Understanding the FIAT 500 Dashboard
Your FIAT’s dashboard offers a wealth of important information about your vehicle. From your speed and gas levels to important warnings and reminders, you can’t afford to ignore any of the indicators on your dash. Get to know the warning lights that may pop up there so you can take prompt action any time an alert appears.
Malfunction Indicator Light
Also referred to as the engine warning light, the Malfunction Indicator Light (MIL) shows the image of a car’s engine, and should illuminate briefly every time you start your FIAT 500. This light is part of the onboard diagnostic system that monitors the automatic transmission control and engine systems. If the light doesn’t come on at all, take it to a service center to address the issue. When it’s functioning properly, the light should only illuminate for a brief moment.
If the MIL stays lit, this indicates a problem with the engine. Your car should still function to safely get you to a service center, but it’s important to have the problem looked at promptly. If the light is flashing, this indicates severe damage to the catalytic converter. A flashing light is an indicator that you will lose power soon, so you should get your vehicle safely off the road and have it towed to a service center.
ABS Warning Light
The ABS warning light is easily recognized because it reads “ABS” in the center of a circle. This light should illuminate briefly when you start the vehicle. If it stays on longer than four seconds, it indicates that the anti-lock feature of your brake system isn’t working properly. Though your conventional brake system is still operating, it’s important to have the ABS system serviced as soon as possible.
Air Bag Warning Light
The air bag warning light shows a passenger sitting in the vehicle with a deployed air bag in front of him. This light performs a self-check when the vehicle starts but should not remain illuminated. If the light stays lit, your air bags are not operating properly. Have the car serviced as soon as possible to restore your air bags to working order. You should also visit a FIAT service center if the air bag warning light does not perform its self-check, or illuminates periodically while you’re driving.
Tire Pressure Warning Light
The FIAT 500 is equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS). This monitors tire pressure and alerts you when your tires are severely underinflated. The tire pressure warning light shows a tire with a flat bottom and exclamation point in the center. If you see this light, you should check your tires and inflate them to the proper pressure.
While these are some of the most important warning lights you may see, there are several other dashboard indicators that convey an important message. Any time you see a light in your FIAT that you don’t recognize, you should turn to your vehicle’s manual to identify the light and determine the best course of action. Never ignore a warning light, because it could do serious damage to your vehicle.