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2015 GMC 3500 - Rusty running boards and honesty

no, the opposite. many people claim that they need a vehicle with running boards because they have a health condition that prevents them from “stooping down” into a smaller vehicle. it’s a straw man argument…just like many of the responses to my original statement on here…there are plenty of full-size vehicles which don’t require running boards to enter/exit.

If the vehicle is too tall to get into without running boards, then they’re a necessity. We no longer get to specify work-capable trucks that aren’t high off the ground.


My 17 year old 4WD SUV/Truck HAS running boards. Not rusted, yet they spent most of their life in a salt-snow-state. I don’t use them. I don’t need them. I am average height at 5’11."

My average height 5’ 4" wife and late 5’ 2" mother used them because they could not get into the truck without them.

My full size truck was used to tow and haul loads for my hobbies and I still have it for that reason. It was also used to commute to work across rural farm roads that allowed snow to blow across them in the winter no matter how many times they were plowed. Ride height and 4WD allowed me to return home at the end of the workday rather than sleep under my desk when the snows came. The lower height “mommy” utes do not have the tow capacity nor the ground clearance to fit my needs.

Given that you are from Michigan, you see lots of big trucks and SUVs on the roads around your home and work. Seeing as how Michigan registers more boats than any state except California and spends $150 million yearly on RVs, how many do you think are used to tow their boats or RV’s to upper-lower Michigan for recreation? How many of your colleagues live in Armada, Romeo, or Allentown that have the rural commutes over un-plowed secondary roads?

Mommy utes and baby utes don’t fill these needs. They don’t fill the wants of the buyers, either. Just because you don’t need a full size SUV with running boards, does not mean no one else does.


One woman I worked with was about 5’2”, drove a lifted ‘mudder’ and hauled her ATV in the bed. No running boards would have helped, she just put her foot on the front tire and pulled herself in from there.

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I disagree. I know at least two people with health issues that drive SUVs because they couldn’t get out of a sedan because it was too low. One had a bad back, and the other bad knees. I find getting into and out of my wife’s minivan easier than my sedan, but it isn’t so bad that I need to sell the sedan.

I would agree if this was a 1500 or 2500. But a 3500 is rather hard core. Most I’ve seen are used for heavy towing or similar tasks.


There are those lifted Dually’s that would be the exception. Most of the owner’s I know use them for towing heavy loads but also daily drive them. Dad decided not to trailer his boat instead of buying a 2500 or F250 that would be overkill except for possibly the annual gravel load for our shared dirt/gravel road.

I’m glad to have running boards on my 2020 f150. I’m 6’5” but I still use the running boards to get in the truck or I would have many torn shorts/jeans. I’m definitely speaking from experience.

That’s true of my mother as well. She really wanted a coupe, but her back makes getting in and out of even my car painful so she ended up in an RDX.

You channeling Jef the Cyclist today?

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Does anyone have a helpful answer? Can these be repaired/replaced to last longer than 6 years? Can GM help or should the OP look for an aftermarket solution?

I wouldn’t think GM would provide any help on a six year old pickup truck. I would just buy new running boards from an auto supply place.


There are 2 complaints from 1500 owners about peeling and pitted chrome on the running boards. Common painted steel running boards with plastic step pads would maintain their appearance longer than chrome.

Everyone is different

Sure they can. Find a metal fabricator have them make you a set. Have them sand, prime and paint them, better yet powder coat them. They will probably last longer the the body of the truck.

Sure! Buy aftermarket stainless steel running boards and regularly clean the bottom of the truck during the winter.

That looks like a bunch of useful answers from folks who KNOW a little about rust…

Sand and paint… Yeah!
Powder coat… Even better, Yeah!
Stainless Steel… The best, Yeah!