Volkswagen Dashboard Warning Lights

Vehicle:   Volkswagen
Difficulty: ⚫⚪⚪⚪⚪
DIY Cost:
Est. Time:

List of Volkswagen dashboard warning lights, symbols, and a description of each light meaning meanings. 

Volkswagen AdBlue Level Warning

AdBlue Level Warning

Add AdBlue fluid as soon as possible. If you keep driving with no AdBlue fluid vehicle may no longer start. 

Volkswagen AdBlue No Restart Warning

AdBlue No Restart Warning

The read AdBlue symbol means that the vehicle may not start due to a low AdBlue fluid level or a system problem. 

Volkswagen AdBlue System Malfunction Warning

AdBlue System Malfunction Warning

This light means there is a problem with the AdBlue. It may also come on if you don't use the recommended AdBlue. 

Volkswagen Airbag Problem

Airbag Problem

The airbag light may show up as read in most cases or may show as SRS. It means the airbags have been disabled due to a problem with the airbag system. The problem could be low system voltage, damaged crash sensor, faulty clock spring, or a faulty passenger seat sensor, which is a widespread issue. 

To troubleshoot the airbag light on a VW, use an OBD-II that can read Airbag Codes. 

Volkswagen Antilock Braking System ABS Malfunction

Antilock Braking System ABS Malfunction

This light means there is a problem with the Anti-lock Brake System (ABS). The light may show up as yellow or red. In most cases, this light is triggered due to a faulty ABS wheel speed sensor. In addition to the ABS light, you may also get traction control and stability control lights to come on because those systems depend on ABS to work properly. 

Get an ABS Scanner and follow this guide to find out how to troubleshoot VW ABS light. 

Volkswagen Automatic Transmission Malfunction

Automatic Transmission Malfunction

The gear symbol with an exclamation mark means that there is a problem with the automatic transmission. A Diagnostic Trouble Code (DTC) that provides more information on this problem gets stored in the Transmission Control Unit (TCU). Transmission may get stuck in gear, limp mode, or refuse to go in gear. 

To troubleshoot this problem, you will need an OBD-II scanner that can read transmission codes. Follow this guide to troubleshoot VW transmission problems

Volkswagen Battery Error Alternator Low Voltage Output

Battery Error: Alternator Low Voltage Output

The battery light means that there is a problem with the charging system. You may have a bad battery, worn alternator, defective voltage regulator. In some cases, this light may come on because of the serpentine belt breaks. 

Do not drive with the battery light on because the vehicle may shut off while driving, leading to an accident. Call an auto mechanic to get help with this problem. 

Volkswagen Brake Light Bulb Failure

Brake Light Bulb Failure

This light means that you have a burned light bulb. An error message should display on the dashboard telling you which light has burned out. You can also turn on the light and inspect all the vehicle's exterior light, including license plate lights. 

Volkswagen Brake Pad Wear

Brake Pad Wear

This light means the brake pads are worn out and need to be replaced immediately. This light does not tell you if the rear or front brakes need to be replaced. 

To find out which brakes need to be replaced, an inspection is necessary. 

Volkswagen Bulb Failure

Bulb Failure

If this light stays on all the time, it means there is a burned light bulb. If the blown bulb light flashes, there could be a problem with headlight leveling or AFS being defective.

Volkswagen B-X 32 License Plate Bulb Failure

B-X 32 License Plate Bulb Failure

The yellow light that shows B-X 32 means the license plate light bulbs are burned out. Replace the license plate light bulbs. 

Volkswagen Coolant Level Low or Coolant Temperature High

Coolant Level Low / Coolant Temperature High

If the temperature light stays on or flashes, you need to pull over immediately and shut off the engine. Wait until the engine cools down complety, then check the engine coolant level. 

Add coolant if the level is low. Do not continue to drive if the engine keeps overheating, or you will ruin your engine. Call a mechanic or VW dealer for advice. The vehicle may need to be towed. 

Volkswagen Daytime Running Lights DRL

Daytime Running Lights (DRL)

DRL light on mean that your daytime running lights are on.

Volkswagen Diesel Engine Pre Flow Before Engine Start Up

Diesel Engine  Glow Light

This light comes on when you turn on the ignition. It stays on for about five seconds to warm up the cylinders then turns off. It would be best to wait for the glow plug light to turn off before starting the engine. This is a normal operation for a diesel engine. 

If the glowing light stays on all the time or flashes, it means there is a problem with the glow plug. Typically one of the glow plugs goes bad and needs to be replaced. 

Volkswagen Direct Shift Gearbox DSG Transmission Too Hot

Transmission Too Hot

If this light comes on, it means the automatic transmission has overheated—a common problem with Direct-Shift Gearbox (DSG)  transmission when driven aggressively or when you are towing. 

Pullover immediately places the shifter in Park and allow the transmsion to cool down. 

Volkswagen Electronic Power Control EPC Exhaust Gas

Electronic Power Control (EPC)- Exhaust Gas

The EPC warning light stands for Electronic Power Control. If the EPC light stays on or flashes, there is a problem with either the throttle pedal, throttle body, traction control, or cruise control.

Volkswagen Engine Malfunction On Board Diagnostics

Engine Malfunction (On-Board Diagnostics)

If the check engine light stays on constantly, it means the on-board diagnostic system has detected a problem with the engine, EVAP system, or in some cases, the transmsion. 

If the check engine light is flashing, it means the is an engine misfire. Engine misfires are often caused due to worn spark plugs or ignition coils. 

To find out why your VW check engine light stays on, you will need to use an OBD-II scanner to read the Engine Control Unit's codes. 

Volkswagen ESP ASR Electronic Stabilization Program or Anti Slip Regulation

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

This light means that the traction control and stability control systems are disabled due to problems. Besides, the ABS light may also come on. In most cases, the problem is a faulty ABS wheel speed sensor. 

To find out why the ESP/ASR light stays on, you can use an OBD-II ABS scanner to read the ABS and ESP control modules' codes. 

Volkswagen Fuel Cap Off Or Missing

Fuel Cap Off Or Missing

This light comes on if you add fuel and forget to install the gas cap or tighten it properly. Pullover and make sure that the gas cap is on and is tight. 

If the gas cap is left off for a long time, it will trigger the check engine light. 

If the gas cap is on, but this light comes on, there may be a large EVAP leak present. 

Volkswagen Hood Open

Hood Open

This light means the hood is open. Pullover, and try to close the hood. 

In some cases, this light may come on because the switch that detects if the hood is closed or open is damaged or disconnected. 

Volkswagen Hybrid Drive System Malfunction

Hybrid Drive System Malfunction

This light means there is a problem with the hybrid system. If the light is red, pull over in a safe location and turn off the vehicle. It is important to keep in mind that the vehicle may not restart. 

Call an auto mechanic to get help with this problem. The vehicle may need to be towed. 

Volkswagen Immobilizer

Immobilizer

This light means the vehicle is not detecting the key. You may be using the wrong key; the key is defective, or most likely, the batteries in the key fob are weak and need to be replaced. 

Volkswagen Low Fuel Level

Low Fuel Level

This light means that the vehicle is getting low on fuel. Please fuel the vehicle at the next gas station stop. 

 

Volkswagen Oil Level Low

Oil Level Low

This light means that the oil level is too low. Pullover as soon as possible, turn off the engine, wait 5 minutes, and then check the engine oil level. Add engine oil if the level is low. 

If the oil level is correct, but the oil level light stays on, you may have a faulty oil level sensor or low oil pressure. Do not drive with this light on. 

Volkswagen Oil Pressure

Oil Pressure

If you see the red oil light come on and stay on, you should pull over immediately and turn off the engine. There is no oil in the engine, or oil pressure is too low. Wait a few minutes, then check the oil level. 

Do not drive or keep the engine running if the oil light stays on. Call a mechanic to get help with this problem. The vehicle will most likely have to be towed to the nearest auto repair shop. 

Volkswagen Parking Brake

Parking Brake

This light means there is a problem with the electronic parking brake. For example, the electric motor for the parking brake may have failed. 

 

Volkswagen Parking brake

Parking brake

This light means that there is a problem with the brake system. Check the brake fluid level first. If the ABS light comes on too, there may be a problem with the ABS. 

Do not drive with this light on. 

Volkswagen Particulate Filter Diesel Engines

Diesel Particulate Filter (Diesel Engines)

This light means that the Diesel Particulate Filter (DPF) needs to be cleaned or replaced due to high soot content. 

 

Volkswagen Rain Sensor Malfunction

Rain Sensor Malfunction

This light means there is a problem with the rain sensor. Pullover and clean the area at the top of the windshield. Restart the engine and check if the light turns off. 

If the light remains on, you will need to troubleshoot the problem by reading faulty codes with a VW All System Scanner.

Volkswagen Shift Lock

Shift Lock

This light reminds you to press the brake pedal to shift the shifter to Drive. 

Volkswagen Steering

Steering

If the yellow steering wheel light stays on, it means there is reduced steering assist. If the yellow steering flashes, it means there is a problem with the electronic steering assist. 

If the steering light is red or flashing, it means that the power steering has failed. 

Volkswagen Tire Pressure Low

TPMS - Tire Pressure Low

This light means tire pressure is low for one or more tires. Check the tire pressure and add air if needed. Your Volkswagen's recommended tire pressure is printed on a sticker that you can see when you open the driver's door. Typically the recommended tire pressure for most VW is 35 PSI. 

If the TPMS light comes on with an exclamation mark in the center, it means the TPMS system has a problem. One of the TPMS sensors may be bad, or the TPMS system itself may be bad. 

Volkswagen Washer Fluid Low

 Washer Fluid Low

This light means that you need to add windshield washer fluid. Follow this guide on how to add windshield washer fluid on a Volkswagen. 

If we missed a warning light, send us a picture of the light, and we will add it to this article. 

By YOUCANIC Automotive Experts
Nov 2020