What Does Check Gauges Mean on a Jeep? - Four Wheel Trends (2023)

Every Jeep owner has probably seen the indicator check gauge light on the dashboard at one point.

When this happened to me for the first time, I was confused and didn’t know what to do.

I then decided to find out more about this warning, and this is what I gathered.

On the Jeep dashboard is a complete list of symbols and warnings that appears once in a while.

Some indicate severe issues, but others are just a precautionary warning that your car needs attention.

One very common indication that you will encounter is the “Check Gauges” light.

What Does Check Gauges Mean on a Jeep?

When the check gauge light illuminates in your Jeep, it means the systems that your vehicle’s gauges are monitoring are malfunctioning. This may be due to an issue with the electrical system, low engine oil, or other fluids monitored by the gauge.

What Should You Do When the Check Gauge Lights Illuminates?

If the Check Gauge Light illuminates while you’re driving, do not panic.

Instead, get to a safe spot, pull over and park your car.

Look at the other gauge lights on the dashboard as the engine is running to determine which one is out of range.

Sometimes this can happen due to an overheated engine, loose fuel cap, charging system issues, or you could be running out of fuel.

If you hear a rattling sound besides, the issue could be with the oil pressure gauge.

Remember also to confirm if the gauges provide the correct information.

For instance, your battery gauge could indicate low voltage, or the speedometer may fail to tell the accurate speed you are driving at.

The problem could also be as simple as running out of gas, so you need to refill, but if it’s a complex warning like engine malfunction, have a mechanic inspect and fix the issue.

Also, if the problem involves multiple components, your car needs thorough inspection since this signifies an underlying issue that needs attention.

You can prevent this by keeping up with regular maintenance.

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Check your engine oil and other fluids regularly, at least once per week.

If you neglect the engine oil, it gets so low to even register on the dipstick, which can reduce your engine’s lifespan.

What Are the Different Warning Gauges in a Jeep?

Jeeps are usually very communicative, and there are various indicator lights in the instrumental cluster to assist the driver in monitoring multiple gauges in the car.

Sometimes the lights can give you mixed signals, especially if you don’t know what they mean.

Here are the lights, warnings, and indicators found in Jeeps.

Charge System Trouble Light

The battery light warns the driver that there is a problem with the charging system.

Once the battery light illuminates, the vehicle might shut at any time.

So, get a safe stopping spot as quickly as possible.

In most cases, the battery light turns on when you have a failing alternator or a bad battery that won’t charge.

If you see the word MAIN below the battery image, the hybrid battery has issues, so have a professional service it soon.

Oil Warning Lights

If the car lights up a symbol similar to an oil can, this is an oil pressure warning.

But, if you see a wavy line under the can, the oil level is low, so you need to refuel.

Some vehicles indicate low oil pressure or level in writing.

If the can symbol has a thermometer above, this is an oil temperature indicator, and you need to pull over and shut down the engine immediately.

Engine Temperature Indicator

The engine temperature is very high if your Jeep lights up a red symbol that looks like a thermometer in the water.

Stop and turn off the engine immediately.

Allow it to cool down, but if it continues to overheat, call a mechanic or tow your Jeep to the nearest repair shop.

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A blue thermometer signifies that the temperature is way below the optimum required.

But, if it blinks from red to blue, this indicates an electrical malfunction in the cooling system.

If it’s yellow or amber, the fuel has entered the engine oil.

Run the engine until warm to evaporate the fuel.

Brake Troubles Warning

When the brake light turns on, there could be issues with the braking system.

Sometimes it might be due to low brake fluid level or malfunctioning brakes.

Do not drive your vehicle in such a condition.

Bring your Jeep to a stop and call your dealer immediately.

Low Coolant Indicator

If the low coolant symbol lights up, it simply means that the engine’s cooling system is low on fluid.

Pull over, wait for the engine to cool so you can resolve this issue.

Transmission Fault Indicator

The powertrain trouble light turns on when the system detects a problem with the automatic transmission, shift system, or transaxle.

You might experience an erratic shift, or the transmission will get stuck if the light stays on.

Driving in such conditions will cause more problems to the transmission.

Have a professional evaluate and fix the issue.

The transmission fluid is overheating if the transmission symbol has a thermometer inside rather than the usual exclamation mark.

Mostly this issue comes up while you are towing with your Jeep.

Pull over and let the transmission cool down.

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Power Steering Trouble Light

If a steering symbol with an exclamation lights up, there is an issue with electronic power steering.

When you ignore this, it will get harder to steer the wheel.

The warning symbol might appear in red or yellow. You can reset the electronic system on your own.

So, pull over, shut down the engine, and restart the car.

If the warning light doesn’t go out, take your vehicle to a specialized dealer for repair.

Check Engine Light Symbol

While driving your Jeep and you see the check engine light, there is an issue with the engine, emission system, or transmission.

The engine light indicator can light up when there is a missing or loose gas cap.

In this case, check the cap and install it properly.

It can also happen due to dirty mass airflow or faulty oxygen sensors.

With such issues, your car will begin to experience increased emissions, impaired gas mileage, and frequent stalling.

Have it serviced to avoid such problems.

Tire Pressure Monitor Indicator

When the tire pressure indicator light illuminates, there is low pressure in one or more tires.

Driving on low or high-pressure tires is very dangerous.

Bring the pressure to the recommended 35psi.

Why Are My Jeep’s Gauge Lights Not Working?

If your dashboard warning lights break down, you might not be able to tell when your car begins to experience problems until it’s too late.

Once they cease to operate, you should try to locate the problem and find a solution as soon as possible since this can pose a safety hazard.

Start by checking the dimmer switch.

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You could have pressed it by accident, or another person made some adjustments that switched it off.

Turn your vehicle on. Then, locate the dimmer switch on the console near the steering or as part of the headlight switch.

If you can’t find it, refer to the user manual.

Once you locate it, turn the knob to see if the lights on your dash will get brighter.

If this doesn’t help, the issue could be the fuse.

Look for the fuse powering the dashboard lights, usually under the hood near the engine or below the dashboard.

Once you find it, take out the lid, inspect the fuse to see if it’s blown.

Before taking out the fuse, ensure that you cut power to the fuse box on the ignition.

If you notice broken metal strips, filaments, or blackening, replace the fuse with a similar one with the same amperage rating.

Return the fuse cover, turn on the Jeep to see whether the dashboard might.

At times you may need to replace the faulty light bulbs.

Take off the faceplate covering the dashboard gauge panel, disconnect the switches, controls, and cables.

Remove the bulb at the back of the instrumental panel and replace them with new ones of the same model and size.

Put on gloves to avoid touching the new bulb with your bare hands.

Replace the faceplate, reconnect the connections, start your vehicle, turn the headlights and see if the dashboard lights.

If you find the steps quite confusing or the dashboard fails to light even after trying all the methods, seek professional assistance.

Jeep “Check Gauges”

Check gauge light indicates a problem within the system.

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To diagnose the exact issue, you need to familiarize yourself with various warning signs and symbols in a Jeep.

The best way to prevent such issues is by keeping up with regular vehicle servicing and repairing minor issues once they appear.

This way, you will enjoy smooth and safe rides, and your Jeep will serve you long enough.


What does check gauges mean on my Jeep? ›

the check gauges light means one of the gauges on the dash is operating normal. once you fix your battery from dieing it should go off. 3 people found this helpful.

What causes the check gauges light to come on? ›

Usually when the Check Gauges light illuminates it is due to one of the gauges going out of range, such as your electrical system, low engine oil or other type of fluids being monitored through the gauges.

What does the gauge mean on the dash light comes? ›

Temperature Warning Light/Gauge: this light goes on when the engine temperature or the radiator's coolant is too hot. In some vehicles, a gauge is used that would show the needle in the warning zone of HOT. If this warning light comes on while driving, STOP as soon as you can at a safe place and shut the engine off.

What is check gauge? ›

It monitors the gauges that monitor things like your engine oil pressure, fuel level, engine temperature, and battery performance.

What does the A with a circle and exclamation mark mean in my Jeep? ›

Service Stop/Start System Warning Light

? Looks like: A capital letter “A” with an arrow encompassing it and an exclamation mark to the right. ? Means: There is an issue with your Stop/Start system.

How do I reset my gauges? ›

Press and hold the “Trip/Odo” button and turn the car back on. While you're holding the button, turn the key back to the “ON” position. Hold the button down for another 2 seconds after the car's back on, then release.

Can I drive with a check system light on? ›

Can you drive a car with the engine light on? It's okay to drive for a few miles, but be sure to schedule an inspection of the engine as soon as possible. If the check engine light comes on while you're driving, don't panic! Pay attention and see if the car is driving any differently than normal.

Can I drive my car with check light? ›

It's okay to drive the car if the check engine light is steady. But only if the vehicle's essential systems such as brakes and lights are operational. Keep a close eye on your car's dashboard warning lights, including the coolant temperature and oil pressure.

Why is my check engine light on but everything seems fine? ›

Sometimes, the check engine light comes on to let you know that there's a problem with the car's internal diagnostic mechanism. That means the system could be “finding” a problem that doesn't exist, or it could be that loose wire systems are creating a false positive in the system.

What are some common dash light warnings? ›

Light 'em Up: A Guide to Common Dashboard Warning Lights
  • Fog Lights. See all 14 photos.
  • Low Tire Pressure. See all 14 photos.
  • Engine Oil Warning Light. See all 14 photos. ...
  • Check Engine Light. See all 14 photos.
  • Traction or Stability Control Light. ...
  • Coolant Level Warning Light. ...
  • Brake System Warning Light. ...
  • ABS Sensor Warning Light.
Apr 2, 2020

What do gauge numbers mean? ›

Gauge (or gage) sizes are numbers that indicate the thickness of a piece of sheet metal, with a higher number referring to a thinner sheet. The equivalent thicknesses differ for each gauge size standard, which were developed based on the weight of the sheet for a given material.

What is used to diagnose gauge problems? ›

Gauges themselves rarely fail, but if they do, testing is easy using an ohm meter. Gauges like the fuel level, oil pressure, and water temperature will show continuity across their connections if they're in working order. Otherwise, a bad gauge will show no continuity or be "open" when checked with an ohm meter.

What does check gauges mean on Jeep Grand Cherokee? ›

The "Check Gauges" light means just that. Look at all the gauges while engine is running and see which one is not in it's normal range. Gas gauge doesn't matter. Temperature gauge should be about 195 degrees, voltage should be about 14 volts, and oil pressure at idle is about 40 psi.

What is the circle with exclamation mark? ›

Exclamation Point in a Circle: Brake Warning Lights

This could be a routine warning or a sensor detecting depleted brake pads or low brake fluid. Is it safe to drive with the brake warning light on? Your brakes are essential to your safety on the road.

What does an A with a circle around it and an mean? ›

The symbol is an acronym of the slogan "Anarchy is Order" by French anarchist Pierre-Joseph Proudhon. It is now commonly interpreted as an 'A' in a circle.

What is half circle and exclamation mark? ›

Exclamation point inside half circle

This symbol may appear if your vehicle has a tire pressure monitoring system. When the symbol illuminates, it means that one of your tires has lost a significant amount of pressure. Pull over to check your tires, and refill any that are low as soon as possible.

How do I fix my gauges not working? ›

First, check all connections to be sure that your colors and wire functions are mating with each other (green to green, blue to blue, etc,) and check for good crimps. With the key in the “ON” position, take a test light and check the feed wire at back of each gauge. You should have 12 volts at all gauges.

What causes gauges to go crazy? ›

Weak Battery Connection

There may be a loose connection that causes the electrical system to go haywire. If you've noticed your instrument cluster going crazy after you've driven on a bumpy road, a loose connection may be the cause. If you find that the connectors are loose, tighten them.

What fuse controls the dash gauges? ›

The instrument cluster fuse, also known as the dashboard fuse, is responsible for powering the dashboard gauges and displays.

Can I drive my jeep with the check engine light on? ›

A steady glow typically means something less serious but a flashing check engine light indicates that your vehicle's engine is in serious trouble and service is needed immediately. If your check engine light is flashing in your Jeep Wrangler, we highly recommend not to drive the vehicle and schedule Jeep service today.

What does a solid yellow check engine light mean? ›

The check engine light can show up in two ways: Solid yellow/amber light: Indicates a less urgent issue. Flashing light or red: Indicates a severe problem that needs immediate attention.

Can low oil cause check engine light to come on? ›

Low oil pressure

Low oil pressure is a common cause of a check engine light turning on, and it can seriously interfere with your car's performance.

How many miles can you drive after warning light? ›

Generally speaking, you will be able to drive between 30 and 50 (0r more) miles even after the light comes on. Which means that even if the gas light comes on, it may not be time to panic yet.

How long do you have to drive to clear a check engine light? ›

To make sure the check engine light does not reappear, it's recommended that you drive your car 30 to 100 miles. This enables the vehicle's “Drive Cycle” to reset, as the various sensors need time to recalibrate.

How long can I drive with a check engine light on? ›

How long can you drive with the check engine light on? Once you see the check engine light, it is safe to drive with the light on for 50 to 100 miles. This is because if the issue is with the sensors, then this will buy some time for it to reset, turning the check engine light off.

What is the most common problem when the check engine light comes on? ›

Oxygen Sensor Malfunction

One of the most common reasons your check engine light may come on is that your oxygen sensor is failing. Your local auto repair shop in Western Washington can replace it for you quickly, which will restore your vehicle's ability to measure unburned oxygen in its exhaust system.

How serious is a solid check engine light? ›

Depending on your car's make and model, a solid yellow or orange light may indicate lower severity. However, it's still a sign that you should make an appointment to diagnose and fix the problem. A flashing check engine light means you should take in your car ASAP.

Can AutoZone tell me what my check engine light is on for? ›

AutoZone can diagnose Check Engine Light codes, yes. If your engine light is on and you are wondering why head down to your local AutoZone where one of our store associates can help diagnose the issue through our free Fix Finder service.

How much does it cost to fix dashboard gauges? ›

How much does it cost to replace an instrument cluster? Instrument clusters can cost anywhere from $200 to $400 to replace, depending on the make and model of your car. Some mechanics may be able to replace an existing cluster, but they will charge your labor costs.

How do I fix my dashboard gauges not working? ›

Figuring Out Why Dash Gauges and Lights Don't Work
  1. Check the fuses first. ...
  2. If the fuses are okay, check for power at the instrument cluster.
  3. If the instrument cluster has power, then check for ground. ...
  4. When all else fails, the instrument cluster itself may have to be replaced.
Dec 2, 2021

What causes dashboard gauges to stop working? ›

The sending unit wire could be bad or broken, or the circuit from the gauge to the sender is incomplete. Without a ground, the gauge will not register.

What are the warning lights on a Jeep? ›

A Brief Guide to Jeep Warning Lights 1
  • Master Warning Light. If you see a triangle with an exclamation point in its center glowing, one or more problems have been detected. ...
  • Oil Warning. ...
  • Tire Pressure Warning. ...
  • Check Engine Light. ...
  • Loose Gas Cap Warning. ...
  • Brake Warning. ...
  • Battery Warning. ...
  • Low Fuel Warning.

Can I drive my car with all the dash lights on? ›

If all of your lights have come on then that may be an indicator of some sort of serious malfunction with the vehicle. The fact that it appears to be running fine is a good sign. However, I would refrain from driving it until you can figure out what the issue is.

How do I test my dashboard gauges? ›

Briefly touch the inside of the terminal with the tester's probe end; if the tester lights up, the circuit is good, meaning no wires are broken. If you hold it a little longer, the needle should move slowly, indicating the gauge is good. Once you see needle movement, stop the test.

Can you drive with faulty fuel gauge? ›

A broken gas gauge, while it won't disable your engine or affect your car's performance, can easily lead to a huge inconvenience, having to leave your car stuck on the side of the road while you look for a ride or walk to the gas station.

Can alternator cause gauges not to work? ›

Some gauges, like the speedometer, odometer, and tachometer, use small gears. These small gears can wear out over time, leading to mechanical failure of the gauge(s). A bad alternator can cause voltage spikes.

Where is the fuse for the gauges? ›

Most modern vehicles have a fuse box located under the hood and another under the dashboard. The fuses for your instrument panel lights and the gauge cluster should be located under the dashboard or behind a panel near the driver's side door.

What causes your car gauges to go crazy? ›

Weak Battery Connection

There may be a loose connection that causes the electrical system to go haywire. If you've noticed your instrument cluster going crazy after you've driven on a bumpy road, a loose connection may be the cause. If you find that the connectors are loose, tighten them.

What could be the possible fault for gauges reading full? ›

A fuel gauge that only reads full may be caused by a faulty fuel gauge resistor sending the full voltage to the fuel gauge at all times. The fuel sending unit is constantly in motion when a vehicle regularly uses fuel, which causes constant movement of the wiper in the variable resistor.

Can a blown fuse cause the speedometer not to work? ›

Faulty Fuse/Bad Wiring: In very wet conditions, it is possible for exposed wires to get wet and short out, causing a fuse to blow. When the fuse for your speedometer stops working, it can cause the speedometer to drop to zero.

What fuse controls the dashboard gauges? ›

But what fuse controls the dashboard gauges? The instrument cluster fuse, also known as the dashboard fuse, is responsible for powering the dashboard gauges and displays. If this fuse is blown or damaged, it can cause the gauges and displays to stop working or function improperly.

What are the warning signs on the dashboard? ›

18 Common Warning Lights on Your Car's Dashboard
  • Oil Pressure Warning Light.
  • Tire Pressure Warning Light.
  • Engine Temperature Warning Light.
  • Traction Control Alert Light.
  • Anti-lock Brake System Warning Light.
  • Traction Control Malfunction Light.
  • Engine Warning Light (Check Engine Light)
  • Battery Alert Light.
Feb 25, 2022

What is the most serious warning light? ›

The check engine light is usually the most serious and feared warning because of the kind of damage it can signal. This warning often indicates the potential for serious engine damage. When ignored, your vehicle could suffer from a blown head gasket or a seized engine.


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