Posted under Car Lights & Glass

You’re behind the wheel, rolling along and enjoying the ride, when you look down and see a dashboard warning light has come on. Uh-oh! Naturally you’re concerned, and you should be! Each dashboard warning light is there for a reason. Some mean that you should pull over right away and call a tow truck. But not every symbol or light requires your immediate attention.

To help keep your car out of the shop and on the road where it belongs, Jiffy Lube® has put together this explanation of car dashboard symbols and meanings. 

When It Comes To Dashboard Indicator Lights, Color Matters. 

For example:

  • Green or blue lights simply mean a system is on or operating. No sweat.
  • Orange or yellow symbols and warning lights mean a system requires servicing soon. Better plan on visiting Jiffy Lube® so your car can be thoroughly checked by a trained technician.
  • Red warrants your immediate attention! Some red symbols are warning lights, such as the seat belt reminder. Others alert you to a mechanical issue, like when your engine is overheating. Never put off action when you see a red dashboard warning light.

What To Do When You See Red.

When one of the red dashboard warning lights comes on: 

  • Pull over as soon as it’s safe to do so
  • Determine what triggered the light to illuminate
  • Get your car to a mechanic as quickly as possible! (With more than 2,000 locations nationwide, there is sure to be a Jiffy Lube® nearby.)
  • Don’t wait. A red light could mean that your vehicle will soon stop operating.


Flashing = LOOK AT ME!

A flashing light indicates a problem that is currently happening. Take the same steps outlined above for the red warning lights. Continuing to drive with a flashing indicator light could cause damage to your car and result in time-consuming, expensive repairs. Better to bring your vehicle to Jiffy Lube® as soon as you can. Trained technicians will diagnose the problem and do their best to get it fixed … and get you back on the road again as soon as possible.


When You Think Of Car Dashboard Symbols And Meanings, Remember Every Car Is Different. 

For example, on some makes and models, it’s completely normal for all the lights to illuminate briefly at start up. This is just a system check. If the symbol or warning light extinguishes after a few seconds, everything is OK, and you have nothing to worry about.

If you don’t understand what a light or symbol is trying to tell you, don’t ignore it. Instead, refer to your vehicle owner’s manual. If you can’t locate your manual, ask a trained Jiffy Lube® technician about your car dashboard symbols and meanings. You can count on Jiffy Lube® to access all the up-to-date information for your specific car. 


Don’t Forget About Car Dashboard Lights When It Comes To Vehicle Maintenance. 

These lights and indicators are a key component of your car’s safety system and should be monitored. It’s recommended that you have them checked frequently: every three months or 3,000 miles. In addition, every time routine maintenance is performed on your car — anything from checking tire inflation to refilling the windshield wiper fluid — why not check the dashboard warning lights, too?

Common dashboard lights and their meanings

Dashboard Warning Lights Are So Important They Are Included In The Jiffy Lube Signature Service® Oil Change.

This isn’t your standard oil change. It’s a comprehensive preventive maintenance check. Each essential system and component that keeps your car, truck, SUV, or mini-van running smoothly is inspected, and that includes these indicator lights: 

  • Oil pressure warning light
  • Tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) warning light
  • Anti-lock brake system (ABS) warning light
  • Traction control malfunction light
  • Malfunction indicator light (MIL); also known as the engine warning light or check engine light (CEL)
  • Charging system warning light
  • Low fuel indicator light
  • Seat belt reminder light
  • Airbag warning light
Jiffy Lube service member preparing to provide a service related to a customer's car dashboard warning light, such as the check engine light or change oil light

This list is not definitive because, well, let’s go back to the Golden Rule of car dashboard symbols and meanings: Every car is different! But rest assured that Jiffy Lube® technicians have access to the latest information about your specific vehicle and can perform a visual check of all the lights that flash across your car’s individual dashboard.

The findings of this visual inspection may lead to further diagnostic testing, which will be performed only after you give your approval. Based on those test results, you will be given a written estimate for any repairs, as well as a timeline for completing the service. Your questions are welcome. Jiffy Lube® appreciates that your car is both a major investment and a must-have in your daily life, and so you will have all the pertinent information before any service work is done.

You’ll have every reason to feel confident when pulling away after the Jiffy Lube Signature Service® Oil Change. You’ll know your vehicle’s essential systems and components (including the warning lights and indicators) have been checked by trained technicians. Top-quality Pennzoil® products will be used whenever possible. And your car will not only run better, it will look better, because the interior has been vacuumed and the exterior windows have been cleaned.

Make Jiffy Lube Your Go To For Car Care.

Count on the pros at your local Jiffy Lube to provide the routine maintenance that will keep your vehicle operating as engineered. This way, a small problem can be fixed before it turns into a big, costly repair.

Read More About It.

Car dashboard symbols and meanings aren’t the only complex and confusing automotive hot topic. We understand how baffling all these terms can be! That’s why Jiffy Lube put together this Car Terms Glossary.
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Please note: Not all services are offered at each Jiffy Lube® location. Please check with your local Jiffy Lube® service center or visit for specific services offered.