Volkswagen Dashboard Indicator Lights

To make things easier, Volkswagen color coded the indicators to give you immediate knowledge on if you need to pull over. The basic rules for warning lights are the same as for traffic lights: if it’s yellow, be cautious and check it out as soon as possible. If it’s red, pull off the road safely—then stop the engine and call for assistance. Click on the VW dashboard icons below to learn what these symbols mean and what to do when they light up.

Antilock Braking System (ABS) Malfunction

If there is an antilock brake malfunction, the ABS warning light comes on in combination with the brake warning light.

AdBlue® Level Warning

Refill AdBlue® tank or AdBlue® system malfunction.

AdBlue® System Malfunction Warning

Possible VW fault codes: AdBlue® system malfunction or not filled with standard AdBlue®.

AdBlue® No Restart Warning

Possible inspection light meanings: No engine restart possible—not enough AdBlue®, or AdBlue® system malfunction.

Airbag Problem

This fault code means airbag or belt tensioning system faulty, or passenger airbags deactivated.

Battery Error: Alternator Low Voltage Output

This fault code means battery charging system failure.

Automatic Transmission Malfunction

When you see this yellow error code, have your car’s system checked immediately by a Volkswagen authorized dealer or service facility.

Brake Light Bulb Failure

This yellow dashboard icon means one or more brake lights is burned out.

Brake Pad Wear

When this dashboard indicator light comes up, it means you should check the brake pads.

Bulb Failure

A solid yellow warning light means bulb failure is occurring. A flashing yellow indicator light means the headlight leveling or AFS is defective.

Learn how and when to check your car's exterior and brake lights by watching this video.

Coolant Level Low / Coolant Temperature High

This red warning light means you should stop and check coolant levels (you will hear 3x audible warning). See this video and your owner’s manual for more information about how to check coolant levels.

Diesel Engine Pre-Flow Before Engine Start-Up

This yellow light, when solid, means the diesel engine pre-flow system is switched on. If flashing, this warning light means a malfunction has occurred in the diesel engine.

Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

This Volkswagen code lets you know that your daytime running lights are on.

Direct-Shift Gearbox (DSG®) Transmission Too Hot

Stop! Do not continue driving (allow the transmission to cool with the gear shifter in park position).

Parking Brake

The red warning light means there is a parking brake error. See owner’s manual for more information.

Engine Malfunction (On-board Diagnostics)

If the yellow engine emission malfunction dashboard indicator light comes on, please bring in your vehicle to your local authorized Volkswagen dealer for service.

Electronic Power Control (EPC) – Exhaust Gas

The yellow EPC dashboard symbol means engine malfunction—bring your vehicle in to your local authorized VW dealer for service.

ESP/ASR (Electronic Stabilization Program/Anti-Slip Regulation)

The solid yellow Volkswagen warning light means ESP/ASR is inactive. A flashing warning light signifies an ESP/ASR event. Contact your local authorized Volkswagen dealer for more information.

Particulate Filter (Diesel Engines)

The yellow check engine light code could mean your filter is blocked with soot. See owner’s manual for more information.

Fuel Cap Off or Missing

This error code means your car’s fuel cap is off or missing.

Hood Open

Stop! The red Hood Open VW dashboard indicator light means your engine hood is open or not closed properly. Ensure it is closed before resuming driving.

Watch this video to see how to properly open and close the hood of your Volkswagen.

Hybrid Drive System Malfunction

The yellow light indicates a hybrid system malfunction. See an authorized Volkswagen dealer or service facility. The red indicator light means you should stop the vehicle in a safe place as soon as possible and seek assistance.


This yellow VW dashboard instrument panel light means the incorrect key has been inserted, or that the key is not adapted to the vehicle.

B-X 32: License Plate Bulb Failure

This yellow VW icon with B-X 32 and a light bulb means one or more license plate light bulbs is burned out. See your local authorized Volkswagen dealer to have it replaced.

Low Fuel Level

This error code means you should please refuel (you will hear a 1x audible warning).

Oil Pressure

Stop—the red oil can and yellow pressure warning lights means there is no oil pressure, please turn engine OFF. See owner’s manual (you will hear a 3x audible warning) or consult your local authorized VW dealership.

Oil Level Low

This yellow warning light indicates:

• Check oil level
• Oil sensor—bring in for service

To learn how to periodically check the engine oil on your Volkswagen and help maintain its performance, watch this video.

Parking Brake

The red check engine light code means either:

• Parking brake is applied
• ABS malfunction (if ABS is light on, too), or
• Low brake fluid warning

If ABS malfunction, see owner’s manual. If low brake fluid, STOP (you will hear a 1x audible warning). Consult local authorized dealership for more information.

Rain Sensor Malfunction

Switch the ignition off and on again if this inspection light comes on. If the light stays on, contact an authorized Volkswagen dealer or service facility.

Shift Lock

This green light means the brake must be applied to shift vehicle into gear.


There is a problem with your steering column. Please STOP and do not continue to drive (you will hear a 3x audible warning). The following mean:

• Yellow Solid Warning Light: Power steering assist reduced
• Yellow Flashing: Malfunction in electronic steering column lock
• Red Solid Warning Light: Power steering assist failure
• Red Flashing Warning Light: Malfunction in the electronic steering column lock (you will hear a 1x audible warning).

Tire Pressure Low

This yellow symbol means your tire pressure is low, or system failure (you will hear a 1x audible warning). Watch this video to learn how to determine proper tire pressure as well as reset your Tire Pressure Monitoring System.

Washer Fluid Low

The yellow washer fault code reminds you to fill up your washer fluid (you will hear a 1x audible warning).

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