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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
65,089 miles

About These NHTSA Complaints:

This data is from the NHTSA — the US gov't agency tasked with vehicle safety. Complaints are spread across multiple & redundant categories, & are not organized by problem.

So how do you find out what problems are occurring? For this NHTSA complaint data, the only way is to read through the comments below. Any duplicates or errors? It's not us.

2005 Chevrolet Cavalier electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments (Page 3 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #95

Jun 252011

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 102,000 miles


This vehicle has lost the speedometer sveral times over the last 20,000 miles and now it has quit completely, I went to an on line forum and they say this has been happening a lot with no recall from General Motors. Usually before it would bounce up to 35 or 40 and then start working again, but it is dead now. No movement at all.

- Wellston, OH, USA

problem #94

Apr 012010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
I have a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The car's speedometer, temperature gauge, RPM gauge and fuel gauge do not work. When I made this complaint to the Chevrolet dealer where the vehicle was purchased they said that it wasn't a warranty issue because it didn't deal with any safety issue. I disagree because how could it not be a safety problem, if you can't tell how fast you are going or if your out of gas or if your car is overheating. The dealer acted like it was not a common problem, but all you have to do is go on the internet and there are hundreds of thousands of these same complaints, and not just in the 2005 models it goes back to 1998. The dealer did say that the could replace the cluster but that it would cost me over $500. Well, I cannot afford it. Also if you look through some of the complaints online there are people on there that have had their clusters replaced by the dealer and they still are not working properly. So what are we supposed to do" I also found out that Chevrolet did recall the same complaints in the Silverado trucks. So why not do the same for the Cavaliers" please help.

- Henderson, KY, USA

problem #93

Aug 242008

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 28,600 miles
Speedometer failed, as well as RPM gauge.

- Colorado Springs, CO, USA

problem #92

Feb 182012


  • miles


I loved my 2005 Chevy Cavalier when I first bought it back in 2006. After a year of driving my speedometer, as well as all the other gauges. Now my window on the passenger side will not go back up. Chevrolet has really put a bad taste in my mouth and I plan to never purchase any vehicle from Chevrolet again.

- Durham, NC, USA

problem #91

Feb 012010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 45,000 miles
Speedometer and fuel guage were erratic. The problem has escalated to the point neither works. In researching this, I have learned this is not an isolated problem and feels it warrants investigating.

- Johnstown, PA, USA

problem #90

Jul 182007

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • miles
I purchased a 2005 Chevy Cavalier in October 2005. My car was purchased with bad or no shocks and within the first 1 to 2 years my trunk interior light blew off the wire sounding like a bomb. Then my driver rear door was not able to open (due to the linkages). Shortly after that the passenger rear door would not shut because the latch stuck (had to bungy strap it) then got it fixed to shut then it would not open (due to linkages) both front doors are messed up as well. ( drvier side difficult to open and poassenger side does not always catch when you shut it). My radio does not shut off when driver door is open like it should. My interior bulb had to be taken out due to never shutting off after doors were closed. My driver window makes noise when opening it.(manual window crank). My guages do not work properly either. I contacted GM and they said to take my car in to have it checked out and repaired but I can not afford the work to be done, the price for a rental, or to miss work. I had the car for 6.5 years (almost) but the age of the car should have ntohing to do with everything going wrong with the linkages and electrical. Passengers have to crawl over the front seat to get into the back. Any information is appreciated. Best way to contact me is email and I will respond if a number is left. I need answers to what can be donefinancially I can not afford anything. I believe that I may have been sold a lemon. I had to replace my trunk latch due to it not wanting to close.

- Argonne, WI, USA

problem #89

Jun 012011

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • miles


A few years ago the speedometer stopped working randomly, but would start working again. This past summer my RPM gauge started saying my engine was rotating at 7000 RPM when the car was off. The RPM gauge has not worked since and the speedometer picks and chooses when it wants to work. Those are 2 very important pieces of equipment in a car. When I talked to Chevy about it in 2008 (I think), they stated that there were no recalls on the part and that no one else had filed any complaints about the same issues. They said it would cost up to a few thousand dollars to fix due to having to take the dash apart to replace the gauge cluster (which is $800 on its own). I have been watching forums etc since then and they are full of the exact same complaints and still Chevy is not doing anything about it.

- Indianapolis, IN, USA

problem #88

Jul 012011

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 70,000 miles
The speedometer began to intermittently provide erratic indication of speed. The symptoms eventually got worse to the point that the speedometer doesn't indicate properly at all. The problem occurred at the same time the engine temperature gauge wouldn't work properly. Reviewed various websites and found that this is a well know defect for Chevrolet instrument panels. The speedometer will read low causing a safety hazard when the driver tried to maintain speed.

- Two Rivers, WI, USA

problem #87

Jul 012011


  • 126,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact was driving 50 mph when the speedometer failed to provide accurate readings and the vehicle experienced abnormally high engine rpms. The contact also stated that the temperature gauge failed to provide accurate temperature readings, displaying that the vehicle was overheating when it was not. The vehicle was taken to a local repair shop where the contact was advised that the temperature gauge would possibly need to be replaced. The manufacturer was contacted but the vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 126,000 and the current mileage was 130,000. Updated 01/10/12

- Scottdale, PA, USA

problem #86

Jan 232007


  • miles
I have had my car since 2004 and I loved it when I first drove it off the car lot. Then I have had problem after problem! my gauges mess up all the time. I can get into my car and start it up and it will say I'm doing 70 mph and I'm not moving. I have had to replace my clutch twice in a year. It would be really nice if Chevrolet would do a recall on the gauges with all of the problems that people are having!!

- Bay City, TX, USA

problem #85

May 012009


  • miles


We bought our '05 Cavalier used in the fall of 2008, thinking it was a solid, reliable vehicle for our young family. It didn't take long (date I posted was approximate, based on when I know for sure it was doing it's thing) for the gauges to start acting up. From then on, it reads like it's overheating on a regular basis (going all the way to the red sometimes), despite the cooling system, thermostat, etc. Being fine. Also, the gas and odometer gauges act up, typically when the temp gauge does. They move around all crazy and stick sometimes. I find I often have to remove the fuse to the gauges to reset them, though this tends to require sitting for as much as 5 minutes. All this just to be able to discern how fast your going is ridiculous. With all the complaints I've read on the '05 cavs doing this, you think Chevy would fix the's a potential safety hazard to have your gauges mess up that bad.

- Chillicothe, OH, USA

problem #84

Apr 012010


  • 80,000 miles
Gauges on dashboard have failed. All lights come on and gauges fail. Speedometer says I'm going 60 mph when the car is stopped. Water temp gauge is not functioning and the indicator gets in the way off the speedometer indicator.

- Saint Joseph, MO, USA

problem #83

Aug 022011


  • 92,000 miles
My gauges in my car are messing up. The fuel gauge is below the E and runs into the temp gauge. The speedometer reads I am going 110 when I am not the odometer reads error. All my emergency lights are lighting up. This is happening to alot of people who own these year of Cavaliers. Chevy needs to own up and issue a recall because this is unsafe not knowing what speed I am going and if I have enough gas to get to where I am going. I am a Chevy fan and this is upsetting that all these people are having these issues and they are not doing recalls.

- East Bend, NC, USA

problem #82

Aug 182010


  • 40,000 miles
Fuel gauge defect. Goes all the way past full and holds down temperature gauge. Can't tell how much fuel is in vehicle.

- Reno, NV, USA

problem #81

Jun 022008

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • miles
The instrument gauges in our 05 Cavalier are not working properly. The speedometer will sometimes fall from the car speed of 65 down to 0 and swing back up to 65 again. The other instrument gauges have started doing the same. We have had many safety issues with the power windows from the first day we bought this car. The drivers side window has no power at all. There is a 5 inch gap at the top, and sometimes the window will fall down even further when driving on the highway. I have done research on the web and found that this is a very common problem with the 05 Chevy Cavaliers. I previously asked GM to help me fix this drivers side window hazard, but they wanted me to be the one to take action. Others that I have spoken with on the web have had the motors replaced by an authorized dealer at no cost. All of my web browsing & researching of this matter was consistent. The motors are defective. And the cost of the window motor plus labor was over $500 per window. That doesn't include fixing any electrical problems that may be wrong. I asked for our drivers side window to be repaired by Chevrolet so that we could drive in safety with no sudden distractions or hazards. Recently, the rear drivers side window has started moving up & down very slowly and we are afraid it is also going to need repair.

- Cumberland, NC, USA

problem #80

Sep 062011


  • 33,254 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact stated the speedometer and tachometer failed. The contact stated he does not know how fast he was driving when the failure occurred. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnostic testing nor was the manufacturer notified. The failure mileage was 33,254.

- Troy, IL, USA

problem #79

Aug 082011

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 68,000 miles
While on congested expressway, passing vehicular traffic began with sounding horns, hand signs of displeasure and rage. At this time an observation of speedometer had a reading of 55 mph, the posted speed limit. Upon exiting expressway and stopping another observation of speedometer revealed vehicle was still moving at 55 mph. During this time a motorist had followed from expressway, approached and offered to violently place my cranium into my anus thereby improving my driving skills. After fleeing this hazardous situation a closer inspection of speedometer informed me of a unpredictable, erratic readings which bordered on not working to showing 100 mph when not in motion. This has clearly caused a life threatening situation on the public way which maybe rectified by a recall notice from GM on this vehicle (instrument cluster) part which is faulty. An investigation of reported complaints, revealed an overwhelming problem with this vehicle part, calling for immediate government oversight and action.

- Chicago, IL, USA

problem #78

Nov 012008


  • 60,000 miles
TL-the contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact stated the vehicle speedometer failed causing the contact not to know the speed driven. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer to be diagnosed. The manufacturer took report 71-982299746 but denied assistance with the repair. The vehicle was not repaired. The failure mileage was 60,000 and the current mileage 150,000.

- Lenoir , NC, USA

problem #77

Dec 102010


  • 88,000 miles
There needs to be a recall for the Chevy Cavalier 2005 vehicles for speedometer defect. It no longer works in my vehicle and I have read a lot of complaints about this.

- Bismarck, ND, USA

problem #76

Dec 072010


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact stated that the fuel gauge did not provide accurate readings. The contact also stated that the speedometer would get stuck on various speeds and display inaccurate readings as well. The speedometer would get stuck displaying a speed of 20 mph, 60 mph, 80 mph and 110 mph. In addition, the fuel gauge failure would occur during cold weather and display readings of empty when fuel was present in the fuel tank. The vehicle was not taken to have the failure diagnosed or repaired. The failure mileage was 50,000 and the current mileage was 58,000.

- Enola, PA, USA

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