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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
7 / 3
Injuries / Deaths:
6 / 0
Average Mileage:
74,324 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.

2002 Chevrolet Impala electrical problems

electrical problem

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2002 Chevrolet Impala Owner Comments (Page 10 of 12)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #49

Apr 132009


  • 80,000 miles


Car does not reliably start. My wife has been stranded with our daughter while waiting for the car to start. Gas gauge does not work, turn signals go out without warning. There is no way to tell when or where this problem will occur. Am fearful of my wife being stranded in a bad area while waiting for the car to start. Has been happening for approx. 2 yrs.

- Converse, TX, USA

problem #48

Apr 022009


  • 70,000 miles
2002 Chevy Impala 3.8L purchased used in Dec. 2004 w/ 65,000 miles. Where to begin... flooding in floorboards due to clog underneath windshield, three sets of rotors/brakes, clunky noise in steering shaft (replaced twice by dealership) still having same problem, catalytic converter replaced after dealership tried to charge me nearly $1000 to replace; covered by GM as harry green Chevrolet was 'unaware' of replacement policy"!" new struts, numerous alignments/balances B/C vehicle still shakes and shimmys at 60-65 mph; must drive about 75-80 mph just to keep this to a minimum! BCM replaced twice by dealer, security issues won't allow car to start for 15 mins. Each time, which is very inconvenient. Sooo many problems and complaints with these 'quality' GM vehicles, and yet they do nothing to resolve them, except hold out their hands wanting more $$$ from american taxpayers to keep on making junk! and now the newest of a long line of recalls/problems is that there is a fire hazard for leaking oil on the manifold! all of these vehicles need to be recalled due to the numerous safety concerns and consumers are sick and tired of General Motors obvious disregard for safety and reliability!

- Anmoore, WV, USA

problem #47

Feb 202009


  • 100,001 miles
Having problems with passlock security system it has locked and will not let me start my car.

- Tulsa, OK, USA

problem #46

Mar 132009


  • miles


This is a pass-lock problem. Randomly the pass-lock system on the 2002 Chevy Impala I own will not allow the car to start. I wait 15 minutes and the car starts. My understanding is that this is a common problem with the Chevy Impala and it causes me lots of problems. I am late for work, late picking up people, sometimes it happens when I run errands so I have to sit in the parking lot and wait for it to reset. A huge waste of my time. The reason why I am writing today is that it just happened this morning and I have finally reached the end of my rope.

- Bellingham, MA, USA

problem #45

Jul 012007


  • 75,000 miles
There were no events that lead to this failure. With all fuses operational, I do not have any dashlights illuminated at night. I have to use my cell phone light to place over my speedometer cluster panel to view my speed, gas levels and any warning lights. This has been ongoing for a little over a year. When my daytime running lights are on, they blink constantly and other drivers think I am experiencing an emergency. If I use my interior lights, they flash like I am trying to signal for help. Same if I open the visor to use the lighted mirror. I have not had this repaired since GM will not guarantee a resolution with a repair. I cannot afford to keep giving money to GM dealerships without a repair. This is very dangerous for me at night, I cannot use my cruise control everywhere. My traction control will not disengage either.

- Dublin, CA, USA

problem #44

Nov 252005


  • 60,000 miles
Approximately 60K miles, pass lock light came on. Dealer said it was common in Impala, would cost $1500, needed to replace computer module which runs the entire vehicle. Started having starting issues, air bag malfunctions, power door locks not working, wiper & window malfunctions, trunk opening on its own, etc. Took to mechanic, said same as dealer, has seen a number of Impala with similar problem. Car randomly does not start, airbag malfunction, and doors not working.

- Highland Park, IL, USA

problem #43

Jan 232009


  • 70,000 miles


Tried to start my car and I thought someone was after me. When I got in the car to start it, it wouldn't start. Luckily no one was there. Mechanic said that the tumbler in the key system is bad and that this is a very common problem for Impala.

- Belleville, IL, USA

problem #42

Oct 242008


  • 77,000 miles
When driving at night and using the "high beams, " they go out after awhile. Nearly crashed until I could slow down enough to safely stop! by moving high/low beam lever, I was able to get headlights to come back on in the low beam position. In checking NHTSA web site, found this is a problem General Motors is aware of but expects owners to pay for repair of poorly designed part.

- New Philadelphia, OH, USA

problem #41

Sep 192008

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,301 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Impala. The contact attempted to exit his vehicle, but was locked inside the passenger compartment. The radio displayed "locked" and he could not exit the vehicle through the doors nor the windows because the electrical system failed. The representative at the dealer stated that he owned the same year, make, and model vehicle and had experienced the same failures. The dealer diagnosed the vehicle with an electrical system defect and repaired it at the estimated cost of over $1,400. The failure persisted and the vehicle was taken back to the dealer. They replaced the key switch at the cost of $492.13 the failure mileage was 32,301 and current mileage was 32,328. Updated 020209 the windows would not roll down. Updated 02/03/09. Several components within the electrical system were replaced and the security light illuminated twice. Updated 02/20/09. The consumer was informed an intermediate shaft was needed at a cost of $300. When the steering wheel was turned, it made strange noises as if it were about to break. Updated 0423/10. Updated 04/29/10.

- Liberty, MO, USA

problem #40

May 192008

Impala 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 133,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Impala. At least once a week, whenever the contact attempts to start the vehicle, the security light illuminates on the instrument panel and the vehicle will not start. The vehicle loses total power. She has to disconnect the positive battery cable and then reconnect the cable. After she waits for it recharge itself, the vehicle will start immediately or two hours later. The dealer stated that the body control module needed to be replaced at the cost of $445. The failure mileage was 133,000. *updated 10/20/08 updated 10/21/08.

- Canterbury, CT, USA

problem #39

Jul 152007


  • 45,000 miles


The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Impala. Whenever the contact attempts to start his vehicle while the security light is illuminated, the vehicle will not start. The dealer stated that the ignition switch needed to be replaced. The contact has noticed the failure since purchasing the vehicle. The current mileage was 62,000 and failure mileage was 45,000.

- Harrisburg, PA, USA

problem #38

Aug 122008


  • miles
The passlock seems to be failing on my 2002 Chevy Impala..74,000 miles. When I attempt to start it, nothing happens, and I have to wait 10-20 minutes before I can start it again. This has happened 3 times since March 2008.

- Vadnais Heights, MN, USA

problem #37

Aug 082008


  • 5,000 miles
On many occasions, car will not start after sitting for several minutes. This has happened since new and it has been in the shop many times to be fixed. Lots of money spent and no resolution. Leaves my elderly parents stranded and could result in major issue if in the wrong place. Someone needs to address this issue - GM is not!!!

- Washingon, PA, USA

problem #36

Jul 302008


  • miles
Car would not start changed passlock and still will not start. Security light is on, radio is locked and the Chevy dealership does not know what is wrong with it, they are guessing that is the BCM and the SDM but they cannot promise that it will work.

- Moncks Corner, SC, USA

problem #35

Jul 312008


  • 64,000 miles
2002 Chevrolet Impala ls - security/passlock system problem - summer 2007 - took in to Chevrolet dealer (since out of business - palm bay Chevrolet in Florida) because security light would come on at times, eventually disabling car for short periods of time. First repair, BCM replaced - same issue two months later - ignition cylinder replaced - two months later, security light would come on again. Dealership out of business that did two original repairs for $1200 - today, security light was flashing and car would not start. Looking online, this is a very common issue with Impala from 2000 - 2005 - why is there no recall?

- Palm Bay, FL, USA

problem #34

Jun 132007


  • 76,000 miles
Initially started with the engine not turning over. Full battery power, put car in N to start, nothing. Put car in emergency park to start and it did. This happened repeatedly, with no warning. Now the car starts every time. The problem now is interior/exterior lights flash like strobe lights every time I start my car till the time I turn it off, so I can't drive at night. The "security" light pass lock issue interferes with the A/C compressor and will blow hot air. A constant clicking from the relays in the passenger side fuse box. Why is it many GM dealerships across the country cannot diagnose this when consumers have brought in the vehicle for assessment. Check out the website of for more of the same issue. Fellow Impala owners; lets file class action law suit again GM to get this resolved. But sadly it will take one death or more for any action from GM. "the american way is lets do something after the fact and not be proactive to prevent".

- Danville, CA, USA

problem #33

Jul 192008


  • 50,000 miles
The contact owns a 2002 Chevrolet Impala ls. While waiting in a line, the contact turned off the vehicle and it would not restart. The vehicle had to be towed to a mechanic and they found no failures. The contact believes that the failure was due to the pass lock. The VIN was unknown. The current and failure mileages were 50,000.

- Odessa, TX, USA

problem #32

Jun 152007


  • miles
At random times, the car will not start when the ignition is turned. There is no response from motor at all. The security light will flash on the information center display when this happens. After waiting 10-20 minutes the car will start. The first incident occurred about 1 year ago and has been occurring at random times ever since. Vehicle was taken to a GM dealer service department after the first time it occurred and they were unable to diagnose the problem. Since then I have noticed that the fan for the HVAC system will not work at times and the security light and other lights will appear on the information center display at random times.

- Loveland, CO, USA

problem #31

May 202005


  • miles
I own a 2002 Chevy Impala. On 5/20/05 the security light started coming on and would remain on. The security light continued to come on and now the car would not start. It would take 10-30minutes before I could start the car. I took the car to a dealership and they replaced the ignition cylinder. On 6/15/05 the same exact problem started up again. This time the dealership installed a new starter. On 7/16/05 same problem arose again with security light. A diagnostic was done and codes came up from a notice from GM (8/04). The code #'s were B2958 and B2960. The code said to repair poor terminal connections at body control module. The security light continues to come on and car does not start. This continues on/off from 9/11/05-11/28/05. On 11/28/05 the ignition lock/sensor is replaced and the PCM is reprogrammed. And I am given a new key. Looks like at the moment the problem is solved. Well today 7/17/08 I notice that the security light is back on and I begin to cringe because of what I went through in 05'. I get online to see if anyone else is experiencing the same problem and I was shocked to see the # of complaints from disgruntled customers about this security light. This is an outrage! GM by now is well aware of the problem with this security light going on. It would seem to me that there would have been a recall notice going out to Chevy Impala owners. I have contacted GM. My complaint is on file. I have 2 file #'s. one for in 2005--# 1-344203027 and a new one just started today (7/17/08)--#-71-645955981. Please google Chevy Impala and security light problem and see the list of complaints that come up. This is an absolute disgrace! I feel that this is something that needs to be looked into asap. Thank you, cheryl evans

- Bronx, NY, USA

problem #30

Jun 252008


  • 130,000 miles
When the car starts, security light appears on dash, A/C malfunctions, trunk opens automatically, radio displays "locked out" message, lights flicker off and on, quick clicking sound on passenger side of dashboard. The car has a 50/50 chance of starting.

- Signal Mountain, TN, USA

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