What Do the Lights on My Dashboard Mean? {Part 5}


Have you ever turned on your engine, only to see a brand new icon light up and utter confusion follow closely behind? Our vehicles are complicated and it’s important to know what all those lights and icons mean so you can maintain your car’s health and ensure its safety. Maybe you’re new to driving or perhaps you’re a seasoned driver who just needs a refresher. Either way, our new series “What Do the Lights on My Dash Mean?” will hopefully provide some insight on what all those many confusing icons are and what they mean about your vehicle and driving experience, so you can look out for potential problems!

If you’re new to our series, check out Parts 123 and 4.



Similar to the lane departure warning system, this light refers to the active lane keep system. This light will illuminate if the system has been manually disabled or there is a fault with it.

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These lights simply refer to the fact that the vehicle is low on fuel and needs a fill-up soon. Every vehicle is different and the amount of fuel range left when the light first comes on can vary.

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A vehicle will perform optimally when properly warmed up. These lights, which are usually blue in colour, indicate the engine temperature is still low and is warning you not to drive too hard until the vehicle reaches proper operating temperatures.

Vehicles come with tire pressure monitoring systems that keep track of how much pressure is left in all of the tires. If this light is illuminated, one or more of the tire’s pressure is low and needs to be attended to.

This light could be lit in a multitude of colours. It means the windshield washer fluid is low and needs to filled. The washer fluid may also be used for the rear window and HID headlight lenses.

Not that common anymore, this light indicates a vehicle’s overdrive system is currently disabled. It will light up if overdrive has been manually disabled or if there is a problem with the transmission.

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These two lights signify the parking and/or emergency brake is currently applied. They illuminate any time the vehicle’s mechanical or electrical brake is on. If the brake has been released but the light remains on, there may be an issue with the system.

This light refers to a fault in the power steering system. It can be displayed in a multitude of colours, but usually red or amber. If illuminated, the vehicle should be taken to a mechanic as soon as possible.

This light means “please depress the brake pedal.” It can be illuminated when trying to start the vehicle and/or when attempting to put the vehicle into gear.

If you happened to buy a vehicle with a manual transmission, you have seen this warning light. It signifies the clutch needs to be depressed, usually when starting the ignition. It differs from the above depress brake pedal image by lacking the extra crescents on the sides of the circle.



Stay tuned for Part 6 of this series next week! If you have any questions or comments, please feel free to comment below or tweet us at @Advantage_Ford!


This information was shared from AutoGuide’s 2015 article called “What Does That Light on My Dash Mean?”

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