A Complete Guide to Understanding Your Warning Lights

May 27th, 2021 by

Have you ever seen a dashboard warning light in your Toyota but didn’t know what it meant?

At Fernelius Toyota, we are committed to treating our customers like family — and that means keeping you safe and in the know on everything regarding your car. Our family-owned-and-operated dealership has been serving Northern Michigan since 2004, and we’ve helped countless drivers better understand the ins and outs of their new Toyota.

Here’s a simple guide to every warning light you may come across:

Common Symbols

  • Service Vehicle: This light can indicate a variety of non-engine system issues. It also kicks on in place of any individual icons that may not be working.
  • Washer Fluid Reminder: Your washer fluid is low and needs to be refilled.
  • High Beam Light Indicator: Your brights are on.
  • Door Ajar: A door or your trunk has not been closed properly.
  • Cruise Control: Cruise control or adaptive cruise control is engaged.

Safety Symbols

  • Airbag Fault: There is a fault in the airbag system, and it needs servicing.
  • Transmission Temperature: The transmission temperature is above normal. You need to check for coolant levels, fan operation, the radiator cap, and leaks.
  • Traction Control Light: Your TCS is activated for safer driving.
  • Coolant Temp Warning: Your coolant levels are not what they should be, your fan isn’t functioning as it should, or there is a coolant leak.
  • Reduced Power Warning: This could mean that one of your engine’s components is malfunctioning.


  • ABS: The anti-lock braking system feature prevents wheels from locking up during braking.
  • Brake Fluid: Your brake fluid level is low.
  • Brake Lights Warning: Your exterior brake light bulb or bulbs are not working correctly. You should check and address this issue immediately for the safety of you and your passengers.
  • Parking Brake Light: This symbol is a circled P, and it means that your parking brake is on.

See a light that needs to be addressed? Call us today at 231-333-3005 or schedule a service appointment online.

Posted in Safety, Service