Simple Guide to the Lights on Your Dashboard

The dashboard of your car is host to all sorts of displays, lights, and information. Do you know what they all are and what they mean? If not, no need to worry. In today’s Simple Guide, we’ll be taking a look at the lights on your dashboard and what they mean. Remember, if you see any of these lights illuminate on your dashboard, get your car checked out by a mechanic as soon as possible. The simplest way to save money on your car maintenance is by booking your appointment through CarAdvise!


Oil Pressure Light

check engine light

This oil can image represents your oil pressure light. It lights up whenever there is an issue with your vehicle’s oil pressure system. Oftentimes, this means that your engine is low on oil and you need to replenish it. A simple problem with a simple solution, but one that should be addressed as soon as possible to ensure you’re driving with enough lubrication.


Check Engine Light

check engine light

The check engine light is one that most drivers are familiar with and is a source of anxiety for some. There are a variety of reasons why a check engine light might turn on, depending on the check engine code that is read by the mechanic when you take it in. The most important thing to remember is to get your car to a mechanic or shop as soon as you can when it turns on. In some cases, the check engine light may flash, indicating that you should cease driving immediately to prevent further damage.


Engine Temperature Warning

check engine light

When the engine temperature warning light is displayed, it indicates that your engine is overheating. If you see this light come on, try to pull over someplace away from the road and turn the engine off for a few minutes to let it cool off. There are several different reasons why your engine is overheating, but one of the most common reasons may be that you are low on coolant. If you are able to, check to see what your coolant level is and add more if needed to address the overheating issue.


Tire Pressure Warning

check engine light

The tire pressure warning light, also known as the TPMS symbol, will light up when you have improper air pressure in one or multiple tires. It could mean that you have too much air pressure or too little. Whatever the case may be, driving with the wrong tire pressure is unsafe and can cause damage to your vehicle, so it’s important to get your tires checked and fixed at a local shop as soon as you notice this light turns on.


ABS Warning

check engine light

ABS stands for anti-lock braking system and it is the system in your car that prevents your wheels from locking up while braking. When your ABS light turns on, it means that there is a problem with the ABS. You will need to get your vehicle to a mechanic or car care professional immediately so that they can diagnose and solve the issue. ABS is extremely important in safe driving, especially in emergency situations, so you won’t want to delay getting this checked out.


Traction Control Indicator

check engine light

You may see this light activate while you’re driving in the rain or snow. When this light is on, it indicates that your car’s traction control system is active, which includes your ABS. This occurs when one of your wheels starts to slip during inclement weather conditions. It applies the brakes to the slipping wheel until it regains traction. A very useful and helpful tool when driving in rain or snow.


Low Fuel Indicator

check engine light

This is an indicator that almost everyone knows. When this light turns on, it means that you’re running out of fuel! It varies depending on your car’s make, model, and manufacturer, but when the low fuel indicator is on you typically have enough fuel to drive 30-50 more miles. That should be just enough to get you to the nearest gas station and fill up.


Battery Alert

check engine light

This light will come on when your car is facing a charging issue. This does not always have to do with the battery, but may indicate an issue with the starter, alternator, or battery cable. Whatever the case may be, your car will need to be looked at by a professional right away to avoid the charging issue from getting worse and making your car non-functional. Get to a car care professional right away to get your car checked out and your electrical issues resolved.


Washer Fluid Indicator

check engine light

This indicator will come on when you are running low on washer fluid. There are many times when you’ll want washer fluid to compliment your windshield wipers, so be sure to get your washer fluid refilled when you see this light come one.


Fog Lamp Indicator

check engine light

This light will light up whenever your fog lamps are in use. You may have turned these on accidentally, so this light will remind you to turn them back off. If you are intentionally using your fog lamps, make sure that you are only using them in low visibility conditions as they could be a nuisance for other drivers otherwise.


That wraps up our Simple Guide to the lights on your dashboard. Remember that each car is different, so you may not have all of these lights on your dashboard or perhaps have even a few more we did not mention.

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