How long will my 91 Chevy last

I recently purchased a 91 Chevy Suburban (because I love to drive him) and I wanted some expert opinions on how long one might last with good maintenance. The odometer reads 204700 and the engine was rebuilt about 7 years ago. Before I bought him he was mainly a camp truck, dirt roads and hwy miles.

I am looking at making him my primary vehicle and wanted some opinions. If I do drive him primarily (or exclusively) I am looking at new tires and possibly getting the AC/heat fixed. Is it worth it? How long do these trucks usually last? Thanks so much.

They can last forever. Take it to a reputable mechanic and have it checked over. Start replacing worn tire and suspension parts, brakes. Change out all fluids.

Does 13 to 15 mpg fit easily into your budget? Theoretically it could be kept running for 40 more years. Just look at those old cars in Havana. And if you can take care of all repairs and maintenance it might be cheaper to own than a 10 year old Volvo with half the miles. How many miles would it be driven annually? How handy are you with a wrench? Parts are plentiful and cheap and it is a very basic vehicle to maintain.

The truck is already past it’s prime. If you bought it as a camp truck to use over rough roads, expect things to start to break. But, if you have the money, it can last a while. It will be a battle between your wallet and your wants. It’s the same with any “him”. It will not be trouble free life with “him” no matter how well you treat “him”…that’s life with any “him”.

YIKES…I havent heard ANYONE wanting to make these Behemoth’s their PRIMARY set of wheels…but…hey…If you own stock in Sunoco…Have at it.

As far as how long they can last? LOL… They can and will last for as long as you maintain it. That vehicle is IMMINENTLY REBUILD-ABLE…in every way…so… It can last till the Sun goes Supernova if that is your intent


As long as you realize that the cost of ownership will be very high, and as long as it doesn’t develop rot issues, its life is long. It’s a basic body-on-frame design with a tough truck frame and truck suspension. That means everything is basically replicable. But it is subject just like any other vehicle to wear and to corrosion. That includes critical things like the brake system, the lines and fittings of which should really get a good look-see at least once a year.

And the vehicle IS at an age where normal wear and corrosion become normal. You should expect to replace things like the alternator, the starter, the AC compressor, the water pump, brake calipers, perhaps a brake line or two, the radiator, etc. one by one over the next 100,000 miles. Ball joints and such aren’t getting any younger either. And they’re all heavy duty and they’ll all be expensive. And if you postpone work that needs to be done due to budgetary constraints this vehicle will deteriorate rapidly.

In short, expect this to be an expensive vehicle to own and expect an occasional breakdown.

Sincere best. I don’t mean to rain on your parade, but you need to understand what you’ve gotten yourself into.

Really, the answer to that question is “As long as you care to keep up with maintenance/repairs*”

Note the asterisk? That means *(Unless it gets wrecked or rusts out.) So: do you feel you’re a “safe” driver? Pretty much ANY “bent metal” will total it (make it uneconomic to repair.) Additionally, how rusty is it? Where do you live…arid climate or wet? Do you get winters…and if so, how much road salt do the Powers That Be use?

Body-on-frame vehicles like this are pretty fixable–swap out what’s broke for what ain’t. In a place like Las Cruces, NM (arid and warm) you could expect this vehicle to outlast you! (Although there may come a day when you can’t afford to fill it up.)

As long as the truck is rust-free NOW, it could go on forever as long as you can afford to keep it running. I owned an 89 2wd Subbie until it hit 114K. Ran fine, towed great, was ready for its 2nd repaint, rust repair and would need a transmission in about 30K. Not worth it to me.

7 years doesn’t tell us anything about the engine. How many miles are on the rebuilt engine? Let me guess, 145K on engine #1 and now 60K on #2. Am I close? You should also be on a rebuilt transmission by now. If not, save your money fast, it needs one very soon. The engine usually last longer than the transmission. The differential (s) will need rebuilding as well in about 50K.

It will last exactly as long as you can afford to keep fixing whatever goes wrong.

@HIllyRay Gas prices will not stay down forever. Count on them being back up where they were within 2 years.

As others point out this is a lot of truck with a lot of miles, and although parts are readily available, you will have to replace many of them in the next 100,000 miles. That amount will be far greater than what you paid for the vehicle.

With good care it’s possible to make this vehicle into reliable transportation.

I appreciate all the feedback y’all. I knew it would be expensive , I’m trying to weigh that against how much I love the drive. I suppose I will find out the first time I have to shell out. Thanks!

This will likely be an expensive experiment, but who knows, you might get lucky and get another 100K out of the vehicle without much more than routine maintenance. Bring all the routine maintenance up to date, cross your fingers and hope for the best. The good thing about cars is that most any problem can be fixed. The only question is the economic feasibility of doing so. And that mostly depends on how you feel about the vehicle, what options are available, and your own personal budget.

Nothing lasts forever, I do not believe, but I have traded in some cars that should have been forever cars given enough repair dollars.