Volkswagen Dashboard Warning Lights

Volkswagen Warning Lights Dashboard Banner

images sourced from Volkswagen USA Service & Parts

Your car’s dashboard provides crucial vehicle information from speed to RPM to how much gas you have in the tank.The Volkswagen dashboard also houses a variety of warning lights that show you an informed diagnosis on what issues are affecting your vehicle. If you see a dashboard warning light turn on, the best course of action is to schedule a service appointment at a Volkswagen service bay to have the issue properly inspected and repaired. To learn about what your Volkswagen dashboard lights mean and how to solve the issue, read our quick guide to your Volkswagen dashboard symbols below.



Green Dashboard Symbols

Volkswagen makes it easy to determine if the dashboard light that goes on suddenly is something you need to address immediately or if it can wait. If the light is green, no matter the symbol, you have nothing to be concerned about. These are informational warning lights and include:


Daytime Running Lights

When you see the DRL symbol, it means your daytime running lights are on. If you’d like to keep these on, do nothing. To turn off your daytime running lights, adjust the settings on your headlight control.


Shift Lock

The green shift lock symbol lets you know you cannot shift gears without applying the brake.



Yellow Dashboard Symbols

When you see a yellow light on your dash, it is a sign you have or might have an issue with the monitoring system. The yellow is just like a traffic light: It’s telling you to use caution while driving and to fix the issue in a short timeframe to avoid vehicle damage. When you see a yellow light, bring your vehicle to your dealership’s service station so a VW technician can evaluate it and complete the maintenance required to turn the dashboard light off. Types of yellow warning lights on Volkswagen vehicles include the following symbols and issues.



The ABS symbol indicates a possible issue with the anti-lock braking system. If you see this light, the ABS might be malfunctioning.


AdBlue Level

This light indicates you need to refill the AdBlue, or diesel exhaust fluid, as soon as possible. If these levels get too low, your engine might not start.



When the airbag indicator lights up, the airbags are either malfunctioning or deactivated. This is a very serious issue and should be serviced immediately by a professional VW service technician.


Automatic Transmission Malfunction

If you see the automatic transmission malfunction light, bring your VW to your dealer’s service department as soon as you can. It means you have a problem with your transmission. Prolonged vehicle use with this warning light on can incur serious damage to your vehicle.


Engine Malfunction (On-Board Diagnostics)

The yellow engine light indicates an emission problem. A service technician can diagnose and repair your emissions systems to ensure your vehicle is meeting state and federal standards.


Diesel Engine Pre-Flow Before Engine Startup

The yellow light that looks like loops on a rope means the diesel engine pre-flow system is on. If it’s flashing, it means the diesel engine is malfunctioning.


Rain Sensor Malfunction

If you see the rain sensor inspection light come on, switch the engine off and then on again. If it comes back on, contact an authorized Volkswagen service facility.


Tire Pressure Monitoring

The tire pressure monitoring indicator looks almost like a low tire. When it goes on, you have at least one tire that needs air or nitrogen. You’ll also get one audible warning with this light. Tire inflation and rotation will help solve this issue.



The steering light is critical. If it goes on and you get an audible warning, pull over. A solid yellow means you have reduced power steering assistance. If it’s flashing yellow, the electronic steering column lock has malfunctioned.


Brake Light Bulb Failure

You have at least one brake light burned out if this light comes on. This issue is easy to fix with a replacement light bulb. If this issue persists you may incur traffic tickets and violations from driving without a brake light.


Fuel Cap Off or Missing

Check your fuel cap when this light goes on. It’s either not on correctly or it’s missing. This is not a serious issue for the health of your vehicle but is a good reminder of how to maintain your car properly.


Oil Level Low

If you see a yellow indicator light that looks like a yellow oil can, it means the oil level is low and you need to change or top it off. If, when you check your oil, it’s at the correct level, bring your VW to your service station to have a technician assess the oil sensor.


Bulb Failure

A solid yellow bulb indicator lets you know you have a complete headlight bulb failure. If it’s flashing, it means the headlight leveling is malfunctioning or the adaptive front-lighting system (AFS) is defective.


Hybrid Drive System Malfunction

A yellow light lets you know the hybrid system has a malfunction. You should bring your car to the service station as soon as you can to prevent further internal damages.


Red Volkswagen Indicator Lights

If one of the red lights on the dash comes on, stop the car immediately or as soon as you can do so safely, and turn off the engine. In most cases, you will need to call for a tow.


Oil Pressure Warning

The oil pressure light means the vehicle has no oil pressure. Stop the car immediately to avoid damaging the engine.


Hood Open

If you see the red light with the hood up, it means the hood is not closed properly. Stop and close the hood to avoid a dangerous situation.


Brake System

The red brake light indicator can mean a few things concerning your brake system. It could indicate the parking brake is on, or it could mean the brake fluid is low. If the ABS light is on as well, the ABS has malfunctioned.


Coolant Level Low

The red coolant light means the coolant level is low. You should pull over as soon as possible to check the owner’s manual and determine what type of coolant to add.


AdBlue No Restart Warning

The red AdBlue warning light means you don’t have enough AdBlue to restart the vehicle or the system has malfunctioned. This may need a towing service if you stop your engine.


DSG Transmission Too Hot

If you see the direct-shift gearbox (DSG) transmission light illuminate red, stop the car immediately. Allow your transmission to cool, keeping the gear shifter in the park position.


Alternator Low Voltage Output

The red battery light means the charging system has failed. The alternator is not getting the power it needs to keep the car running.



A solid red steering light indicates power steering assist failure, and flashing red means the electronic steering column lock has malfunctioned. The flashing red will come with an audible warning.


Hybrid Drive System Malfunction

If this light turns red, the hybrid drive system has failed completely. Stop the vehicle as soon as you safely can and contact a tow service to bring your vehicle to a Volkswagen service center near you.


Service Your Volkswagen At Our Service Bay in Streetsboro

If you have questions about your Volkswagen indicator lights, call us at Volkswagen of Streetsboro. We can help you determine the severity of the issue and offer several options for addressing your vehicle’s issue. Our service team can help you keep your vehicle maintained at an affordable price with our rotating service coupons and specials. We’ll be happy to help service your vehicle and keep you on the roads.


Volkswagen of Streetsboro Service Center, Classic Drive, Streetsboro, OH, USA

Volkswagen of Streetsboro 41.248, -81.3648339.