What Do The Lights On Your Car’s Dashboard Mean

What Do The Lights On Your Car’s Dashboard Mean

If you own a car, you might be familiar with some of the lights which occasionally pop up from time to time. Perhaps the most familiar one is the empty gas light. Past that, do you know what the other lights mean and what to do when they appear?
Here is a quick rundown of some of the most common dashboard lights and their meaning!
Disclaimer: This piece is to simply provide information about common warning lights! Take your car to a professional should there be any issues.

Low Oil Level

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If your car is running low on oil this light will pop right up! When this light comes on, avoid driving your car too much until you have it checked by an auto shop. Don’t forget you can also check the oil level yourself by popping open the hood and pulling out the oil dip stick. Check out this video to see how it’s done.

Pro-Tip: Change your oil every 5,000 miles.

Tire Pressure Low

Image result for tire pressure low light
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This comes on whenever you have a tire running low on air. Before taking it to a tire shop, make sure to check all four tires for any punctures. You can do this by having a friend move your car slowly forward and shining a flashlight at the top of the rotating tire. If you see no punctures or debris on your tire, head to a gas station and fill up all the tires. The amount of air that should fill your tire will be on the tire itself.

Pro-Tip: Not all cars have this light, here is how to identify this problem manually.
Battery/Charge Alert

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If this light is on, it probably means you’ve already had to get a jump start or two, or you might need one soon! Head to a local shop and buy a new battery. If the issue is not resolved it may be your alternator or other factors connected to your battery.

Pro-Tip: Use the same battery brand that’s been in your car.

Overdrive Light

Image result for overdrive light
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Have you experienced your car going slower than usual and getting fewer miles per gallon? You probably turned off the overdrive, however, don’t get too excited. Overdrive does not mean you have a racecar. Look for a light switch around the gear shift (or PRNDL for you London Tipton fans) labeled “O/D”. Click it and you should be back to normal!

Pro-Tip: Only turn off overdrive if you are driving in hazardous conditions.

Airbag Fault

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This one sounds scarier than it is. The light means something is wrong with your airbag. You’ll want to go get it checked ASAP since it is dangerous to drive with a faulty airbag. On the bright side, most of the times this is simply a malfunction between the light and the airbag.

Pro-Tip: Check online to make sure your car does not have a recall for an airbag! Here’s how to find out.

Washer Fluid Reminder

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Ever wonder where the magic water that comes out of your hood and onto your windshield comes from? Well, you’re about to find out! This light means to refill the washer fluid. Open your hood and look for a cap (usually around the edge of the hood area) with the same logo. Pop it open and fill it up!

Pro-Tip: It costs $2 at Walmart. Fix it yourself and top off all your friend’s cars for $5 each. Profit! (You’re welcome).



Traction Control

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This light indicates your car is not being kept stable in case you suddenly spin out. Look for a button with the same logo as the light and keep traction control on. That is unless you are auditioning for the next “Fast and Furious: Tokyo Drift” movie!

Pro-Tip: If the light flashes and does not remain on, it means the traction control is working as it should, confusing right?

Check Engine Light

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This little light can mean the difference between life and death for your car! There are tons of reasons for this light to turn on, but the easiest way to check is to go to a mechanic so they can check it through a specified computer made for this issue.
Pro-Tip: Here are the most common reasons why it would turn on!
My parting goodbye tips are to never buy a used or new car with the check engine light, airbag fault light or low oil level light on. This could be an indication that the seller is trying to avoid a possible huge repair cost which you would then have to pay!

Something to remember: If you successfully fix the problem and the light turns off, then it returns before 50 miles of driving, the problem has not been fully resolved!

Do you know what any of these lights mean? Let us know using the hashtag #CampusCropChat on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram! Follow us on Snpachat too @ASICPP!