So, you’ve just gotten into your car and started it. Everything seems normal, until a new sign appears on your dashboard. More often than not, it’s not too serious. These signs typically indicate that there’s either something wrong with your car, or a feature you should be aware of.
Regardless of which one it is, you should know what it indicates to stay on top of potential issues. While the signs depend on what car you drive, they mostly have a universal design. Still, it doesn’t hurt to peruse through the owner’s manual so you’re aware of what each sign means.
To help get you started, we’ve created this guide for some of the most common car warning signs to look out for.
How do you check car warning lights?
Usually, you’d be aware of a warning sign when your car has a problem. However, if you want to check how all your lights look and function, it’s straightforward. You can start by turning your car on. If your vehicle has a key start, you can access the ‘on’ mode.
To do this, you insert the key into the ignition. However, instead of twisting to the ‘start’ position (two steps clockwise), you stop at the ‘on’ position (one step clockwise). Once you’ve accessed the ‘on’ mode, you can see most, or all, the dashboard signs illuminate.
Different cars have different methods of accessing this mode. Especially if your vehicle has a push-to-start function, it’s advisable to consult the owner’s manual. We recommend you carry out this check-in a dimly lit atmosphere as a bonus tip. It’ll be a lot easier to see the signs properly.
What do yellow signs on your dashboard indicate?
As we mentioned earlier, the colour convention has a universal value, at least for the red and yellow signs. Red signs typically indicate an almost fatal issue with your car. If you see any of these signs, it’s best to avoid driving your vehicle at most costs.
A yellow sign indicates an issue that would need to be serviced shortly. You can note such signs and inform your garage or mechanic when your car is in for a service. There are other colours used too, such as green and blue. They typically indicate a particular feature of your vehicle is being used.
What are the most common dashboard warning lights?
The Oil Pressure Alert
This alert indicates that your engine oil levels are low. It could also signal an issue with your oil pressure system.
The Anti-Lock Brake System (ABS) Alert
Anti-lock brakes are essential since they prevent your car from skidding every time you brake. This alert indicates that your ABS isn’t functioning properly, putting you at risk of skidding.
The Check Engine Alert
Since your engine is an intricate module with many moving parts, this alert could indicate an issue with just about anything. It could be anything from a problem with your oxygen sensor, to an unfastened fuel cap.
The Adaptive Headlights Alert
This alert indicates that there’s an issue with your adaptive headlights system. It’s not a significant concern since your headlights should work fine. The adaptive aspect is only used to ensure your headlights swivel towards the same direction your car is turning to.
The Washer Fluid Alert
This one’s a lot easier to understand than the others. It simply means you need to refill your washer fluid.
The Tyre Pressure Alert
While this alert may be a little challenging to identify at first, it’s self-explanatory. This indicates that some of your tyres may not have proper air pressure in them. It’s best to get your tyre pressure checked, and filled appropriately, if you see this sign.
The Traction Control Alert
This could mean one of two things: one, either your traction control is turned off, or two, your car will not stay stable when you make turns.
While both of them result in the same thing, only one of them is in your control. If your traction control is still on, then it’s advisable to go to the nearest garage and get this issue fixed.
The Low Fuel Alert
This is another simple one. Your fuel is too low, and you need to get it filled ASAP.
The Engine Temperature Warning
This warning is indicative of your engine overheating. If this light is on, it’s best to avoid driving your car without checking if it has cooled down first. If the light persists, it’s advisable to get it checked immediately.
The Battery Warning
This red alert typically indicates that there’s something wrong with your charging system. It may momentarily light up when you start your car, but if it remains, and your vehicle doesn’t start, it could be a problem.
What to do if you see any of these signs?
Whether it’s one of the more innocuous ones or one of the fatal ones, these signs have to be taken seriously. In this case, it’s crucial to have a trusted garage that’s easily accessible.
However, modern problems call for modern solutions. This is where a comprehensive car maintenance solution like ServiceMyCar comes in. The expansive service network gives you access to the best garages to assist you with all these issues. Make a booking today on the ServiceMyCar app or website to enjoy a safe driving experience.