2020 Ford F-350 Problems and Top Complaints – Is Your Car A Lemon?

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

Updated on Author: Brian Jones

There are few trucks as capable as the 2020 Ford F-350. In fact, the company claims that the Super Duty truck lineup is “built to keep you moving.” However, many owners are complaining about defects in the powertrain, steering, service brakes, fuel system and structure.

Click on other model year to view more problems: 2017   2018

Problems with the Powertrain

The powertrain consists of a multitude of parts that transmit the energy to the wheels, creating movement. When it comes to the 2020 Ford F-350, several problems exist that are causing some form of powertrain failure.

One instance is outlined by this NHTSA complaint. “The contact owns a 2020 Ford F-350. The contact stated that the transmission and torque converter were replaced five times within the last 9,000 miles.”

Additionally, there is a recall that should cause some alarm. NHTSA Campaign Number 20V599000 states that affected models have narrow base axles, causing the inner tires in a dual-wheel model to contact the body and cause damage. If a truck manufacturer can’t get the basic dually design right, it doesn’t deserve to build trucks.

2020 Ford F-350 Complaint Summary

Complaint CategoryNumber of Complaints
Power Train
Unknown Or Other
Service Brakes
Electrical System
Exterior Lighting

Structural Problems

Looking at the way the 2020 Ford F-350 was built should reveal a lot of the problems. After all, if the structure isn’t even right, how can anyone expect the mechanical aspects to be built with any level of integrity?

Another NHTSA complaint states, “Tailgate released while towing 5th wheel trailer causing damage to tailgate and trailer. Safety issue and could have caused serious accident.”

Right now, the NHTSA is investigating issues with the tailgate. NHTSA Action Number RQ21001 shows that the tailgate has been unintentionally opening on its own. With nothing being done yet to repair the situation, other drivers should remain far away from the F-350 trucks on the road, lest cargo comes flying out the back when the tailgate fails. If only Ford truck owners would be hauling millions of dollars in the truck bed.

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Problems with the Service Brakes

When hauling or towing a lot of goods, it’s imperative that the truck comes to a stop quickly. Yet, this is another major complaint with the 2020 Ford F-350 models.

One Edmunds user writes, “The downside to this behemoth with a 3500lb load capacity is the brakes, both the engine brake and the disc brakes aren’t really up to par with the engine. You could find yourself at the top of a hill that will be very difficult to get down. I’ve not had any personal problems halting this thing, but it does take a while and riding the engine brake down mountain roads isn’t always enough, meaning the brakes may be over temperature at the bottom of the grapevine in LA for example.”

Of course, no one can expect the brakes to function right in a truck that is so poorly made. One other recall shows how very little attention to detail is found with the F-350. NHTSA Campaign Number 19V633000 says that over 640,000 vehicles have a seat back with a defective recliner mechanism installed. If it fails, it will not restrain the occupant during a crash, possibly leading to severe injuries. It seems from every angle, the Ford lineup is failing its clients, ensuring that repeat business won’t be an option.

Fuel System Problems

For maximum power, the fuel delivery system needs to be up to par. However, this system has been a sore spot on Ford trucks for many years.

Another Edmunds review states, “DEF system is flawed. DEF froze solid in-20 and the heater faulted. Went into limp mode. Waited til 0c and tried to fill and DEF system would not accept any fluid. Continual issue that still has not been resolved. Still cannot fill DEF.”

Even if the fuel system were to work right, there would still be issues with the engine. Service Bulletin #20B15 talks about a damaged piston oil cooler bracket from the assembly. This defective part allows the cooler to detach, causing low oil pressure, the Check Engine Light and engine noises. Basically, it leaves owners with one more system that needs to be repaired because the assembly workers didn’t do their jobs. Maybe the day the F-350 trucks were built, there was something distracting at the plant, like a dog with a squirrel.

Problems with the Steering System

Finally, a look at the steering system shows the same level of incompetence coming from the Ford lineup.

One last Edmunds review states, “Blew a high pressure power steering hose. Dealership ordered wrong part. Finally got the right part and were missing an adapter.”

Why does everyone come down on Ford and the dealerships? It turns out that Service Bulletin #SSM 48130 illustrates the issues perfectly. You see, 2010-2020 vehicles were ending up with distorted auto glass after going through a car wash. While every other vehicle on the road was also using these car washes without an incident, it’s clear that there is a defect with the car wash solution and not Ford trucks at all, or so the manufacturer wants everyone to believe. Still, the company is able to weasel right out of any warranty coverage.

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

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