2020 Ford F-250 Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

Electrical, powertrain, fuel system, structure, and steering issues among the top complaints received by the NHTSA from vehicle owners

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

The lineup of Super Duty Ford trucks remains a popular choice among workers, with the 2020 Ford F-250 commanding the streets. In fact, the automaker claims that the newer models are “where strength and technology meet.” However, the defective electrical system, defective powertrain, failing fuel system, dangerous steering and shoddy structure are causing complaints that overwhelm the internet.

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2019   2021   2022   

Problems with the Electrical System

With a high-quality electrical system, everything is possible when sitting behind the wheel. However, the 2020 F-250 is outfitted with defective equipment.

One NHTSA complaint states, “The instrument cluster display (ICD) of my 2020 Ford F-250 randomly goes black and provides no information. The display will randomly come on and usually go out again while driving. The display usually displays a warning that there is a fault with the blind spot warning system or cross traffic warning system before going out. I have also started to receive displays asking if I want to activate the crash avoidance system, but I can’t make a selection even though the system has already been turned on. I also don’t feel the vehicle braking when the crash alert warning activates like it once did even though the Brake Assist is turned on.”

There are many other electrical system issues being discussed, even troubles with the air conditioning system as outlined with Service Bulletin #SSM 48135. So, while the Super Duty might make work easier, it surely doesn’t allow for any convenience, comfort or entertainment with all of the glitches.

2020 Ford F-250 Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Power Train
Electrical System
Unknown Or Other
Fuel System, Diesel
Fuel/propulsion System

Powertrain Problems

When it comes to moving the truck forward, there must be a potent engine combined with a solid transmission. However, the Ford Super Duty is struggling with both.

One Edmunds review states, “2020 F-250 XLT 4×4 6.2 gas has a driveline issue where at low speeds and slow stops it clunks and surges. Also under a slight load the driveline has a gear growling noise around 3rd gear. My truck spent 2.5 months at the dealership before I received a call that said all of these issues are normal we have another truck doing the same thing. So I drove it and yes it was making the same noises. When I pulled back into the dealership with the comparable truck I was told to park it up front the man was there to buy it. I asked to speak with him that’s when the service manager and driveline technician grumbled they didn’t want me to speak with him. So these trucks are knowingly being sold by Ford and your local dealerships with these issues and no fix.”

Further, Service Bulletin #TSB 20-2408 discusses issues with the 10R140 transmission. Ford discusses scraping and ticking coming from the bellhousing that could go away when in Neutral and Park. The cause of this problem stems from a torque converter studs that contact the flexplate inspection cover. What seems like a small problem quickly turns into major problems heading down the road.

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Problems with the Fuel System

The fuel system is needed to provide power for the engine. Without a functioning fuel system, the truck is basically dead in the water.

Another NHTSA complaint states, “On August 28, 2020, the engine in my virtually brand new 2020 Ford F-150 truck (equipped with a diesel engine) suddenly and without any advanced warning whatsoever shut off while the vehicle was in motion. I had just turned from state highway 10 into the left lane of a four-lane city street in 5 o’clock traffic on a Friday evening. Without either power brakes or power steering, I was able to get the truck out of the roadway and into the parking lot of an adjacent business. I tried to restart the vehicle numerous times. While the engine would crank, it simply would not restart. I contacted my local Ford dealership the next morning and they arranged to have the truck towed to their place of business. After the Ford dealership had my truck for nearly a month, they determined that the cause for the sudden shutdown of my engine was a failed Bosch CP4 high pressure fuel pump, which failure contaminated my entire fuel delivery system with metal shavings. I am now aware that there are class action lawsuits against each of the major US manufacturers relating to failures of the Bosch CP4 high pressure fuel pump as a result of the lack of lubrication provided by low-sulfur diesel fuel generally available in the US, which failures result in substantial repair costs to replace the entire fuel delivery system.”

This driver is correct – there have been numerous class action lawsuits related to pump failure. In recent years, the Powerstroke diesel engine has become less reliable and known for more issues, causing people to jump ship to GM brand trucks instead. If Ford isn’t careful, it might stop having the best-selling truck in the nation.

Structural Problems

If the F-250 is going to handle the tough jobs, it must be built for extremes. However, customers are livid with the integrity of the structure.

One Edmunds customer wrote, “The paint on the bed of the truck had a few issues. Drivers side bed panel between the wheel well and trail gate, there is a little area where the paint did not cover. You can see the green primer. It stands against the dark blue paint. The passenger side bed panel behind the rear door is a touch mark. These issuses came from factory because these issues have been covered by clear coat. The other issue is the Fx4 sticker has bubbles under it.”

What’s even more alarming is an open investigation, outlined with NHTSA Action Number RQ21001. This investigation is looking deeper into the reasons that the power tailgate continues to open on drivers unintentionally. On top of this, there is already a recall for the seats. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V633000 states that nearly 640,000 vehicles are equipped with a defective front seat back recliner mechanism that might not restrain a passenger during a collision. Whether the heavy-duty truck is pouring contents out of the back or letting passengers fly free in an accident, it’s clear this Ford pickup isn’t safe. Maybe the company should focus on having “strength and technology meet” where it matters most.

Problems with the Steering

Handling the heavy-duty truck is another priority among drivers, but has also turned into more complaints.

Another Edmunds review states, “Drove a 2020 F250 XLT off the lot and before I even got 5 miles from the dealership I thought the front end was going to rip off. These trucks are extremely dangerous and uncomfortable. Transmission is pathetic, hunts and hops all over the place. Ford service dept literally said we don’t know how to remedy death wobble but would I give a good review if they paid for a spray in bedliner. Ford needs to do some R and D instead of making their customers do it. Horrible truck.”

Even when the truck can be controlled, there are other hindrances keeping it from being safe. For example, Service Bulletin #SSM 48130 talks about a distorted glass situation that occurs after taking the vehicle through the car wash. However, Ford is not warranting the defect, instead choosing to blame the solution used at car washes. With that in mind, how can every other car go through the same car wash without this problem? Clearly the car wash solution is the Ford F-250’s kryptonite.

Your Lemon Law Legal Rights

Think you have a lemon? Sit back and let the experts work out your lemon case at no cost to you. The law makes Ford pay legal fees. You may be able to get your lemon out of your life. Every year, auto manufacturers buy back, replace or pay cash settlements to thousands of ‘lemon’ owners like you.

Brian Jones

About the Author:

Brian Jones spent more than 30 years working as an ASE Certified Master Tech and Parts Specialist at multiple dealerships. Brian has become an authority in the industry, traveling across the country to consult for car dealerships and contributing his expertise as a writer for several major automotive publications. In his spare time, Brian enjoys working on pickup trucks, muscle cars, Jeeps and anything related to motorsports.

See more posts from Brian Jones
  • Rusty R

    My 2020 F250 diesel failed to shut down when I parked and turned the key off.
    After turning the key and removing it from the ignition the engine continued to run. I tried to insert the key and turn the ignition on and off numerous times and it still would not shut down. The trick continued to run on its own for over two hours while waiting for a tow truck from Ford 24 hr. service. As the tow trick driver was getting ready to out it in the flat bed the motor just shit down on its own.
    This experience happened again soon as the engine was started the next time and again it would not shut down. With key in hand it continued to run. Ford service said this is called a “runaway” and it’s not safe to drive. Also have had it to service for transmission slipping issues as well as dash components “radio” not shutting down and or shutting down on its own while driving.

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