What do the control lights on the dashboard stand for?

Close up Car Speed Dashboard, with alarm sign display.

The dashboard is one of the most important elements of the car while driving. It provides the driver with basic information such as the current engine speed, the speed at which the vehicle is moving and the work of individual components of the car. With regards to helping with the last issue, these control lights can be divided into three basic groups.

  • green control lights – they define specific functions that are activated during driving. They notify the driver if the lights are on low beam, if the indicators are working and about the cruise control. They do not directly affect the ability to start the vehicle;
  • orange control lights – these are the informative controls, their task is to inform the driver about a problem. You can continue driving, but the fault should be repaired as soon as possible before it becomes a source of serious accidents.
  • red control lights – these are the alert lights. They inform about a detected major fault in the car. Such fault should be repaired immediately. If while driving, any red light appears  on the dashboard of your car, you should stop the vehicle immediately in a suitable place and in some cases use the roadside assistance services. Ignoring such issue can lead to serious damage to the engine, and even cause a dangerous accident.

Surely every driver knows all the basic control lights that appear on the dashboard, but there are often problems with the correct interpretation of the symbols from the orange and red lights group. In today’s article, we describe the most important warning lights, which are not always well interpreted by many drivers.

  1. Warning about the airbag system failure – the indicator should be lit only for the first few seconds after starting the engine. If the light does not go off, it means that there is an airbag system failure that needs to be repaired in the servicing station.
  1. Warning about brake failure – this light is on, always when the handbrake is pulled. When the control light appears on the dashboard while driving, most often it is a result of the insufficient level of brake fluid. In this case you should refill the fluid or go to the service station immediately.
  1. Warning about a too high coolant temperature – the appearance of this control light is equal to a failure of the cooling system. Ignoring this control light could lead to a major accident, such as a blown head gasket, which replacement might be quite expensive.
  1. Warning about too low engine oil or its insufficient pressure – in this case, simply top up the engine oil, otherwise the engine may be seized up.
  1. Glow plug control light – it concerns only diesel cars. In this case, you can continue driving, but you need to visit the servicing station as soon as possible.
  1. Warning about a problem with a particulate filter – the appearance of this warning light on the dashboard indicates that the particulate filter is almost clogged. It is necessary to visit the site.
  1. The indicator of the injection system – informs about the appearance of a problem with the functioning of the engine.
  1. Warning about a too low air pressure in the tire or tires – in this case, the problem can be dealt when we restore the proper tire pressure. You can visit the vulcanizing station or simply do it yourself using machines for pumping wheels, which are located at most petrol station.