Car Dashboard Warning Signs & What Do They Mean?

Common Car Dashboard Warning Signs and What Do They Mean?





Dashboard symbols are an essential part of the cabin in auto maintenance. It gives crucial information to the driver, such as the vehicle’s speed, gear position, fuel level, RPM (Revolutions Per Minute), engine temperature, total distance covered, etc. and, more importantly, helps you to get it fixed in time. Apart from these parameters, the dashboard displays several other symbols that light up to indicate a particular function or warn the driver of any malfunction.

You may be familiar with some symbols as you see them daily; on the other hand, some warning signs may be advanced, and you hardly or do not see them at all. Understanding car dashboard signs is important to identify any malfunctions in the car. With adequate knowledge of car dashboard lights, you can avoid potential car damage or fatal car accident if you fail to understand the car dashboard warning signs. This guide will help you understand the meanings of common car symbols to make sense of those things that don’t seem relevant to you!

Car Light Colour Codes – What Do They Mean?


Red light: A red light may indicate a problem that needs to be addressed immediately. Or it could also be a safety reminder.


Yellow/Orange Light: This colour indicates a component that needs to be repaired.


Green/Blue Symbol Lighting: This sign lights up to tell you that a feature of the vehicle is working.


Flashing Warning Lights: This light notifies you should check the component for repair or servicing.


Note: The colour and icon of this indicator vary depending on the manufacturer.


1.1 Check Engine Light (MIL-Malfunction Indicator Lamp)


If this warning flashes, it is essential to have your automobile evaluated, even if everything appears to be in perfect working order. This is because it alerts you to a potential engine problem, which you will want to prevent at all costs.

This light can appear for various reasons, so while it is likely just a bad sensor or other minor problems, a correct diagnosis is essential to avoid further damage.


1.2 Engine Coolant Temperature Light


The red thermometer on the engine temperature light shows that the engine is overheating when it is lit. If the engine coolant temperature light is on and your car engine temperature is too high, you should stop driving it immediately. Turn on your hazard lights, turn off the engine and let it cool down for at least 45-mins before driving it to the nearest service centre. A damaged water pump, a clogged thermostat, a leak in the radiator or one of the coolant hoses, or a cracked head gasket are just some of the problems that can cause an engine to overheat.

Suppose you have doubts about whether your car is overheating due to low coolant levels. In that case, you should always consult a professional mechanic who can diagnose the problem correctly and recommend a suitable solution.


1.3. Tire-Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) Light


The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) aims to alert drivers when tire pressure drops to a dangerous level. The TPMS light will turn on when the vehicle’s tyre pressure is low, and the driver must instantly take action to avoid a loss of control or a crash.


If the TPMS light is illuminated, your vehicle’s tires are likely under-inflated. Driving with underinflated tires can lead to uneven tire wear and failure. You mustn’t ignore the TPMS light if it is illuminated. Under-inflated tires can create poor driving conditions, putting you and your passengers at risk of injury or death. Talking about solutions, Treel by JK is a TPMS sensor that offers advanced wireless tyre sensors with an app. Enhance the safety and performance of your vehicle with Treel TPMS Sensor to prevent tire-related breakdowns, and tyre bursting safety and save on fuel. It is used as an indicator that indicates something is wrong with your tires.


Note: A puncture, a faulty tire pressure sensor, and seasonal temperature variations, which can cause the tire to reduce pressure gradually, are all common reasons for this light to light up.


1.4. Battery Alert Warning Light


The battery light indicator is designed to warn drivers about the charge capacity of their batteries. Common causes of the battery light warning include a bad battery, bad alternator, bad alternator belt, corroded battery terminals, loose battery cable, bad battery cable, bad ground strap, faulty wiring, and too many accessories in use. This is considered one of the major issues with vehicles today since electronics power most. Therefore, batteries are essential for your vehicle to run smoothly. Even if your car’s battery light is on, the vehicle may still run for a while. However, if the alternator is bad, it will eventually use up all the power, and the battery will die. Most cars nowadays rely on smart devices with lots of code.

If your car is running, you don’t have to worry about causing more damage by driving while the battery light is illuminated. But you should figure out if your battery is bad or your alternator is terrible as soon as possible to avoid being stranded later.


1.5. Service Engine Soon Light


There is sometimes a difference between the Service Engine Soon light and the Check Engine light on your automobile’s dashboard. It primarily illuminates to indicate routine engine maintenance, while the latter may come on for several reasons, including failed 02 sensors. Changing your oil should clear the Service Engine Soon light. So the severity is typically minor. To avoid any issues, change your car oil according to the schedule in your Owner’s Manual. 


To avoid all the possible glitches, if you wish to enjoy your drives better and become a more informed driver, you need to understand your vehicle’s dashboard. Hopefully, this article will help you better understand some of the standard car warning signs on the dashboard.




Q. Why should you never ignore car dashboard warning lights?

Ans: It’s important to pay attention to car dashboard warning lights, as they can indicate a severe problem with your vehicle. If you ignore them, you could end up stranded on the side of the road or worse. So, if you see a warning light, pull over and check it out as soon as possible.


Q. How can I reset the dashboard warning lights?

Ans: It depends on the type of warning light. Generally, the warning signs reset themselves once the issue is resolved. The service centre can reset some warning signs by resetting the vehicle’s Electronic Control Unit (ECU).


Q. Is it OK to drive with the TPMS light on?

  1. Ans: No. It is not safe to drive with your TPMS light illuminated. Without getting your tire inspected, there’s no way of knowing how quickly air is leaving your tire or how long it has been over or underinflated. The best course of action is to use a TPMS sensor to check the current inflation level of each tire. It is the best tyre care option that one may choose from.