Do Drivers Know Their Warning Lights?

Your worst nightmare comes true when you see that little ominous warning light appear on your dashboard. The situation can quickly escalate when you realise you have no idea what that light means, and you frantically search online to find some answers.

I don’t know anyone who knows every single possible warning light that appears on their dash. After all, they’re rare, and something you’d only look-up if one appeared. The problem with that is, driving with a warning light can cause even bigger problems down the road, and you could fail your MOT if one comes on during the test.

Whether you’re a learner driver or have been on the road for decades, we want to know how well you know your warning lights. Prestone conducted a poll of around 1,000 drivers to see if they could recognise some common warning lights that may appear on your dashboard.

The results of this poll are incredibly worrying. Staggeringly, over half of the individuals polled between the ages of 16-25 have no idea what the tyre pressure warning light looks like. Did you know that proper tire inflation is crucial to tire performance, car handling, and carrying ability? An underinflated tire will negatively impact fuel economy and build up extra heat. Likewise, overinflated tires, will cause early wear in the centre of the tread, poor traction, and won’t be able to properly absorb road impact. If the tire fails from any of these conditions, it could lead to a blowout that causes you to potentially lose control of the vehicle.

Your emissions control reduces the amount of toxins that your vehicle delivers into the environment. Prestone’s poll revealed that 9 in 10 drivers (Gen Z) do not know what the Emissions warning light means.

What we found particularly interesting about this poll is the age split. There is a clear knowledge gap from the point of drivers passing their test as teenagers to becoming experience drivers. Baby boomer drivers and Gen Z performed the best, but the middle age groups Millennials and Gen X struggled more, showing we may forget some of what we learn when learning to drive but gain more knowledge over the years as we may encounter the lights and problems first-hand.

Take the quiz yourself to find how much you know compared to your age group.


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