Car Maintenance Tip of the Month: Dash Lights

Car Maintenance Tip of the Month- It’s always an alarming feeling, when our car’s dashboard lights up when we least expect it. Although some of the symbols on there may be self explanatory, or so familiar we know what they mean, others may mean deeper problems are on the horizon for your vehicle. Don’t just ignore these problems as they show up, look for the root of the problem and get it fixed. Understand what each light on your dash means, why it is there, and how to fix the problem it is signaling.

Check Engine

check egine The check engine light can signal a lot of different things in your car from the engine itself to the emissions system. As such this light can simply be the result of some small electrical problem or a dangerous issue with your engine. If you see the check engine light show on your car, don’t hesitate to take it to the mechanic. He or she can use diagnostic tools to read the code, and determine what is wrong.


abs brake If your car is ABS-equipped, this secondary brake light will turn on when something is really wrong with your brakes. Any time you see this, get your car to the shop as soon as possible. While it could be as simple as dirt being present on the sensor, this could mean you need your whole ABS system replaced. Even if the light only turns on for a second then switches off after you put the vehicle in drive, have it checked. Your brakes are an essential part of your car’s safety.

Oil Warning

oil The oil warning light often only comes on if the oil pressure is too low in your car. Ignoring this will lead to expensive engine repairs or even replacement down the road. Keep up to date on your oil changes, especially if you see this light. If this light comes on shortly after you’ve gotten an oil change, you may be burning oil. Go back to the repair shop and see if this is the case.

Electrical Problem

battery In many cases this light is directly related to the battery of your car, but it can also be connected to the alternator. This is an indication that the electrical charging system of your car for whatever reason isn’t functioning properly. If you let this problem go on for too long, you’ll eventually end up with your car stopped on the side of the road. Prevent this from happening by getting your car checked immediately following this light turning on.


Understand the lights on your car’s dashboard, knowing when things are serious enough to take into the shop. For the more serious lights, the earlier you take in your vehicle the better. For more Shine Collision car maintenance tips check out what needs to be done with the spark plugs of your car.

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