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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 9
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 1
Average Mileage:
56,411 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.

2003 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 electrical problems

electrical problem

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2003 Chevrolet Silverado 3500 Owner Comments (Page 3 of 4)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #26

Feb 202006

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 38,650 miles


My speedometer is not giving the right speed or sometimes, it doesn't even work at all. I still get my total mile on the odometer but not my speed. This is a low mileage, barely used truck and I have no idea how fast I'm going" sometimes it works but is still off and other times, it just stops working all together. If it is cold, it stops working and you hear a tapping noise coming out of the cluster. If it is warm weather, you get some response out of it but it is not correct. I was already pulled over for speeding when I thought I was under the speed limit. There are I believe, 5 different speed sensors on the truck and I don't know which one is not working. I am not alone in this! there are hundreds of people on chats and forums who are complaining about the same thing. Why should I have to pay for these cheap parts"

- Rocklin, CA, USA

problem #25

Feb 032006

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 36,000 miles
Was driving down the freeway and my speedometer was showing that I was slowing down. My speedometer will work for a short period of time then it will start to show that the vehicle is slowing down. And soon shows that you are going 0 mph. After sitting for a few hours in park and not running, it might work. Sometimes it never works again for a day. Took it to the local dealer and they told me that they have had many others like this and they didn't know why it is happening but Chevrolet has not recalled it yet. They told me it ranges from 2003- 2005. They have worked on every one of these years. The dealer told me they couldn't do anything for me except replace my speedometer cluster, for about 1000 dollars. Without a speedometer is a big safety issue and I know that this is happening to other people.

- Moses Lake, WA, USA

problem #24

Mar 232006

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 61,100 miles
: the contact stated the speedometer works intermittently. The dealership determined the cluster panel needs to be replaced. Updated 7/13/2006 -

- Round Lake Heights, IL, USA

problem #23

Dec 222005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 78,000 miles


Speedometer gets stuck at a speed and does not come back down until you cycle the ignition enough times to get it to return to 0 mph. It is an ongoing problem, it does not seem to be getting any better.

- Holbrook, AZ, USA

problem #22

Mar 122006

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
I have owned my 2003 Silverado for just over 3 years. I have had several problems already: 1) the air conditioner would only blow out hot air-- has been fixed. 2)vibration noise in rear end around 30-40 mph--?? can't be fixed/duplicated. 3) speedometer quit working--replaced at my cost; warranty just expired, go figure; also had to go to court to fight speeding ticket! ( relative has same truck, same problem!) 4) windshield wipers will not shut off, I get to pay for this one too, after warranty. I had to pull the fuse out! not very safe in crazy mi weather!! 5) also had tailgate cables replaced under recall. 6) back seat loop replaced due to recall. No wonder Chevy is not doing well, who wants to spend over $30,000 for a piece of junk! will not buy another.

- Ypsilanti, MI, USA

problem #21

Jun 012005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl Diesel

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles
1) speedometer gradually began to fail, registering false speeds. 2)in the dark, I was driving too fast for road conditions, my speedometer was stuck at a lower speed indicated. (I was not involved in an accident or issued violation) 3)the instrument cluster needs to be replaced. This is a common problem (I belong to Silverado enthusiast forum) further this is apparently a GM problem, as an 05 Chevrolet Impala I drive at work (police cruiser) has the same problem, which led to an erroneous issuance of a speeding violation on a pace (corrected at court). I feel this is a safety issue, especially when traveling at night without surrounding traffic as a reference.

- Macomb Township, MI, USA

problem #20

Feb 082006

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 109,185 miles


: the contact stated the speedometer stopped working without warning. While the vehicle is parked, the speedometer reads 85-120 mph and is unreliable while driving. The dealership determined there is a short in the instrument panel cluster and it needs to be replaced.

- Doerun, GA, USA

problem #19

Sep 162005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 42,000 miles
9 January, 2006 to whom it may concern: I would like to report two safety related problems with my 2003 Chevrolet Silverado pickup truck. While driving through Illinois last year, I experienced the failure of the speedometer. I had been on the road for 12+ hours and was the only car on the interstate late at night when I began having trouble maintaining a consistent speed and was uncomfortable in general with the quality of my driving. Feeling that I must be too tired to continue, I pulled off the road at the next interchange. When I stopped I noted that the speedometer continued to read 60 mph. This vehicle had approximately 40,000 miles on it at the time. The other problem is more recent. The vehicles flashers come on when the left turn signal is applied. This is very confusing to other drivers around me. The manager of the company fleet reports that there are two company pickups of the same vintage that have also experienced unreliable speedometers early in there lives. The Chevrolet dealer states that he has not experienced these problems before. Please let me know if this is an ongoing problem with these trucks or an anomaly. Thank you, .

- Falling Waters, WV, USA

problem #18

Dec 282005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 95,500 miles
The speedometer on my 2003 Silverado started sticking, not resetting to zero. This allowed the vehicle to fail to show the correct speed. At times, I could turn the vehicle off, and restart several times in a row to make the speedometer reset back to zero, but now it will not reset at all. I have heard from several dealers that this is a common problem, if that is true, why hasn't General Motors done something to correct this problem, such as a "recall"?? this to me is a serious problem, and the manufacturer should be taking the proper steps for repairs! if I cant get this resolved, I can guarantee I wont purchase another GM vehicle!

- Shenandoah, IA, USA

problem #17

Dec 272005

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles
Speedometer erratic, sticks at various speeds, does not display correct speed. Part is on national back order. Was told by chevorlet dealership that this problem exists in 2003 and 2004 Silverado trucks. Internet search for others experiencing this problem provided numerous results. With road conditions in fla subject to change without notice due to rain this is a very unsafe condition, its hard to drive safe if you have no idea how fast you are going. Was told the part will be at least 2 months back order.

- Cocoa, FL, USA

problem #16

Dec 072005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles


Wire short in wires leading to the drivers door and rear door. Wires shorted out behind left kick panel and partially melted the kick panel. No modifications to truck - seems they were installed poorly from the factory. Dealer is charging to fix and replace wires and reprogram the door control module. Shorts caused air bag light to come on - dome lights failed to turn off - left rear window rolled itself down while truck was sitting unoccupied - all power windows failed - battery completely drained.

- Sandusky, MI, USA

problem #15

Jun 042005

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 37,000 miles
Speedometer does not work properly. Sometimes it does.sometimes it doesn't last I heard there was a national backorder on the cluster. To me its a hazard.

- Sarasota, FL, USA

problem #14

Jul 252005

Silverado 3500 6-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 16,000 miles
General Motors have a faulty neutral safety shift switch on their Silverado 1500 1/2 ton pickups that may lead to failure and cause the truck to burn. I have brought this to the attention of General Motors but they ignored me. My truck burned and we put it out. I see others that have burned and I bet the neutral safety switch is what started it. If you were to investigate how many 03 (maybe newer maybe older) have burned you will find the cause in this switch.

- Eveleth, MN, USA

problem #13

Dec 202003

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 15,000 miles
4X4 not working, charcoal canister, cd-player 3 times, complete new brake system from rotors, seals, caliperes etc. That I paid for $1,000., window regulator, door latches, noise coming from the steering area, dash peeling apart, chapman Chevy replaced all four tires twice within 50,000 miles-I finally went and spent $1,200 on new tires to make sure my family and I our safe

- Maricopa, AZ, USA

problem #12

Feb 142005

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 33,000 miles
Experianced a total digital blackout of all digital read out accross the dash. Could not determine what gear I was shifting into. Mileage readout and such was black. No display showing radio or heating/ac control.

- Los Alamos, NM, USA

problem #11

Dec 282004

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles
When braking at any speed brake pedal would go to the floor, and there would be extended stopping distance. Dealership was notified, but did not resolve the problem. ABS displayed brake system failure. The consumer stated that the brakes failed on inclines. The consumer stated that there was an electrical short. The odometer failed and added extra mileage. The tires started separating after 300 miles. The radio became hot and shorted out. The air conditioner shorted out. The consumer stated that the new vehicle checklist was not filled out nor reviewed with him. The consumer stated that the engine knocks. The consumers fingers were burned by the radio after it got hot. The consumer stated that he heard a growling noise in the power steering. The consumer heard a buzzing noise in the transmission. The consumer had to use the emergency brake to stop the vehicle coming down a hill. The right headlight went out and turned black. The headlight was replaced with the wrong high beam light. The cd player will not take the cd. The speedometer will only go to 20 mph at times.

- North Little Rock, AR, USA

problem #10

Aug 122004

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 35,500 miles
2003 2500 silvarado with 36,000 miles. So far the transfer case shifting module (dropped itself inot 4 low at 70 mph), transmission (became so sloppy that it slammed passengers around had to be rebuilt), air conditioner compressor (quit working and the new one works poorly), fuel pump (died in the middle of Utah and took 4 days to get the part), radio (had multiple problems had to be replaced after 4 visits), keyless remote failures, and 4 recalls.

- Forest Falls, CA, USA

problem #9

Apr 132004

Silverado 3500 8-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 8,000 miles
While driving at any speed dashboard lights warn the consumer of impending danger. A light would inform of reduce power and go out. Then, another light would warn of reduce brake power. Vehicle will not stall, but only have limited power. Dealer placed the vehicle on a diagnostic machine, and found a computer glitch. This problem occurred three times in two months.

- Horseshoe Bay, TX, USA

problem #8

Aug 112003

Silverado 3500

  • 5,000 miles
Vehicle caught fire while parked in the driveway. (nar) fire was due to a mechanical and/or electrical problem with the vehcle. The fire not only destroyed consumer's vehicle but damaged the siding of the house.

- Rutland, VT, USA

problem #7

May 132003

Silverado 3500 4WD 8-cyl

  • 6,903 miles
Vehicle seems to go into 4-wheel drive by itself while driving. This has happened to me three times already. I want to switch dealers but GM told me no I have to stay with the dealer who worked on the vehicle. As this happens the vehicle slows down considerably causing the seat belt to lock and hold me back. Also at times the vehicle just slows down while at highway speeds. The check 4 wheel drive light comes on and the push buttons on the panel do not operate. (the lights go out) I also think this has caused my odometer to fast forward. It tells me now that I have 29900 miles on the truck. I have all records and need help. I travel to work 8 times a month and round trip is 114 miles this does not seem to work out. Can they check the electronics and see actual miles from the computer.

- Beachwood, NJ, USA

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