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Chevrolet Cavalier



  • My daughter has a '97 Cavalier RS Coupe.
    The Cavalier has a 2.2L engine with a 5-speed manual tranny.

    She was driving and then all of a sudden, she hear a small pop and the engine cut off and will not restart. I checked for a spark and it's good. Not sure what to check next as I am not familiar with fuel injection.

    Can anyone recommend how I should proceed.

    Thank you,

  • gonogogonogo Posts: 879
    Turn the key on run,do you hear the fuel pump for 2 seconds?
    If not need to find out why the pump is not working. Most likely pump but need to check out power to pump.To replace pump need to drop tank.
  • I tried as recommended and believe I do hear the fuel pump working. So, I tried spraying some starting fluid into the throttle. No change.

    I just returned from to my local Murrays Auto and rented a diagnostic tester. I got a code...

    P03042: camshaft position sensor A- bank 1 circuit low.

    Does anyone know what this means?

    I'm thinking that it might be the timing chain.


  • gonogogonogo Posts: 879
    The camshaft code means nothing as far as starting goes. The computer just reverts to non- sequential instead of sequential opening of the injectors. Remove the valve cover and see if the valves are moving.
    Spark, fuel, not much else left.
  • I removed the valve cover and had the wife crank the enginea I looked a the valves. I saw no movement of the valves. We tried this three time and nothing. I guess it's safe to asume that it's the timing chain.

    Am I correct?

    Thank you for all your help.

  • gonogogonogo Posts: 879
    Yes, you are correct. Most likely you have bent some valves. The 2.2 of that era is known to leak coolant at both ends on the exhaust side, greenish white stain.
    The head removal is not that hard on that year, actually lot easier access than the front cover for chain replace. If you decide to remove the head to check the valves and replace the head gasket I can give you some tips to make the job a lot easier.
  • had the same problem with my 88. turned out to be the transmission overdrive sensor(TSS sensor, or something like that). mine is located inside the tranny, so i unplugged the lead & the car ran fine, although i no longer had overdrive, so i didn't get the same gas mileage. it's an easy check, if you can figure out which wire to unplug...
  • arrparrp Posts: 1
    I've got a 2000 cavalier 2.2L Auto with a really frustrating problem: I can only drive the car with a full tank of gas! When I used up around 4-5 gallons it starts stalling on me. The only way to keep on driving then is by constantly working the gas pedal, accelerating-slowing down-then accelarate again. If not the car will stall and the only way to get it going again is to pull up at the gas pump and fill it up to full again (4-5 gallons).

    Fuel filter is new/ No check engine light on. What to do???
  • gonogogonogo Posts: 879
    There was an issue with the 2000 in tank fuel filter, too fine and would plug. Did yours ever get the new filter?
    Strainer P/N 88891094, tank needs to be dropped to be installed.
  • I've just had to replace the front brake pads on my 2004 Cavalier at 54,000kms (approx 33,554 miles). Does anybody know the normal life span of the rear brake shoes on a late model Cavalier? (I used to hear the rule of thumb is that the shoes on the rear normally last about twice as long as the pads on the front discs.)
  • donr2donr2 Posts: 1
    I have a 84 cavalier I have done the timing chain, head gasket and emissions to include TSP and MAP sensor. car heats up after 15 minutes of running (exhaust turning cherry red) there is no catalatic converter on it so that is not the problem. if any one can help i would be greatly appreciated... :confuse:
  • I bought my car in December, it had just 21,000 miles on it. It drove great for the first month and then started vibrating. I took it to GM and they said I had an exhaust leak. A week later I broke down on side of freeway because my flywheel had busted because when my car was put together at the plant they used a bent pin to put my trans. in. Anyway I got all that fixed and now my oil light keeps blinking and the Trac light comes on at the same time. My oil is fine, was just wondering if it was just a computer problem or what? My engine also seems to rev up when I am stopped at a light too, does not show up on RPM's but I can feel it. Any help would be appreciated. :lemon:
  • I have about 33,000 miles on my 2004 Cavalier and except for a heater fan swich and front brake pads, it's been perfect.
  • I have a 2 door 97 Chevy Cavalier. I am starting to have all sorts of problems with it. I purchased the car in 99, and shortly after had to have the ignition lock cylinder replaced. I subsequently had to have it replaced 2 times after that at $300 a pop. The ignition would lock & not allow you to turn it to start the car. I wrote GM several times about this problem, but they refused to help me out. My husband & I affectionately call it the "CRAPOLIER"!!!! I can honestly say I will never buy another one again. If we could afford a new car right now, I'd drive it off a cliff.

    The more recent problems are noted below:

    Trunk leaks when it rains-pool of water sitting where spare tire is.

    Passenger side seat broke & will not slide backwards. This happened when we were trying to get something out of the backseat & slid it forward. It would not go back. Now the seat is unusable, unless you are a size 1 & want to eat the air bag if it goes off.

    The oil light goes on & off everytime you hit the breaks, even though the oil has just been changed.

    The car runs hot, even in the middle of winter.

    The alternator has been replaced once.

    The CV joints are going bad.

    The dash has started crasking in a million pieces.

    Last but not least, the ac quit working on the lowest setting, and then quit working all together about 3 weeks ago. Lets see how much that is going to cost me to get fixed this weekend???????
  • alternatoralternator IndianaPosts: 629
    How many miles were on that 97 Cav when you bought it? How well was it maintained by the previous owner? Maybe some of your problems are not inherently GM's fault? I'm now on my sixth straight Cav and have never had even one of the problems that you mention. Please don't burn me, I'm just offering my opinion.
  • deborahjdeborahj Posts: 1
    My mother has a 2000 Chevy with less than 25,000 miles. The gasket broke and the whole unit needs to be replaced at a cost of nearly $2,000. Called GM and they offered to pay half. My google searches indicate they have a lot of problems similiar to this. I've decided to not accept their offer and instead take them to court (special civil part)--where you can sue up to $10,000. Does anyone have any advice where I can get backup information against them regarding what appears to be a chronic problem?
  • brew8194brew8194 Posts: 1
    how do i remove the stereo???? where exactly are all the bolts at? :mad:
  • alf253alf253 Posts: 7
    I am having the same problem right side poping noise. They told me i need structs. I don't know i get the run around at my dealership alot. I only have 45 thousand miles on it, i got it new too.
  • halscahalsca Posts: 15
    I have a 2004 Cavilier with 39 thousand miles on it. Struts are shot, dealer claims "ride hight is normal and they don't leak so they are OK". Uneven tire wear says different. Said I need alignment but I KNOW it's OK because I had it done at a place I can trust.

    Bought car as prior rental so have extended warranty, 3 years 36 thousand miles beyond factory. So far it's been a CROCK every problem I presented to the dealer they claim is "not under warranty".

    Prior problems include metal spring poking through back of driver's seat, major water leaks in trunk. Fixed leak in trunk myself had driver's seat done at upolstery shop.

    Either find a good mechanic or buy the 150 dollar shop manual start doing it yourself. Most dealers will run you around if they can get away with it. :mad:
  • halscahalsca Posts: 15
    Have a 2004 Cavalier coupe, noticed that after driving in the rain the right side of the trunk compartment is all wet. Pulled up the carpet found not only water but mud and silt, pretty much a no brainer water coming through wheel well.

    Found a plastic and rubber air vent contraption in the corner, easy to tell this was source of leak. Removed it and took to dealer who told me they'll gladly order up this way over priced item and also it's NOT covered by the extended warranty plan.

    OK I used some silicone RTV sealer to glue the thing shut also applied some of the stuff to the foam seal around the edges of the thing and replaced it. Water leak is gone.

    Now I've been told this valve is needed to provide proper air flow to the trunk area. Why? Is it because of problems with condensation?

    Is this valve nessesary to prevent a build up of air pressure making it easier to close the doors and trunk? What about to prevent a build up of trapped air pressure from blowing out a window on a hot day when the car is parked in the hot sun with the windows closed?

    Why did the big brains at General Motors install this thing if it's not needed? :confuse:
  • ok this is what you do first off your going to need to undo the dash, take off the panels on both sides of the door i think you need a special scree drive a hexkey or somethign not sure of the name they have another one under the dash thats hard to get to undo do all those first then pop it up the top dash then pull the front one out. now there is a wire on some of them that is connect to the door chime i cant remember how i did it but make sure your electrical units work after you hook all the wires up any other questions let me know
  • alternatoralternator IndianaPosts: 629
    You might want to check this out :

    Go to

    Click on "Library" (left side of page)

    Scroll down to "Interior Enhancements"

    Click on "2000+ Aftermarket Stereo Install"
  • alf253alf253 Posts: 7
    I have had the same problem with my struts. And the drivers side spring is poking out as well. Dealership says its normal. My passengener side door can not be opened with a key and the lock does not open by hand. I brought this up with the dealership when I had 32000 miles on it. And they suggested WD 40 as the way to fix it. They claimed that the passenger side door does that because it is not used as much as drivers side. My warranty is up now, because the dealership likes to wait until that happens. And I contacted Gm and they said that I would have to pay to take it to another dealership and then they would evulate my situtation. I am now going to complain to Gm with letters and emails till I get some response. I think everyone that has GM problems needs to get together on this 2003-2006 cars should not need this kind of work!!
  • halscahalsca Posts: 15
    Getting into the door is not a problem, I'd try the WD-40 and see what happens. You might have to remove the door panel but that's no big deal.

    Problem is that GM uses cheap parts. My brakes were noisy, pops, and clicks were annoying. Replaced them with better components I picked up at Pep Boys fixed the problem Replaced the struts too bought Monroes and got a 90 dollar rebate. The car is pretty simple to work on. Bottom line dealers will try and screw you if you don't do the work yourself find a good mechanic try the auto club, they're usually preetty good at stuff like that.
  • wirkinmanwirkinman Posts: 12
    Anyone have a better way of removing the crankshaft bolt?
    I am replacing the timing chain and can't get the bolt off.
    I don't have a impact/compressor.
    I'm using hand tool.


  • Hi. I have a 2004 Cavalier LS with ABS. The car currently has about 19,000 miles on it. About a thousand miles ago, the brakes started a light squeal that seems to be indicative that I need new brake pads. The stopping power seems to be very slightly reduced, but not by much. Does this mean I already need new brake pads?

  • the car was running tell it was turned off than it wont run no moor it backfires smoke out the carb at times and backfires inside it sounds like its shooting down a tunnel i checked timing chain its ok i got gas i have spark but i have spark it seems like every time a valve opens lots of spark spark spark not spark-------------spark is there some ignition mod i dont know anything a bout these computer cars no distributor i'm lost hope some one can help wed like to get it back on the road 105,000 miles and still gets 35 mpg beats my truck 75,000 and 17mpg but 17mpg empty or loaded
  • robstromrobstrom Posts: 1
    I've had my Cavalier (1998 , 2.2 , 2dr , manual trans) for about 6 months now. Last week I started getting a clicking noise near the left front of the car. Sounds almost like a baseball card in the spokes of a bycicle kind of noise. The noise goes away when I accelerate and returns when I take my foot of the gas. When I stop the car and rev it in neutral I get no clicking. When I downshift I still get the noise as long as i'm not giving it any gas. I think it may be the transaxle but maybe the half shaft, that I might be able to repair, but not the transaxle. Thanks
  • halscahalsca Posts: 15
    Sounds like a CV joint. If you decide to get into it I'd replace both shafts, when one starts to go the other is soon to follow.
  • devil3devil3 Posts: 1
    I have a 96 Cavalier and have a constant vibration that can be felt on both the drivers side and passengers side floor. I have replaced both hub and bearings, brakes and routers on both sides. This does not seem to help. It is front wheel drive and when I hit a bump ( railroad crossings, pot holes) it feels like I am losing control of the car. I have been told it might be my cv joint. Is there any way of telling if this is the problem or not? The vibration is there no matter how slow or fast I go. Also I don't really hear any noise.
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