What Does Check Gage Light Ford Explorer Mean? 4 Helpful Tips That You Need

Many people must have panicked when seeing the check gage light Ford Explorer while driving. What does it mean?

It may be a false warning. But it can also mean anything, such as the oil pressure switches, low oil pressure, a blown fuse, a bad water pump, a brake fluid gauge, gas tank issues, or an engine failure.

Usually, this warning is accompanied by illuminating the afflicted dashboard gauges. Inspect the instrument panel or the internal engine system to find the causes of the check gage Ford Explorer.

This article will instruct you to check and fix the check gage light on your Ford Explorer before seeking help from a competent mechanic. Let’s figure it out!

Briefly On The Ford Explorer

check gage light ford explorer

The first Ford Explorer cars were produced in 1991, completely revolutionizing the SUV industry.

The present Explorer provides consumers with three powertrain choices, an athletic external design, and a big cabin with a third row.

Although there are parts of the Explorer that we like, it sometimes fails to deliver a normal operation. For instance, I didn’t know why my check gage light turned on.

There was at least half a gas tank in my Ford Explorer. The temperature gauge remained in the center, indicating the car was not overheating, and everything still functioned well.

The qualified professional mechanic recently told me that there are leaking thermostat issues.

After filling the coolant reservoir to the prescribed level, everything worked as it should for a short while.

However, after around five miles of driving, my Ford Explorer check gage light started to be on again.

I attached my diagnostic kit to determine the error codes, but there were no problems.

It drove me crazy. Therefore, I walked around the car forums and found helpful explanations about the check gage meaning. Now, I would like to share them with you.

What Does Check Gage Light Ford Explorer Mean?

ford explorer check gage light

Any oil pressure and temperature measurement beyond the normal operating parameters or a bad ignition switch will activate the check gauge light on a Ford Explorer.

A faulty sensor may also be the reason.

This warning light requires you to check the fuel level gauge, engine oil pressure gauge, brake fluid level, and coolant temperature gauge.

Different colors indicate the degree of the problem, such as yellow, orange, and red.

You must be familiar with the type of instrument panel and learn how to read numerous gauges for a proper diagnosis.

Depending on the problem, you should call a competent mechanic, or you can fix it yourself. Let’s see what you must do when the ford explorer check gage light turns on!

Check Your Gas Gauge

Using the fuel gauge, you can determine how much fuel is left in the tank.

When you fill-up your fuel tank, the arrow will point toward “F,” which stands for “full.” However, if you run out of fuel, it will go toward “E,” meaning “empty.”

Your Ford Explorer check gage light can turn on if your fuel gauge is close to the “E.”

In addition, a loose fuel tank cap may change the gasoline tank’s pressure, turning the check gage in Ford Explorer on.

If so, retighten your fuel tank cap for fuel economy. If the problem is due to a malfunctioning O-ring or broken tank cap, replace the defective component.

Check Your Engine Oil Gauge

Low engine oil level is one of the most common reasons a check gage light turns on. Looking at the oil pressure gage, you can see a “H” for “high” and a “L” for “low”.

A leaky oil filter, a bad oil pressure sensor, or an ineffective oil pump might all cause your low oil pressure. The check gauge light will turn on when the engine oil level is so low.

I always advise you to check your car’s fluid level at least once a week.

Regular engine oil checks prevent the installing a rebuilt engine because of a lack of lubrication, which is expensive.

Check Your Engine Coolant Level Gauge

High engine temperature is another cause of a triggered check gage light. Overheated engines may occur if the radiator leaks or coolant blows out of the reservoir.

I recommend looking at the coolant temp gage on the Ford Explorer. It has the letters “C” for “cold” at one end and “H” for “hot” at the other.

The normal range of water temperature is somewhere close to the center of the thermostat graphic. If the arrow approaches the “H,” your car is in danger.

You may add extra coolant or take your car to a repair shop.

Check Your Electrical System Gauge

The battery gauge in the Ford Explorer is located on the dashboard. It has the letters “L” for “low” and “H” for “high.”

If the voltage of your car battery fluctuates between 12.5 and 14.5 volts, it often is a normal range. If not, the check gage in Ford Explorer will light up.

So, what is the cause of your vehicle’s gauge readings out of range?

  • Loose Connections: Dirty battery terminals cause a loose connection, one of the most common causes of high or low voltage.
  • Alternator Faults: When the alternator breaks down, you’ll notice fluctuations in your voltage range readings.
  • Battery Failure: A defective battery is the obvious cause of a high battery gauge. You might need to replace it if it is over three to five years old.

Lights Out – Is Your Ford Explorer Good To Go?

check gage ford

There are six lights on the Ford Explorer’s instrument panel. Two lights work as warning gauges, while the other four show up as certain gauges.

It’s not good to go if the lights are out. Therefore, you need to replace them by following the steps listed below:

  1. Shut off the engine.
  2. Open the hood.
  3. Use a socket wrench to unplug the battery’s negative black connector.
  4. Remove the two cross-head screws from the HVAC unit’s top using a Phillips head screwdriver.
  5. Use a socket wrench to remove the three bolts above the instrument panel.
  6. Use a socket wrench to remove the four cross screws below the steering wheel.
  7. After removing the Explorer’s kick panel, use a Phillips head screwdriver to remove the two cross screws below the steering wheel.
  8. With a Phillips head screwdriver, remove the two bolts securing the trim around the steering wheel and pull down the steel plate beneath the steering wheel.
  9. Remove the dashboard trim from the center console.
  10. Remove the frame around the instrument panel on the dash using a pry bar.
  11. Remove the Explorer’s dash trim from the instrument panel.
  12. Pull the plug out from behind the gear shifter.
  13. Open the three plugs on the instrument panel’s underside.
  14. Remove the bolts that hold the instrument panel.
  15. On the front bottom of the instrument panel, there are bulbs. Remove the bulbs you want to replace.
  16. Replace them with new bulbs, making sure they snap into place.
  17. Reassemble the dashboard and instrument panel.
  18. Reconnect the battery.


What Is A Gage In A Car?

The gages in a car are dials and sensors that help drivers monitor vehicle systems.

Before getting behind the wheel, you’d better learn how to read them because the gauges reveal problems and malfunctions in your car.

What Is The Difference Between Gauge And Gage?

The word “Gauge” has various meanings related to measurement. The word “Gage” is another spell of the “Gauge”.

What Are The Uses Of Gage?

The gauges on your car are the diagnostic tools. They provide you with real-time data regarding fuel level, battery charge, engine temperature, RPMs, and speed.

Is The Check Gauge Light The Same As The Check Engine Light?

No, it’s not. The check gauge warning light is located on the dashboard. It may be triggered when there is a problem with the car, or nothing happens.

The check engine light is an indication that there is a problem with the vehicle’s engine computer. The light might indicate a defective fuel tank cap or a malfunctioning engine.

What Is The Difference Between An Electrical Gauge And A Mechanical Gauge?

The main difference between a mechanical gauge and an electrical gauge is that the electrical gauge uses a sensor for measuring instead of a physical measurement instrument.

Have a look at the electrical gauge on the 2022-2023 Ford Explorer in the following video:

Ending Note

The check gage light Ford Explorer alerts the driver to hidden issues with the system.

Any oil pressure and temperature measurement beyond the normal operating parameters, a fuel tank issue, a bad ignition switch, or a false warning will turn the check gauge light on.

Overall, “check gage light Ford Explorer” is not the most urgent alert you can receive on your vehicle. However, it’s worth taking a look at after a ride around town. 

Make sure to check the fuel gauge, oil pressure gauge, engine coolant temperature gauge, and battery power gauge.

The instructions mentioned above will help you have an accurate reading before setting an appointment with certified mechanics.

Keep the panel lights off, and you can be safe on your merry way!

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