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Foreign Affairs Motorsport
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Understanding The Emergency Lights In Your Car

emergency lights in your car

If there’s one thing that all drivers have in common, it’s that no one wants to see an emergency light illuminate on their car’s dash. What makes this experience that much scarier, is when you have no idea what that light even means. To shed some light on this subject we had our Pompano Beach auto mechanics share some of the meanings behind the emergency lights in your car that can be confusing.

Emergency Lights in Your Care Are Color-Coded

One fact that always seems to shock people is that your emergency lights are color-coded.

Red lights are for warnings that should be attended to ASAP. Orange or yellow are advisory lights that indicate important information about your vehicle that is important for the driver to know but isn’t necessarily going to cause any harm to the vehicle or affect your driving.

Power Steering Warning Light

The power steering light can take a few forms, but the most common is a steering wheel and a steering wheel with an exclamation mark next to it. It is used to indicate a problem within the power steering system. This could be anything from low power steering fluid to a failed pump or steering wheel angle sensor. Fortunately, your car’s ECU will log the error code which makes figuring out what went wrong very easy for your mechanic.

Tire Pressure Monitoring Light

The tire pressure monitoring light comes in both red and yellow variants, with some vehicles being able to switch the color of the light depending on the severity of pressure loss.

Unless your car has run-flat tires or has been fitted with a set of aftermarket wheels that weren’t compatible with your car OEM tire pressure monitoring sensors, it is recommended you pull over when it is safe to do so or stop at a service station.

Tires naturally lose pressure as you drive, so you may need to just top your tires off with some air. Most cars have a reset button for the monitoring light which recalibrates the sensors. If the light comes back on after topping up with air, stop when it is safe to do so. If you’re confident enough to do so, it is recommended that you replace the damaged tire with your spare wheel. Otherwise, we recommend you call for assistance.

Diesel Glow Plug Light

Diesel is no longer a fuel just for heavy-duty vehicles and trucks. Most manufacturers now offer diesel variants of their cars. If you’re new to owning a diesel car, this light may alarm you. Fortunately, it doesn’t represent an error or failed component.

With diesel engines, only pressure is required to cause ignition, so they don’t have spark plugs. Diesel engines make use of glow plugs that heat the cylinders to the optimal temperature to ensure combustion takes place.

When you start your diesel car and this light is lit, it means that the engine’s temperature is below optimal temperature, and the glow plugs are currently activated. Simply just wait for the light to turn off and proceed to start your car.

Check Transmission Light

While most of us know about the check engine light, very few people are aware of the check transmission light.

Both manual and automatic vehicles have check transmission lights and indicate a transmission problem which can be anything from low transmission fluid to a worn-out clutch or a malfunctioning transmission computer.

Should this be one of the emergency lights in your car, it’s recommended that you stop the vehicle as soon as it is safe to, call a tow service, and have the vehicle delivered to your local mechanic to be inspected and repaired.

‘Key Not Found’ Light

With keyless start becoming more common in cars, many owners are being greeted with the key not found light. What’s more frustrating is when you have the key in your hand and the car still won’t recognize it.

This is usually caused by a dead battery in the key fob. If your car still has a slot to accept the key, simply inserting the key will allow you to start the car. If your car doesn’t have a key slot, hold the fob against the start button and press start.

Most manufacturers fit a near-field communication sensor behind the start button that can read the security chip in the key fob even when the battery is dead. Repairing this issue is as simple as having the battery in your key fob replaced.

Emergency Lights in Your Car Making the Dashboard Glow?

Whether your car has one mysterious warning light lit, or you’re faced with a dash that’s lit up like a Christmas tree, our friendly Pompano Beach auto mechanics are equipped with all the right tools to tackle any of the emergency lights in your car

From minor work to major rebuilds and modification, look no further than Foreign Affairs Motorwerks, South Florida’s Premier Luxury Auto Repair, Performance, and Race Facility Since 1978.

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