Print this page Notes: Widespread instrument panel failure is a common and frustrating reality for many 2004-2005 Chevy Cavalier owners. They're often left in the dark when it comes to knowing how fast they're going, what their engine temperature is, or even how much fuel they have left in the tank.

The likely culprit is a series of bad "stepper motors" which control the gauges and are no longer covered under warranty. Think not being able to see your speed is a safety issue and should be recalled for all owners? We'd agree. Trouble is, apparently the NHTSA does not.


pretty bad
Typical Repair Cost:
Average Mileage:
63,292 miles
Total Complaints:
32 complaints

Most Common Solutions:

  1. replace power window motor (20 reports)
  2. not sure (11 reports)
  3. replaced switch for window buttons in center console (1 reports)
2004 Chevrolet Cavalier windows / windshield problems

windows / windshield problem

Find something helpful? Spread the word.
Get notified about new defects, investigations, recalls & lawsuits for the 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier:

Unsubscribe any time. We don't sell/share your email.

2004 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments (Page 1 of 2)

problem #32

Mar 282014


  • Automatic transmission
  • 32,000 miles


Had to replace the driver window motor. The window would roll down but not up, you could coax it up sometimes so once it was up we didn't roll it back down. Then we replaced the motor and the passenger side went out, so we replaced it and now the driver side is out again. These motors were new not refurbished or taken from a u-pull it place.

- , Milwaukie, OR, US

problem #31

Oct 012014

Cavalier LX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 80,000 miles

I have always been a Chevy GM fan. Being single I have to depend on my car. I can't even use drive thrus cause windows won't roll down. Whats the deal Chevy?

- , Saint Louis, MO, USA

problem #30

Jun 012008

Cavalier 4S ?

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

the drivers side window has been fixed is still broken as is all other windows...I even had them fixed not to go down and that did not work...I have to cover to car and I cannot drive it in the rain...I am on a fixed income and cannot afford to continue to fix the windows...not one would buy the car with non functioning windows...never have I heard of a car with all the windows broken...has to be a factory defect....

- , Columbus, GA, USA

problem #29

Feb 232013

Cavalier LS

  • Manual transmission
  • 73,073 miles


This is a heck of a note, everyone seems to be having the same problem. I bought this car brand new and haven't had any problems. A few months ago my windows started acting up, they would go down but then they wouldn't go back up. If I left them alone they would eventually go back up, well now my drives side window will not go back up. I was pushing the button to go up but instead it went down the whole way and now it won't budge. I ain't getting it fixed I just want the damn window to go back up. How can I do this? Anyone know.

If this is a problem that alot of people are having, which it sounds to me like it is, then Chevrolet should step in and fix them for free.

Also watch your gauges, they will stop working to. First it was my tach,now my temperature gauge doesn't work right either. I'm not getting them fixed either. Alot of people are having this issue also.

Love my Cav but its now beginning to be a pain in the ass.

- , St Thomas, PA, USA

problem #28

Jun 062012

Cavalier LS

  • Automatic transmission
  • 55,000 miles

The only real issue in the past year was the drivers side window coming to a slow death. It just seemed to go down ok, but getting back up was the hard part. You had to give it a rest and then it would move further.

Eventually it just petered out and I had to see if I could fix it. First I checked battery voltage and then the window switch(Popped it out and used a spare)- Not the battery or switch problem. I then ordered a motor and regulator assembly for both doors (110.00$) Got the parts and in my leisure time with no experience (except some youtube videos) took the panel off the door, took plastic wrap off, removed five rivets and a few bolts, put new assembly back in with short bolts and nylon nuts (four on new assembly) replaced plastic, put panel back on and had a great electric window in three relaxed hours. I could probably do it in one hour with a beer now.

- , Minneapolis, MN, US

Search for these popular complaint phrases...

problem #27

Nov 302010

Cavalier LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 88,222 miles


- , Columbus, OH, USA

problem #26

Sep 012010


  • Automatic transmission
  • 140,000 miles


First the rear passenger window quit working. I had some one rig it just so it would stay up. Then the driver's side window would stall, eventually it stopped working. I have to manually put it up by hand. It has absolutely NO problem sliding down. No, the driver's side rear window stalls. I no longer attempt to put it down. After reading all these complaints, I do not think I ever want another chevy.

- , Durham, NC, US

problem #25

Aug 012009

Cavalier LS Coupe 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 40,000 miles

Windows roll down slightly and then are stuck. Passenger window sometimes will roll down and up. It is amazing that this is such a widespread problem yet GM has not issued a fix or a recall. My husband is a mechanic and he doesn't want to touch it. I've read frequent complaints that the motors have been replaced several times and keep going out so I do not want to bother with the repair. Not worth buying a Chevy if they fall apart after 4 or 5 years.

- , San Diego, CA, USA

problem #24

Dec 152009

Cavalier LS

  • Manual transmission
  • 70,000 miles

8 months after my driver side window motor blew... my Passenger window motor is blown! UGH! It cost me 120 dollars to fix the drivers side! Where does Chevy get off putting these crappy motors in?! My mom has a 98 (mercury) and her's work like new! I think Chevy should recall these P.O.S motors... I'm so annoyed with my 04 cavalier. I had a 99 for 3 years and the only thing that went bad was the alternator! I guess making the cars more affordable is making them with poor quality parts?!

- , Athens, PA, USA

problem #23

Apr 082009

Cavalier LS

  • Manual transmission
  • 60,000 miles

My drivers side window would stop rolling up and down. When you pushed the button you could hear that it was still getting the message to move but it didn't move! Seriously I was P.O'd!! I got it fixed and the stupid mechanics ruined my "regulator" (their words) and now the window sounds like a lawn mower and I can fit my fingers all the way to my palm between the window and the inside door panel... yeah they said it's normal... BULLSH...oops, I'll be nice and not finish that word! Now about 8 months later, my passenger side window motor is blown... off to make another report about that! :o) I wish Chevy would frickin fix this for me! How convenient it only lasted 6 years... My mom has a 98 with auto windows and her motors have NEVER been replaced! ugh!

- , Athens, PA, USA

problem #22

Feb 252008

Cavalier LS

  • Manual transmission
  • 42,682 miles


This has happend to the car three times now. The past two times the dealership has eaten the cost on it. I have had the blue, tan and now light blue wires replaced. They are saying this is due to "environmenal corrison". These wires are releated to my headlights about once a year a headlight starts acting up and a "wire needs replaced"

I have also had the instrument cluster replaced, driver side window motor replaced, back up switch and harness replaced. . Oh yes and after owning the car not even a month the radio started going haywire, it won't keep stations, if I am listening to a CD when I get out of the car I am listening to the radio when I get back in an vice versa (this is all very RANDOM) and the latest is I have gotten out of the car KEY in hand radio was off I get back in the car and the radio is on.And of course the dealership can never get this to happen when they have the car. I also am having the ABS light issued that others are having.

Has anyone else had all these electrical issues? I have called GM and they dont seam to think it's their problem

- , Charleston, WV, USA

problem #21

Nov 142009

Cavalier LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 70,000 miles

I have had this damn car for less than a year and have replaced my front two window motors already. At first I thought I would be able to do it myself, boy was I wrong. The damn thing is riveted in. Tried to drill with little success. So i called the dealer. They told me with labor and parts, 900 plus tax. What! go f yourself. I called around some more and found someone to do it for 400. That sounds good compared to the dealer but way too much to make my windows go up and down. Since I got those fixed, my left rear has gone out. Since it is the back, I am just gonna put some plexiglass in and forget it. I cant be spending all this money on senseless parts. Chevy should be ashamed of themselves. First they take my kids tax money to fund more crap like this and now I have to pay to fix it. I had a ford expo. with 180,000 miles on it. never had a problem with not one window. I don't know how we can get through to chevy and have this problem addressed. I am sorry to see so many others out there like me.

- , Kent, WA, USA

problem #20

May 172009

Cavalier LX 3.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 104,000 miles

Driver-side window motor went from rarely working to not at all. Now the passenger side is starting to act up.

- , Pekin, IN, USA

problem #19

Jul 222006

Cavalier LS 2.2L

  • Manual transmission
  • 40,000 miles

Stupid Stupid CAR!!! It was a complete pain to have no control over the driver side window! It wasn't a complete pain in the butt until it was winter and I couldn't get the window back up or down at all! Especially since drive-thrus, whether at the bank or fast food, was made to make life more convenient!!

- , Clarksburg, WV, USA

problem #18

Jul 122006

Cavalier LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,000 miles

The Chevy cavalier has been my worst car. I bought this vehicle new and started having problems with it just after two years. The first of my problems began with my power windows just like most of you my windows began to go up/down very slowly, and finally just breaking down. I have not fixed the problem due to financial situations and procrastination to be honest but it is very frustrating to know that many cavalier owners are having this same problem. i am seriously considering to trade it in for something better.

- , Los Angeles, CA, USA

problem #17

Jul 112007

Cavalier LX

  • Automatic transmission
  • 31,400 miles

i think it really sucks that Chevrolet knows about this problem and really don't care about their customers i know that i 'm not the only one having this problem and it is really a shame

- , Cleveland, OH, USA

problem #16

Oct 152008

Cavalier LS 2.2L

  • Automatic transmission
  • 94,000 miles

Got into the car, the window on the drivers side went down and is not coming back up. I have read soooo many complaints about this, what should I do without it costing an arm and leg to fix?

- , Aurora, CO, US

problem #15

Jan 012007


  • Automatic transmission
  • 90,000 miles

I didn't realize so many other people were experiencing difficulty with their windows as well. Originally, the driver's side window would go down and then not come up. It would take several attempts (sometimes over the course of a few days) to return it to the closed position. It would move a few centimeters at a time and just stop and day later move up a little more, etc. I did go to the dealer (AGAIN) when getting a tune up, but they claimed to be short-staffed and unable to look at the problem. Now, the rear passenger window will go down and not come back up using the driver controls in the front of the car. By accident, I was able to get the rear window to go up by using the back window lever. It's an annoyance, especially when I just want some air or need to go through a drive through or conduct outdoor banking or something. I try to never let those two windows down. I haven't put a lot of money on that problem because frankly I have had other ongoing issues with my Cavalier that have required more immediate attention. The ABS braking has been a problem since I purchased the car and all I've ever gotten is the run-around with the different dealerships (see other auto beef for details). Now the passenger side window wiper won't work and the driver's side wiper works with a grinding sound (as of last week). I can't get the time off my job to keep running back and forth to the dealer over every possible thing, not to mention the expense. (And GM wonders why its sales suffer?!?)

- , Detroit, MI, USA

problem #14

Sep 012008

Cavalier LS Coupe

  • Manual transmission
  • 36,000 miles

It is absolutely horrible to see that there are a multiple amount of people with the same problem that I have...Driver window fails to go down all the way. But when I do get it down a little, I have to manually use my hand to pull the window up while at the same time holding the window button down. I am pissed off to hear that many of you had replaced the window motor up to three times.

I hope that more people come here to complain about this specific problem so that Chevy could have a recall on the problem part...which I think has to do with the electrical circuits and probably nothing to do with the motor itself. For now, I think I have to go and get a new motor and wait until the other side window fails, so that I could spend some more money on another motor.

For now, using my hand to pull up the window manually seems to work!!!

- , Lihue, HI, USA

problem #13

Jun 022008


  • Automatic transmission
  • 45,600 miles

Window won't roll up all the way. Will roll down no problem, rolls up about half way and quits. Give it a few seconds and it will roll up a bit more. Dealership wants couple hundred dollars to fix it but the part only costs 26 dollars. Labor is worth paying for but thats a rip-off!

- , Newberry, FL, USA

Read the next 12 complaints »

Not what you are looking for?