Know how to maintain your car gauges as they are the first signal makers when something goes wrong!-Brought to you by PartsAvatar auto body shop

Nothing is more frustrating than a faulty reading when trouble is brewing under your hood. It’s really important for the readings to be clear in order to know what’s going in your car.

If you are looking to improve your speedometer, PartsAvatar Car Parts Canada is here to get you back in tune with your ride at an affordable price.

dashboard signals

Here in this article, lets discuss about how to troubleshoot car gauges problem and find a useful remedy so that you get precise reading of your car!

The instrument panel or what we call a gauge cluster includes a speedometer and lots of little symbols that warn us of trouble with our car by lightning small signals. Some of the popular signals are check engine light, headlights, low or empty fuel, rising engine temperature, speed etc.

There have been various styles of panels like before the popular style was analog gauges. But with advanced technologies and luxury requirements of a car, the gauges have their own style statement to lure a customer.

Similarly, every warning light has its own meaning to alert us of whatever is happening inside. But some complex warning lights could indicate to more than one problem which only a technician could figure out. For instance, check engine light is like a nightmare to many drivers as it might be associated with car engine problems, fuel system issues might be there, ignition or exhaust might be there to trigger it.

So, you have to visit a professional and repairs could be heavy depending on the damage that has been done.

Popular dashboard signals

Before moving further to maintenance lets get a quick review on some popularly used warning signals on our dash.


Check engine light as already mentioned above, could reflect the issue with your car’s emission system or may indicate a trivial problem like a loose gas cap!

Brake system alert is triggered when some serious braking issue occurs with your car’s brakes. Make sure to contact the mechanic immediately.

Engine overheating issues are reflected by engine temperature warning.

There are other car light based signals light fog beams which are activated when the fog beam is turned on. Similarly, you often get signals for the headlights when they are active.

There is also signal for low beam in which the headlights asymmetrically light the road’s surface which is better for oncoming cars.

There are various other warning lights as this is only a small portion of them. Check your car’s manual as it contains every information about your car’s listed warning lights.

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Lets move to the maintenance thing. What to do when the gauges are not working properly and how to identify this problem.

Faulty Gauges

What to do if no gauge in your car is working? There might be a problem associated with blown fuse or a defective instrument cluster. But if the gauges all read low, it might be voltage regulator that is at fault.

But what if you read high readings? Still it might be voltage regulator’s fault or it could be wiring problem.

So all in all, irrespective of your car’s cluster design, this problem might be associated with either fuse or wiring problem.

To diagnose the problem and warning signals, usually you will have to visit a technical and generally problems like this are checked using multimetre or OBD scanners.

But what if the fuses are okay, then what to do? Check the power at individual gauges which requires much time and labour. So, take help of someone who is comfortable with assembling and disassembling car related things.

If one gauge doesn’t work

Its an easy thing to troubleshoot as there might be bad wiring, gauge or the sending unit. Again if you are able to remove or install sensors, then go for it.

If one or more warning light fail to illuminate when you first turn the key on, it usually indicates a blown bulb. If none of the lights come on at all, check the fuses and wiring to the instrument cluster first.

If the warning light comes on and stays on when the engine is running, that usually indicates a problem with a system.

If gauge seems erratic

What if you are getting high readings? You might have to deal with malfunctioning instrument voltage regulator or a bad ground.

If you can, then remove the voltage regulator and clean its terminals. After cleaning them, reinstall it and check whether the readings become normal or are still erratic?

If not, then your problem of bad voltage regulator is solved easily.

But the gauges that read full all the time are caused due to bad ground. Secure the ground tight and make sure that it is clean for correct readings from your dash.

Indicator or dash lights are faulty

Indicator is not working? Its not good especially when you need to alert the other drivers of your possible actions. If Dash lights also fail to illuminate, there might be some ground issue.

Make sure your instrument cluster is not properly grounded. You can check the grounds which are usually under the dash. Check if they are properly grounded and look for corrosion and other rusting signs on the wiring.

If they are clean and grounded securely, you might get the illuminated lights back.

These are some of the prominent problems faced by drivers in relation to the gauges. So, with these tips and tricks, you can at least do a background check before going for costly repairs and labour costs.

This much knowledge about wiring and gauges is must so that if something’s wrong with speedometer then the scam mechanic won’t use your money on costly repairs which are not even needed.

To find out more about getting the best possible aftermarket auto part for your make and model, delivered straight to your door, speak to one of the PartsAvatar Auto Parts expert who is here to advise you on everything you need.