Volkswagen Dashboard Symbols & Lights


The Volkswagen dashboard symbols are here to keep you safe while driving. But as a driver, these VW dashboard symbols can be confusing. Don't fear. Gunther Volkswagen is here. There are a whopping 33 possible Volkswagen dashboard lights that can pop up at any given time in your car. We are here to explain all of the Volkswagen dash light meanings to you. That way, when you are driving, you can feel prepared and knowledgeable about what your dashboard is trying to tell you. If you have any questions after reading about the Volkswagen dashboard symbols or think you may need service, feel free to contact us. Our team members are always here to help.

What Are These Volkswagen Warning Lights For?

No matter what Volkswagen vehicle you drive, it is filled with intricate computer systems and technology. They work together to help make your car run smoothly. But, let's say you're peacefully driving in Daytona, FL, and one of your Volkswagen Jetta dashboard lights illuminates. This means your car is trying to tell you something. The cool thing is that because there are so many different VW dashboard lights for any given situation, your vehicle isn't just screaming at you. It is often telling you exactly what it needs based on which of your Volkswagen dashboard symbols is on.

The 33 Volkswagen warning lights come in three categories: red, yellow, and green. Think about a stoplight. Green means go. If one of the two green lights is on, you're good to go! These VW dashboard symbols are simply informational. When a traffic light is yellow, it is warning you. You can still drive, but it's telling you to proceed with caution. Same with your dashboard symbols. The 24 possible yellow indicator lights are telling you there is a possible issue, but you can proceed with caution. If you see a yellow light, we recommend speaking with a technician as soon as you can. And, red means STOP. If one of the ten red VW dashboard lights comes on, pull over safely, stop the vehicle, and immediately turn off the engine. You will likely need to tow your car to a service center to help with the issue.

Below, we will run through all 33 Volkswagen dashboard symbols to help you familiarize yourself.

The 33 Volkswagen Dashboard Symbols, Explained

We have listed the warning lights in alphabetical order for you below. We will let you know if it will illuminate green, yellow, or red. We will also tell you where you can expect to see some of the indicators pop up (please note that all Volkswagen vehicles are different, and your light may illuminate in a different spot).

ABS light:

This is a yellow light. It will show up as "ABS" in big letters on your dash, typically on the speedometer side towards the top. This is telling you that your Anti-Lock Braking System (ABS) is malfunctioning. It will come on in combination with a brake warning light.

AdBlue® light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like a water bottle pouring over to the left with some liquid coming out. This light means your AdBlue® tank needs to be refilled or is having a malfunction.

AdBlue® light (Part 2):

his is a yellow light. If you see the symbol stated above together with a wrench, this means your AdBlue® has a system malfunction. It is also possible that it was not filled with standard AdBlue® fluid.

AdBlue® light (Part 3):

This is a red light. This means you cannot restart your engine due to AdBlue® issues. Possible issues could be not enough AdBlue® or a malfunction.

Airbag Problem light:

This is a yellow light. You'll see it on the left side of the speedometer on your dash. It looks like a person sitting with their seatbelt and a big circle in front of their head. It means the airbag or seatbelt system is faulty or the airbags are deactivated for passengers.

Automatic Transmission Malfunction light:

 This is a yellow light. It looks like a wheel with an exclamation point in the middle. You'll want to have your car's system checked immediately by a Volkswagen service center.

Battery Error light:

 This is a red light.It looks like a rectangular battery with a + and - symbol. It means your battery charging system is failing. It is usually on the top of the tachometer.

Brake Light Bulb Failure light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like an upside-down lightbulb with parentheses around it. It means that one or more of your brake lights is out.

Brake Pad Wear light:

This is a yellow light. It is a circle with dotted parentheses around it. This is telling you to check your brake pads.

Bulb Failure light:

This is a yellow light. It's an upside-down lightbulb. If this Volkswagen dashboard symbol is solid, it means bulb failure is occurring. If it is flashing, it means the headlight or AFS is defective.

Coolant Level light:

This is a red light. It means your coolant level is low or your coolant temperature is too high. Stop and check levels immediately.

Diesel Engine Pre-Glow light:

This is a yellow light. You'll see it on the top left of the RPM side (tachometer) of your dash. It looks like a curling line. When solid, it means the pre-glow system is on. If flashing, it means there is a malfunction in the diesel engine.

DRL light:

This is a green light. It says DRL in big, bold letters. It is simply letting you know your daytime running lights are on. It will be on the bottom right of the speedometer usually.

DSG® light:

This is a red light. It looks like a thermometer inside a wheel. It means your Direct-Shift Gearbox (DSG) is too hot. Stay in park and do not drive until the transmission has cooled.

Engine Malfunction light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like a little engine. You're having an engine issue and need to bring it in for service. You'll see it on the left side of the tachometer.

EPC light:

This is a yellow light. It simply says EPC. It means your electronic power control is malfunctioning. Bring your car for service. It will be on the left side of your tachometer.

ESP/ASR light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like a car with squiggly lines behind the wheels (indicating slipping). It means your electronic stabilization program or anti-slip regulation system is inactive. It'll be on the top/middle of your speedometer.

Fuel Cap light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like the cap for your gas tank is flying off the car. And, no surprise, that's because it means your cap is gone or off.

Hood light:

This is a red light. It looks like a car with the hood open. And, you guessed it, it means your engine hood is open or that it was closed improperly. Close it before driving.

Hybrid Drive light:

This VW warning light looks like a car with an exclamation point through it. If it is yellow, you have a hybrid system malfunction and need to take it to be serviced when you can. If the same symbol is red, stop the vehicle and get assistance.

Immobilizer light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like a vehicle with a key on the bottom. It means the wrong key has been inserted; therefore, you can't move the car. You'll see this on the top of your tachometer.

License Plate Bulb light:

This is a yellow light. It is also called the B-X 32 light. It looks like a license plate with a B-X 32 on it and a light above it. It means your license plate light bulb is burned out. A Volkswagen dealer can replace it.

Low Fuel light:

This is a yellow light. We are sure you have seen this one before. It means it's time for more gas. Be aware it is dangerous to drive with your tank below 25 available miles.

Oil Pressure light:

 There are two versions of this light. The yellow one looks like your speedometer with an exclamation point to the left of it. The red one looks like an oil can with a drop coming out of it. If you see either, but especially the red one, we advise you to turn your engine off. Contact your local dealership ASAP.

Oil Level light:

This is a yellow light. It looks like an oil can with a zig-zagging line under it. It means you need to check your oil level or oil sensor. You can periodically check your oil yourself, but if this light comes on, you should bring it in.

Parking Brake light (Part One):

This is a red light. It's an exclamation point in a circle. It can mean multiple things. 1) Your parking brake is applied. You must remove the parking brake to drive. 2) If this light comes on at the same time as the ABS signal, you could have an ABS malfunction. 3) You could have low brake fluid. Try undoing the parking brake and see if it goes away. You should hear an audible warning once you stop the car if it's your brake fluid. If brake fluid is low, schedule service.

 Parking Brake light (Part Two):

This is a red light. It is a P in a circle that's crossed out. It's telling you there is an error with your parking brake.

 Particulate Filter light:

This is a yellow light. It is a rectangle with polka dots in it and a nozzle coming out of the right side. It is telling you to check your diesel engine because it could be blocked with soot. It will likely appear on the left side of your tachometer.

 Rain Sensor light:

 This is a yellow light. It looks like a windshield with a light shining on it. Try turning your vehicle off and back on again. If the warning symbol is still there, see a service center.

Shift Lock light:

 This is a green light. It looks like a shoe in a circle. It simply means the brake has to be applied to shift the vehicle into gear. It is usually found on the bottom left of the speedometer

Steering light:

This one has a whopping four meanings. All will look like a steering wheel. If the wheel is yellow and solid, your power steering assist is reduced. If it is yellow and flashing, the electronic steering column lock is malfunctioning. If it is red and solid, your power steering assist is failing. If the wheel light is red and flashing, there is a major issue with the steering column lock. You'll hear an audible warning on the last one. You'll see it on the left side of the tachometer.

Tire Pressure light:

 This is a yellow light. A common one. It means your tire pressure is low. Pull over ASAP to check for holes or punctures to make sure you don't get a flat. You can manually add air, or if it's a larger tire issue, you can see a dealership.

Washer Fluid light:

 This is a yellow light. It looks like your windshield wiper with some fluid in it. All this means is you need more washer fluid for your windshield wipers.

Don't Panic!

Phew. We know that is a lot. Don't worry. We don't expect you to memorize this. Please feel free to save this link to reference in the future. And, if you don't understand what any of the Volkswagen dashboard symbols mean, you can always call us. We know it can get confusing. Be aware you'll also see symbols pop up for simple things like cruise control being on, your brights being on, and your parking brake being on. These aren't warnings. They just keep you informed.

Remember, these indicator lights are here to keep you safe. If you see a yellow or red one pop up, it is best to get assistance ASAP. That's what we are here for, to keep Dayonta, FL drivers informed and serviced.