What Those Dashboard Symbols Really Mean

Let’s face it; unless you’re a mechanic, you probably don’t know what everything in your car means, right? So you’re driving along and a light pops up on your dashboard, but do you automatically know what it means?

If you’re lucky, you have your car manual and can just check to see what these dashboard symbols are telling you about your vehicle, but if you’re not so lucky, we’re here to try to help you out. We’ve come up with a short list of common symbols which could be displayed on your dashboard and the meanings behind them.

Open Door Dashboard SymbolsOpen Door Indicator – this symbol means a door is still open in your car



Temp Warning Light Dashboard SymbolsTemperature Warning Light – this symbol warns the driver their engine could overheat and means the driver should stop immediately to allow cooling off



Oil Pressure Dashboard SymbolsOil Pressure Warning – when red, this symbol indicates low oil pressure. If this light illuminates, you should switch off the engine immediately to avoid severe damage. If this symbol appears as a lighter amber color, it means the oil level is low and a top off is required.



Seat Belt Dashboard Symbols

Seat Belt Reminder – this light is activated when the driver or passenger is not wearing their seatbelt.



Brake System Alert Dashboard SymbolsBrake System Alert – this will appear when brake fluid is low.



Powertrain Malfunction Dashboard SymbolsPowertrain Malfunction – if this light turns on, immediately turn off your car and call your mechanic. This will illuminate when the engine management system detects a fault which could seriously harm your vehicle if not quickly resolved.



Tire Pressure Dashboard SymbolsTire Pressure Monitor – when your tire pressure is low, this light will turn on. To turn it off, check your tire pressure and inflate properly.



ABS Warning Light Dashboard SymbolsABS Warning Light – this will show up when you have a fault in the ABS braking system. You will not lose your brakes but some features will be switched off. Professional help is required to resolve issues.


For assistance, bring your vehicle to Bates Nissan and we will gladly assist you with any problem which triggered a dashboard light to appear in your car.