How Cooler Temps Impact Car Tires
And What Do All Those Dashboard Lights Mean?
PHOENIX – It’s the time of year when more red, yellow and orange lights appear on car dashboards. As the temperature drops, so can tire pressure. It’s not necessarily because tires are losing air, but because the air inside the tire condenses and takes up less space.
Trying to figure out what all the lights on your dashboard mean can be confusing. And ignoring them can be dangerous.
Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals (NARPRO) can decipher your dashboard. Keep reading to learn about the most common symbols and keep in mind your car’s dashboard may be different so check the owner’s manual or have a professional investigate.
Red Means Warning
Engine Temperature Light
· Your engine is too hot. Pull over to a safe location. Do not open the hood for at least 20 minutes to avoid rupturing a radiator hose. Have car towed to a repair shop.
Oil Pressure Warning Light
· Your engine is running low on oil or there could be a problem with the engine.
· Your car is running solely on battery power. There’s a problem with the charging system. Turn off anything that draws power from the battery until you reach a safe location.
· Make sure your emergency brake is off. If the brake light remains on you could be low on brake fluid or it could be something more serious.
· There could be a problem with your airbag. Have a qualified shop check this out.
Yellow Means Safety
· At least one tire may have low pressure and should be addressed ASAP.
· Properly inflated tires are safer, wear evenly and save gas.
· This light can indicate a minor or major issue. Have it checked out.
Antilock Brake System (ABS)
· There’s a problem with your brakes. If the light comes on while driving your brakes will still work, but the ABS might not engage in an emergency.
Low Fuel Indicator
· Ignore this at your own peril.
Low Windshield Fluid
· You’re running low. Fill it up as soon as you can.
NARPRO (Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals): The Neighborhood Auto Repair Professionals (NARPRO) helps car owners find skilled and honest car repair shops. NARPRO only recommends independent, family-owned, full-service auto repair shops that have passed 26 rigorous tests. Visit www.NARPRO.com to find recommended shops near work or home. NARPRO is the easiest way to find an honest mechanic in the Valley.