Vehicle Warning Indicators
Get to Know Your Dashboard Lights
Dashboard lights are nothing new, but the messages are. The following list of car warning lights are the most common lights used by auto manufacturers. Not all warning lights are universal, some have different meanings. Always refer to your owner's manual when you're not 100% sure what the light indicates.
Many warning lights indicate that a fault has occurred inside the vehicle's system, but it doesn't pinpoint the item or system that has failed. In these cases, a code reader or scan tool can help determine the part that needs to be replaced. If an indicator light on your dash is on, visit your local AutoZone store to get the best products and information to help keep your vehicle running in top condition.
The AutoZone Fix Finder
An easy-to-use tool to troubleshoot why your Check Engine Light is on, Fix Finder utilizes an extensive database of repair solutions from ASE certified mechanics to help you get to the most likely fix.
How does AutoZone Fix Finder work?
- Fix Finder pulls your vehicle information, code and mileage.
- This data is analyzed to give you verified fix solutions for your specific vehicle from over 5.5 million ASE-Certified technicians' records.
- These solutions are given to you in a FREE, easy-to-read MYZONE HEALTH REPORT.
Visit your local AutoZone store and let us help you find out if the problem is simple or serious
Your Check Engine Light may be indicating a simple problem that’s easy to fix – such as a loose gas cap. Or, it could be a warning of a more serious problem that could damage your engine components. Finding out why your light is on now can save you money and trouble down the road.Find an AutoZone near you
Vehicle Warning Light Information
Click a vehicle warning light to see more detailed information.
Diesel fuel vehicles only:
- Check Engine or Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL):
- Indicates the engine computer has set a Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC). Usually requires diagnosis with a professional scan tool. Learn the top five reasons why your check engine light is illuminated.
- Service Vehicle Soon:
- Typically indicates a lighting or other electrical problem that is controlled by the BCM (body control module). Check all lights (head lights, turn signals, brake lights, and hazard lights). This symbol may also be used to warn driver of a traction control problem, or a communication problem between modules.
- TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring System):
- Indicates the tire pressure monitoring system has found a tire with low air pressure or there may be a sensor malfunction. Check tire pressure. Some vehicles will allow manual reset of TPMS warning light and others will require professional diagnosis. Refer to owner's manual.
- Brake System:
- Indicates one of three possible conditions: parking brake is on; problem with the braking system/brake fluid is low, or ABS problem. Check brake fluid and make sure the parking brake is fully released. If the problem is in the ABS system, it may need a professional diagnosis.
- ABS Light:
- Indicates that the Anti-lock Brake computer has set a code and needs professional diagnosis.
- Traction Control or ESP:
- Illuminates when the vehicle's traction control/anti-skid or electronic stability system is in use. Usually an indicator that conditions are slippery.
- Overdrive Light:
- This symbol indicates that the vehicle's overdrive system has been manually turned off. Typically the overdrive system is controlled by an on/off switch.
- Airbag Fault:
- If this light stays illuminated after starting, it indicates that the vehicle has found a fault in the airbag system and the computer has set a code. Professional repair of the supplemental restraint system is highly recommended.
- Glow Plug (Diesel):
- On diesel vehicles this light indicates that the engine's glow plugs are warming up and the engine should not be started until this light goes out.
- DPF Light (Diesel):
- The diesel exhaust particulate filter has failed its test and needs to be serviced.