What do all those lights mean in my car? Understanding your vehicle’s language!

Have you ever had to learn another language? If so, it’s similar to your car telling you how it feels, sending you warning signs, or letting you know what needs some maintenance. It’s important to learn what it all means. Talking your car’s language will keep your car healthy and, on the road, running sound. Whether it’s an oil change, an engine issue, or your tires are low be sure you’re in the know! Here are a few important warning signs and what they mean to the health of your car.

Some Warning Symbols to know

Engine Temperature Warning Light

Indicator light means the engine temperature has exceeded normal limits. Check coolant level, fan operation, radiator cap, coolant leaks.

Battery Charge Warning Light

Indicator light means that the car’s charging system is short of power or is not charging properly. It normally indicates a problem with the battery itself or the alternator.

Oil Pressure Warning Light

Indicator light means loss of oil pressure, meaning lubrication is low or lost completely. Immediately check the oil level and pressure.

Brake Warning Light

Indicator light turns on when the handbrake is on. If it is lit continuously, it means that hydraulic pressure has been lost on one side of the brake system or that the fluid level in the master cylinder is dangerously low (due to a leak somewhere in the brake system).

Some Safety Symbols to know

Transmission Temperature

Indicator light means the engine temperature has exceeded normal limits. Check coolant level, fan operation, radiator cap, coolant leaks.

Tire Pressure Warning Light

Indicator light means the pressure is low in one of your tires.

Traction Control Off

Indicator light means that the vehicles TCS (traction control system) has been deactivated.

Steering Wheel Lock

Indicator light means your steering wheel is locked and can not be moved. To turn off the steering lock, insert the key into the ignition and turn it to at least the first position while turning the steering wheel in either direction.

Trailer Tow Hitch Warning

Indicator lights mean that the tow hitch is unlocked or that there’s an issue with the lighting system.

Traction Control Light

Indicator light turns on when the vehicle TCS (traction control system) is activated.

Service Vehicle Soon

Indicator light turns on when there is a fault condition in an area of the vehicle chassis systems such as—the anti-lock (ABS) brake system, the traction control (TCS) system, the electronic suspension system, or the brake hydraulic system.

Security Alert

Indicator light will turn on momentarily if the ignition switch is locked and will need the proper transponder-equipped key to restart. If the light is visible when the vehicle is on, then it typically indicates a malfunction in the security system.

Side Airbag

Indicator light means a fault with the side airbag.

Powertrain Fault

Indicator light turns on when a powertrain or AWD fault has been detected. Contact your mechanic as soon as possible.

Power Steering Warning Light

Indicator light turns on if there is an issue with the power steering system, and will be disabled until fixed.

Press Brake Pedal

Indicator to push the brake pedal.

Master Warning Light

Indicator light usually accompanied by another warning light and indicates that one or more warning systems have been detected.

Automatic Gearbox Warning

Indicator light means there’s a gearbox/transmission malfunction.

Adaptive Suspension Dampers

Indicator light means there is a need to contact an authorized repairer.

Air Suspension

Indicator light means that there is a problem with the air suspension bags, likely due to a leak or inflation issue.

Catalytic Converter Warning

Indicator light means the catalytic converter is either overheating or not operating as intended.

And…these are just a few! There are also lighting symbols and other warning symbols that you need to know. Refer to your owner’s manual for other warning lights to look for if your car is talking to you. If you have any questions about your vehicle’s system’s warning lights and cannot find it in your manual, please give us a call. Tri-County Collision Center can help you assess the issue.

Looking for a Reputable Automotive Collision Repair Shop in Southampton, PA after an Accident? We can help!

Tri-County Collision Center is an ASE / I-CAR® GOLD certified auto body shop located in Southampton, PA. Call one of our technicians today to learn more about our collision repair and auto painting services. We are OEM certified collision repair facility for INFINITI, Nissan, Hyundai, Kia, Acura, Honda, GM, Chrysler, Ford, Dodge and Jeep.

Tri-County Collision Center is conveniently located near the PA turnpike, route 95 and Street Road, County Line Road and Second Street Pike at 995 Jaymor Road, Southampton, PA  18966. Give us a call at 215.322.5350 or just stop in if you’re in need of auto collision services.

Tri-County Collision Center’s shop hours are Monday-Friday 8am-6pm, and Saturday by appointment. We would be happy to supply you with an auto repair quote online or over the phone and we always welcome comments and suggestions.

Need a tow or a rental car due an auto collision accident? No worries, Tri-County Collision Center also provides services for tow, rental car, and insurance claims assistance. You are in good hands with a trusted collision shop in Southampton, PA.

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Gregg Quinn