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Dashboard Warning Lights Explained

Dashboard Warning Lights Explained

Car dashboard lights can be a mystery even to the most seasoned of drivers, so don’t worry if you’re feeling a little overwhelmed. In this guide, we’ll be showing you exactly what some of the more common warning lights mean, equipping you with the knowledge to avoid a breakdown before it happens in the future.

The Traffic Light System

The warning lights on your dashboard are governed by a traffic light colour system:

  • Green means that the function in question is working properly
  • Amber means there is something wrong with the function and needs to be looked at
  • Red means there is something seriously wrong with the system or function and could be putting you in danger

Red Warning Lights

red engine warning lights

Airbag warning light. When this light goes on, it means that the airbag system isn’t working and may not go off at all in the event of a collision. There’s also a chance that it could go off unexpectedly and cause a collision, so this is something you should sort immediately.

Power steering warning light also known as the EPS/EPAS warning light. This can often be fixed by simply restarting your car, so try this first before heading to the garage.

Engine temperature warning light. When this light goes red, it means your engine is overheating, something which could indicate you have a coolant leaking problem or something more severe. Stop immediately when you see this light and call your breakdown service.

Engine oil warning light. This light will turn red when either the temperature of the oils ramps up or the pressure is too low. Assuming there are no obvious leaks under the car, check the oil level using the dipstick and top up if necessary.

Battery warning light. When this light goes read, it means, for some reason, your battery is no longer charging. Assuming you’ve got a fair bit of juice left, you should have plenty of time to head to a garage. Do make sure you go straight there though; once you run out of battery, none of your car’s systems will work!

Amber Warning Lights

Amber engine warning lights

Engine management light. When this light turns amber, it could be any one of a whole number of issues. If you notice a lack of power or stuttering while driving, this is a good indication that the problem is serious.

Particle filter warning light, something that only exists in diesel vehicles. If it turns amber, this could indicate that the filter has been blocked with soot and should be seen to ASAP.

Tyre pressure warning light. This could indicate a puncture has occurred, or it could simply be that the pressure has decreased over time.

ABS warning light. Your ABS (Anti-lock Braking System) plays a vital role in ensuring you avoid a collision in poor driving conditions, so make sure you get this checked out.

Brake pad warning light. If this light comes on, it means that your brake pads are becoming too thin and will need replacing. This light should come on well before the pads become dangerously thin, so you should have plenty of time to replace them.

1st Call Windscreens are the leading windscreen repair and windscreen replacement company throughout Maidstone, Sittingbourne and the wider Kent area. For a quick and easy solution to your chips and cracks, call our team today.

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Excellent service, many thanks to Grant & Jack and all at 1st Call Windscreens they charged £400.00 + VAT to replace the windscreen on my BMW 5 Series including camera calibration. Auto Wind...

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Super service from 1st call windscreen, they were quick to come out and fix my windscreen. Helpful friendly service, thanks to Byron and Dan and those on the phone....

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5 star plus Excellent service from start to finish Grant was exceptionally helpful after our Insurance Co who deal with Autoglass cancelled both our scheduled appointments as they could not get a sc...

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Great service - the work was carried out very quickly from the initial call. Would recommend without hesitation. Thanks again...

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Fiat Ducato. Arrived on time & job was completed in good time with no fuss. 1st class service....

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Always on time, reliable and good price, service with a smile! What more could you want?...

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I called 1st Call Windscreens after recommendation from the main Vauxhall dealer when my new car’s windscreen needed replacing. Obviously with the car only being a month old, it was really impor...

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I called Auto windscreen and Auto glass after my fiesta passenger window got broken . It was a long process before getting a date before my car could be fixed then came back with days a week away . Th...

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Resealing of window screen, managed without damage. If it had been damaged on removal it would have cost £300 plus VAT to replace, Auto glass wanted nearer £800! Prompt, polite, efficient ...

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was very happy made the call, within 2hour my window was being fixed, tried autowindscreens still awaiting call back, I would recommend 1ST Call Windscreens to anybody, friendly and very prompt. 5Star...

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Very helpful and friendly. They deserve every penny of the money that they earned. They were local, they gave me a quote prior. I am amazed at how considerate they are when it comes to cars. They made...

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