Ten Most Common Dashboard Lights and Icons | Clinton SC | Serving Laurens & Fountain Inn

When a dashboard light comes on while you're driving, you may feel panicked. Well, while those lights may sometimes indicate something urgent, that's not always the case. At Cooper Motor Company, we don't want you to panic while on the road, but we also want to make sure you listen to what your car is telling you. If you're curious about what that light means on your dashboard, keep reading.

Warning Lights Vs. Indicator Lights

There are two types of lights that could pop up on your dashboard. Warning lights are urgent and need to be taken care of right away. Indicator lights signal that something needs to be serviced or repaired soon, so drive with caution. Consult your owner's manual if you have any question about the color or urgency of a light.

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Lights Decoded

Anti-lock Braking System (ABS) warning light

When you turn on the vehicle, if the ABS warning light illuminates and then turns off, then it’s operational. If it comes on while the engine is running, have the system checked.

Brake warning light

Functioning for both the parking brake and foot brake system, this light comes on when the parking brake is applied as well as warning of a low brake fluid level. If the light comes on while the engine is running but the parking brake isn’t applied, check the brake fluid level or have the warning system checked.

Charge warning light

If the light comes on while the engine is running, it may indicate the charging system is not functioning properly. Turn the engine off and check the alternator belt. If the belt is loose, broken, missing or if the light remains on, have your vehicle serviced immediately.

Forward Emergency Braking (FEB) system warning light
(if so equipped)

This light comes on when the ignition switch is placed in the on position. It turns off after the engine is started. This light illuminates when the FEB system is set to off on the lower display. If the light illuminates when the FEB system is on, it may indicate that the system is unavailable.

Low fuel warning light

This light illuminates when the fuel in the tank is getting low. Refuel as soon as it is convenient, preferably before the fuel gauge reaches the 0 (empty) position. There will be a small reserve of fuel remaining in the tank when the fuel gauge reaches the 0 position.

Low tire pressure warning light

If the vehicle is being driven with low tire pressure, the warning light will illuminate. When this happens, stop and adjust the pressure to the recommended cold tire pressure.

Master warning light

When the ignition switch is in the on position, the master warning light illuminates if there is a problem. Check your vehicle’s manual for the list of potential problems that the Master warning light signals.

Power steering
warning light

Whether you have Direct Adaptive Steering, hydraulic pump electric power steering or electric power steering, when your power steering isn’t functioning correctly, this light will come on. Have your system checked immediately.

Seat belt warning light and chime

The light and chime remind you to fasten seat belts. The light illuminates whenever the ignition switch is pushed to the ON position, and will remain illuminated until the driver’s seat belt is fastened.

Supplemental air bag warning light

After pushing the ignition switch to the on position, the supplemental air bag warning light will illuminate. The supplemental air bag warning light signals if the supplemental front air bag and supplemental side air bag, curtain side-impact air bag systems and/or pretensioner seat belt are operational. Unless checked and repaired, the Supplemental Restraint Systems and/or the pretensioner seat belt may not function properly.

Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) warning light

The light will blink when the VDC system or the traction control system is operating, thus alerting the driver that the vehicle is nearing its traction limits. The road surface may be slippery. When the VDC warning light illuminates when the VDC system is turned on, this light alerts the driver to the fact that the VDC system’s fail-safe mode is operating.

ECO drive indicator light (if so equipped)

When the ignition switch is placed in the on position, the light will come on and then turn off. When the INFINITI Drive Mode Selector is turned to the ECO mode, the ECO drive indicator light will illuminate, blink or remain off depending on the accelerator pedal operation to help assist the driver to drive economically.

Exterior light indicator

This indicator illuminates when the headlight switch is turned to the AUTO, and the exterior lights (such as front parking lights, headlights, etc.) are on. The indicator turns off when these lights are turned off.

Front fog light indicator light

The front fog light indicator light illuminates when the front fog lights are ON.

Front passenger air bag status light

The front passenger air bag status light located on the instrument panel will be lit and the passenger front airbag will be OFF depending on how the front passenger seat is being used.

High beam assist indicator light
(if so equipped)

The indicator light illuminates when the headlights come on while the headlight switch is in the AUTO position with the high beam selected. This indicates that the high beam assist system is operational.

High beam indicator light (blue)

This light comes on when the headlight high beam is on and goes out when the low beam is selected.

Idling Stop System indicator light
(if so equipped)

The Idling Stop System indicator light illuminates when the Idling Stop System is activated. The Idling Stop System indicator light blinks at a high speed, when the engine hood is open while the engine is stopped by the system. When the Idling Stop System is malfunctioning, the Idling Stop System indicator light blinks at a low speed.

Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL)

If the malfunction indicator light comes on steady or blinks while the engine is running, it may indicate a potential emission control malfunction, if the fuel-filler cap is loose or missing or if the vehicle runs out of fuel. Check to make sure the fuel-filler cap is installed and closed tightly, and that the vehicle has at least 3 US gallons (11.4 liters) of fuel in the fuel tank.

Security indicator light

The light blinks when the ignition switch is in the ACC, OFF or LOCK position. This function indicates the security system equipped on the vehicle is operational. If the security system is malfunctioning, this light will remain on while the ignition switch is in the ON position.

Turn signal/hazard indicator lights

The light flashes when the turn signal switch lever or hazard switch is turned on.

Vehicle Dynamic Control (VDC) off indicator light

When the ignition switch is placed in the ON position, the light will come on and then turn off. The light comes on when the VDC off switch is pushed to OFF. This indicates that the VDC system and traction control system are not operating.

If you're still unsure about a light that has come on in your dashboard, come visit Cooper Motor Company at 305 E Main St., Clinton, SC 29325 or give us a call today. We look forward to serving customers from Laurens and Fountain Inn.

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