Ford Focus Dashboard Warning Lights and Symbols

This section covers many of the dashboard warning lights / symbols with pictures and their meanings found within the Ford Focus range.

Dashboard warning lights may illuminate red, orange, green or blue, red indicating a more serious malfunction where the vehicle should be checked immediately. Orange lights indicate less serious issues such as the vehicle needing a service. Flashing red warning lights indicate an urgent malfunction. Green or blue dashboard light symbols provide the driver with information only.

Light symbols may vary slightly depending on when your car was manufactured and in which country it was made. Certain Ford Focus dashboard warning lights will illuminate when the engine ignition is switched on, such as:

  • Airbag
  • ABS
  • Stability control (ESP)
  • Low fuel
  • Brake system
  • Frost
  • ESP off

If a warning light or information indicator light does not illuminate when the ignition is switched on, it indicates a malfunction. Have the system checked by properly trained technician. Listed below are Ford Focus dashboard warning light / symbols that cover many versions of the Focus.

Grade Assist

Grade Assist

Ford Grade Assist helps to maintain vehicle speed when going downhill. Grade assist can be activated either by a button located on the dashboard or on the gear shifter. Activating grade assist helps to prevent too much stress being put on the transmission or the brakes.

Ford Focus ABS dashboard warning light

ABS warning light

If the Ford Focus ABS dashboard warning light illuminates whilst driving, it indicates there is a malfunction within the Anti-lock Braking System (ABS). Normal braking will continue without the use of ABS. System should be checked by a qualified technician immediately. For further information on how Anti-lock Braking Systems (ABSs) work, the Anti-Lock Braking System guide explains what they do, how they work and how they benefit drivers in controlling their vehicle.

Ford Focus ignition dashboard warning light

Ignition warning light

If the ignition warning light illuminates whilst driving, it is indicating a malfunction. Immediately switch off all unnecessary electrical equipment and have the vehicle assessed by a trained technician immediately. See Why is the battery warning light on for further help.

Ford Focus airbag dashboard warning light

Airbag dashboard light

Symbol should extinguish when engine is turned on. If light illuminates whilst driving, it indicates a malfunction with at least one of the air bags. For further information about airbags and possible faults, see why is the airbag light on?

Ford Focus oil pressure dashboard warning light

Oil pressure warning light

If the oil pressure light stays on after starting the vehicle or illuminates whilst driving, this indicates a malfunction. As soon as it’s safe to do so, stop the vehicle and turn off the engine. check engine oil levels – see how to check engine oil, but do not resume the journey even if oil levels are correct.

Ford Focus engine warning light

Engine warning light

The engine warning light should extinguish when the engine is running. If it illuminate when the engine is running it indicates a malfunction. If it flashes whilst driving, reduce speed immediately. If it continues to flash, avoid excessive acceleration or deceleration and seek professional assistance.

Ford Focus blind spot monitor dashboard warning light

Blind spot monitor light

The blind spot monitor light will illuminate when the feature is deactivated or in conjunction with a message. See car blind spot for further information on what a blind spot is and the correct methods that should be used to avoid a collision.

Forward alert warning light symbol

Forward alert warning

The forward alert warning light will illuminate when the feature is deactivated or in conjunction with a message. This system warns you by visual and audible messages of a potential collision in front. Collision alerts will only occur is the system is activated although brake support remains constantly activated.

Ford Focus frost / ice warning light

Frost / ice warning light

This snowflake symbol warns the driver that frost or ice is present. Sensors detect outside air temperature. The warning light symbol will illuminate amber in colour when the air temperature outside the vehicle is between +4°C (39°F) and 0°C (32°F). As temperatures fall below 0°C (32°F) It will glow red.

Ford Focus traction control warning light
Traction Control (older models)

Traction control light

During normal driving, the traction control dashboard light flashes after activation of the system. If it does not illuminate after turning on the ignition, if the symbol illuminate continuously during driving, it indicates a malfunction. Whilst the system is malfunctioning, it is deactivated. The second light it also traction control that’s displayed on older versions of the Focus.

Ford Focus traction control off warning light

Traction control off light

If traction control is manually switched off, the dashboard warning light will illuminate. The light will extinguish once the traction control system has been reactivated.

Ford Focus cruise control indicator light

Cruise control indicator

The cruise control indicator dashboard light will illuminate on the Ford Focus when a speed has been set and cruise control has been activated.

Ford Focus front fog lights indicator symbol

Front fog light symbol

This dashboard symbol will illuminate once the front fog lights are activated. The symbol is reversed when rear fog lights are activated.

Ford Focus lane departure warning light

Lane departure warning

The lane departure warning light will illuminate when the system is deactivated or in conjunction with a message. The system monitors lane discipline and warns of lane drifting.

Ford Focus gear change indicator light

Gear change indicator

The gear shift / change indicator light will illuminate on the dashboard to inform you that changing to a higher gear will offer better fuel economy. Periods of high acceleration, braking or when the clutch pedal s pressed does not illuminate the light.

Ford Focus message indicator dashboard light

Message indicator light

Dashboard light illuminates when a new message is stored in the information display. Message indicator may be red or amber depending on the severity of the message.

Ford Focus engine start/stop light indicator

Engine start/stop light

This symbol illuminates when the engine turns off in conjunction with start/stop technology. This technology reduces fuel consumption and reduces CO2 emissions.

Ford Focus red cog with red exclamation mark warning light

Powertrain warning light

The red cog with a red exclamation mark warning light signifies a fault with the powertrain. Typically, the usual reason is a fault with the faulty glow plug relay or a fault with the glow plugs. Diagnostics will specify the exact fault. Vehicle is safe to drive.

Ford Focus ESP warning light

ESP/BAS warning light

The ESP/BAS Ford Focus warning light is related to ABS. If this light illuminates, it suggests a problem with the Electronic Stability Program. The ESP/BAS light will often illuminate alongside the ABS warning symbol.

Tyre Pressure

Tyre Pressure warning light

The tyre pressure monitoring system (TPMS) may not be available on earlier versions of the Ford Focus. The tyre pressure warning light will illuminate on the dashboard to inform the driver that air pressure has fallen to or below the 25% threshold limit. If you have checked tyre pressures and all are correct, see tyre pressure warning light keeps coming on for help. IF you have corrected pressures and need to turn the light off, see how to reset Ford Focus tyre pressure light.

Circular ring with exclamation mark signifies the parking / handbrake brake warning light
Low tyre pressure warning light
Diesel glow plug dashboard light
Directional indicators information light


High/main beam indicator light
Headlights indicator symbol
Seat belt reminder light
Fuel level indicator light


Other vehicle warning lights

40 thoughts on “Ford Focus Dashboard Warning Lights and Symbols”

  1. 2Michael Astrino

    Car tilted in circle

  2. Robert

    I have that same light and it’s not in the manual… wtf does it mean?

  3. Bob

    What is the car in the speedometer for?

  4. Louis

    It’s for grade assist. Button on shifter turns it on and off

  5. John

    When I go over bumps or dips in the road,I get a beeping noise.what is causing this

  6. Michelle Meadows

    On my lower left hand corner of the dashboard near the zero on the RPM dial , there is a flashing lock of some sort, any idea what that is?

  7. Sandra Ingram

    no screen for warning indicators on my 2015 ford focus, its was working, now its no longer has a screen all white? cant see anything

  8. benedict McGeary

    What does the symbol that looks like a wheel spinning in gravel mean? 02 Focus 1.8 tdci

  9. Hi Benedict,
    Sounds like it’s a traction control light that’s used on older versions of the Ford Focus. The symbol has been added below.

  10. Peggy

    What is the symbol that is a car with a line underneath it? Is it that the road is slippery? (It wasn’t, however there was a sprinkling of snow. I have never seen it before. My car is a 2014 Ford Focus Se. Thanks for your help.

  11. Hi Peggy,
    All I can think of is traction control (car with two wavy lines) or hill decent (car with a line under it set at an angle). The traction control light is on this page.

  12. janet

    there is a piture of a wrench in the lower left corner what does that mean

  13. Hello Janet
    The wrench / spanner warning light is a fault light. It’s a generic light, so there’s many possible faults that can be associated to it. You’ll need to have diagnostic equipment hooked up to read fault codes which will then let you know what the problem is.

  14. Kev Baird

    When the car detects Low temp does that have an effect on the stop/start tech?

  15. Hi Kev,
    It can do. If the engine is not at optimal running temperature or the cabin temperature is not at the temperature set then start stop will be cancelled.

  16. Sandra

    Immobilize does this mean your Key

  17. Caroline

    Hi I have the hand brake light on the doors wont lock and the hand brake works fine but since the light come on cant lock the car

  18. mark macuska

    i needed to replace my screen unit it was covered by warranty . screen started to flicker then white new module screen works well now . reverse screen works along with temp ect

  19. Robyn DiCola

    I Have a Ford focus 2007. There is a light that flashes when my car is off. I don’t see it anywhere in the symbols. It almost looks like a lock in front of a car. Any ideas?

  20. Hi Robyn,
    It’s the immobiliser system – the light flashing letting you know the system is armed.

  21. Lorraine Davis

    I have a 2005 Ford Focus. I just replaced my battery. There is a red flashing light on the top left-hand side of the steering wheel. Does anyone know what this is?

  22. Sounds like it’s possibly the immobiliser light. Is it flashing when driving or when the engine is turned off?

  23. Randall Hoppe

    I have the same issue on my 2016 Ford Focus. I just bought the car 1 month ago and that light came on twice. If I shut the car off and whenI restart it the light is off. Any Idea what that light means?

  24. Rafy

    Adaptive cruse control

  25. Glynn turner

    Ford Focus titanium X 63 plate. Red flashing book on dashboard when engine stopped ?

  26. Phyllis

    On the gear shift is a switch that slows car going down hill you probably turned it on by mistake no harm that’s down hill car in circle

  27. Pat

    I have a reduced acceleration reading on dashboard. Any ideas pleasr

  28. Jackie

    Red dash board light is staying on. Ford focus titanium 2009.

  29. Della

    I have a red information button flashing between the fuel and temp gauge. My alarm keeps going off for no reason. Had the car checked by a Ford specialist who couldn’t find any faults and the problem stopped for a couple of days but starting again now. Can anybody help?

  30. Terrence

    Hi i have the same issue red light flashes while driving. Means what

  31. Hi Della,
    The red information button means your have a urgent message to read. Go into your vehicle settings to read it. Alarms can be adjusted for sensitivity.

  32. Rhonda

    In reply to Louis.

    Thanks, Louis! You have helped a great deal! The owner’s manual does not define this icon.

  33. steven allan

    hi my ford focus 70plate when driving dash bored shows up foot on peddle in blue any ideas thank you

  34. Kevin

    My focus gave an alert that said power operative please close , i don’t know what that means

  35. I have a ! Exclamation in red where fuel fill is I have half a tank of fuel don’t know what it means

  36. amanda jane Barton

    yellow engine light on should i be worried

  37. Hi Amanda,
    The engine light means there’s a fault or issues with the emissions control system. There are numerous components that can cause a fault from the engine, through to the exhaust system. Due to there being so many possibilities, you need a code reader to diagnose the fault. Pretty much all auto repair garages have these, else they can be purchased online. When the engine light comes on, a fault code is usually logged and these code readers allow the engineer to read and locate where the fault is.

    You shouldn’t be worried and can usually continue driving, but it’s advised that you get it sorted sooner rather than later. If the engine light flashes, definitely get it sorted sooner and not later.

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