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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 7 of 7)

« Read the previous 20 complaints

problem #15

Nov 012009


  • 50,100 miles


One by one, the gauges in the instrument cluster failed. As a result, the speedometer, fuel gauge, and tachometer no longer function. Repairs are pending while I determine if my extended warranty will cover it.

- Midland, TX, USA

problem #14

Aug 012009


  • 30,000 miles
At approximately 30,000 miles, our 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier's gas gage, speedometer, and instrument cluster started malfunctioning. After researching the problem, and cost to fix, we decided against repairs, as we don't have $500+ to fix the problem. After researching this on the internet, we have found that many people have complained about the same problem with their 2005 Chevrolet Cavaliers. Our car is a one owner vehicle, so we know the maintenance and care of the car. Chevrolet, to this point, has done nothing for the other owners, who have paid for this repair. Regardless of the fact that our car is no longer under warranty, we should not have to pay for this obvious malfunction.

- Elko, NV, USA

problem #13

Aug 152009


  • 48,000 miles
My 2004 Chevrolet Cavalier instrument panel is not working right. So far the gas and the temp gauges have been affected and I am sure the others will soon follow. I have 48000 miles on my car and the five year warranty just ran out. This is a problem that needs to be addressed by GM. From my internet research I have learned that this a common problem on this make of car. Also GM has recalled other car models for the same problem. So why not this one?

- Live Oak , FL, USA

problem #12

Jan 012008


  • miles


I have a 2005 Chevy Cavalier that has never been modified in any way and about a year and a half ago, I noticed that the instrument panel was acting faulty. I checked the sensors and lines in the engine, towards the steering wheel and everything seems intact. After that, it would act up sometimes and when the engine was turned off, the gauges would stay stuck and when you restart the engine, they would rotate even more further pass their normal idled position. It just got worst and worst. Now it's not even working. I can't really tell when I am low on gas until my gas checklight comes on nor can I tell how fast I am driving. That's my worst concern. My temp gauge sometimes works and sometimes not. Speedometer and RPM don't work at all. This is faulty and think that Chevy should either have it recalled or replace for free. It was bought in having faith in reliability that the car and parts would last a little longer than 4 years, especially interior parts/instruments.

- Westminster , CO, USA

problem #11

May 012009


  • 10,000 miles
When my gauges won't work I punch the dash right behind the steering wheel & voila, they jump to attention. My speedometer does hang up slightly < & the car overheats slightly in heavy traffic. 2 coolant changes in 100,000 miles have had no effect. Dexcool is not good, as it will gel. Recommend draining immediately for all.

- Warwick, NY, USA

problem #10

Dec 242008


  • 53,000 miles
In Dec 2008, temperature gauge starting reading hot but read normal a few days later. It became erratic for about a week then started pointing to the right of hot and kept moving further clockwise until it was in the 6 O'clock position and stayed that way for a couple months. Now (Mar 2009) it is in the 4 O'clock position and prevents the speedometer needle from moving past it. Within a few moments driving, the speedometer needle then drops back to 0 until the car slows below the speed where the temperature needle stopped it. Upon re-accelerating the speedometer needle attempts to operate somewhat normally until it is stopped again by the temperature needle. Then it drops back to 0 after a few moments. Many other people say they eventually experience failure of all gauges in the cluster. A recall needs to be issued before someone gets killed because a driver loses control after loss of power due to a condition that could have been prevented if the gauges worked properly (out of gas, excessive temperature etc.) everyone is encouraged to submit their own complaint at and sign up with to track this issue.

- Sheridan, CA, USA

problem #9

Aug 012008


  • 40,000 miles


Instrument panel speedometer and fuel gauge are inaccurate, gauges stick, flutter and become inoperative and often report false speeds and fuel level. The problem started with occasional erratic behavior, but with each passing week the problem is persistent.

- Pittsburgh, PA, USA

problem #8

Jan 082006


  • 37,000 miles
I want to know is there a recall on my gauges on my 05 Cavalier because what happens if I run out of gas and I have a wreck because my gas gauge don't work and don't know how fast I am going or what the rpms of my engine or the temp of the engine.

- Winder, GA, USA

problem #7

May 092008


  • 50,000 miles
Have 2005 Cavalier with 59,000. Started having problems with speedometer at about 51,000 miles. Speedometer would come to rest anywhere from 30 to 110 when care is not moving. Then it would show 80 or so mph when I was only going around 20 to 25. It is now stopped at pegged all the way over. Then the tack started acting up, it would move all over the gauge. It too is now holding at 1000 RPM even when I am going around 70 mph. Now the fuel gauge is all over the place too. All this within about 10,000 miles. What next, is the temp gauge going to go hay wire"????? I have talked with repair shop and they have told me that Chevrolet has been having this problem with their gauges for around three years, since 2002 model. If this is such a wide spread problem, why hasn't Chevrolet done a recall on the replace of the gauge cluster. Or are they only looking to make a profit from the innocent customers who have the misfortune to have bought a Cavalier. The Chevy dealer told me that they have replace quite a few of these problems. This repair is not cheap, dealership wanted around $600 dollars to fix the problem. I tried putting of the repair since I could almost judge how fast I was going. That was till I got a ticket. Now that the gas gauge is going hay wire, looks like I will have to fork out the money to fix this problem before I run out of gas some where on the highway, or my wife runs out of gas in some bad neighbor. Sure don't want any problems like that. Why doesn't Chevy do a recall since they know about this problem and have know about it for a long long time. Chevrolet is starting to leave a bad taste in my mouth. I am a sixty one year old male and have always drove a Chevy. But maybe, just maybe I might have to change my way of thinking about the Chevy build tuff.??????" get Chevrolet off their rears and lets fix this problem and make your customers happy.

- Pell City, AL, USA

problem #6

Feb 012008


  • miles
Having several problems with cluster. First had problems with the temperature gauge. Sometimes would not budge from cold even after driving 30 miles. Then speedometer completely messed up. Sometimes it would work, but usually it would show that I was driving 110 mph. Finally I just replaced the entire cluster board. Worked properly for one day, but broke again next day. At least the temperature is accurate. But I have to depend on my gps daily to know how fast I'm driving. Occasionally it works properly, but only for a short period of time. And here recently my odometer is going crazy. Actual mileage is accurate, but trip mileage continually resets itself and often appears on its own, without me pushing the button. Sometimes flashes on and off for no reason, even after car has been turned off.

- Knoxville, TN, USA

problem #5

Sep 012008


  • 40,000 miles


Speedometer is no longer working correctly, it now comes to rest anywhere from 30-60 when car is not moving, it does increase as speed increases but does not decrease at the same rate, causing the speedometer to register above the limit of the dial. Horn does not work via the steering wheel, the horn does sound with locking and panic buttons. Dealer informed me that this is not covered under warranty and that there are no recalls for speedometer, and that the cost would be $650 he was able to tell me this without looking up any information, sounds to me like they have replaced quite a few instrument panels recently.

- Myersville, MD, USA

problem #4

Aug 232008


  • 80,300 miles
The tach in the instrument cluster is not displaying the correct engine speed. The engine can be turning 800-900 RPM at idle and the tachometer is showing 0 RPM or below. As engine speed increases, the tach needle does increase normally but the reading is still invalid. This problem seems to be intermittent in frequency which makes the tachometer a very unreliable source of information for the driver.

- Washington, NC, USA

problem #3

Nov 012007


  • 55,000 miles
First the gas gauge went hay-wire, when it's full the gauge could say empty or it could be at about half a tank past full. Then the speedometer went. Usually hangs down at the bottom of the dial. Now the RPM gauge is starting to go. Some times it just keeps going higher and higher, other times it will hardly register anything.

- Ravena, NY, USA

problem #2

Nov 222005

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • 29,000 miles
The contact owns a 2005 Chevrolet Cavalier. The contact stated that the horn sounds intermittently while the vehicle is parked or while opening the trunk. The key must be placed in the ignition in order for the horn to shut off. She stated that the vehicle feels as if it will shut off while driving. In addition, one battery has already been replaced and the passenger side rear window will not roll up once it is down. The vehicle has been to the dealer five times, but the failures persist. The contact filed case number 71-530-566-719 with General Motors. The current mileage was 34,000 and failure mileage was 29,000. Updated 02/01/08.

- Obetz, OH, USA

problem #1

Sep 132006

Cavalier 4-cyl

  • Automatic transmission
  • miles
About a week after buying the car, my break light comes on and my brakes started grinding and the car started to shake, I took the car in and had the brakes replaced and was also told I probably had an electrical problem but they couldn't find out from the diagnostics test. About two weeks later I had to go back with same problem. Now, as in today, 6 months later, the same thing is going on. Now I would like to have an explanation as to why I should be responsible for having to correct this problem again.

- Midlothian, TX, USA

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