How Long Do Chevrolet Suburban Last? (Solved and Explained)

The Chevrolet Suburban has been in production since 1935 and is currently in it’s 13th generation. 

For almost 9 decades, this full-size SUV has been one of the top choices for elevated ride height, incredible hauling capacity, and practical daily usability.

In this article, we’ll take a closer look at the average lifespan of the Chevrolet Suburban,

Read on to find out

Here is the short answer to how long do Chevrolet Suburbans Last:

The Chevrolet Suburban is a robust, full-size SUV that is expected to last on average 200,000 miles provided it is well maintained and driven conservatively. Based on an annual mileage of 15,000 miles, it can last approximately 13.5 years before requiring expensive repairs or breaking down completely.

How Many Miles Can You Expect from a Chevrolet Suburban?

Since the Chevy Suburban’s has been around for such a long time, we can accurately gauge it’s average service life.

Most owner reports indicate that a reasonable lifespan expectation falls in the region of 200k miles.

After this many miles have been accumulated the cost of repairs can become uneconomical and it makes more sense to simply buy a replacement.

Case-to-case reports of vehicle longevity can vary greatly based on a number of factors, primarily:

  • How well it’s maintained – this includes factory scheduled service intervals as well as routine checks
  • The style of driving it’s subject to – smooth controlled usage will help keep wear and tear of components to a minimum
  • Environmental factors – buyers often look for used vehicles in states (at least in the US) with little or no snow and moderate temperatures.

Ultimately it’s down to the owner to get the most life from their vehicle and with due care and attention, we would expect the Suburban to comfortably reach over the 150,000-mile mark.

The Suburban is more than capable of exceeding these projections with some owners reporting extremely high mileages between 300,000 – 500,000 miles on the clock, however these are well above average figures and should not be expected.

Provided that you do your part as an owner to keep up to date with maintenance and adopt good driving habits, you can expect many years of service from your Suburban.

How Soon Should You Expect Rust on a Chevrolet Suburban? 

Chevrolet as a brand has been relatively notorious for rust problems across almost their entire range of vehicles. The Suburban is no exception, with little improvements seen across generations. 

For the sake of reporting on relevant information, and given the Suburban has been around for 8 decades, we will only be covering rust problems from 1995 to present. 

Owners of late 90’s and early 00’s model years of the Suburban share similar reports of rust on the tailgate, door hinges, and minor engine bay components. Although materials used to produce the Suburban have become more sophisticated over the years, fuel filler neck and brake rotor rust is still a common problem. 

Because rust problems are prevalent on not just the Suburban, but Chevrolet vehicles in general, we recommend that owners invest in a ceramic coating.

Alternatively, rust-proofing sprays are widely available in hardware stores and should be applied before encountering salty conditions or taking on any rugged terrain. 

Residents of areas particularly prone to rust such as the Salt Belt states, or coastal and snowy regions around the world, should take extra precautions to avoid rust.

Standard rust proofing measures include regular car washes, rustproofing sprays, keeping the car’s interior dry, and ceramic coating for a more long-term investment. 

How Long Does the Chevrolet Suburban Last Compared to Similar Car Models?

The Chevrolet Suburban has enjoyed 8 decades of dominance in the SUV market. However, never has the market been as packed as it is today with SUV choices of all shapes and sizes. 

In this segment, we’ll see how the Chevrolet Suburban stacks up to its competitors. 

Chevrolet Suburban vs. Cadillac Escalade

When it comes to the American SUV market, few vehicles are as iconic as the Chevrolet Suburban and the Cadillac Escalade. 

The Escalade has made its way into pop culture and modern hip-hop songs, while the Suburban is well respected for being one of the country’s first full-size SUVs. 

The two SUVs share a similar life expectancy of 200,000 miles, or roughly 10 years. Both are also commonly reported to make it past 300,000 or more depending on maintenance and care. 

Despite sharing the same average lifespan, the Chevrolet Suburban costs less to maintain on a yearly basis.

With an annual maintenance cost of $821, the Suburban will set you back $186 less than the $1,007 yearly maintenance of the Cadillac Escalade. 

Given that both the Suburban and Escalade match up perfectly in terms of performance and hauling capacity, your budget will be the determining factor; as the Escalade starts at $70,000 which is nearly $15,000 more expensive than the Suburban which starts at $51,700.

You may also be interested in our articles: Where are Cadillac Escalade made? and how long do Cadillac Escalade last?

Chevrolet Suburban vs. Ford Expedition

The Ford Expedition gives the Suburban a run for its money. With an average lifespan of 300,000 miles, the Expedition is built to last considerably longer than the Suburban.

The Ford Expedition also comes better equipped with tech and safety features, as well as more rugged off-road potential; despite having a near-identical MSRP as the Suburban. 

Although the Ford Expedition offers a longer service lifetime, it also comes with marginally higher yearly maintenance costs.

With the Escalade and Expedition costing $821 and $861 in annual maintenance cost respectively, the difference between the two SUVs is $40.

While yearly costs may add up ever so slightly, the Ford Expedition stands as the better value for money option; with 10 more years of service, and more sophisticated tech than the Chevrolet Suburban.

Chevrolet Suburban vs. Toyota Sequoia

The Toyota Sequoia is no exception from the brand’s dedication to making long-lasting vehicles. With an average lifespan of 300,000 miles, the Toyota Sequoia offers up to 10 more years of service than the Chevrolet Suburban.

It may come as no surprise that the reliability of the Sequoia (4 out of 5) is a whole point higher than the reliability of the Suburban (3 out of 5) according to RepairPal. 

On top of better longevity and reliability, the Sequoia also costs $179 less than the Suburban per year in maintenance.

With the Chevrolet Suburban and Toyota Sequoia costing $821 and $642 respectively. 

Toyota once again offers a vehicle that matches up to the competition while also being far more practical in the long run. 

How Reliable is a Chevrolet Suburban?

When looking to buy an SUV, researching a vehicle’s reliability is a key criteria.

RepairPal gives the Chevrolet Suburban a fairly average reliability score of 3.0 out of 5.0 and ranks it 11th out of 14 for full-size SUVs. JD Power has awarded the 2021 Suburban an 81/100 score for quality and reliability.

Reliability Compared to Other Fullsize SUVs

ModelReliability 
Mazda CX-94.0 / 5.0
Nissan Armada3.5 / 5.0
Dodge Durango3.5 / 5.0
Jeep Commander3.5 / 5.0
Toyota Sequoia3.5 / 5.0
GMC Yukon3.5 / 5.0
Ford Expedition3.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Avalanche3.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Suburban 15003.0 / 5.0
GMC Yukon XL 15003.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Suburban3.0 / 5.0
GMC Yukon XL3.0 / 5.0
Chevrolet Suburban 25002.5 / 5.0
Toyota Land Cruiser2.5 / 5.0
Avg. Fullsize SUV3.0 

The Best and Worst Years of the Chevrolet Suburban

Although the Chevrolet Suburban has been in production since 1935, the CarComplaints database only spans as far back as 1985. The Suburban has had a healthy life over the decades, with 2004, 2007, and 2015 as the only notably problematic years.

Model Year 2009 ranks as the worst year of the Suburban despite having a relatively low number of complaints. This is because owners frequently reported excessive oil consumption, with an average cost to repair of $5,000 and an average of just 55,000 miles when the problem occurs. 

Other problems found throughout the lifetime of the Suburban include:

  • Electrical problems
  • Interior accessory problems
  • Engine failure
  • Faulty transmission
  • AC/heater problems

As it stands, the safest option would be to go for newer models of the Suburban in order to avoid rust problems and costly repairs.

Please also read our article: how long do Chevrolet Traverse last

What About Recalls?

Here is the full list of recalls:

  • 1985: 0 recalls
  • 1986: 0 recalls
  • 1987: 0 recalls
  • 1988: 4 recalls
  • 1989: 4 recalls
  • 1990: 4 recalls
  • 1991: 4 recalls
  • 1992: 4 recalls
  • 1993: 5 recalls
  • 1994: 2 recalls
  • 1995: 3 recalls
  • 1996: 4 recalls
  • 1997: 4 recalls
  • 1998: 2 recalls
  • 1999: 2 recalls
  • 2000: 12 recalls
  • 2001: 9 recalls
  • 2002: 5 recalls
  • 2003: 2 recalls
  • 2004: 4 recalls
  • 2005: 3 recalls
  • 2006: 4 recalls
  • 2007: 4 recalls 
  • 2008: 3 recalls
  • 2009: 1 recall
  • 2010: 4 recalls
  • 2011: 12 recalls 
  • 2012: 8 recalls
  • 2013: 10 recalls
  • 2014: 2 recalls
  • 2015: 4 recalls
  • 2016: 4 recalls
  • 2017: 2 recalls
  • 2018: 1 recall
  • 2019: 1 recall
  • 2020: 0 recalls
  • 2021:0 recalls

Chevrolet Suburban Model Year List:

Here is a full list of model years for the Suburban:

  • 1935 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1936 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1937 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1938 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1939 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1940 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1941 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1942 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1943 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1944 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1945 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1946 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1947 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1948 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1949 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1950 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1950 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1951 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1952 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1953 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1954 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1955 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1956 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1957 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1958 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1959 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1960 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1961 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1962 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1963 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1964 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1965 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1966 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1967 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1968 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1969 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1970 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1971 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1972 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1973 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1974 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1975 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1976 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1977 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1978 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1979 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1980 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1981 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1982 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1983 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1984 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1985 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1986 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1987 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1988 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1989 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1990 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1991 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1992 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1993 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1994 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1995 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1996 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1997 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1998 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 1999 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2000 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2001 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2002 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2003 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2004 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2005 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2006 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2007 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2008 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2009 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2010 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2011 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2012 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2013 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2014 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2015 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2016 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2017 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2018 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2019 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2020 Chevrolet Suburban
  • 2021 Chevrolet Suburban

Is the Chevrolet Suburban Expensive to Maintain? 

According to RepairPal, the Chevrolet Suburban will cost on average $821 a year to maintain, with an expected cost of $4,105 over a 5 year period.

This is slightly higher in comparison to an average full-size SUV maintenance cost of $758 / year and a 5 year total of $3,790.

ModelAvg. Annual 
Repair Cost
Frequency of
Unscheduled
Repairs (per year)
Probability of
Severe Repairs
Mazda CX-9$5390.610%
Nissan Armada$5500.413%
Dodge Durango$6750.213%
Jeep Commander$6390.415%
Toyota Sequoia$6420.415%
GMC Yukon$7470.316%
Ford Expedition$8610.315%
Chevrolet Avalanche$7000.518%
Chevrolet Suburban 1500$8210.418%
GMC Yukon XL 1500$8520.418%
Chevrolet Suburban$9440.515%
GMC Yukon XL$9340.616%
Chevrolet Suburban 2500$8700.321%
Toyota Land Cruiser$8430.721%
Avg. Fullsize SUV$7840.415%

How Long Do the Brakes Last?

Chevy Suburban brake pads usually last between 40,000 and 60,000 miles.

How you drive your vehicle will play a big part in brake longevity. If you tend to do a lot of stop-and-go driving or are prone to heavy braking then your brakes will need frequent replacement.

Full and complete stops from a high speed are the biggest culprit of premature brake pad wear.

How Long Do the Tires Last?

Chevrolet Suburban tires last up to 5 years, which means an average of 75,000 miles given the 15,000 miles driven per year. 

Maintaining the correct tire pressure will not only keep you safe it will also bolster your tire’s lifespan, the correct pressure for your tires is usually located in the driver’s door jamb.

To ensure even wear of your tires, have them rotated regularly as specified in the owner’s manual or new-tire warranty guidelines, this is usually every 5,000 – 8,000 miles.

How Long Does the Transmission Last?

The transmission on the Chevy Suburban is built to last between 130,000 to 220,000 miles without ever needing replacement, so long as a proper servicing schedule is followed.

Ensure fluid levels are topped up and fix any problems immediately to keep the transmission running smoothly.

How Long Do Spark Plugs Last?

Chevy Suburban spark plugs are built to last between 30,000 and 35,000 miles before needing replacement.

Spark plugs are usually changed when you go for a tune up.

You may also be interested in our article: Chevrolet Suburban Beeping (9 Causes & Solutions)

What About Insurance Cost?

The average insurance costs for a Chevy Suburban is $117 per month or $1,398 annually.

Tips to Prolong the Life of Your Chevrolet Suburban

  • Keep up to date with factory scheduled maintenance.
  • Keep fluids topped up and check fluid levels regularly
  • Drive smoothly, use controlled acceleration and braking
  • Check your tire pressures at regular intervals
  • Check engine oil every two weeks
  • Use good quality parts and fluids
  • Invest in a ceramic coating to protect against contaminants and minor scratches
  • Consider all rust-proofing options
  • Wash the vehicle regularly particularly when encountering salt and snow
  • Confirm the weight of objects before attempting to tow them, do not overload your vehicle.

Resources

https://www.carcomplaints.com/Chevrolet/Suburban/2021/

https://www.edmunds.com/chevrolet/suburban/2019/cost-to-own/

https://repairpal.com/reliability/chevrolet/suburban+1500

https://www.chevrolet.com/suvs/suburban

https://enginepatrol.com/suv-long-distance-driving-road-trips/

https://enginepatrol.com/how-long-ram-1500-last/