Take the quiz and see whether you can identify our dozen dashboard warning lights…
We learn how to drive, repeat the mantra ‘mirror, signal, manoeuvre’ and remember what road signs mean. But how many drivers know their car’s dashboard warning lights?
When Green Flag surveyed more than 2000 drivers, earlier this month, only 27 per cent said they could immediately identify a warning light. Another 35 per cent checked their car’s handbook, and 21 per cent took their car to a garage for help in understanding what the problem was. Some even admitted to phoning a friend, an approach that could easily result in a dodgy diagnosis.
It’s important to heed any warning flagging up by dashboard warning lights. Typically, they give drivers the opportunity to have a mechanical or electrical problem investigated and repaired by a garage, before it becomes serious enough to cause lasting damage to a car.
Car makers use a common colour scheme that, much like traffic lights, uses green to indicate all is well, amber to give an advisory signal which may require further investigation, and red to show a serious problem which requires investigation as soon as safely possible.
Nick Reid, head of rescue at Green Flag, says it’s vital drivers know what their car’s warning lights mean: “Warning lights can mean anything from something as simple as needing to put on your seat belt, to something far more serious like low oil levels, which could cause irreparable damage to your engine. All drivers should understand what their warning lights mean, so if the worst should happen, you know whether you need immediate assistance or if you can wait until you get to a garage.”
As different makes and models of cars feature different mechanical and electronic systems, the best way to brush up on an individual car’s dashboard warning symbols is to make time to read the relevant section of the vehicle’s handbook. It’s time well spent that could save drivers from serious trouble further down the road.
Try another quiz: Can you guess the Green Flag tools and beat Joe Swash’s score?