the Chevy Suburban series, with certain models exhibiting critical challenges concerning their engine, air conditioning, brakes, and interiors, for example, 2007 and 2004 variants.

More detail would be necessary to get the full information regarding these specific Suburban SUVs that will help one make an informed decision on whether to purchase them or not.

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Chevrolet Suburban Years To Avoid: (Explained)

The Suburban series was first introduced in 1935 by Chevrolet. It has since maintained a tradition of refining its style, design, and structure elements to encompass improved features, performance, and drivability in subsequent Suburban models.

However, it is worth mentioning that none of the released models of the Suburban series had equal standards. Consequently, certain models exhibited distinctive issues such as excessive oil consumption, air conditioning failure, braking and steering control troubles, and transmission failure, which could result in several associated problems.

Therefore, if you are planning to buy a used Suburban model, avoid those listed below:

  • 1999 Suburban
  • 2003 Suburban
  • 2004 Suburban
  • 2005 Suburban
  • 2007 Suburban
  • 2008 Suburban
  • 2015 Suburban

It is because, during these years, several complaints were made against some of the mentioned vehicles on a website. This ranking was substantiated by 1,142 reported grievances demanding an explanation with a PainRank™ score of 18.34. These models are known for major engine failures and electrical problems within their interior systems and transmissions that have attracted substantial repair costs, among other things.

1999 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Overview of common issues and reasons to avoid the 1999 Chevrolet Suburban model.
Overview of common issues and reasons to avoid the 1999 Chevrolet Suburban model.

In this regard, one can mention the first versions, such as the 1999 Suburban model, which faced severe engine malfunctioning problems like engine turnover without ignition, idle stalling, misfiring, and coolant leakage. Besides, most reports state that the door handles were not operating properly, the dashboard lights were burnt out, there was a transmission failure, and the heated seats did not work in this year’s vehicle.

2003 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Description of prevalent problems in the 2003 Chevrolet Suburban.
Description of prevalent problems in the 2003 Chevrolet Suburban.

The 2003 Suburban models still had issues with their engines and complaints about interior accessories and steering. While there were many reports of fuel pump failures and transmission system issues, it was common to experience brake line corroding and brake fluid leakage.

2004 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Analysis of typical issues faced by the 2004 Chevrolet Suburban.
Analysis of typical issues faced by the 2004 Chevrolet Suburban.

One major challenge the 2004 Suburban models faced was electrical malfunctions. Major concerns included non-functional speedometers, air conditioning, and battery failures. The other problems cited by 2004 users involved knocking sounds during wheel turns, air conditioning that only blew hot air on the passenger side and non-functional A/C blowers.

2005 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Reasons why the 2005 Chevrolet Suburban model is less desirable due to common problems.
The 2005 Chevrolet Suburban model is less desirable due to common problems.

On many websites, consumer complaints show that in 2005, these types of cars had several issues. Specifically transmission failure, instrument cluster malfunctioning, harsh shifting, and speedometer malfunctioning. Other problems included trouble with the rear door latch release mechanism, warm or hot air only coming from the air conditioner system, blower motor noise, or complete lack of operation.

2007 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Overview of issues that make the 2007 Chevrolet Suburban a less reliable choice.
Overview of issues that make the 2007 Chevrolet Suburban a less reliable choice.

Most of the troubles in 2007 Suburban models are attributable to their engines, interiors, electrics, and transmissions, as all users complained. Such problems included knocking at start-up, crankshaft bearing failure, engine shutdown while driving, and oil consumption.

2008 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Description of problems and malfunctions common in the 2008 Chevrolet Suburban.
Description of problems and malfunctions common in the 2008 Chevrolet Suburban.

The 2008 Suburban models also experienced a few engine-related problems, such as excessive oil consumption, sudden oil pressure loss, and the check engine light coming on. Besides that, some minor electrical failures were observed by a few customers on the 2008 models.

2015 Chevrolet Suburban Problems

Exploration of common complaints and issues in the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban.
Exploration of common complaints and issues in the 2015 Chevrolet Suburban.

The 2015 Suburbans had massive complaints about their ACs, brakes, interior designs, car body parts, suspensions, and transmissions. Airconditioning systems often failed or had compressor clutch failures, which were highlighted in car complaints consumer reports. According to some of the consumer responses posted, brakes either did not engage properly or failed completely. There were interior panel issues, too, with regard to detachment between vehicle windows and cabin water leakage, according to other users.

The Worst Years of the Chevrolet Suburban:

We will be looking at three worst years of the Chevrolet SUV that you should not consider buying:

The 2004 Chevrolet Suburban

The 2004 Suburban models generated 624 complaints, with seven recalls based on important severity ratings by NHSTA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration). Knocking sound when turning wheels was one of this year’s major problems ($200 average repair cost); speedometers not working ($400 average repair cost); air conditioning blowing hot air ($700 average repair cost).

The 2007 Chevrolet Suburban

926 complaints came in for the 2007 suburban models. They also attracted four recalls by NHTSA due to their very high severity ratings. Excessive oil use, for instance, costs an average of $410 per repair, while transmission failure costs around $2,930 to fix. The average repair cost for engine failure was $5,800.

The 2015 Chevrolet Suburban

There were 600 complaints against the 2015 Suburban models and the ten recalls from NHTSA due to their extremely negative severity ratings. AC problems constituted many of them, costing $1,100 per repair on average. Brake malfunctioning was another major issue, and it usually required around $1,000 to correct each time it happened. For transmission failure, the average cost of repair was $4,300.

The Most Common Problems with the Chevrolet Suburban

Let us now explore the most widespread troubles that have made some released Suburban models more or less attractive:

1. Engine Failure

Common instances of engine failure and their impact on the Chevrolet Suburban.
Common instances of engine failure and their impact on the Chevrolet Suburban.

Almost every single SUV has minor engine hiccups. However, these issues become very pronounced, especially in the Suburban 2007 and 2008 models. On many websites, many Chevrolet Suburban owners needed to top off their engine oil every 500-1000 miles logged on the odometer. Also, serious engine problems occur when a vehicle reaches about 76k miles, resulting in a minimum servicing charge of about $4,100. To solve this problem, an uncovered AFM valve was identified in 2007 models; hence, some had to be replaced with new engines.

2. Brakes Failure

Overview of brake system failures and their consequences in the Chevrolet Suburban.
Overview of brake system failures and their consequences in the Chevrolet Suburban.

Many websites and NHTSA reports describe numerous incidents relating to brakes in various models released by Suburban, including those from 2003, 2004, and 2015. Below are some such incidents: inadequately functioning brakes; brake lines corroding, thus leaking fluids; rusted brakes; premature brake wear; traction control systems failing; ABS systems not functioning properly. It is really hard to steer with problematic power brakes; if vehicle tires fail to respond accurately, this is a serious risk of accidents to be considered.

3. Air Conditioning Malfunctioning

Description of frequent air conditioning issues in the Chevrolet Suburban.
Description of frequent air conditioning issues in the Chevrolet Suburban.

A/C issues, including complete failure, are commonly observed in Suburban's 2004, 2005, and 2015 released models. Customers have reported compressor clutch failures on their A/C units, blowing hot air from the AC (particularly on the passenger side), the A/C working inconsistently, and broken fan blower motors. A recurring problem in certain Suburban models involves AC condensation leaks resulting in AC that blows only warm or hot air caused mostly by frozen water vapor.

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Reliable Chevrolet Suburban Years

Reliable Chevrolet Suburban Years
Reliable Chevrolet Suburban Years

The following graph of the Chevrolet Suburban Model Year Comparison shows that some Suburban SUV models have been proven to be reliable by many users:

  • 2000 Suburban
  • 2006 Suburban
  • 2020 Suburban

The 2000 Texas-sized wagon seats eight comfortably and becomes a home on wheels for long cross-country trips. It has improved ride quality, handling, and braking compared to its former truck-like equivalent.

The 2006 Suburban comes equipped with electronic stability control, making it an SUV / minivan alternative for those seeking longevity.

Large families living in the suburbs will find 2020 Suburban suitable since it is a full-size truck-based SUV with abundant cargo space and powerful towing capability.

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Finally

Though this article has enumerated many problems in Suburbans reported by their users, we should also understand that it is still unmatched regarding its capabilities. This is what makes the Suburban the longest-running car model in its class that still exists today.

FAQs About Suburban Years to Avoid

Which Suburban Years Have the Most Engine Problems?

According to data from many websites, the 2007 release year had 226 complaints, which were only about engine problems, making it one of the highest among Suburban models.

Which Years' Suburban Models Have the Most Problems?

Based on information from many websites, there were 47 cases of interior accessories under Suburban’s 2007 models.

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