What Does the Triangle on Your Dashboard Mean?

If you’re a technician or car owner, you’ve probably noticed that the dashboard has a lot of symbols. If the car’s computer senses a problem, it will inform us what’s wrong with the parts of the system by lighting up these symbols. The illumination of one or two symbols, though, never fails to perplex us.

What does a triangle with the exclamation point in a car mean?

Something is amiss with the vehicle if you see a triangle with an exclamation point. There is no indication that any one part is defective. Not at all; it’s just a friendly reminder to check the DIC for any registered messages. For example, if your Honda has an exclamation point, it implies that the vehicle stability assist (VSA) system is malfunctioning.

For better handling in corners and traction on wet roads, turn on your vehicle’s stability aid system. Many people refer to the triangle with the exclamation point as “the master warning light.”

Whenever something is wrong with the vehicle, a notification will either appear on the dashboard or be sent to the driver’s information centre. A low petrol tank level, a loose fuel cap or problems with the stability control system are all potential causes of the error.

Plus, a triangle with an exclamation point on a Hyundai vehicle might not signify the same thing as one on a Toyota. To find out what’s wrong, you could go into the driver information centre or study your service handbook.

Likewise, there is a difference between a red triangle with an exclamation point and a yellow triangle with the same symbol on the dashboard. This warning light will show one of the following lights when it comes on, making diagnosis easier.

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On occasion, you might see more than one of these dashboard lights illuminate simultaneously.

  • Traction control warning light
  • Oil pressure warning light
  • Tire pressure warning light
  • Battery light
  • Temperature warning light
  • Check gauge warning light
  • Airbag warning light
  • Seatbelt warning indicator
  • Anti-lock braking system (ABS) warning light
  • Check engine warning light
  • Electronic stability control (ESC) indicator


If you see a dashboard light that looks like a triangle with an exclamation point, it means that something is wrong with the system. The presence of this warning light does not indicate the presence of any particular issue. The likely reasons differ from one vehicle to another.

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