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definitely annoying
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
41,446 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.

1996 Chevrolet Cavalier exhaust system problems

exhaust system problem

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1996 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments

problem #7

Sep 052010


  • 226,250 miles


I purchased a 1996 Chevy Cavalier in 1999 and from the beginning had problems with the check engine light continually on etc. From 1999 to Sept 2010 - I took it to several Chevy dealers while it was under warranty and they never fixed the problem completely and the lights remained on. I was told to put fuel injection cleaner in it by one car dealer of course that didn't work. Years later and many repairs, engine rebuilt, thermostat replaced, water pumps, fans etc.. four catalytic converters I still have the same problem - loss of power, car shutting off and leaving me in intersection, freeways etc.. causing a very dangerous situation, I have over these years become very frustrated the codes read O2 sensors, the cat converter pieces fall apart easily causing very costly repairs because these defective parts clog the air flow causing overheating and loss of power, it should not be this difficult or cost to keep this car in repair order. Cat converters, sensors, head gaskets, seals, water pumps, sticking thermostats etc.. continually replaced and still the same on going problem with no hope of ever finally fixing this dangerous defective problem.

- Anaheim, CA, USA

problem #6

Nov 152003


  • Automatic transmission
  • 63,871 miles
Driving down the road, motor stops running and I lost all power both steering and electrical. Got it to the side of the road. Waited 2 minutes and started it back up it was fine. Only did this 2 times within a week period. Engine idle rough since I purchased it in 1998. Took it in and they said they could not find anything. Came back several times they essentially said thay could do nothing thats just how they run. Motor surges and lags after start up. Regardless of temperature. Push pedal motor bogs down and then it will take off. Replaced almost every sensor under the hood problem is still present. Battery took a dump at almost 4 years. Engine spun #3 and #4 bearings on a cold start up. They advised me that I needed a water pump at the same time.pass power window was always slow. Replaced approx mid 2002 rear suspension clunks and sounds like it has lumber in the trunk. Wheel studs snap easily as I have replace approximately 10. Rear brakes drag and grab even after replacement. Front brakes wear excessively. Rubber muffler hanger wears out. Replaced 2 times.

- Broken Arrow, OK, USA

problem #5

Apr 052002


  • miles
There is a burning smell in vehicle while driving.

- Knoxville, TN, USA

problem #4

Jan 251999


  • miles


Contacted dealer and they advised of the evaporative purge solenoid and charcoal canister needed replacement as carbon monoxide was leaking. We have a warranty and they report it is not covered under the warranty. If GM had to replace the same parts in many of their other cars then why not this vehicle. The Cadillac, Buick, cutlass and over 400,000 vehicle they should recall this problem in the Cavalier at no cost to the owner of the vehicle. We just purchased the vehicle a few months ago and purchased the warranty for $1,000. The dealer said it is not daughter purchased her first vehicle just a few months ago, and now it has a problem that they say she will needs to pay for. I think that this problem should be covered under the warranty we purchased and should be recalled just like the other vehicles were at no cost to the owner. Thank you for taking time out of your busy day to answer our concerns. Yvette hollis and aimee hollis.

- Payette, ID, USA

problem #3

Oct 271997

(reported on)


  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
Emmission control system failed.

- Upland, CA, USA

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problem #2

Apr 301998


  • miles
Water in air filter/plugs caused engine to backfire.

- Stuart, FL, USA

problem #1

Jan 161996


  • miles
Noise heard over bumps due to misaligned exhaust/heat shield.

- Bal Harbour, FL, USA

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