2000 CHEVROLET CAVALIER DAYTIME RUNNING LIGHTS

  • Tiny
  • abbysmom18
  • 2000 Chevrolet Cavalier

Electrical problem
2000 Chevrolet Cavalier 4 cylinder, Automatic 96,000 miles

Hi, I have a 2000 Cavalier, the daytime running lights are not working. When I start the car and put it in gear, the DRL light on the dash comes on and starts flashing and I hear a clicking noise and the headlights flicker off and on. When I turn the switch to headlights, the flashing stops, but my headlights do not turn on. The high-beams work no problem and so do the turn signals, brakes and parking lights. I was trying to replace the DRL sensor, but the one I got from GM does not look like the one that is in there. Any ideas?

Thursday, February 14th, 2008 AT 10:54 AM

7 Answers

  • Tiny
  • brian.c.olsen
  • Member

Well, believe it or not, there is a pin-out connector under the battery box (located in the front on the driver's side) that may be corroded. It is attached to the underside, and it is not easy to see without a mirror. If there is corrosion on the battery box, this connector is probably corroded as well.

To me, this is a major safety issue, because all of your lights come into this harness/connector and could go out at any time while driving down the road.

I have a 2002 Cavalier, and I was experiencing the exact same problem with the flickering (when started), non-functional DRL, but my high-beams were not working, while my regular lights did. This was also accompanied by a 'Service' light on the dash. The reason for the DRL going out first, is that the DRL ground wire is the closest to the post-side of the battery, where the acid leaks from. No ground = no lights! Your regular headlights going out along with it is because, for your car (being a 2000), the DRL are run on the regular headlights. Mine, being a 2002, were run on the high-beams.

Now for The Fix:
1. Check the battery box (under the battery) for corrosion. Chances are, it is corroded, batteries leak, it is what they do.

2. Take a small mirror on a stick, and look underneath the battery for the wires running into a black blob. That used to be your front-end light connector/harness (now corroded). If it is intact, stop here.

3. Remove headlight assembly (optional for more work space).

4. Remove Battery and Air Box.

5. Get the connector/harness from under the battery box.

6. Get enough wire for 13-wires in total. 11- 18 gauge wires, and 2- 16 gauge wires (for the main positive and ground). Each wire should be similar in length and about 8"-12" long (so you can avoid putting the wires back under the battery box where they could get damaged again). Color coding is optional, but they are handy if you do not want to get lost.

7. Clip, strip, and connect (I used solder-less connectors) each wire individually if you can to avoid getting them mixed-up. (NOTE: You do not need the connector/harness, and I am really not sure why they even put it in there, but it is the source of the problem as it is easily corroded).

8. Make sure your connections are sealed well and wrap them up/bind them together with electrical tape for extra protection. Snake tubing, although optional, will also help avoid any future problems. Plus, it looks cool.

9. Put everything back where it should be.

...and before you know it, it's as good as new!

As an after-thought (to everyone else who reads this):
If it is just your high-beams, low-beams, or DRL that are out (just one), start with the DRL module (in the fuse box). If that is not it, and it is not the DRL, try the multi-function switch (the thing attached to the left of your steering wheel, the headlight switch/cruise control switch). If that's not it, it's probably the problem I have just gone over.


http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/198642_IMG_1150_1.jpg



http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/198642_IMG_1151_1.jpg



http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/198642_IMG_1153_1.jpg



http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/198642_IMG_1154_1.jpg



http://www.2carpros.com/forum/automotive_pictures/198642_IMG_1158_1.jpg

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Saturday, June 7th, 2008 AT 12:44 AM
  • Tiny
  • sstephenson4
  • Member

I have a 2000 cavalier that was doing the same thing. When I put the car in gear the DRL symbol well flash for about eight seconds along with that comes a clicking noise from the DRL relay in the fuse box in side the car. My low beams work fine, but my high beams do not work at all. I replaced the DRL relay (big waste of money) still had the same problem. I cleaned and checked all the grounds and still had the problem. I replaced the head light bulbs ( twice) still had the problem. Then I found this website with this great guy who had the same problem. I followed what he said to do and with no problem my lights works perfect. It was a time consuming process but it is definitely the best fix for this problem. This is a well known problem with Cavaliers and Chevrolet says it is not a defect and does not require a recall. I am here to tell you that is the biggest load I have ever heard. Why the would anyone ever put the wiring harness under the battery and washer fluid fill? They do not want to recall it because it is a $900.00 part plus labor. So I just want to say to all you Cavalier owners with this problem follow this guys directions and your problem well be fixed in no time. Thank you thank you for the help.

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Wednesday, February 25th, 2009 AT 5:16 PM
  • Tiny
  • nerdsanctuary
  • Member

I used the fix described above to replace the corroded connector on my 2000 Cavalier, and it worked great! Fixed the problem completely. I used a slightly heavier gauge of wire for all of them, so I did not use solder-less connectors, but the old-fashioned twist and tape method worked just fine.

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Sunday, January 24th, 2010 AT 5:33 PM
  • Tiny
  • trudymac
  • Member

So glad that someone posted about this issue. I too have a 2000 Chevy Cavalier that suddenly started having DRL problems. Same as mentioned above. I put the car in gear, DRL symbol starts flashing and "clicking" profusely and the service light comes on, DRL symbol goes out and no lights. Also, no low beam lights.
Taking the car to the garage this evening with this information.
Again, thanks for posting!

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Monday, July 11th, 2011 AT 9:06 PM
  • Tiny
  • Stormray
  • Member

Hey all.

Really hope someone can help me out here. I am having the same problem as the original post and nothing I do to remedy the problem seems to fix anything.

It is not the bulbs, fuses, relay, multi-function switch, grounds or the nine pin connector. I have been almost a year and a half into having no low beams, and I am sick and tired of people flashing their lights at me at night and blinding me out of sheer ignorance to my problem.

My lights used to flash when I locked my car with the remote, and now they do not even do that anyone.

Is there anything else it can be? I just cannot believe that I have had to go through all of this pain and self diagnosis just to find nothing wrong with anything. I cannot afford to have some shop over-charge me for a possible twenty minute fix either.

Please, someone, help. My email is adparker80 at hotmail. Com if for some reason I do not get a notification of a reply.

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Monday, April 2nd, 2012 AT 8:07 PM
  • Tiny
  • jking724
  • Member

Hey I have a 2002 cavalier and I have done so much work to it and I started getting the same kind of problems with lights. If you have power windows underneath the center console switches in my car there is a wire that should be on a connector with one screw. See if that connection is broken, mine was and every time it grounded out you can hear the relay and lights go crazy. That was a problem that drained my battery if I left it without starting it for twenty four hours. If you have any more questions hit me up and I can give you as much information as I can. Hope this helps.

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Monday, December 14th, 2015 AT 9:26 AM
  • Tiny
  • dmmackay
  • Member

I have bulbs, as the low beams and DRL, did not work- that did not solve the problem.
I also saw a video on YouTube about this and you are right it is corroded at the connector under the battery.
Mine is a 2000 cavalier and I would not say the connector is under the battery tray, but more along the side of it, also the connector box looks different more round, but there is a hole in the connector box.

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Friday, April 8th, 2016 AT 12:39 PM

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