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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
0 / 1
Injuries / Deaths:
0 / 0
Average Mileage:
86,720 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.

1998 Chevrolet Cavalier electrical problems

electrical problem

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1998 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments

problem #12

Feb 192018


  • 335,000 miles


The gas gauge is going haywire. It pegs to the "F", and then immediately pegs to the "E", even though the tank is half full. The gauge then jumps around the middle form one side to the other side. It is impossible to tell how much is in the tank. This happens while driving and also while sitting at lights or stop signs.

- Charlottesville, WA, USA

problem #11

Nov 052013


  • 189,467 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier. While driving approximately 40 mph, the vehicle stalled without warning. The vehicle was not diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer was not notified of the failure. The failure mileage was 189,467.

- Spring Hill, FL, USA

problem #10

May 012014


  • 90,000 miles
The contact owns a 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact stated that while attempting to start the vehicle, the key could not be inserted all the way in the ignition. Also, the contact stated that in order to turn on the vehicle the key needed to be slightly out of the ignition switch. The vehicle had not been diagnosed or repaired. The manufacturer had not been notified. The VIN was not available. The approximate failure mileage was 90,000.

- Fall Rock , AR, USA

problem #9

Jan 042010


  • 123,000 miles


Ignition switch, or anti theft system, causes fuel pump to not work properly and also fuel injectors, been in garage 3 times and finally was told the problem after spending hundreds of dollars, was told GM had a recall on this part.

- Elkton, MI, USA

problem #8

Mar 082008

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 160,000 miles
All I have to say about this car is it is a piece of junk. I have had mine for almost two years now and in this two years I have had to put about 7,000 dollars of work into it. As of right now my car is sitting 200 hundred miles away on the side of the highway because the wiring to my starter keeps blowing my starters up. And as far as im concerned the car can stay there. I'm not even going to bother going to get it. Someone else can bar the burden that comes with that car! im done!

- Bella Vista, AR, USA

problem #7

Oct 302004

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles
I have replaced the rear drivers side brake light/turn signal 6 times. I have had the circuit board replaced. The housing, the socket, and now they want to replace the connector. Today my rear passenger brake light/turn signal went out and upon inspection the bulb had melted in the socket. This is posing a hazard to me. No brake lights, or turn signals in the rear.

- Shelton, WA, USA

problem #6

May 012003

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Manual transmission
  • miles


I have a 1998 Chevrolet Cavalier, I had my car for 4 yrs, when I bought the car the next month the coils burn out and had to be replace. I had my car fixed 7 times for the same thing. I still have a car note and my car still isn't running, I can't trade it in because the market value is low and my negative equity is too high. I have put almost $6,000 dollars in repairs in my car and still owe $5,000, I don't know what to do. My credit is bad because I have been late on my car note trying to get the car fix every other month. The electrical system is real bad, the cords burn out twce, I had every cinsor in my car replace, I had two new batteries in the last year. Everything under my hood is almost brand new and my car just broke down again, and I just got it out the shop 1 month ago. I need help in regards to this situation.

- Lanham, MD, USA

problem #5

Apr 202004

(reported on)


  • 40,178 miles
Attempting to start the vehicle, smoke came out the ignition and steering column. The vehicle was taken to the dealer who replaced the ignition system. The dealer also indicated that the battery was bad and replaced it. After the repairs were made the consumer received a recall notice related to the vehicle ignition system. The consumer request reimbursement for all repairs along with reimbursement for other expenses incurred.

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #4

Jul 022003


  • 71,000 miles
Consumer stated the vehicle was parked and shut off. Without warning, the vehicle caught on fire from the steering column. Dealer notified. Consumer woke to ignition running. Ignition was in off position with the keys removed. She inserted the key and turned it on and off several times until the engine shut off. Just then smoke was seen coming from under the steering column. Fire dept. Determined fire was the result of something electrical.

- Little Rock, AR, USA

problem #3

May 212003


  • miles
While driving in warm weather the vehicle shut off. The vehicle was allowed to sit for a few minutes before it started up again.

- Williamsfield, IL, USA

problem #2

Aug 191999


  • miles
The interior lights are inoperative, the headlights go off while driving at night causing loss of visibility and the radio has been replaced 3 times, the dealer replaced a shorted fuse, the multifunction control module, multifunction alarm and fuse and the drivers side door jamb switch but the problems still exist. Nlm

- Palmerton, PA, USA

problem #1

Aug 011998


  • miles
All lights including all electrical components failed.

- Corydon, IN, USA

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