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really awful
Crashes / Fires:
1 / 0
Injuries / Deaths:
1 / 0
Average Mileage:
65,089 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.

2005 Chevrolet Cavalier electrical problems

electrical problem

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2005 Chevrolet Cavalier Owner Comments (Page 4 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #75

Nov 012010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 120,000 miles


Problem with cluster panel. Can't tell how fast I am going, what the temperature of the engine is, how much gas I have. Nothing works! I have had to live with this problem for months and am tired of it. I can't afford to get a new cluster, this is a problem it seems with a lot of 2005 Cavaliers and something needs to be done!

- Houston, TX, USA

problem #74

Sep 182010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
This is a problem I inherited from the previous owner. I bought the car with approximately 50000 miles on it. The fuel gauge is never accurate. Most of the time it reads past full and into the adjacent temperature gauge. Twice I have been forced to walk to a gas station because I ran out of gas when I didn't know I was low. This is a major safety issue because I could be hit by a car walking along a highway trying to get gas. I'm also concerned that the faulty gauge will interfere with my temperature gauge causing my car to overheat without me knowing.

- Cornelius, NC, USA

problem #73

Jun 162011


  • 55,000 miles
The speedometer on my 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier does not work. While driving slowly through my apartment complex, I noticed that the speedometer read 60 mph which is impossible. At a complete stop the gauge read 10 mph. The amount it's incorrect varies every time I drive. I'm worried that I'll get a speeding ticket or get into an accident because I have no idea how fast I'm driving.

- Cornelius, NC, USA

problem #72

May 022011


  • miles


I have a 2005 Cavalier which I purchased with 17,000 miles on it. I am currently at 28,500 approximately. My car is currently experiencing problems with the temperature gauge, gas gauge and check engine light. It also appears to be accelerating on it's own. I have checked several websites and find that this problem seems to in addition to the other issues, I am experiencing problems with my horn (I am not familiar with the relationship they components of a car have with each other). My understanding is that Chevy did a recall do to defects with steering problems in the 2005 Cavaliers. Could the problems that I and other are experiencing be a part of that recall, since it is all apart of the dashboard be common for the year, make and model of my car?

- Baltimore, MD, USA

problem #71

Feb 122011

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 45,500 miles
2005 Cavalier, approx 45,500 miles, cluster panel on dash went haywire. Cannot tell if you need gas or what your rpms are in general you cannot trust your panel.then check engine light comes on. Don't know if that is a separate issue. Dealer says there are numerous complaints but we must pay for our own repairs,

- Washington, PA, USA

problem #70

Nov 302009


  • miles
My 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier has been failing on me since I bought it in 2005. First the gas gauge stopped working. I learned to live with that using the trip odometer. Next, in the middle of a cross-country drive, my speedometer stopped working! it would do so occasionally, but now it never works at all, and the other gauges have now quit as well. I have run out of gas in the middle of a snow storm, and this incident blocked traffic and risked my life from being hit by another car or freezing to death. I've gotten countless tickets because of these defects. This is a common problem among 2005 Cavaliers, very common, and I am appalled that GM has not issued a recall. I've had the gauges replaced but before long the problem starts all over again. It has cost me hundreds, and I'm sure it's just a matter of time before I or someone else with this problem end up injured from being out of fuel, speed, etc. The gauges in my car now do not work at all, I have to rely on a gps for speed and just fill up my car every other day to ensure I don't run out of gas again. I have seen hundreds of stories just like mine with the very same vehicle. Something must be done!

- Rochester, NY, USA

problem #69

Mar 012011


  • 71,000 miles


The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact was driving approximately 30 mph when the vehicle speedometer and tachometer failed. The vehicle was not taken to the dealer for diagnosis of the failure. The VIN was unavailable. The failure mileage was 71,000 and the current mileage was 71,050.

- Topeka, KS, USA

problem #68

Feb 082011


  • 104,000 miles
Speedometer quit working.

- Moody, MO, USA

problem #67

Feb 082010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 50,000 miles
2005 Chevy Cavalier, gauges started going haywire around 50K miles. Temp gauge soared and I thought the car was overheating. We were out of town and in heavy traffic, but had to immediately pull over and stop the car "to let it cool off." My son was violently ill at the time and we had gone to pick him up on his job because he could not drive home and we needed to get him to a doctor asap. What a nightmare! we considered getting a rental and calling a tow truck to tow the Cavalier home, but when we could find no signs of overheating, we proceeded with caution. This continued to occur over and over again. Then several months later, the gas gauge stopped working properly. Seems the needles have a mind of their own. There are multitudes of online compaints about this defect. I wish everyone had filed a formal complaint. But since it is a safety issue, a recall should be issued by Chevrolet. The dealership says the only fix is to replace the parts (which only they can do) at a cost to the consumer of $500.

- Hattiesburg, MS, USA

problem #66

Oct 012010


  • 95,000 miles
Speedometer inop.

- Mishawaka, IN, USA

problem #65

Jan 202011


  • 99,450 miles


My speedometer and temp guage are spun all the way around showing that my car is always going 150 mph and its running at 500 degrees.

- Orient, OH, USA

problem #64

Aug 142010


  • 50,000 miles
I own a 2005 Chevy Cavalier I am the first owner. The car had 50,000 miles on it when all the gauges on the dash board stopped working. The problem started with the gas gauge then finally all gauges stopped working.

- Chapel Hill, NC, USA

problem #63

Oct 102010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 18,234 miles
I have a 2005 Chevy Cavalier ls the instrument cluster has gone wacky all the gauges are to the right and you cannot tell what speed you are going, how much gas you have, what the temp is. Only have 19,000 miles on the thing and the list of complaints I see regarding this problem, I think GM should issue a recall.

- Dayton, OH, USA

problem #62

Dec 192010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 80,000 miles
I have a 2005 Cavalier with a faulty gauge instrument panel (cluster), faulty speedo and temp gauge. I hear this is a very common problem with GM clusters. Where is the recall??its only 5 yrs old. The speedo needle goes all the way past the #S and rests at my mileage #S. my temp gauge goes past all the #S.

- Clarksville, TN, USA

problem #61

Aug 012010


  • 35,000 miles
At highway speeds, the speedometer needle on our 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier fluctuates wildly and is unreadable. Reducing speed greatly or changing rate of acceleration/deceleration will correct the problem temporarily, but it recurs every time the car passes 55 miles per hour.

- West Orange, NJ, USA

problem #60

Jan 012010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 78,500 miles
I drive a 2005 Chevy Cavalier and on very hot or cold days, or when I drive longer than usual distances (over 30 miles), the speedometer often malfunctions, either by getting stuck reading over 110 mph, even when stopped, or by reading under zero, even when I'm moving. And lately the temp gauge has started doing this as well, alerting to me overheating on cold days even though the engine is not overheating and the check engine light never comes on. It's frustrating and frightening and unsafe.

- Martinez, CA, USA

problem #59

Mar 162010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 65,720 miles
When cold outside the temperature gauge will read inaccurate temperatures and gauge is stuck to far left and does not budge. A week later the gas gauge also gave out. Do not know how much gas in tank! was driving across the state on a vacation trip and was using cruise control. Once taken off cruise control the speedometer is stuck at 65mph and will not change. Very dangerous. Going on long distance trips and not knowing how much gas, my speed or the temperature of the internal system is scary indeed.

- Round Rock, TX, USA

problem #58

Dec 012010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 115,000 miles
Last night I was driving home in the dark and the speedometer was not correctly working. (this has happened many times since I bought the car several months ago) the speedometer will work sometimes, then will read erratic, fluctuates from 10 mph to 120 mph whether the car is parked or driving. This has been happening a lot over the past few months. I just bought the car a few months ago. The dealership recommends a new gauge cluster @ $500+. this is a common problem with the 2005 Chevy Cavalier and other year models as well. I got on the internet and saw many entries about the same problem, same brand, same model. GM should recall this and fix it. I and others are forced to drive in an unsafe condition. I am retired and cannot afford the part nor afford to trade the car in. Please help me and others who have no place to turn, thanks.

- Williamson, GA, USA

problem #57

Oct 202010

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • 93,000 miles
The speedometer in the 2003-2005 Chevrolet Cavalier is likely defective among many cars. Recently, when my speedometer in my 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier stopped working at 93000 miles, it prompted me to do a search on google to see if anyone else had a similar problem. I bought the car with 72000 miles on it out of warranty and I soon realized (maybe in 2000-3000 miles) that the speedometer was around 5mph fast. I was able to test this using speed check signs posted by police and by using my gps unit. At the moment, my particular speedometer works when the weather is warm (not too cold, not too hot), but many other's don't work at all, or this happened before theirs stopped working completely. It appears that many others with many different years of the car have experienced the same problem. (by many others, I found at least 30-40 complaints among the years the Cavalier new style of Cavalier has been built (2002-2005) the average cost to fix this problem is $800, according to, which is more than 20% of the assessed value of my car. As I am sure you are aware, the speedometer is an integral part of a car's suite of safety features. Not only does it contribute to the safety of the drive and his or her passengers, it also contributes to the safety of the highway system as a whole. Please consider investigating this issue as many others have experienced it.

- Reston, VA, USA

problem #56

Dec 112010


  • 55,000 miles
I have a 2005, Cavalier and I have the same complaint as every one else my gauges are going hay wire.1st started at 62,000 miles the RPM started messing up 2nd the speed gauge was next acting as if it didn't wont to move. 3rd now at 89,000 miles the temp gauge is saying its hot when its not look under hood I see no heat coming from engine, check the coolant not steam.I am pissed and tired of this car.all three gauges that I mention are taking turns going up and down. From the start when I brought this car it had electrical problems when I brought this car it had 8 miles and mine you this is my 2nd Chevrolet Cavalier of the last model and it had electrical problems. So GM swallow ur pride and fix these cars I don't have 500~800 to fix some thing that should be recalled on your behalf. This is an issue.

- Richmond, VA, USA

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