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Our Top Picks for the Best Used Work Trucks

Looking for the best used trucks for work? You’ve come to the right place. We're not only known as a great service center for custom trucks, but also as a place to find the best used work trucks. They didn't call us Truck World (once upon a time) for nothing!

In this guide, we’ll highlight our top picks across light, midsize, and heavy-duty categories. These popular recommendations focus on reliability, performance, and value, making it easier for you to find the perfect truck for the types of work that trucks do—from hauling to navigating difficult service roads.

Best Used Work Trucks at a Glance

  • Opting for used work trucks offers significant cost savings, reliable performance, and slower depreciation compared to new models.
  • Top picks for full-sized used trucks include the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, and Ram 1500 due to their reliability, performance, and comfort at work.
  • Toyota Tacoma offers above average fuel economy, with a combined 18-21 MPG depending on the drivetrain.
  • A used Silverado 1500 offers a variety of powertrain options, from a turbo 4-cylinder to a robust 6.2-liter V-8 engine yielding 420 horsepower and 460 lb ft of torque.
  • The Ford F-150 5.2L has a Supercharged V8 option that delivers up to 700 horsepower and 640 lb ft of torque.
  • Ford Super Duty Series includes the models F-350, F-450, F-550, and F-600 with up to 40,000 lb of towing capacity.
  • The Ram 1500 offers a diverse range of engine options, including the 3.6L V6, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6, and the powerful 5.7-liter Hemi V8.
  • Key features to look for in a used work truck include suitable engine options, strong towing and hauling capabilities, and modern safety features to ensure reliability and safety.

Why Choose Used Work Trucks?

Chevrolet Colorado between light and heavy duty Silverados. Chevrolet Colorado trucks are great additions to your used truck fleet and offer an alternative to full size trucks light and heavy duty pickups like the Silverado series. Ask about our Chevrolet inventory for seriously reliable work trucks from the Chevy make.

Choosing used work trucks can offer significant financial benefits. Here are some reasons why:

  • Lower price tag compared to new models
  • Wide range of features and great quality at an affordable price
  • Used trucks have already undergone the initial depreciation hit, meaning they retain their value better over time after purchase.

But it’s not just about the money. Used work trucks also offer proven reliability. Many models have stood the test of time and have a track record of dependable performance. With multiple options available, from certified pre-owned trucks to well-maintained fleet vehicles, buyers can find a truck at our used truck sales center that fits their company's specific needs without compromising on reliability.

Cost Savings

Significant cost savings rank high among the reasons to opt for a used work truck. Compared to new models, used trucks come with lower purchase prices, which translates to smaller loan amounts and less financial leverage needed at the outset. This advantage allows commercial buyers to access high-quality vehicles at a at lower cost, leaving more capital funds available for other business needs.

Proven Reliability

When it comes to reliability, used work trucks, especially late-model and certified pre-owned options, shine. These trucks often come with comprehensive service records and have been thoroughly inspected by service engineers to ensure they meet reliability standards.

With widespread reports of trucks surpassing the 250,000-mile mark according to their proud owners, a used Ford, especially from the Super Duty series, has durability and long life like the best and most reliable used trucks. Work and recreational activities are usually not so different when it comes to wear and tear, and reliability over time.

Lower Depreciation

While new trucks can depreciate by up to 20% in their first year, used trucks have weathered this initial value drop. This slower depreciation rate means that used trucks are a better investment, retaining their value longer and offering better resale potential.

Buying used trucks is particularly advantageous for those who may need to sell or trade-in their work trucks down the line. We buy your used trucks for a fair price, so that the next owner can use it for recreational purposes or work needs as they see fit.

Best Full-Sized Used Work Trucks

Ford F-150 Lightning showing payload capacity with plywood sheets The Ford F-150 Lightning brings a lot of the familiar benefits of Ford trucks to the table, but with more fuel efficiency. It's got impressive payload capacity just like its ICE counterpart, and it's a great addition to your company's assets.

Light-duty trucks are a popular choice for many due to their versatility and balance of power and efficiency. Among the best in this category are the Ford F-150, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, and Ram 1500. The older models of the GMC Sierra 1500 Limited and the Ram 1500 Classic also stand out among the choices of best full-sized trucks.

Ford F-150

The Ford F-150 distinguishes itself through utility, reliability, and comfort. With various engine options including the powerful 3.5-liter EcoBoost V-6, and impressive towing capabilities up to 14,000 lb, a used Ford F-150 is well-suited to most jobsites. Its expansive range of powertrain and customization options makes it a popular choice among used work trucks.

With various engine options, including the powerful 5.2L Supercharged V8 that delivers up to 700 horsepower and 640 lb ft of torque, the Ford F-150 can come in many shapes and sizes for multiple applications as a work truck.

Chevrolet Silverado 1500

Choosing a used Chevrolet Silverado 1500 gets you enduring reliability and power. Models like the older Silverado 1500s offer a comfortable ride, robust engine options, and strong performance, making it a favorite for those seeking a reliable and powerful work truck.

Additionally, a used Silverado 1500 offers a variety of powertrain options, from a turbo four-cylinder to a robust 6.2-liter V-8 engine that produces 420 horsepower and 460 pound-feet of torque.

Ram 1500

The Ram 1500 offers a refined suspension system, providing one of the class’s smoothest rides. It also features advanced technology like the Uconnect infotainment system, which enhances the driving experience with user-friendly controls and connectivity options.

The Ram 1500 blends power and comfort. This full-sized pickup truck offers a range of engine options, including the 3.6LV6, the 3.0-liter EcoDiesel V6, and the powerful 5.7-liter Hemi V8.

Additionally, a used Ram 1500 is ready for strong hauling capabilities, making it a reliable choice for those needing a dependable light-duty truck for various work tasks.

Top Midsize Used Work Trucks

Midsize trucks offer a great balance between capability and maneuverability. Among the top picks in this category are the Toyota Tacoma, Nissan Frontier, and GMC Canyon. These models are known for their reliability, performance, and versatility, making them ideal for various work tasks.

Toyota Tacoma

A used Toyota Tacoma has a great balance between performance and towing capabilities. It is also highly regarded for its off-road performance. Models like the 2019 Tacoma have nearly perfect reliability and owner satisfaction scores, and with configurations like the TRD Off-Road, it offers robust performance both on and off the road.

The Toyota Tacoma is famed for its potent towing capabilities and offers a 3.5-liter V6 engine that delivers 278 horsepower and 265 lb-ft of torque, ensuring robust performance both on and off the road. For business in remote Utah sites, a Tacoma could be your answer. It also offers better fuel economy, with a combined 18-21 MPG depending on the drivetrain and engine size.

Nissan Frontier

Durable Nissan Frontier for compact yet capable tasks The Nissan Frontier is great for all your company needs, as part of a fleet or for a small business of your own. Check out available inventory at our used sales center, now proudly named Summit Trucks, to speak with a sales advisor.

Offering durability and affordability, a used Nissan Frontier from our used Nissan inventory is a strong contender in the midsize truck category. With engine options ranging from a 2.5L four-cylinder to a 4.0L V6, it caters to diverse power needs while offering great value for money.

GMC Canyon

The GMC Canyon, particularly the early 2020s models offer decent safety ratings on small overlap, driver side protect you on lone work trips. Despite its smaller size, it provides decent towing and hauling capabilities, making it a solid choice for work tasks.

Leading Heavy Duty Used Work Trucks

For those needing even more power and durability, heavy duty trucks like used Ford Super Duty models, used Chevrolet Silverado 2500HD vehicles, and used Ram 2500/3500 trucks are top choices. These trucks, including the heavy-duty truck category, are built to handle the toughest tasks and offer impressive towing and hauling capabilities.

Ford Super Duty

Capable of towing up to 26,500 lb with a fifth-wheel setup, the Ford Super Duty lineup, specifically the F-350, is built for heavy-duty tasks.

With engine options like the 6.8L V-8 and a high-output 6.7L Power Stroke diesel V-8, these trucks are built for heavy-duty performance and long-term reliability. Additionally, crew cab layouts provide extra space and comfort for coworker passengers.

Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD

With its powerful Duramax 6.6L turbo-diesel V8 engine that delivers 445 horsepower and 910 lb ft of torque, the Chevrolet Silverado 2500 HD is a force to be reckoned with. With a towing capacity of up to 18,500 pounds, it is a reliable and powerful work truck for heavy-duty tasks.

Ram 2500/3500

Ram 3500HD cruising Utah highway The Ram 3500HD is one of the best work trucks out there with outstanding towing capacity. It's often seen towing heavy trailers or serving as a chassis for a custom work truck.

The Ram 2500 or Ram 3500 trucks have a reputation for durability and sustained reliability. Equipped with the 6.7-liter I6 Cummins turbodiesel engine, these trucks offer impressive towing power and have a significant chance of exceeding 250,000 miles.

Key Features to Look for in Used Work Trucks

Certain features should be prioritized when buying a used work truck to ensure its reliability and performance. Key features to consider include engine options, towing and hauling capabilities, and safety features for various types of worksites.

Engine Options

Different engines offer varying levels of performance and fuel efficiency. Some factors to consider when choosing an engine include:

  • Diesel engines, which your company might prefer for their better fuel efficiency and longer lifespan.
  • The engine’s power output, which determines how much work it can do under stress.
  • The engine’s torque, which measures its ability to generate rotational force Considering these factors can help ensure that the engine meets the demands of heavy-duty tasks.

Towing and Hauling Capabilities

Ram 3500HD towing heavy construction machinery on trailerbed The Ram 3500HD is a reliable choice for towing trailers full of valuable equipment or heavy machinery sitting on a trailer bed. Many of our customers seeking heavy duty mention this truck at the outset of our conversations on towing to and from the jobsite.

Towing and hauling capabilities are crucial for work trucks. Ensure the truck meets your requirements for towing capacity and payload ratings, particularly if you plan on moving heavy trailers or equipment. The gross vehicle weight rating (GVWR) is a key indicator of its hauling capacity.

Safety Features

Modern safety features are vital for ensuring a safe driving experience. Look for trucks equipped with advancements such as forward collision warning, pedestrian detection, and electronic stability control.

Features like rearview cameras also enhance visibility and safety when reversing. Each of our trusted makes has a whole suite of features that you should look for in a used truck for work:

Maintenance Tips for Used Work Trucks

Proper maintenance is key to ensuring the longevity and performance of used work trucks. Truck services can include custom modifications for the kind of work your business does with its trucks—to regular oil changes, replacement parts, and brake repair.

Regular Oil Changes

Maintaining engine health and preventing breakdowns necessitates regular oil changes. They help maintain engine lubrication, reduce wear and tear, and remove contaminants that build up over time.

Consistent oil changes contribute to longer engine life, prevent expensive repairs, and support fuel economy.

Replacement Parts Availability

Access to replacement parts is key to keeping used work trucks safe and high-performing. Models like the Chevrolet Silverado 1500 are notable for their durability and affordability of replacement parts.

Test Drive and Inspection

A thorough test drive and inspection should be conducted before purchasing a used work truck. Check for rust, misalignments, and ensure the suspension system is in good condition.

It’s also important to inspect the truck’s maintenance history to ensure it has been well-cared for.

Where to Find Reliable Used Work Trucks

Used trucks in a row at used vehicle lot Our used truck sales center is one of the best places you'll find for fair deals on great used inventory. Our experienced sales advisors can help you decide based on your needs and the needs of your company.

Reliable used work trucks can be found through trustworthy dealerships like Summit Trucks, online marketplaces, and individual sellers. Each source has its own benefits and considerations.

Used Truck Dealerships

Quality used work trucks can reliably be sourced from reputable used truck dealerships like ours. Dealerships host all kinds of brands in a dedicated used auto space, making it easy to choose from a wide array of vehicles and test drive them without wasting your time.

This business model often provides the most peace of mind through rigorous appraisals on fair trade-ins and used car purchases from our customers—with warranties and ensure the trucks undergo thorough inspections to meet high standards of performance and reliability.

Additionally, used truck dealerships usually provide financing solutions as well, making it possible to get all the things you need under one roof.

Private Sellers

Private sellers may also have what you're looking for, but they're spread out and every seller is different. There's typically more risk when taking this route. There's a lot that goes into buying a used truck, so you'll have to be careful when on your own. When buying from private sellers, it is important to consider the following:

  • Checking the vehicle history report
  • Having the truck inspected by a mechanic
  • Meeting in a public place
  • Bringing a friend

Browse Summit Trucks' Used Inventory for the Best Work Trucks

Used truck sales advisor showing entrepreneur spacious bed on compact used truck Visit our used sales center, now proudly named Summit Trucks, to speak with a sales advisor. If you tell us a bit about your business and the work you expect to be doing we can point you to multiple models from great makes that will satisfy your business needs.

Choosing a used work truck can be a financially savvy and practical business decision. These vehicles offer significant cost savings (especially through financing), proven reliability, and slower depreciation rates, making them an excellent investment for individuals and businesses alike.

Keep an eye on our used GMC, Ford, Ram, and Toyota models in our stock. Every truck is different and no two trucks in our inventory are the same.

Key features such as engine options, towing and hauling capabilities, and modern safety features are part of the process of getting a used truck for work—and our truck services are great for keeping your trucks, especially modified trucks in great working order.

Ready to drive away in your ideal used work truck? Get prequalified for a truck loan through our used truck sales center to simplify your financing options and budget.

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I consider buying a used work truck instead of a new one?

You should consider buying a used work truck because it offers significant cost savings, lower depreciation rates, and proven reliability, making it a financially smart choice. On newer used vehicles there's often very little wear and tear, but the biggest depreciation has already occurred, which saves your business a large depreciation expense.

What features should I look for in a used work truck?

When looking for a used work truck, focus on engine options, towing and hauling capabilities, as well as modern safety features like forward collision warning and electronic stability control. These will ensure efficiency and safety in your work truck. Moreover, trailering tech will really help practically speaking and insurers may view it as risk mitigation for better rates.

Depending on your business, you may also want to know some of the best off-road trucks as well, in case you're working in remote sites in Utah.

How can I ensure the used work truck I buy is reliable?

To ensure the used work truck is reliable, just ask our sales advisors for a bit about our used truck inventory's history. We'll have vehicle history reports and inspection results at the ready, from when we bought the truck on sale or trade. We don't buy lemons so you won't have to worry about it either!

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A Used Truck Buying Guide: Our Tips & Advice

What's in a used truck? While dealerships often showcase amazing vehicles, trucks out there performing in the real world have the added benefit of being tested and given the thumbs up. Our used truck buying guide offers practical advice to help you make an informed purchase, so you can find the best ones.

Used Truck Buying Guidelines

  • Buying a used pickup truck is smart financially due to lower price tag, gentler depreciation rates, lower loan interest rates, and potentially lower insurance costs.
  • Key factors to consider when buying a used truck include budget planning, fuel economy, towing and payload capacity, cab and bed configurations, and engine options.
    • If you're going to get a lifted truck, it's better to give a used truck past its initial bumper-to-bumper warranty an aftermarket upgrade like a body lift or a suspension lift.
    • Lighter pickup trucks can tow up to 14,000 lb and heavy-duty trucks can tow between 30,000 lb and 40,000 lb. Gooseneck hitches are usually required above 30,000 lb.
    • Fuel efficiency can be 10-24 mpg combined in petroleum engines. But with fully electric trucks you can get 60-90 mpg; these trucks can be harder to find since they are newer to the used truck market.
  • When choosing a used truck, consider the type that fits your needs: compact, midsize, full-size, heavy-duty, or an exciting new EV market.

Why Choose a Used Pickup Truck?

Newer used Ford-F150 in black driving up snowy dirt road in Utah showcasing suspension truck lift. The Ford F-150 is wildly popular and a great buy. If you buy used, you've in-demand features with the brand power of Ford behind it. You've also got their most popular model and something you can customize later if you wish!

Why opt for a used pickup truck, you ask? Think financial savvy meets rugged adventure. A pre-owned pickup truck offers the following benefits:

  • Saves you from the steep depreciation of a new vehicle
  • Comes with lower loan interest rates and insurance costs
  • Features like leather seats and advanced tech become surprisingly affordable in the used market
  • Used trucks retain their value, thanks to their built-to-last durability

Imagine cruising in a crew cab with all these features and more. A used pickup truck is the perfect choice for those looking for both practicality and adventure.

Whether you’re eyeing a compact truck for city errands or a heavy-duty truck for dominating mountain trails or towing the maximum. Whatever you're aspiring to, a used truck is a wise investment that keeps on giving after its first owner tosses the keys.

Types of Used Pickup Trucks

As for used pickup trucks, there’s a world of choices to suit your every need. From the agile compact trucks to the mighty heavy-duty haul champions, each type brings its own brand of power and purpose.

Maybe you'd like to get into a sleek electric truck for eco-friendly escapades or a full-sized Silverado for your contracting business. No matter the dream, understanding the different truck types ensures you drive away with a pickup that perfectly aligns with your lifestyle.

Where does your current truck fit in the used truck market? It could be a great model from yesteryear, but not the right size, towing package, or fuel-type you need. In that case, you should consider selling or trading your truck in—for something that's more your speed.

Compact Trucks

Taking a closer look at compact trucks, we're into your stereotypical pickups. These trucks weave through city traffic with grace and fit snugly into that tight parking spot outside your favorite café. Don’t let their size fool you, though; they come with a cargo bed ready to haul your weekend DIY project supplies, albeit with a smaller capacity than their larger siblings.

Compact trucks, like the nimble Ford Ranger or the feature-packed GMC Canyon, offer the kind of fuel economy that people need with the capabilities pickups offer to their drivers exclusively; our new and repeat customers are truck owners, and many have heard the phrase, "can I borrow your truck?"

Midsize Trucks

Newer used 4x4 Toyota Tacoma on dirt road at sunset in spring. The Toyota Tacoma is something we often hope to buy off our customers on trade-in. Sitting between compact and midsize trucks, it's got the best of both worlds between agile, smaller trucks and industrious midsized. In a way it's the perfect midsize!

Midsize trucks are the jack-of-all-trades in the truck world. They strike a sweet balance between the compact’s nimbleness and the full-size’s muscle, making them versatile companions for both daily commutes and off-road adventures. The Toyota Tacoma is a fantastic midsize truck model, known for its reliability, off-road capability, and strong resale value.

With engine options that range from fuel-sipping to powerful, these trucks cater to a variety of needs and often come decked out with upscale amenities that rival luxury vehicles.

Full-Size Trucks

Enter the domain of full-sized trucks, where robust performance meets versatile configurations. These workhorses are designed for hard work and encumbered play, boasting towing capabilities that make them the go-to choice for hauling heavy trailers or boats.

Leaders of this category are usually considered the Ram 1500 or the Ford F-150.

And when it comes to comfort, these trucks don’t skimp – with spacious interiors that can give luxury SUVs a run for their money, especially in crew cab variants like the SuperCrew.

Electric Trucks

The electric truck is the new kid on the block, quietly revving up to revolutionize the pickup world. The Chevy Silverado EV and the Ford Lightning are two popular options.

Already boasting powerful towing capabilities, these plug-in models are expected to surge in availability in the used market, offering a cleaner, more efficient way to tackle the jobs traditionally reserved for their gas-guzzling counterparts.

Heavy-Duty Trucks

Side profile of Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD 4x4 on Utahn side street near Salt Lake City. The Chevrolet Silverado 3500HD is a favorite among heavy duty truck owners. Like the Ford Super Duty series, it's part of a line that can tow over 25,000 lb with the right equipment. If you buy used, you've got a ton of life left in it to tow all you need.

For those who demand maximum power and capability, heavy-duty trucks are the undisputed champions. Engineered to conquer the toughest tasks, these trucks are the heroes of heavy towing and payload capacities, ideal for hauling fifth-wheel trailers or bearing heavy loads.

Models like the Ford Super Duty, with features like dual-wheel rear axles, stand tall with reinforced frames and suspension systems designed to withstand the heaviest demands. The Chevy Silverado 3500HD and the GMC Sierra 3500HD are also great examples of this category.

Key Factors to Consider When Buying a Used Truck

When the hunt for a used truck begins, several factors come into play to ensure you find a vehicle that’s as dependable as it is suited to your needs.

From setting a realistic budget to scrutinizing the engine’s output, considering these key elements will guide you to a truck that’s ready to hit the road and get the job done—without any costly surprises down the line.

Budget Planning

Budget planning is the compass that guides your truck buying journey. It’s about more than just the sticker price; it encompasses the total cost of truck ownership, including insurance, maintenance, and those trips to the gas station.

It all depends what you want in a used truck. Take the Tacoma; with used Toyota Tacomas at our used auto center fetching anywhere from $27,000 to just under $40,000, setting a clear budget helps you navigate the financial waters.

Financing a Used Truck

Our used inventory sports a diverse range of used trucks priced from roughly $30K to around $90K. For those eyeing the higher end of the spectrum, financing options are available to make your dream truck a reality. You can always get pre-qualified for financing to start budgeting more accurately for the type of ride you want.

Towing and Payload Capacity

Closeup of trailer hitch with safety lock engaged. Before you even get into gooseneck hitches, there's a lot you can tow in your used truck, depending on its size. Some compact light duty trucks tow just a little, maybe a small boat weighing 4,000 lb. But with a hitch and a full-sized you're getting up to 14,000 lb!

Towing and payload capacity are the muscles of your pickup truck, defining how much weight it can flex without breaking a sweat.

Whether it’s a compact truck with a 4,000-pound towing limit or a full-size powerhouse capable of pulling 14,000 lb, these figures are essential to match your truck to the tasks at hand, from towing trailers to hauling heavy loads without straining the frame.

Fuel Economy

Fuel economy is the heartbeat of your truck’s long-term financial use. The gallons-per-mile equation plays a vital role in the ongoing expenses of truck ownership, especially when considering the typical MPG figures that can range quite a bit

With the potential to cover hundreds of miles on a single tank, a truck’s performance on fuel is a key factor to ponder. In newer used trucks, there's the GMC Canyon 4WD and the Chevrolet Colorado 4WD, each getting 22 mpg on the highway, while the Ford F150 Pickup 4WD wins out with 24 mpg. But the Toyota Tacoma will get you around in the city better with 20 urban mpg!

Cab and Bed Configurations

Cab and bed configurations are like choosing the perfect outfit for your truck – they determine how it will function in your daily life. From the cozy two-seater standard cabs to the family-friendly crew cabs and the versatile extended cab, each configuration offers a balance of seating and cargo space tailored to your needs.

The right choice here ensures your truck serves you well, whether you’re carpooling to work or loading up for a weekend adventure. If you're after those maximum payloads and towing capacities, you might need a specialized truck bed or a goose-neck hitch, respectively.

Engine Options

Newer used GMC Sierra sitting on icy patch of a dirt road in Utah. The GMC Sierra comes in several engine types, and one of our customers' favorites is the 3.0L turbodiesel by Duramax. Pound-for-pound it's a fighter, producing 277 horsepower and 460 lb-ft of torque.

The heart of your used truck lies in its engine options, and it’s crucial to choose one that suits your performance needs and appetite for adventure. Diesel engine choices are also something to consider as some used trucks have smaller displacements like a 3.0L Duramax turbodiesel, which can keep up with 5.3L or 6.2L V8s burning petroleum.

With options ranging from fuel-efficient inline four-cylinders to the roar of a 425 horsepower V-8, there’s an engine for every job and journey. But bear in mind that diesel engines, while powerful, may come with higher maintenance costs, adding another layer to your decision-making process.

Where to Buy a Used Truck in Utah

In the Beehive State, the quest for the perfect used truck leads to a crossroads: online listings, reputable dealerships like Summit Trucks, or the more adventurous route of private sellers. Each path offers a unique buying experience, and in Utah’s flourishing used truck market, finding your ideal ride is all about knowing where to look and who to trust.

Dealerships an Used Auto Centers

Dealerships like Summit Trucks are oases in the desert of used truck buying, offering a mirage of options from compact trucks to the mightiest of heavy-duty pickups. Here, well-maintained preowned vehicles sometimes come with warranties providing security and peace of mind—ensuring your used truck doesn’t come with hidden surprises.

Professional service and support mean you can rest assured that the truck has been thoroughly vetted, ready to earn its keep from day one. With Summit Trucks' reputation, you can rest assured that your used truck will be one you can be proud of.

Custom Used Truck Services

Lifted Ford Super Duty showcasing boosted off road capability kicking up dirt. The Ford Super Duty shows how comfortable even heavy duty truck owners can have it. There's a lot of great tech inside a truck, and the used market is full of newer used vehicles with features owners still rave about years later.

When a truck owner wants to pass a well-cared for truck in great working order (inside and out) to the next person, we're here. Summit Trucks sells used trucks as is but also provides a range of custom truck services, including:

  • Modifications
  • Customized Truck Alignments
  • Aftermarket Tires
  • Professional Trimming

Visit us today to explore our custom truck services and see how we can transform your used truck into the perfect ride for your lifestyle. If you're going to modify a truck, it makes a lot more sense to modify a used truck from a used auto center like ours; you'll be putting exciting new components in and increasing its value, performance in certain areas, and visual appeal!

Private Sellers

Private sellers can be the wild cards of truck buying, offering deals that may seem too good to be true – and sometimes they are. When venturing into private sales, a keen eye and thorough investigation are your best allies.

Always verify the vehicle’s history and ensure a comprehensive inspection to avoid any unwelcome surprises lurking under the hood or within the paperwork. At the end of the day, private sellers are a buyer-beware source for used trucks so please exercise caution here.

Online Listings

Online listings are the treasure maps of the used truck world, offering a panoramic view of the market from the comfort of your home. With these platforms, you can filter through hundreds of options to find the truck that checks all your boxes, comparing prices and conditions with ease.

Just remember, the digital world is vast, so doing your homework on the seller’s reputation is as important as inspecting the truck itself. Plus, if you're going to modify your truck, you'll have to find a place to do it afterwards, like Summit Trucks.

Inspecting a Used Truck Before Purchase

Like a miner sifting for gold, inspecting a used truck before purchase is all about separating the gems from the grit. A meticulous examination from tire treads to engine bay can unearth potential issues, ensuring your investment is solid as the steel of the truck’s frame.

Never shy away from getting into the nitty-gritty details; after all, it’s the little things that can make or break your driving experience.

Mechanical Inspection

A mechanical inspection is the spotlight that illuminates the inner workings of your potential truck. Enlisting the expertise of a third-party mechanic can reveal hidden issues that might otherwise go unnoticed, saving you from future headaches and unexpected repair bills.

It’s a step that should be built into your budget, It’s a step that should be built into your budget, a small price to pay for the peace of mind that your truck’s engine runs smoothly and its brakes function properly. As our customers know, when we buy a used truck, we do a thorough inspection so we can sell it to its next appreciative owner.

Vehicle History Report

A vehicle history report tells the story of a used truck, providing a detailed record of its past. It’s a must in your used truck buying process, revealing past accidents, ownership details, and maintenance records.

Armed with this knowledge, you can gauge the truck’s past and its readiness for your future, ensuring the story ahead is one of smooth roads and reliable service.

Test Drive

Used Dodge Ram 1500 in white kicking up dirt in reverse. The Dodge Ram 1500 is another great find in used truck centers like ours. If you buy used, you've got a a chance to take a truck out and see how it might perform. A test drive doesn't have to churn dirt to tell you a lot about acceleration, braking, torque, suspension and handling. You can feel all that on the pavement!

A test drive is your chance to dance with the truck, feeling its rhythm on the road and ensuring it moves to the beat of your drum. When our customers come for that all-important test drive, most pay attention to how it handles different speeds and terrains, and keep their ears tuned for smooth mechanics.

For any used truck buyer, it’s a practical way to check the truck’s performance, handling, and comfort, ensuring it aligns with your expectations and driving habits.

The Best Used Trucks to Buy This Year

As we gather from our Utah customers, certain used trucks stand out for their blend of durability, utility, and performance among most trucks. Whether you’re searching for a truck that can endure the rigors of work or one that offers a comfortable ride for family outings, the following models have proven their worth on the road and in the hearts of their owners:

  • Ford F-150
  • Chevrolet Silverado
  • Ram 1500
  • Toyota Tacoma
  • GMC Sierra

These trucks offer a range of features and capabilities to suit different needs and preferences. Consider these options when shopping for a used truck—or better yet, a newer used truck. Let’s explore the best picks that combine quality and value for a purchase you won’t regret.

Toyota Tacoma

Used Toyota Tacoma sitting majestically on patch of dirt near Utahn construction site. The Toyota Tacoma is award-winning and sought after by both new and used truck owners. Sitting between compact and midsize trucks, it's got a great balance between performance, reliability, and price.

The Toyota Tacoma is a testament to reliability, commanding a high resale value and offering a versatility that’s tough to beat. With models from 2016 to 2023 fetching prices that reflect their enduring quality, the Tacoma stands as a wise choice for those who seek a used truck that promises to be a faithful companion on both city streets and rugged trails.

It’s no wonder this pickup has a loyal following; its reputation for toughness and dependability is well-earned and well-regarded in the used truck market.

Ford F-150

The Ford F-150, a symbol of American half ton trucks, offers an impressive array of features, including:

  • A diverse range of powertrain options
  • Advanced towing technologies
  • A towing capacity that peaks at over 13,500 lb
  • A payload of 2,445 lb

It’s clear the F-150 is built for heavy lifting. The availability of a PowerBoost Hybrid V6 engine and cutting-edge features like BlueCruise technology further positions the F-150 as a forward-thinking choice that doesn’t compromise on power or performance.

Chevrolet Silverado

The Chevrolet Silverado is another stalwart in the used truck arena, renowned for its robust build and versatile performance across a variety of configurations. From the work-ready standard-cab models to the luxurious crew cabs, the Silverado offers a truck for every job and every driver.

Known for their durability, Silverado trucks, especially those coming from fleet service, are plentiful and provide a reliable option that keeps you on the road and out of the shop.

Common Mistakes to Avoid When Buying a Used Truck

Navigating the used truck market can be as challenging as off-roading in the Rockies, so it’s crucial to be aware of common pitfalls.

Do some research on the best used trucks to buy by year. Some makes and models do better some years; many private sales have resulted in buyers' remorse, as some of our more wary customers know from experience.

Always ensure the title is clear and in hand before signing on the dotted line; it’s the most important document in your truck buying journey. And don’t underestimate the value of a dealership with an on-site shop – their expertise can be invaluable in ensuring your truck is road-ready.

Visit Summit Trucks to Make Buying Used Trucks Easy

Used Jeep off-roading beside tall grasses in Utah in autumn. Our used vehicle center used to be called Truck World, hinting at our devotion to selling and modifying great trucks. But now we can extend that beyond our favorite used trucks to vehicles of many shapes and sizes—like Jeeps. Come check us out at our location in Salt Lake City!

From the rugged highlands of the Wasatch Range to the bustling streets of Salt Lake City, a used truck is your ticket to freedom and versatile capability. Remember, the key to a successful used truck purchase is a blend of savvy shopping and meticulous inspection.

With the right approach, you’ll find a pickup that not only meets your demands but also delivers continuous satisfaction. This guide is your compass, pointing you towards the best deals in Utah, and ensuring your used truck adventure is nothing short of legendary.

Ready to find your perfect used truck? Contact us for a visit to test drive today! Used trucks are worth their weight in gold when you get the right combination of price, extended warranty, and build quality.

Used trucks also a canvas for your favorite truck modifications! Our sales advisors can get your questions in and advise accordingly.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the benefits of buying a used pickup truck?

The benefits of buying a used pickup truck include saving money on upfront costs, loan interest rates, and insurance, as well as better value retention compared to new trucks. Moreover, it wouldn't make sense to gut the insides of a truck that's just rolled off a name-brand dealer's lot.

Used trucks are ready for the new lease on life that a lifted truck gets. It's a smart choice if you're looking for a reliable, optionally customized vehicle that won't break the bank.

How do I choose the right type of used pickup truck?

Choose the right type of used pickup truck based on your needs for maneuverability, towing/payload capacity, and desired features. Compact trucks are best for easy parking and better fuel economy, while heavy-duty trucks are ideal for more demanding tasks.

Off-roading can be a different beast, even for thoroughly reliable trucks. If you know your going to be touring tough mountain or foothills trails, you should choose the best off-road truck for your budget and your purposes.

Where is the best place to buy a used truck in Utah?

Summit Trucks is the best place to buy a used truck in Utah, offering a wide selection of quality vehicles and heavy hitters that you can modify to your hearts content. Or services complement each other perfectly, so you've got the one-stop shop for the custom truck of your dreams.

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Why Choose Used? Learn The Benefits of Buying a Used Truck

Sometimes we meet customers who are hesitant about used vehicles; the used car salesman stereotype is one we've heard about. But our commitment to quality used trucks comes first and foremost.

Why buy a used truck? Simply put there are a lot of benefits to buying a used truck. In short, offering significant savings on upfront costs and a slower depreciation curve are our favorite reasons, but there are more! Pre-owned trucks present financially comfortable choices without sacrificing quality.

Brief Benefits of Buying Used Trucks

  • Buying a used truck can save you cash upfront, potentially drop those insurance bills, and give you more stability with slower depreciation.
  • Newer used trucks may still be under manufacturers' warranties, the average of which is 36,000-60,000 miles.
    • Double declining depreciation means a newer used truck with a few thousand miles on it costs much less than new.
    • Insurers sometimes offer better rates for certain makes and models depending on state regulations; it's worth checking with an insurer on the difference in premium for new and used.
    • A lower price means you can opt for higher down payments and less interest overall.
  • The best used trucks can go 200,000 miles over their entire lifespan, so high mileage purchases are still a good investment.
  • Used trucks with brand-proven reliability promise great build quality. And through Summit Truck's appraisal process, we keep a repair history for peace of mind.
  • A lower price point means you can upgrade on trim for less; higher trims usually have the best features!

Maximizing Your Budget: The Cost-Effective Choice of a Used Truck

Let’s face it, trucks are fantastic vehicles with versatility and power, but their price tags can be hefty. But what if you could get all the benefits of a truck without taking a financial hit? A pre-owned truck is a budget-friendly way to join the community of proud truck owners.

Save on Initial Purchase Price

A man writing on a piece of paper with a key to a truck lying on top Get a deal on used trucks compared to the price of new every time you buy. Our sales experts can help you get a price on a used vehicle that you can feel good about.

When you buy a used truck, you’re already ahead financially. How so? Well, the initial purchase price of a used truck is significantly lower compared to a brand-new truck.

This means you could potentially drive away in a high-quality, pre-owned pickup truck without a massive loan weighing you down. Plus, with the money you save, you could invest in some nifty additional features only available on higher trims. Lower price also means higher down payment ratio!

Lower Insurance Costs

Another advantage of buying a used truck is the potential for lower insurance costs. Unlike new vehicles, the decreased overall value of used trucks can result in less expensive insurance premiums—depending on multiple factors including make and model. You could be saving money year after year, just by opting for a pre-owned truck. Feel free to find out what your insurer in Salt Lake City says!

Gentler Depreciation Curve

Have you ever heard that a new vehicle loses value the moment it’s driven off the dealership lot? On a curve that looks like a vertical drop off a cliff, halfway to the point it levels out.

That’s depreciation in action, and it’s a significant factor in the total cost of owning a new truck. However, when you buy a used truck, you bypass this initial steep depreciation.

Our finance department calls this double declining depreciation, and with a used truck you use this appraisal standard to your advantage.

Durability Meets Value in Pre-Owned Trucks

Orange vehicle getting serviced at Summit Trucks to keep it reliable Used vehicles may have some miles on them already but with good maintenance, they can go a lot farther. Our service experts can offer you great advice on how to maximize that lifespan.

Now that we’ve discussed the financial benefits of buying a used truck, let’s shift gears and talk about value in terms of durability and reliability. Trucks are built to last, and with average high mileage now reaching 200,000 miles, opting for a pre-owned truck is a smart move. But don’t just take our word for it, let’s delve a little deeper.

Proven Reliability

Used trucks with high reliability ratings and proper maintenance can be road companions for the long haul. Modern trucks are built to last well beyond 200,000 miles, given they’re well-maintained. Among outliers a few makes come up consistently; some of our best used truck brands include:

  • Chevrolet
  • GMC
  • Nissan
  • Ford
  • Dodge
  • Jeep
  • Toyota

But every used vehicle is a different beast. A hands-on evaluation during a test drive really helps in assessing a used truck’s reliability. As we'll discuss further into the article, checking the exterior, interior, and safety features is a great idea. Still, we can tell you more about the general pros and cons of each make.

Repair History Transparency

When buying a used truck from Summit Trucks, you also have the advantage of a vehicle’s transparent repair history. This offers a transparent view of the truck’s past maintenance, which can provide valuable insights into its current condition and future upkeep needs.

Regular service records are a clear sign of a well-maintained vehicle, which is a good indication of its reliability.

Upgrade Your Ride: More Truck for Your Money

Choosing a used truck doesn’t mean compromising on features or settling for less. In fact, it can often mean getting more truck for your money. With the money saved on the initial cost, insurance, and depreciation, you might find that you can afford a used truck with higher-end features and advanced technology that would be pricey in new models.

Access to Higher-end Features

When you opt for a used truck, you have the potential to access upscale interiors, advanced safety technology, and robust engines that would come with a premium price tag in new trucks. This means you can enjoy the luxury and performance of higher trims without breaking the bank.

Plus, some used trucks may even come with features that have been discontinued in newer models, offering something unique.

Variety of Models and Options

trucks and cars in a lot Get a deal on used trucks compared to the price of new every time you buy. Our sales experts can help you get a price on a used vehicle that you can feel good about.

The used truck market offers a diverse selection of truck models, with various makes, trims, and configurations. This variety extends your selection so you've always got more options than you would at a name-brand dealership. Whether you’re a fan of Ford, GMC, or Toyota, the used market is likely to have a model that ticks all your boxes.

Newer Used: The Best of Both Worlds

If you’re looking for a middle ground between a brand new and a cheaper used truck, newer used trucks might be just what you’re looking for. These vehicles offer the best of both worlds: the peace of mind of a new vehicle with the price tag of a used one.

Warranty Protection on Low Mileage

One of the great advantages of newer used trucks is the likelihood of coming with full or partial manufacturers' warranties. The sought-after newer used powertrain warranty provides a defined duration of coverage, giving you clear expectations and peace of mind that keeps repairs in the future.

Thorough Inspections for Newer Used Trucks

Another significant benefit of trucks is the comprehensive multi-point inspection they undergo before they hit the used lot. Whether used or newer used, this process ensures the vehicle you’re getting meets high-quality standards, providing you with even more confidence in your truck purchase.

Plus, with the vehicle’s original manufacturer setting the criteria for the inspection, you can be sure it’s up to scratch, and that the previous owner maintained it well.

Test Drive with Confidence: Finding Your Next Truck

Woman in black shirt smiling receiving newer used truck's keys so she can take a test drive. Get a deal on used trucks compared to the price of new every time you buy. Our sales experts can help you get a price on a used vehicle that you can feel good about.

Now that you’ve weighed the pros and cons, crunched the numbers, and you’re ready to find your next truck. But hold on! Before you make your final decision, there’s one more step, the test drive, which isn’t just a joyride, but a chance to get hands-on experience with the vehicle and assess its suitability for your needs.

Hands-on Evaluation

During the test drive, you’re not just assessing how the truck feels on the road, but also checking its performance, response, comfort, and overall condition. It’s your chance to listen for any unusual noises, test the brakes, and check all the vehicle controls.

By the end of the test drive, you should have a good idea of whether the truck meets your personal driving preferences and needs.

Professional Advice

While test driving a used truck, don’t hesitate to ask for professional advice. The insight and guidance from the experienced sales staff can be invaluable in your decision-making process.

Our used vehicle sales advisors are always happy to make this part easy for you. They leverage years of experience selling makes and models of all kinds, with an above-average knowledge of the strengths and weaknesses of each model.

They can also provide information about the specific make and model of the truck, help you understand its features, and even suggest the best types of roads to include in your test drive.

We can also share some insight on the best trucks for off-roading according to our own off-roading community.

Understanding Financing and Warranties

By now, you’re probably excited about the prospect of buying a used truck. But before you peel away in your new ride, you should know about the financing options available to you as well as the implications of buying a newer used truck that's still under full or partial warranty.

Flexible Financing Solutions

Financing a used truck can be a breeze with the right information and resources. From our trusted lenders, we can get a deal that works for everyone. Whether you’re an individual owner-operator or a large fleet business, there’s likely a financing solution that fits your needs.

Warranty Considerations

While we trucks provide might be old or newer, it's always a good idea to find out what's covered under a used truck’s warranty.

The average used vehicle's warranty is 36,000 miles—so looking for Summit's used truck inventory under 36,000 miles will help you assess whether you can still collect on a full warranty; peace of mind you might enjoy at a new car dealership is still possible with used truck purchases.

Truck Personalization and Aftermarket Support

Used Toyota modified with a lift kit and off-road tires on a side street in Mexico. When you get a deal on a used truck you can depend on, you might have extra budget for truck modifications. Lifted custom trucks with third-party tires are a simple and affordable touch you can make for a vehicle you'll go far with.

Once you’ve signed all the paperwork, you might start thinking about personalizing your truck to make it truly yours. The world of aftermarket support and customization possibilities are part of the reason why some Utahns come straight to our used truck lot. Check out our custom truck services for aftermarket:

  • truck modifications
  • stock and oversized tires
  • truck alignments
  • custom truck maintenance

Whether you’re looking to enhance performance, appearance, or functionality, there are almost countless ways to tailor your truck to your liking through truck modifications, and maintenance or services especially suited to lifted trucks.

Customization Possibilities

From bed covers and running boards to lift kits and grilles, the aftermarket offers a plethora of products to customize your truck to your heart’s content. With the wide array of accessories compatible with various truck brands, you can truly make your truck a reflection of your personality and lifestyle.

Whether you’re aiming for a rugged off-road look or a luxurious, high-tech interior, the possibilities are endless for most vehicles. Check out our helpful article on the best truck modifications—a comprehensive guide to everything you can do with your newer used truck.

Ongoing Support and Upgrades

But customization isn’t just about making your truck look cool. It’s also about maintaining and upgrading your vehicle to suit your evolving needs. With a vast network of service providers and specialist businesses, you can count on receiving quality parts and services, along with nationwide warranties.

You can always take your used truck off the lot as is; you can also benefit from modifying your truck. But if you're happy to balance financing with money down and custom lift right out of the gate, you can get your custom dream truck right out the gate.

Ultimately, whether you go for stock or aftermarket experiences, a used truck punches above its weight and makes vehicle ownership a pleasure.

Visit Summit Trucks for Your Newer Used Truck Today

Wide shot of popular makes and models on a used truck sales lot on a cold winter day Some of the most reliable and thrilling used vehicles end up on a used vehicle lot like ours, so it's worth it to keep an on our inventory. Talk to our sales advisors for great used trucks for sale this week!

If you’re looking for a vehicle that offers value, versatility, and the opportunity for customization, a used truck is the answer. With countless models to choose from, significant cost savings, and the potential to upgrade to higher-end features, your perfect ride could be waiting for you in the used truck market.

Get prequalified with our finance department, start exploring our used truck inventory and book a test drive. If you visit us today, you could be hitting the road with confidence in your next truck by dinnertime.

Frequently Asked Questions

Are used trucks reliable?

Absolutely, used trucks can be very reliable, especially if they have been well-maintained and have a comprehensive repair history to showcase their optimal care. In a quality checkup upon trade-in, we perform a thorough inspection so that our used trucks for sale are ones we'd drive home ourselves.

In some cases, a newer used truck in our inventory might still be under all its manufacturer's warranties!

Can I afford a used truck with high-end features?

Yes, definitely! Buying a used truck allows you to afford higher-end features and trims that would be expensive in new models.

Moreover, if you're considering a used truck purchase, you can also divert the money you'd meant for payment in full into a down payment, financing some of the cost of lifting your truck, putting on oversize tires and other exciting truck modifications.

If a modified truck is your ultimate goal, why wait? Start with your newer used truck right away!

How important is a test drive when buying a used truck?

A test drive comes highly recommended when buying a used truck. When you drive out with one of our sales advisors, you can learn about the vehicle, its class, its make, its strongest competitor and more.

A used truck test drive ultimately allows you to assess its performance, handling, and overall condition, while you learn more about it. Make sure to take it for a spin before making a decision.

Can I customize a used truck?

Yes, you can customize a used truck by choosing from a wide range of aftermarket parts and accessories from our custom truck services department to enhance its performance, appearance, or functionality. This step is yours to take, whether you walk the path years from now or on the same day you drive away.

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Benefits of Lifting a Truck: Style, Performance & Clearance

Considering raising your truck’s stance? No doubt you'll want to understand the benefits of lifting a truck; enhanced ground clearance that paves the way for new off-road adventures, improved visibility that brings confidence to your drives, and a commanding presence that sets your vehicle apart.

Among truck modification services, lift kits are a standout option. It's best to unpack the advantages to starting there, so you can make an informed decision about transforming your truck with a lift.

Brief Notes on Truck Lift Benefits

  • Lifting your truck can enhance off-road capabilities with the right lift kit—chosen for center of gravity, overall weight, tire size, and other factors.
  • Most lift kits offer better handling on rough terrain and some unique benefits to towing and hauling, though they will reduce fuel efficiency and payload capacity.
  • A lift kit provides a higher vantage point for increased visibility and safety, as well as the opportunity to fit larger tires for greater ground clearance and stability.
  • Body lifts maintain stock ride quality and near-maximum tow capacity while suspension lifts call to those seeking maximum ground clearance and off-road performance.
  • Tire sizes with body lifts limit tire size to 33" but with a suspension lift of a few inches, tire diameter can be increased up to 37" comfortably.

Elevating Performance: How Lifting Affects Truck Performance

Lifted trucks in a convoy showing on busy highway at high speed Lifting your truck can enhance off-road capabilities with the right lift kit—chosen for center of gravity, overall weight, tire size, and other factors.

Let’s kick things off with the sheer thrill of performance enhancement. Lifting your truck isn’t just a cosmetic change; it’s a physical alteration with powerful implications. A lifted truck performs better through:

  • Improved handling and appearance, especially off-road
  • Agility over challenging terrains under most conditions
  • A raised profile for higher clearance on certain lifts

While some lifts can lead to a stiffer ride (depending on kit, make, model, and more) the right lift can lead to a ruggedness and confidence that comes with a higher ground clearance. Plus, with an expertly select kit, you’ll have the perfect setup to fit those larger tires that positively impact performance even more. Enter all-terrain tires.

Superior Handling on Varied Terrain

Now, let’s talk terrain. A lifted truck with bigger tires isn’t just for show—it’s a powerhouse when it comes to handling off-road conditions. With all-terrain tires, your truck gains improved stability on uneven surfaces—crucial when you’re navigating through nothing but mud, sand, and even snow.

Larger tires contribute to a truck’s capability and actually grant a little bonus to safety, ensuring you remain in control in the most unpredictable off-roading scenarios. For our clients in Salt Lake City, off-road truck trails in the Rockies are unforgiving; it's best to have all-terrain tires of the right size.

As a note, however, that superior maneuverability on rough terrain may come with a trade-off in fuel efficiency, but for the die-hard off-roader, the trade is well worth the unparalleled control and handling.

Towing and Hauling

Lifted truck on road casting imposing shadow on busy road with fishbowl lens effect With all-terrain tires, your truck gains improved stability on uneven surfaces—crucial when you’re navigating through nothing but mud, sand, and even snow.

For those who mean business with their trucks, lifting can offer some benefits to towing and hauling. A body lift keeps the truck’s original balance and wheel-to-body weight distribution intact, making it ideal for those who regularly tow boats or haul heavy loads. More on body lifts further into the article!

Another option lies in suspension lifts, which may slightly cut into your payload and towing capacity due to the changes in suspension. It’s a delicate dance of power and performance, as lifting can introduce towing instability and unfortunate sagging under heavy loads. Towing might be the better choice.

Once you’ve decided between payload hauling and towing, you’ll find that a correct truck lift done by experienced truck services companies like ourselves can give you that extra leverage and stability needed when towing recreational stuff or trailers on those long highways.

Maximizing Visibility for Safer Driving

There’s more to lifting a truck than meets the eye—quite literally. Have you ever found yourself straining to see over traffic, or missing an obstacle until the last second? A lift kit offers a commanding view from the driver’s seat, giving you a better perspective of the road ahead while enhancing safety significantly.

This elevated vantage point is not just about looking down on other vehicles; it’s about situational awareness. It allows you to spot potential issues early, from drivers straying from lanes on busy highways to hidden obstacles in a parking lot, ensuring you can react in a timely manner.

Upgrading to Larger Wheels and Tires

Truck lift with oversized tires featuring prominently A suspension lift opens up the possibility for oversized tires which our truck modification service personnel can help with.

Rolling into the topic of wheels and tires, there's another layer of benefits that come with lifting your truck. Larger tires are not just about making a statement—they’re performance enhancements. The traction and stability provided by bigger tires are second to none, especially on rough terrain.

To strike the ideal balance between a smooth ride and off-road capability, tires should be at upwards of 33 inches in diameter for a lifted truck, up to a limit of about 37 inches.

But remember, the larger the tire, the more strain you’re putting on your engine. It’s a trade-off that requires consideration, as the added weight can make your truck feel slower and less responsive, but for many, the trade-off is well worth it for the enhanced performance capability and superior look.

Why Bigger Tires Make a Difference

Bigger tires are half the fun of lifted trucks, offering tangible benefits that extend beyond their rugged good looks. By lifting your truck and outfitting it with larger tires, you’re raising the body while simultaneously smoothing out the entire driving experience. The benefits of upgrading your truck’s tires include:

  • Increased ground clearance, allowing you to tackle more challenging terrain
  • Larger surface area of the tires, providing better grip and stability on uneven surfaces
  • Improved control and stability, no matter what the trail throws at you.
  • Bigger tires for off-roading can benefit from further grip by airing down.

Truck lifts are key to unlocking the potential of oversized tires. But it's always been a delicate balance act between surface area and height on one end and weight gain on the other. That's why you should choose carefully!

Choosing the Right Tire Size for Your Lifted Truck

lifted red truck with perfectly fit tires for safety and maneuverability A suspension lift demands a practiced eye for choosing tire size, which our truck modification service advisors know through experience.

Selecting the perfect tire size for your lifted truck is part of what our truck modifications and truck service technicians focus on when you step through our door. We factor the weight of your truck and the conditions you’ll drive in—ensuring the tires fit snugly under the fenders without friction.

Be mindful, though, as those larger and heavier wheels might outpace your brake system as well, which could necessitate an upgrade to keep your towing and hauling safe and sound. Tire size affects more of your truck's other systems than you might expect!

The Beauty and Style of a Lifted Truck

Beyond the mud-slinging and rock-crawling you're envisioning for your newer used truck's future, lies the undeniable allure of a lifted truck’s appearance. There’s an aggressive edge to the raised silhouette that turns heads and starts conversations. You're communicating adventure and personal power with it.

With a range of lift kits available, you can tailor your truck’s look to suit your personal style, whether you crave the versatility of a trail conqueror or the charisma of a lifted truck made for the highway.

Maintenance and Accessibility Benefits

Think about the last time you performed maintenance on your truck; being cramped and uncomfortable while you perform a simple oil change is no fun. A lifted truck makes these simple DIY projects under the carriage easier and much more comfortable. That’s just one of the practical perks of a lifted truck.

Not only does it facilitate easier maintenance, but it also:

  • Reduces the time and cramped conditions typically involved on oil changes
  • Provides ground clearance for mounting the driver's seat
  • Allows you to inspect the any skid plates or suspension upgrades easier

The extra elevation provides better access to the underbody, making inspections and repairs far more convenient, and allows for reaching components without the usual bending and straining. A lifted truck can be a maintenance dream, simplifying the service process and even making it a nice place to work.

Lift Kit Types: Body Lift vs. Suspension Lift

Aesthetic appeal of a lifted truck The installation of a suspension lift is complex, demanding extensive mechanical knowledge and often modifications to the truck’s other components.

Choosing a lift kit comes with serious implications; you’re faced with two options in a watershed decision—the body lift and the suspension lift. Both offer distinct advantages, but they cater to different needs and preferences. Moreover, if you're careful about weight, center of gravity, and others, you can do both.

Body lifts elevate the truck’s body from the frame using spacers and maintain the stock ride quality, making them a go-to for those looking to boost the truck’s stature without altering its driving dynamics or towing capabilities.

On the flip side, suspension lifts provide a complete overhaul of the truck’s underpinnings, offering not just increased ground clearance but also the capacity for larger tires—perfect for the off-road enthusiast.

Body Lifts

Body lift kits are the answer for truck owners who want to elevate their vehicle’s appearance without a significant change to the driving experience. These kits work by raising the body using lift blocks or spacers, adding to the truck’s height between the frame and the body.

The truck’s original handling and suspension characteristics by keeping the frame near the wheels, allowing you to enjoy the height gained without any bumps in the ride quality.

Suspension Lift Considerations

Suspension lifts, however, are a different beast entirely. If you opt for this route, be prepared for a comprehensive transformation of your truck’s suspension system. This includes:

  • the potential need for new driveshafts
  • longer brake lines
  • exhaust modifications
  • a precise alignment to keep everything running smoothly.

The installation of a suspension lift is complex, demanding extensive mechanical knowledge and often modifications to the truck’s other components. The frame and body are closer together, but the suspension juts out, meaning it has to work hard to maintain aligned shock absorption.

It’s a significant undertaking, but for those who crave the ultimate in ground clearance and off-road capability, a suspension lift is the way. For a higher price tag, you may want to consider financing your next newer used truck with us before you have us install a lift kit on it.

Pre-Lift Considerations: What You Need to Know

In our opinion, it's best to hire professionals with experience making truck lifts that perform well and ensure safety and street legal status. You should also research which of the best truck modifications there are to make, to see if your truck lift would factor into whatever you want to do down the road.

If you’re going for larger tires, there are sometimes factors to consider concerning other systems; if we lift your truck's suspension we may need to re-gear the axles for optimal power transfer.

And for those who tow, consider adding air suspension or a drop hitch for improved stability. And please note, the safest towing is always with an unlifted truck or one with a body lift.

Trail Riding Transformation: Conquering the Off-Road

Exaggerated view of a lifted truck's undercarriage from ground level, covered in mud An exaggerated lift like the one pictured here makes off-roading that much more fun and doable, which our truck modification services thrive on.

A lifted truck literally takes your off-road experience to new heights. With increased ground clearance, you’ll find yourself soaring over fallen tree trunks, debris, and even smaller-sized rocks with ease. The improved maneuverability preserves your truck’s undercarriage. It also enhances your ability to tackle steep inclines and declines without breaking a sweat.

And when it comes to suspension articulation, a lifted truck delivers more wheel travel over rough terrain, which translates to better traction and stability.

Navigating Legalities and Safety Concerns

While lifting your truck can bring numerous benefits, it’s essential to navigate the legalities and safety concerns that come with it. Bylaws and state regulations set limits on vehicle modifications, so make sure you’re in the clear to avoid any unwelcome surprises. Through our experience, you can avoid common legal pitfalls affecting Salt Lake city residents and Utahns more generally.

When it comes to safety, be aware of the increased body roll due to a higher center of gravity, which can be countered with thicker anti-sway bars. And don’t forget that larger tires, while great for traction, can pose a higher risk of hydroplaning and affect your fuel efficiency, so weigh the pros and cons carefully.

Visit Summit Trucks for Experienced Lift-Kit Services in Salt Lake City

To wrap it all up, lifting your truck is more than a simple modification; it’s a comprehensive upgrade that enhances every aspect of your vehicle. From the thrills of improved performance and handling to the practical benefits of visibility and maintenance, a lifted truck stands tall in more ways than one.

Whether you’re more into off-roading or towing nearer to your truck's maximum, the style statement of a lifted truck is unmistakable. But there are things to bear in mind before you commit. That's where our seasoned truck lift technicians come in; we can advise based on our experience.

Ready to elevate your truck's performance and style? Book your lift kit installation with Summit Trucks in Salt Lake City today and transform your truck into a towering symbol of adventure and capability. Contact us to get started on your next or current truck's transformative journey!

a lifted truck customized by Summit Trucks, Utah This is the end-result of a lifted Ford truck customized by Summit Trucks for one of our customers.

Frequently Asked Questions

Does lifting a truck increase value?

Yes, if someone is looking for a lifted truck and it has been worked on by a qualified expert, it might even increase its value. So, lifting a truck can increase its value if you can prove that the truck lift was done by professional truck services like ours.

Will lifting my truck affect its towing capacity?

Yes, lifting your truck can definitely affect its towing capacity. A suspension lift may reduce towing capacity due to elongations in the truck's suspension and potential instability. Consider the type of lift and how you plan to use your truck before you select a lift kit from our services department.

Can lifting my truck make it less fuel-efficient?

Yes, lifting your truck, especially with larger tires, can decrease fuel efficiency and may cause speedometer inaccuracies. In our experience, some lift kits affect the drivetrain. If mileage is something to consider, you'll want to keep your lifting options open.

What's the difference between a body lift and a suspension lift?

A body lift uses spacers to raise the truck's body from the frame without changing the suspension, while a suspension lift elongates the suspension system for increased ground clearance—allowing the option to use larger tires.

If your center of gravity is unsafe at greater heights due to a narrower stance, you may want to consider deciding between the two instead of doing both. Ask us for advice on stance width based on your vehicle—and check our rundown on the best trucks for off-roading for more insights.

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Best Truck Modifications for Peak Performance & Style

Discover the art of truck customization in this ultimate guide, where peak performance meets personalized style. For those who view their pickup truck as a personal statement, we'll explore modifications that enhance both functionality and a sense of style.

You'll get noticed on the highways and byways after choosing from our recommendations on suspension upgrades, design tweaks, and custom truck lift services. Whether it's about expressing power in the city or gearing up for a journey in rugged terrain, Summit Trucks is a great place to get some ideas!

Truck Modifications Options at a Glance

  • Pickup truck performance can be boosted with upgrades like a turbo kit and aftermarket exhaust or intake systems, while suspension improvements increase control and off-road capability.
  • Customize for style with eye-catching vinyl wraps, protective coatings, unique wheel and tire configurations, and lighting enhancements like LED headlamps and auxiliary lighting systems.
  • Enhance convenience and comfort inside the truck with custom-fit floor mats, organized storage solutions, and functional accessories like step bars and running boards.
  • Install a lift kit for heightened clearance and off-road prowess, but remember to align your lifted truck regularly—to prevent uneven tire wear and maintain optimal handling.

Top Performance-Enhancing Modifications

The world of truck customization is all about working towards a build that spells out capability and precision, whether you're conquering rough terrain or cruising urban jungle. The right changes can pushing your truck to its limits in a way that reflects your personality.

For those eager to boost their pickup truck's power, there's opportunity get into performance tweaks. From essential engine tune-ups for optimal efficiency to aftermarket exhausts for improved flow, and programmable engine tuners for custom tuning—there's more than one way to harness more capacity.

Based on what we've seen and the work we've done to help owners squeeze even more performance out of their trucks—you might want to think about some no-brainer upgrades right off the bat, provided of course, there's no budget you had in mind:

  • Installing a turbocharger kit, designed for a significant surge in horsepower
  • Fitting an aftermarket supercharger capable of delivering steady increases in horsepower with swift throttle reaction
  • Adding air intake heat shields to reduce engine bay heat, ensuring cooler air for the engine and better performance.

We can make any of these modifications you like, but the cost-to-benefit ratio might also be something you want to prioritize. In that case, cold air intakes are a great place to start!

Cold Air Intake

An image of a cold-air intake installed, prominently featuring an insulated air filter Cold-air intakes help performance by boosting the availability of oxygen in combustion reactions, as in your internal combustion engine.

A great option that affects performance without directly changing the engine are cold-air intakes. Intake systems are essentially designed to do several important things at once:

  • Injecting your engine with cooler and more oxygen-rich air to enhance combustion.
  • Boosting overall efficiency in combustion which translates into heightened horsepower and fuel efficiency.
  • Mitigating the likelihood of engine knock or detonation, contributing to smoother functioning and increased dependability.

There's an oscillating relationship between hydrogen and oxygen levels (key parts of the mixture we call air) in combustion reactions, which is central to your truck's internal combustion engine. This dance between different atoms as they burn creates changes in pressure opposite to changes in temperature! Raising oxygen helps boost regulate the expanding and contracting pressure harnessed by your engine's pistons.

Equipping your engine with a cold air intake can make ordinary driving far more thrilling. Because that colder air is denser—and greater density gets more oxygen for use during combustion—the engine doesn't work as hard, lasts longer, and accomplishes more. Plus, we can put one in inexpensively.

Exhaust Systems

When it comes to amplifying power, we shouldn’t overlook the role of aftermarket exhaust systems. By enhancing exhaust flow and diminishing backpressure, these enhancements can improve engine efficiency.

There’s a bonus to swapping stock exhaust manifolds with performance headers: it modifies torque distribution across speeds, potentially increasing horsepower. An optimal exhaust system doesn't just boost performance but also creates a distinctive, powerful sound when you accelerate.

Exhaust system upgrades remove, hot, carbon-rich air faster and more reliably—so the engine has more room for cold, fresh, oxygen-rich air. Combined with a cold-air intake, this truck modification provides noticeable boost to performance—and in our experience, the installation process is easy.

Suspension Upgrades

There’s more to a truck than just its power; control is equally essential. Suspension upgrades provide enhanced control on off-road terrain types with improved ground clearance, wheel articulation, and shock resistance.

Combined with suspension upgrades, installing a lift kit significantly raises your vehicle’s height—providing extreme clearance, which allows you to overcome larger obstacles in rugged terrain without damaging the truck. More on lift kits in a bit!

The suspension system of your truck is pivotal for retaining vehicular control and ensuring a smooth ride whether you’re traversing city streets or navigating rough trails. We see problems on Summit Truck's repair side when customers make upgrades to tires without considering suspension.

Every upgrade you make affects another system! If you upsized on tires, the suspension can get too hot; the oil inside the damper springs in a suspension system heats up too much while absorbing shock at high speeds over rough terrain. More weight on custom oversized tires means you'd be well advised to work in stronger aftermarket suspension in order to compensate.

Performance and Style Upgrades

Pickup truck modification has never been just about performance—it's just as much about style. Your truck reflects your identity and should turn heads. With tons of customization options, from unique body mods and eye-catching vinyl wraps to diverse lighting, you can make modifications for a truck that not only looks impressive but also may improve performance.

Paint and Vinyl Wrap

Customizing your truck with a unique paint job or vinyl wrap is an effective way to reflect your individual style. You can select professional trimming from complex patterns, thematic images, shiny metallics, and iridescent finishes to make sure your vehicle stands out.

Vinyl wraps are particularly versatile for those hesitant about permanent changes—they allow you the freedom to define how much of the truck is covered, ensuring that a mix between original paintjob and custom wrap remains exactly what you envision. They also last an average of 5 years, so you're not married to a single style.

Aesthetic appeal isn’t the only benefit here. Applying high-grade coatings on both paintwork and vinyl not only distinguishes the look of your truck, but also serves as a defense against harmful UV rays, adverse weather conditions, and potential scratches—maintaining exterior quality over time.

This added protection means that no matter if you’re on smooth highways or rugged terrain during off-road adventures, your truck can take risks while looking impeccable.

Wheel and Tire Upgrades

a truck services employee wearing shop gloves pulling oversized aftermarket tires off a shelf In our experience modifying trucks for off-roading, it's best to start with tires and build other upgrades around your choice of tires. If you're open to getting a lift kit, you can even select oversized tires!

The aesthetics or overall "look" of your truck extends higher and beyond its color scheme. The choice of wheels and tires can profoundly affect how your vehicle stands out from the crowd. In our experience, with off-road modifications, tires are the most important modification you can make; the best brakes, engines, suspension systems mean nothing if you don't invest in wheels and tires.

By equipping unique wheels and rims, complemented by a protective coating, you can create a definitive style of your truck. Opting for larger wheels not only improves a rugged look, but also customizes it to suit various seasonal driving conditions.

Performance upgrades aren’t solely about enhancing visual appeal—upgrading to premium wheels and tires offers numerous performance advantages:

  • Superior traction across different types of terrain
  • More precise handling and improved stability
  • Augmented capacity for carrying heavier loads
  • Refined braking capabilities
  • Greater fuel efficiency depending on terrain

Upgrading your truck’s wheels and tires delivers both an improvement in function and fashion. Your vehicle benefits from increased capability while gaining an edge in styling that complements its use on any terrain.

Lighting Enhancements

Installing aftermarket LED lights not only modernizes your vehicle’s appearance, but also contributes to safer driving conditions after dusk—a common and valued upgrade, especially with the off-roading community.

Auxiliary lighting like Lightforce Rok 20 and 40 work lights deliver an expansive floodlight that is essential for safe navigation in pitch-black settings. This feature proves beneficial both during precise maneuvers in confined areas as well as reversing procedures.

Whether it’s extending working hours or an off-road trip into the evening or simply enhancing your truck's visibility, choosing appropriate lighting solutions is key to safety and style.

Truck Lifts: Possibly The Best Modification You Can Make

conceptual image of a blue North American truck with a step-bar featuring a high lift kit accommodating large off-road tires Lift kits are widely available with multiple options, but choosing the right kit for your vehicle is essential; Summit Trucks' years of experience has allowed us to take out the guesswork and choose the right lift kit for you.

When it comes to the ultimate in pickup truck modifications, lift kits might well be your first and best choice for modifications. After all, elevating your truck with a lift kit is often the most impactful change you can make.

A couple of reasons we offer lift kits first and foremost among our truck modification services are more commanding presence on the road and the necessary clearance for larger tires—a game-changer for off-road adventures as mentioned. By raising the body and suspension, these kits allow for a higher vantage point and oversized tires, which many drivers find invaluable both on and off the pavement.

Lifted Trucks Have Definitive Style

A lift kit is more than just a visual upgrade—it's a statement. It speaks to a driver's readiness for anything, from navigating off-road trails in Utah's mountain passes to making an impression in urban settings like Salt Lake City. The increased ground clearance also translates to improved off-road capabilities, allowing for a smoother ride over obstacles and rough terrain.

Choosing the right lift kit is essential, as it can affect everything from handling to fuel efficiency. Summit Trucks, known for our performance-minded custom truck lift services, gets you hooked up with the right kit for your truck.

Interior or Convenience Modifications

While we’ve explored aspects of performance and aesthetic appeal, the importance of comfort on your work-related vehicle use or off-road joyride makes a difference.

By undertaking some straightforward modifications to the interior, you have the opportunity to notably improve not just the tidiness and coziness, but also simplify how you get the most out of various features in your truck.

Floor Mats and Liners

Beginning at the base of your truck’s interior, you might consider premium, tailor-made floor mats and liners. These elements serve as a defensive barrier for the flooring against everyday accumulation of dirt, dust and debris, ensuring that cleanliness within the cabin is preserved.

You could always select distinct styles and premium materials that mirror their individual taste while simultaneously offering robust protection for their vehicle’s interior—regardless of whatever kind of grime makes its way into your truck.

Toolboxes and Storage Solutions

Convenient storage is key to avoiding the annoyance of a disorganized truck. Various toolbox and storage solutions are designed to maintain orderliness and safety for tools and equipment, ensuring everything is neatly stowed away.

A drawer system, complemented by handy accessories like D-Boxes and Crossboxes, offers an effective way to access your stored items quickly. Whether it’s work-related tools or leisure gear for a getaway, each item will have its designated spot in your truck.

Step Bars and Running Boards

A modified gray truck off-roading in mud featuring a headlamp grill and a modified step bar for convenient entry Running boards or step bars come highly recommended for those who upgrade their truck with a lift kit, as it's much harder to adapt to your truck's new stature without them.

We should also discuss the utility and style that step bars and running boards bring to a truck. These practical enhancements make it easier to get in and out of the cabin, which is particularly beneficial for higher trucks with lift kits installed. After all, running boards or step bars provide substantial ground clearance and safer ingress and egress—key considerations if you have a taller truck.

You can find these accessories from manufacturers like Westin, TrailFx, Carr, and Go Rhino available in various colors allowing for significant customization options for pickup truck enthusiasts.

Making a choice between either one, you can't lose. Step bars accent your truck’s side-profile and provide ample assistance climbing into your vehicle. Meanwhile, running boards serve up an integrated look with a great foothold— and both can significantly improve the functionality and aesthetics of your trucks.

Towing and Hauling Enhancements

Pickup trucks serve a dual purpose—getting from point A to point B while excelling in towing and hauling tasks that other vehicles just can't manage. To improve your truck’s proficiency in pulling trailers, bearing substantial weights, or ensuring the stability of your load during transit, there are an array of upgrades available that can bolster its performance in these areas.

Hitch and Trailer Accessories

Hitches and towing equipment are one reason many of our customers buy trucks in the first place! And it goes without saying, aftermarket hitch and trailer modifications can better leverage your vehicle's power while improve both safety and adaptability in towing. There are a lot of hitch options to choose from, each tailored to support specific weight capacities which are crucial for efficient off-road recovery.

This isn’t solely a question of safety. Some hitches not only provide numerous height adjustments to match various trailer profiles but can also sustain up to 14,000 pounds in terms of gross trailer weight capacity.

Some hitches offer extended versatility by featuring several ball mounts, able to take a variety of tongue weights. You might want to look into a tow hook catering to different types of trailers. Regardless of what your truck may be pulling behind it, you have to have a hitch with a high tongue weight.

Bed Liners and Covers

Bed liners and covers can help any truck used to carry items. They also safeguard the bed of your vehicle against damage, rust, and provide surfaces over time—best for preventing scratches from cargo from slipping while also guarding against wear caused by abrasion and harsh chemicals. There are a variety of bed liner options, so you can take the time to choose the best one!

  • Comprehensive full-bed liners shield not only the floor but also the sides, bulkhead, and tailgate.
  • Bed mats offer protection specifically where it’s needed most.
  • Tailgate mats similarly offer focused protection in critical areas.

Tonneau covers come into play as extremely useful accessories that keep goods shielded from both inclement weather conditions and potential theft by concealing them. Tonneau covers are a popular choice compared to soft-top covers but it all depends what you're looking for!

These covers enhance functionality without compromising on the look of your truck. So no matter if you’re transporting supplies for construction or gearing up for an outdoor camping adventure, these features ensure everything stays protected inside your truck bed.

Cargo Management Systems

Truck boxes serve as comprehensive solutions that merge a Tonneau cover with integrated sliding boxes to maximize both organization and security for your goods.

You might consider these additional truck bed accessories to boost its utility.

  • Use cargo nets and bars to secure items in place within the bed of your truck.
  • Install crossover boxes for safekeeping tools and gear against adverse weather conditions.
  • Consider soft boxes when seeking an economical and movable option for less delicate contents.

Thus, regardless of what you’re transporting, options are available to ensure it stays well arranged and safeguarded in your truck’s bed.

Off-Road Modifications

POV of a truck owner under a truck inspecting the axle, suspension and exhaust systems under the chassis If you're considering off-road modifications, you should start with tires and select suspension upgrades, skid plates recovery gear and even lift kits based on wheel diameter, tire tread, rubber wall thickness, optimal tire pressure and more.

Trucks are at home on the road and off it. And if you ask around with truck enthusiasts like we have, you'll find more than a few are captivated by the thrill of off-roading. In order to navigate tough landscapes, it's very important for trucks to undergo special modifications suited for off-road conditions such as:

  • tires capable of handling all types of terrain.
  • lift kits that elevate the chassis.
  • protective skid plates.
  • winches useful for pulling and recovery tasks.
  • essential gear designed specifically for vehicle recovery.

It's best to consider off-roading before you buy a used truck for aftermarket modifications. The good news is, there are lots of makes and models excelling at off-roading to begin with, and with the above modifications, they're even more capable.

Skid Plates and Armor

To begin with, skid plates and armor serve as vital protection for the truck’s underbody against damage incurred during off-road activities. They safeguard all the essential elements underneath your vehicle.

Skid plates come in various types to shield specific areas of your truck, including, front section, back end, engine zone, transfer case location, transmission area. Materials matter, however, and aftermarket aluminum brands are reported to provide more resistance over longer periods.

For enthusiasts who often navigate rough terrain, complete skid plate sets are available that offer total protection for the undercarriage. This level of protection means regardless of how rugged the path may be, these protective measures will eliminate worry and keep your truck’s underside secure from harm.

Winches and Recovery Gear

Moving on to winches and recovery equipment, these elements are essential for a secure off-road rescue. It’s imperative that the winch you select has a load capacity surpassing your vehicle’s Gross Vehicle Weight Rating (GVWR) by 30 to 50 percent.

There is an option between synthetic rope and steel cable when it comes to winches. Rope offers lightness and ease of handling while cable has better resistance to heat. A reliable winch can make or break a situation where you're extricating your vehicle from mud or ascending steep terrains during outdoor adventures.

Off-Road Tires and Wheels

Specialized tires are essential for maintaining traction and stability during your off-the-beaten-path excursions. They feature distinct tread patterns and rubber formulas engineered for certain landscapes—be it dirt, mud, dust or sand—boosting both grip on the terrain and torque control.

Off-road tires also sport sidewalls and durable rubber materials designed to endure harsh elements and slippery conditions. Whether you find yourself gliding over dunes or ascending crags in the mountains, trail-worthy tires are built to facilitate a smooth journey. In our experience, you should decide whether you need off-road tires and start with that!

Inquire at Summit Trucks for Help Getting Started on Modifications

A truck modification mechanic in gray overalls working on aftermarket upgrades Combining truck modifications are half the fun of making a custom truck for off-road or personalization as you wish; but it's best to consult truck modifications services experts like us to see if there's anything you might've missed!

Pickup truck modifications is a broad subject, and choosing from every option under the sun brings a wide range of benefits—from boosting performance and elevating style and interior design, to augmenting off-road proficiency. You really can't go wrong when choosing!

Or get everything from professional trimming services to lift kits and off-road tires—especially when you buy a used truck with modifications already in mind.

Wrapping up, whether for adventure, off-roading, or pride in your ride, the right mods can make your truck truly yours. Among these, truck lifts are a top choice—offering both style and function. For expert advice and installation on a new truck you're building with us, trust our professional service mechanics. Our reviews are a great place to settle any doubts and find out what the experience will be like.

Ready for a lift or another upgrade? Visit Summit Trucks for top-notch custom modifications!

Frequently Asked Questions

How can I increase my truck's horsepower?

Consider enhancing your pickup truck’s performance by implementing a turbo kit, employing engine tuners, and incorporating an aftermarket exhaust system. These modifications, combined with cold-air intakes, are geared towards amplifying the horsepower or engine performance of your vehicle. The right cold-air intake can increase the average truck's horsepower by 17hp.

What type of tires should I get for off-roading?

It's advisable to select off-road tires that are designed with unique tread designs and rubber formulations tailored for particular surfaces, like those meant specifically for sand or mud. Opt for the variety that aligns most closely with your off-roading preferences—and the most common terrain in Utah (or the surrounding states) where you'd like to go off-roading most!

How can I improve my truck's interior?

Enhancing the look and functionality of your truck’s interior can be achieved by incorporating customized floor mats, making adjustments to ergonomic seating with custom seat covers, and seat as well as interior or truck-bed storage solutions. These modifications not only improve aesthetics, but also keep your truck clean, tidy, and ready for anything. That said, interior modifications matter less if you're considering modifications best for off-roading.

How can I protect my truck bed when hauling cargo?

Consider employing bed liners and covers for your truck to safeguard the truck bed when transporting goods. These protective measures help prevent damage, resist rust formation, and maintain cargo stability by reducing slippage and preventing harm to the items being carried. You can always choose between Tonneau Covers or soft covers to protect, but it depends on your preferences and activities! Covers also come with OEM options depending on the make, one example being the TruXedo Soft Rollup Tonneau Cover by Ford.

What are some popular lighting upgrades for trucks?

Think about switching to LED headlights, taillights, and additional rooftop LED lighting systems for your truck. This can enhance how well others see you on the road or off-road and increase safety when off-roading after dusk. One thing to note is that some lighting options aren't street legal, so it's best to check state regulations and look into which lighting upgrades are unlawful.

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Top Picks for the Best Off Road Trucks: Ultimate Buyers’ Guide

When it comes to mastering rugged terrain, choosing the right off-road truck is key. This guide zeroes in on the best off road trucks, ranking them by real-world off-road capability. With a focus on performance, durability, and innovative technologies, we reveal which models excel and why they’re worthy of the title. Read our fact-based insights to assist in your decision-making, without the fluff.

Quick Summary

  • For midsize off-road prowess, the Chevy Colorado ZR2 and Jeep Gladiator Rubicon are top choices.
  • In the full-size category, the Ford F-150 Raptor and Ram 1500 TRX lead the pack with their superior capabilities.
  • The Ram Power Wagon dominates the heavy-duty segment with its balance of off-road ability and towing utility.

Off-Road Pickup Trucks: Performance and Capability

Off-road pickup trucks aren’t your average vehicles. They are powerhouses that combine robust engines, high-torque performance, and durable components that can handle the roughest terrain. Built for strength and flexibility, these off road pickup truck models offer reliability and versatility across various off-road scenarios.

Key to their performance are advanced all-wheel drive systems that provide essential traction and control in challenging conditions. Add to that technology like terrain management systems and hill descent control, and you’ve got a vehicle that gives drivers the confidence to navigate off-road terrains with ease.

These trucks come in various sizes, each with its unique features and capabilities. Let’s delve into the world of midsize, full-size, and heavy-duty off-road trucks.

best off road trucks - jeep gladiator

Midsize Off-Road Trucks

In the realm of midsize trucks, the Chevy Colorado ZR2 and the Jeep Gladiator Rubicon reign supreme. These models are equipped with larger, more aggressive tires, a higher suspension, and front and rear locking differentials, making them ideal for off-roading.

The Jeep Gladiator Rubicon even features a solid front axle that allows for more traction due to greater suspension travel, a feature particularly beneficial for off-road conditions.

For off-road enthusiasts, a midsize truck like these offers the perfect balance between off-road chops and everyday practicality, making them a popular choice for many who don’t necessarily need the massive power and size of full-size or heavy-duty trucks.

Full-Size Off-Road Trucks

For those who crave more power and size, full-size off-road trucks are the way to go. These beasts are favored for their high performance and ability to traverse challenging terrains with ease. A standout in this category is the Ford F-150 Raptor. Equipped with a 450 horsepower 3.5L EcoBoost engine, Fox off-road shock absorbers, and a unique four-wheel-drive system, the Raptor provides superior off-road capabilities.

Another noteworthy model is the Ram 1500’s supercharged TRX pickup truck, which offers a blend of comfort, luxury, and high-performance features designed for off-road adventures.

The Chevrolet Silverado 1500 ZR2 also gets a nod for its numerous powertrain options and unique bed features that enhance its off-road performance.

best off road trucks - f-150 raptor

Heavy-Duty Off-Road Trucks

When it comes to heavy-duty off-road trucks, the Ram Power Wagon stands out. Built on the Ram 2500 Heavy Duty, it’s specifically constructed for off-road activities such as rock crawling. Powered by a 6.4-liter V8 engine, the Power Wagon produces 410 horsepower and 429 pound-feet of torque, providing enough muscle for virtually any off-road challenge.

What sets the Power Wagon apart is its balance of off-road prowess with practical towing utility. Despite its off-road focus, it maintains an amazing towing capacity of 19,990 pounds. Even with its great capabilities, the Ram 2500 Power Wagon remains an affordable entry into the high-performance off-road truck category.

Essential Off-Road Features

While the type of truck is important, what truly makes a truck capable of conquering off-road terrain are its specific features. Key among these are off-road suspension systems, which are crucial for maintaining vehicle stability on rough terrain and absorbing impacts from obstacles. Independent suspension systems allow for individual wheel movement, which is essential for vehicle control and traction across uneven surfaces.

Another critical feature is the traction control system. Similar to locking differentials, traction control systems redistribute power to wheels with traction, enhancing off-road capability without locking the differential. Other important features include higher ground clearance, which allows vehicles to navigate rougher terrain without underbody damage, and wider, larger tires that enhance traction on various off-road surfaces.

Suspension Systems

Suspension systems are the true heroes of off-roading. They play an important role in how well a truck handles on rough terrain. Advanced suspension systems like the Articulink system and electronic sway-bar disconnects provide superior movement and flexibility for off-road vehicles in rugged environments.

These systems enhance a truck’s capability to handle rough terrain by improving ground clearance and wheel travel, allowing the truck to navigate obstacles with ease. The right suspension system can make the difference between an exhilarating off-road experience and a bone-jarring, uncomfortable ride.

best off road trucks - toyota

Locking Differentials

Locking differentials are a must-have feature for any serious off-roader. They work by ensuring both wheels on an axle spin at the same speed, providing maximum traction. This is particularly beneficial in conditions where wheel slip is likely, such as when one wheel is off the ground or on a slippery surface. In such scenarios, front and rear differentials distribute power evenly to both wheels on an axle.

The versatility of locking differentials is demonstrated by their capability to handle a wide range of terrain challenges efficiently. They allow each wheel to apply as much rotational force as the traction under it allows, which is pivotal for navigating steep inclines, side slopes, mud, sand or snow.

Ground Clearance and Skid Plates

Ground clearance is another critical off-road feature. It’s the distance between the lowest part of a vehicle’s undercarriage and the ground. High ground clearance, like the 14.2 inches offered by some models, is crucial for navigating obstacles without damaging the vehicle.

Protecting the underbody of the truck from potential damage is where skid plates come in. They serve as a shield for vital underside components, protecting them during off-road encounters with rugged terrain. Models like the Toyota Tacoma Trailhunter are expected to have features such as steel skid plates designed for off-roading, enhancing underbody protection.

Off-Road Truck Customization and Upgrades

Making a truck off-road ready often involves making some customizations and upgrades. These can include:

  • Tuning devices that optimize vehicle settings for enhanced off-road performance
  • Tire upgrades that provide improved traction and control
  • Adjustable leveling kits that prevent the rear from sagging and the front from tilting upwards when the vehicle is loaded

These truck modifications will help ensure that your truck is ready to tackle any off-road adventure.

Each of these modifications plays a key role in optimizing an off-road truck’s performance. However, it’s crucial to remember that any modifications should be done carefully and professionally to avoid compromising the vehicle’s safety and reliability.

You can contact our custom lift experts at Summit Trucks who'll help you answer all of your questions.

best off road trucks

Lift Kits and Suspension Upgrades

When it comes to off-road performance, lift kits and suspension upgrades are essential. An off-road suspension system enhances a truck’s capability to handle rough terrain by improving ground clearance and wheel travel. Off-road suspension systems typically feature longer travel shocks and heavy-duty springs that facilitate greater wheel articulation, vital for maintaining contact with uneven ground.

There are many reliable brands that offer a range of lift kits and leveling kits, suitable for a variety of off-road vehicles. These kits deliver lifts from 2 inches to 7.5 inches and feature durability elements like polyurethane mounts.

Tires and Wheels

Selecting the right off-road tires, such as all terrain tires, is crucial for improved traction and control in off-road conditions. Tires like the BFGoodrich All Terrain T/A KO2, Firestone Destination X/T, and Toyo Open Country A/T III offer good off-road grip while also providing comfort and performance on-road.

While off-road tires enhance performance, they can reduce fuel efficiency due to increased rolling resistance and added weight. However, choosing lighter off-road tires can mitigate this impact. Also, smooth driving techniques, like avoiding abrupt acceleration and braking, can help maintain better fuel economy, even when equipped with off-road tires.

Performance Parts

Performance parts like exhaust systems and high-performance engine components can significantly boost an off-road truck’s capabilities. For example, the Borla ATAK Exhaust System, with its large-diameter mandrel-bent tubing and high-flow mufflers, can increase power essential for conquering rough off-road terrains.

Moreover, high-performance engine components as seen in the F-150 Raptor R’s 5.2-liter supercharged V-8 with 700 horsepower can significantly boost a truck’s off-road prowess. Whether you’re climbing steep hills or navigating muddy trails, having the right performance parts can make a world of difference.

Off-Road Truck Ownership: Tips and Considerations

Owning an off-road truck comes with its set of challenges and considerations. Regular maintenance, such as checking the suspension and tires before and after off-road trips, is vital for the reliability of your truck. Off-road vehicles also often require heavier-duty parts, which may need more frequent replacements compared to standard trucks.

Moreover, off-road optimized vehicles generally suffer from lower fuel economy due to their robust structure and demand for power. Owners should anticipate additional fuel expenses and consider fuel economy when purchasing and driving an off-road truck.

It’s also important to balance off-road enhancements with daily drivability to ensure that trucks remain practical for everyday activities. Though many drivers tend to use a second vehicle for the more day-to-day driving needs.

best off road trucks - rubicon

Maintenance and Reliability

Routine maintenance tasks such as oil changes, filter replacements, and brake inspections are key to maintaining the reliability of off-road trucks. Regularly cleaning the air filter is essential to prevent dirt, dust, and debris from entering the engine and to maintain engine performance and fuel efficiency.

After off-roading adventures, we recommend conducting a thorough inspection for frame and engine issues. This will help you prevent issues with your vehicle’s structural integrity and performance.

Without regular maintenance, off-road trucks run the risk of experiencing engine failures and other significant problems, leading to costly repairs. Neglecting the regular upkeep of off-road trucks can also lead to decreased performance and increased fuel consumption. Therefore, maintaining an off-road truck not only extends its lifespan but also saves money by preventing premature wear on critical components like the engine and transmission.

Fuel Economy and Efficiency

Fuel economy is another important consideration when it comes to off-road truck ownership. Installing larger off-road tires may lead to reduced fuel economy, longer braking distances, and inaccuracies in the speedometer and odometer. However, performance upgrades such as cold air intakes and performance exhaust systems can improve power and fuel efficiency, aiding extended off-road journeys.

Adopting smooth driving techniques, like avoiding abrupt acceleration and braking, can help maintain better fuel economy and ensure a smooth ride, even when equipped with off-road tires. Devices like the S&B Cold Air Intakes are designed to boost horsepower and fuel efficiency, with the added advantage of clean air intake crucial for dusty off-road drives.

Practicality for Daily Use

While it’s exciting to modify a truck for off-road use, it may also be important to balance these enhancements with the vehicle’s daily drivability, ensuring it remains practical for everyday activities such as commuting. An off-road truck that is also a daily driver should be realistically evaluated for the level of off-road difficulty it can endure without compromising its road-worthiness for use during the workweek.

When selecting tires, models like the Yokohama Geolandar G015 offer a balance, providing low noise and good road manners for daily driving while maintaining off-road capabilities for less intense off-roading situations. For daily driving, it’s essential to prioritize reliability to ensure that performance or aesthetic modifications do not undermine the vehicle’s capacity to function effectively in everyday situations.

But, as mentioned before, some truck owners use a second vehicle for their daily commute instead.

chevy k5 blazer

Iconic Off-Road Trucks of the Past

Off-roading is not a recent phenomenon. Throughout history, several iconic off-road trucks have left their mark on the industry. These trucks, like:

have not only demonstrated remarkable off-road capability but have also influenced the design and performance of modern off-road trucks.

The Toyota Land Cruiser FJ-40, for instance, earned a reputation for being exceptionally rugged and reliable. The Jeep CJ-5, born in the 1950s, is remembered for its presence in grueling races like the Baja 1000 and educating many of its owners in the art of vehicle mechanics. These trucks have set the standards for off-road performance and continue to be revered by off-road enthusiasts.

Frequently Asked Questions

What truck is the most reliable?

The most reliable trucks are the Chevrolet Colorado, Ford Ranger, Ram 1500, Toyota Tacoma, Chevrolet Silverado 1500, Toyota Tundra, Ford Super Duty, and Chevrolet Silverado HD. They are known for their dependability and performance in various categories like midsize, full-size, and heavy-duty trucks.

What makes an off-road truck unique?

Off-road trucks stand out for their tough engines, high-torque performance, and durable components designed to handle rough terrain, along with features like advanced all-wheel drive and terrain management systems. This makes them distinct for off-road adventures.

What are some essential off-road features?

Essential off-road features include off-road suspension systems, locking differentials, high ground clearance, and wider, larger tires. These features are crucial for navigating rough terrain and improving off-road performance.

Should I buy new or used?

Both are valid considerations but before you decide to spend the money on a used vehicle for off-roading, check out this guide on the benefits of buying a used truck.

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