Your dashboard is full of tiny symbols that alert you to different issues with your vehicle. But do you know what every single one of them means? There are certain dash symbols that light up when you turn your car on, but then turn off. Here are 9 common dashboard icons and what they mean.

  1. Engine Temperature Warning Light

The engine temperature warning usually looks like a thermometer, and it means that your coolant is overheating. Pull over and let your car cool down or you may risk doing permanent damage to your car’s engine.

  1. Oil Pressure Warning Light

The oil pressure light means that your oil is low, and is nothing to worry about as long as you get your oil changed. However, it might indicate something more serious like an oil leak. If you recently changed your oil and this icon pops up, take your car in for a service check.

  1. Battery Charge Warning

If your battery charge icon comes up, turn off your stereo or GPS to save battery power, and do not stop your vehicle until you are somewhere safe.

  1. Airbag Indicator

If your airbag indicator is on, take your car in for a service immediately. This icon means that your airbags are not working, which could be extremely dangerous if you’re involved in a collision.

  1. Engine Warning

This icon is one that many drivers ignore because their car still seems to be working fine. Your engine warning coming on could be nothing, but it might be a problem that could damage your engine significantly if left unchecked.

  1. Traction Control Light
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If your traction light is on, slow down your car immediately. This light means that your wheels are losing traction with the road, and it could cause you to lose control of your car. When you slow down, do so in a gradual manner. Do not stop abruptly or you could potentially damage your car.

  1. A.B.S Indicator

A.B.S stands for anti-lock braking systems. If this light is flashing (usually with the letters ABS) this means that there is something wrong with your brakes. There’s no need to panic right away, your brakes will still work in regular driving conditions, but get it inspected as soon as possible so that you’re prepare if you need to make an emergency brake.

  1. Tire Pressure Warning Light

The tire light wasn’t actually put into use until the late 2000’s, so older models may not have this feature. The tire light is connected to the pressure sensor within the tire, so it’s an accurate indication of whether your tire pressure is too high or too low.

  1. Low Windshield Fluid Indicator

This one may not seem so important, but windshield wiper fluid is crucial, especially during certain weather conditions. Having wiper fluid available is what will keep you safe if something obscures your line of vision on your windshield, so if it’s low, make sure to take it in for a service, or replace it yourself.

Keep in mind that every vehicle is different, so check with your user manual to make sure that you know what your alerts mean, and check with your insurance provider to see what is covered in the event of a mechanical breakdown. For the right insurance, make sure to check as site such as Rates.ca to compare different car insurance rates.

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