What Are the Different Codes That Can Light Up on My Dashboard?

We’ve all been there before. You’re driving along and suddenly, the Check Engine Light flashes on. It might not even be accompanied by any sort of symptom – no spitting, no sputtering, no jerking. What’s going on? Of course, there are other lights that can come on in your dash, as well. They’re all indicators, but they don’t mean the same thing.

Diagnostic trouble codes

Generally, the Check Engine Light means there’s a diagnostic trouble code stored in the car’s computer. The computer has detected some sort of abnormal operation in the engine, transmission or emissions system, and it’s warning you that it needs to be checked out.

There are hundreds, perhaps thousands, of different codes that can trigger the Check Engine Light alone, and this doesn’t account for other systems with their own warning lights (TPMS, ABS, battery/alternator, oil, etc.).

While it would be impossible to list all the different codes that might light up on your dash, here is some insight into what different lights might mean.

  • Check Engine Light: The Check Engine Light comes on when the computer notes a problem in the emissions/exhaust system, the transmission or the engine. It could be as simple as a loose or missing gas cap, or something more serious like a failed oxygen sensor or a misfire.

  • TPMS: This light is part of your tire pressure monitoring system. If it comes on and stays on, then you have a tire low on air, or there’s a problem with a sensor or the system.

  • ABS: This light warns you about a problem with your anti-lock braking system. It does not mean that you won’t be able to stop the car, but it does mean that the ABS system may have been disabled.

  • Oil Pressure Light: The Oil Pressure light means that the computer has detected a drop in oil pressure. Your oil might be low, the sending unit might have failed, or the pressure sensor may be bad.

  • Battery: The Battery light means that there’s an issue with your battery or alternator; generally, it’s a sign that your battery’s charge is abnormally low.

  • Coolant Temperature Light: The Coolant Temperature light comes on to warn you that the temperature of your engine coolant is too high and you need to pull over and turn off the engine before it overheats.

  • Brake Light: The Brake light comes on to show the parking brake is engaged, or that the brake fluid is low.

These are just a few of the warning lights on your dash. Some of these systems will store a trouble code, and others will not. The best option is to have a mechanic inspect your car as soon as possible.


Schedule Brake Pad Replacement
Service Area

$125.02 - $447.30

Price range for all vehicles
Average rating from 12,178 customers who received a Brake Pads Replacement.

The statements expressed above are only for informational purposes and should be independently verified. Please see our terms of service for more details

Excellent Auto Repair Ratings.

4.2 Average Rating

Auto Repair

Service Hours

7 AM - 9 PM

7 days a week

Phone Number

Phone Hours

Mon - Fri / 6 AM - 5 PM PST

Sat - Sun / 7 AM - 4 PM PST

Address

We come to you at no extra charge

Guarantee

12-month/12,000-mile warranty

Service Area

Recent Brake Pad Replacement reviews

Excellent Rating


YourMechanic Brake Pad Replacement Service

Average Rating

4.9/5

Number of Reviews

12,178

Rating Summary
11,639
343
71
35
90
11,639
343
71
35
90

Manuel

8 years of experience
14 reviews
Manuel
8 years of experience
Honda Element - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Rural Hall, North Carolina
he was on time, professional, fast and my break job was done very well!!! we had him do our service in an unusual area but he did it with no problems and we will use this service and maybe if circumstance is good, Manuel again! thanks for a very good price and service is tops!

PETER

11 years of experience
43 reviews
PETER
11 years of experience
BMW 330i - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Pittsburg, California
Peter did a great job.. He arrived minutes earlier and left the working area clean. Highly recommended.

Brian

22 years of experience
363 reviews
Brian
22 years of experience
Mitsubishi Montero - Brake Pads Replacement (Front, Rear) - Jacksonville, Florida
The BEST mechanic ever !!!! Professional, detailed, ethical, and pleasant to deal with. Highly recommend him, I will definitely continue to book appointments with him.

Charles

3 years of experience
34 reviews
Charles
3 years of experience
Kia Sportage - Brake Pads Replacement (Rear) - Nashville, Tennessee
Showed up early (which worked great for me) and accommodated my changed location. Top quality work, and completed quickly!

Need Help With Your Car?

Our certified mobile mechanics make house calls in over 2,000 U.S. cities. Fast, free online quotes for your car repair.

GET A QUOTE