Modern cars are built with intelligent sensors to monitor all the internal functions of your vehicle. It’s important you fully understand what each of these warning lights mean when they are activated. As it can be the difference between the minor inconvenience of a visit to a mechanic or a complete car breakdown.
You will notice that your car warning lights appear in a traffic light system.
- Green: This is notifying you the system is working correctly or is currently in use
- Yellow: Something is not working correctly. You will ned to check this as soon as possible.
- Red: This indicates a serious problem that requires immediate attention. You should stop driving as soon as it is safe to do so.
In this guide we will cover off the red warning lights, what they mean and what action you should take.
Brake Warning Light
This could indicate your handbrake is still on. However, if you have lifted the handbrake then it is notifying you that the fluid level is dangerously low. You should have this checked by a professional. Check your mirrors and lightly press on your brake to check it’s working, if it is, make your way to your nearest garage.
Engine Temperature Warning Light
This light means the engine temperature has exceeded its normal limits. You should stop straight away and check the coolant levels once the engine has cooled down. Look closely for any leaks. If the light turns off once you top this up then continue driving, if the right reappears then you should get this checked by a professional immediately.
Airbag Warning Light
When this light is showing it means that an element of the airbag safety system is compromised. If the airbag is not working properly there is a risk, it will either not go off in a crash or will go off and cause a crash. This should be checked by a professional immediately.
Power Steering Warning Light
This light is also known as the EPS or EPAS warning light.
If you have an electric powered system, fixing it could be as simple as rebooting the computer. However, if the light stays on once you have done this then you should get it checked as soon as possible. You should take extra care while driving straight to a garage.
Oil Warning Light
This light will appear when either the oil temperature gets too high or the level or pressure is too low. This could potentially lead to irreparable engine damage so you must get this checked straight away. You should call for recovery as further driving could damage your engine.
Battery Warning Light
This light indicates that the battery is not charging. There are various causes for this. Your car will run normally until the battery dies but as soon as it does, nothing in your car will work. Get this seen to as soon as possible.
For a full break down of car warning lights, including yellow lights, visit https://www.rac.co.uk/drive/advice/know-how/car-dashboard-warning-lights-meaning/