Monday 21st August 2017
What’s your car trying to tell you?

Are you confident in recognising each and every possible warning light that might show on your dashboard? Or are there a few that would raise a question mark?

Anthony Joseph, Daily Mail, reports:

They are an everyday sight that could mean the difference between a smooth journey and a costly repair bill.

But many of us have no idea what the lights and symbols on our car dashboards actually mean and when to take action.

They flag up issues with the engine or can even save a driver's life in the most serious of cases - but how many do you know?

According to a new survey, one in three cannot recognise which symbol is the headlamp indicator, while 27 per cent can't identify the 'check engine' sign, the study of 2,000 drivers found.

And when people do understand what the car is warning them about, very few know how to manage the problem themselves.

Two thirds of those polled have no idea how to check the oil, just under half don't know how to change a tyre and 44 per cent wouldn't have a clue how to change the windscreen wipers.

While 58 per cent have no idea what their tyre thread limit should be, when it becomes illegal, or how to check it.

David Carter, spokesman for Accident Advice Helpline, said: 'It's worrying how little drivers know about their own cars.

'Knowing the meaning of a dashboard symbol on your car could be the difference between having an accident or not.'

The study reveals only 16 per cent of drivers would now try to fix a problem with their car themselves.

Just under half of those polled would look online if the dashboard started flashing at them with unrecognisable symbols.

And three per cent of people would continue to drive their car regardless of warnings until it actually felt unsafe.

When it comes to car maintenance, a quarter of motorists admit they have been late in getting their car through the MOT.

Of these, 18 per cent took their car to the garage more than 16 days after the test was due.

Most common reasons for missing the car MOT were forgetting, feeling the car was safe and not being able to afford it.

Understanding the warning signs that your car is programmed to give you can make the difference between a quick fix and a potentially costly or dangerous one. Getting your car regularly serviced, with an up to date MOT is the best way to protect the health of your vehicle, and it’s the responsibility of the driver to understand warning lights and act promptly to resolve the issue.

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