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Chevrolet Cavalier Check Engine Light

so i drive a 2000 cavalier and the check engine light has been on ever since i bought it 2 years ago. and i took it to a car place to get it diagnosed and they said there could be a vacuum leak but they never found out where and it is causing me to have very bad gas mileage. so if anyone has had a similar problem to mine i would appreciate your help.


  • well i got my cavalier two years ago and ever since the check engine light has been on. i took it to an auto zone and they said there could be a leak in one of the vacuum lines but i just dont know which one it is. i know it is not the gas lid because i have already replaced it. so if anybody has any suggestions please help me out. thanks.
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    What code # did AutoZone give you, PO XXXX.
  • Hello, I was just wondering if there was an alternate way to check why my "check engine" light is on instead of taking it in to the shop and putting it on they OBDII tool. On my older car, I used to be able to stick 2 paperclips into the plug thing and my engine light would flash the codes at me. Is there any way to do that with the Cavalier? Or do I HAVE to use the OBDII tool?
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    You need at least a code reader for OBD2. Some parts stores will read your codes for free, like AutoZone.
  • These 3 lights are VERY annoying! I have did almost everything that you can do to fix it without replacing any parts because I don't know what to replace! I will explain how this problem started...

    I drove my car for a week after getting the car fixed at Midas (fixed my exhaust system - new converter) and come to find out that for some reason my Brake Fluid Cap was loose/almost off! The reservoir for the brake fluid wasn't empty but it was close!!! I don't know if the ABS Pump is out now or what? I have had my car scanned several times at Checkers for free and nothing shows up! They say the Check Engine Light must be on to have the computer show a code.

    If anyone has a solution for this or anything would help!! I have found a different discussion about this problem with a Grand Am GT but nothing for my car. I have a Cavalier Z24 2.4L

    Please HELP!
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    You need to get the SES code and any other codes, if the light is not on it will show a code in history. I would pay to get good scan from a shop.
  • But the problem never threw a code I have been told by other mechanics too. If you scan it, it is going to show nothing related to this problem!! I was told there is such a thing as a speed sensor for the ABS system or something like that? It might be this because the lights dont light up till I hit about 15 mph or 5000 rpm.
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    You stated the SES light was on, it will put a code in history, the person that told you the light needed to be on is not true. Some codes will even set with no light.
    The ABS coming on above 15 MPH is usually a wheel sensor.
  • I have a 2000 cavalier and have the same problem. It all started when the bottom of my car scraped against some snow and ice. I had it scanned at a dealership and they said the abs computer was not responding. My dad is a mechanic and he can not figure out what is wrong with my car. So if ANYONE can help it would be appreciated!!
  • Ya I have a 2000 as well and this may have something to do with my O2 Sensor behind the Cat. because I know I have to replace that as well because I put in a MIL Eliminator to shut off my check engine light.
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    What ABS code did they find, you paid to get the code.
  • My 05 is doing the same thing and I went to a dealership to have it scanned They were so nice to charge 75.00 to put it up and tell me it would take another 200 to fix it however they didn't tell me what was wrong or what the codes were and when I asked those questions the service man chuckled at me sooo nice. I have found out that it may be the ABS sensor which costs 9.00 to replace yourself
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    I would go back and ask for the code . If they refuse to give it to you tell them you are going to report it to the attorney general in your state.
  • yodanyodan Posts: 1
    I have the same problem with my 2000 Buick Regal. It started about 1 year ago but only when I was driving in the rain. So I thought it was related with some bad wires from the wheel hub assembly. Recently the 3 lights will show up after 5 minutes of driving or so. So I went to a shop, they scanned it, charged me 120$ and told me that my ABS Computer(Control Module) is bad, and they will change it for 900$.
    I said no thanks, and when I asked for the error code he laughed at me and told me that their state-of-the-art-bad-[non-permissible content removed]-scanner is not like the one from Auto Zone, and there is only some generic code which won't mean anything to me.

    After spending some time online I found a lot of things that could cause this:
    wheel hub assembly/bearings, wheel hub assy harness, speed/ABS sensors, low break fluid, ignition control module, loose fuel cap, fuses, and now... ABS control module.
    Where should I start?
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    A good start would be getting the codes you paid for .
  • tedebeartedebear Posts: 832
    I went to a dealership to have it scanned They were so nice to charge 75.00 to put it up and tell me it would take another 200 to fix it however they didn't tell me what was wrong or what the codes were and when I asked those questions the service man chuckled at me sooo nice.

    Don't places like AutoZone run a scan of your car for free? I know they used to but I haven't needed that service for a long time.
  • I have a 2000 cavalier that recently the trac off light comes on noT ABS, yet goes off when I shut the car off, upon putting the car back in drive it seems to engage hard and has the terrible sound from bottom of the car, and then it runs fine. We took the car to different small shops, when they checked no codes came on. Do you think it could be a sensor in the traction system?
  • All the ABS Light, Service Light, and Track off lights come on together. Do you think it could be a sensor in the traction system? Anybody had simliar problem?
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 871
    You have lights so you have codes, take it to some one that has the proper scanner to get codes. The Trac off will come just because of other codes, that has nothing to do with the Trac system it self.
  • ashmarie10ashmarie10 Posts: 1
    I have a 2000 chevy cavalier and my check engine light just came on. I read in the manual that if your gas cap is not on tight it will cause the check engine light to come on. It has happened to me once before and I did get gas today. Anyone have any other solutions in case it doesnt go off? Ash
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