You’ve seen the warning lights that pop up when you turn on your car, but they usually shut right off. When your car has a problem, these lights will stay on and you shouldn’t ignore them.
All cars have warning lights that appear on your dashboard, oftentimes near your speedometer. These lights are your car’s way of telling you that there’s something not right somewhere on your vehicle. In many cars the warning lights are color-coded, according to Auto Simple. The colors can be:
While you should take all warning signs that pop up on your dash seriously, some can be more critical that others. Here are the four warning lights to pay attention to according to Haynes:
When your check engine light comes on it could mean that you need to pull over immediately until you can get it looked at. This light most commonly signals that the car’s emissions control system isn’t working properly. Due to this, your car could be over-polluting the air. The check engine light needs to be serviced by a mechanic. If the light is flashing on the dash, it means you need to pull over immediately. If the light is steady, it’s usually okay to continue driving, however you should call your mechanic to talk through the problem before driving much further. This problem can be mechanical, electronic, or could be just a sensor error, but to know for sure you’ll need a professional to look at it with a code reader.
This warning means there’s an issue with the brakes or the anti-braking system. When you see this light pop up, quit driving immediately. If your brakes are not functioning properly, it’s unsafe to drive. The brake light could also shine for low fluid condition or an emergency brake that was left on.
When this malfunctions it makes steering at even low speeds hard. Modern cars use power steering with an electric or hydraulic assist. If your car didn’t have this, it would be difficult to drive at low speeds. When the power steering function malfunctions, it takes great strength to continue to steer. It can also affect emergency maneuvers.
This could mean your engine isn’t circulating the oil properly. When this lights up, it could mean that oil pressure, oil level, or oil temperature needs your attention. You’ll notice the difference by small variations of this light. If you see an oil jug by itself it means you need an oil change. A similar light can signal oil pressure problems. However, if you see a wavy line with the jug it could mean the oil level is too low. If you see a jug with a thermometer that signals there’s something wrong with the oil temperature. If the lights are red, you need to turn the car off quickly or you could risk engine damage. If you see a yellow color, you can continue driving but need to seek service quickly.
If you notice any of these warning lights on your dash, or any other problems with your car in general, contact Scott’s Auto. With two convenient locations, one in Fort Collins and one in Loveland, we’re ready to serve you. Serving all makes and models, our skilled technicians will be able to find the problem quickly to get you back on the road safely in a timely manner. Call today for an appointment! Fort Collins: (970)-682-4202, Loveland: (970)-541-4404.