Subaru Outback Dashboard Warning Lights

Subaru Outback Dashboard Warning Lights

Here are the dashboard warning lights for the Subaru Outback fourth generation (Mk 4, 2009–2014) and fifth generation (Mk 5, 2015–2019). The dashboard display layout and warning lights location may vary depending on the year of manufacture and model version of your Subaru Outback.

SymbolWarning Light Description / Action
Subaru Outback Airbag Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback airbag warning light.
Description: If the airbag warning light exhibits any of the following conditions, have the airbag system inspected immediately. There may be a malfunction in the seat belt pretensioners and/or SRS airbag system and it may not deploy in the event of an accident.
▷ The airbag warning light begins flashing or flickering.
▷ The airbag warning light does not come on when the ignition is initially switched to 'on'.
▷ The airbag warning light stays on constantly.
Subaru Outback Check Engine Warning Light
Check Engine
Name: Subaru Outback check engine warning light.
Description: The check engine warning light / malfunction indicator lamp (MIL) may either come on constantly or flash.
Constantly: This indicates an emissions control malfunction. You can continue driving, but may notice poor fuel economy and engine performance. Have vehicle checked as soon as possible. Continued driving over time may result in damage. The check engine warning light may also indicate that the gas cap is not securely fitted or missing. Remove the cap and tighten it until it clicks. To ensure pressure in the fuel tank is correct, ensure there is nothing interfering with the seal of the fuel filler cap. Note: Even after correctly fitting fuel filler cap, it will not make the check engine warning light go out right away. It may take several driving trips.
Flashing: If while driving the check engine warning light is flashing, it can be an indication of engine misfire which can cause damage to the emission control system / catalytic converter. To help prevent damage:
• Immediately reduce speed.
• Avoid hard acceleration.
• Avoid stressful situations for the engine such as driving up steep hill grades.
• Avoid carrying heavy weight in the vehicle.
If the check engine warning light continues to flash even after taking the above action, have vehicle serviced by a Subaru workshop immediately.
Certain models of the Subaru Outback may display the check engine warning light in textual form: Check Engine
Subaru Outback Battery Charge Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback battery warning light.
Description: If the battery warning light comes on when the engine is running, it indicates a fault in the charging system. If the battery warning light stays on after engine start, stop the engine and check the alternator belt. If the battery warning light comes on when driving, immediately switch off any systems that aren't essential that consume electric as this will conserve engine activity for longer. Immediately make your way to a vehicle repair workshop to have the charging system checked. Common fault relate to:
• Faulty alternator
• Broken / worn alternator belt
• Battery fault
• Corroded battery terminals / faulty wiring
Subaru Outback Engine Oil Pressure Warning Light
Oil Pressure
Name: Subaru Outback low oil pressure warning light.
Description: The red low oil pressure warning light requires immediate action. Low oil pressure may result in internal engine components bot being lubricated causing significant engine damage.
1. Stop the vehicle as soon as safely possible, ideally on level ground and switch off the engine.
2. Allow the engine to rest for a few minute so that the engine oil can drain into the pan.
3. Check engine oil levels.
4. If the oil level is low, add oil immediately.
If engine oil levels are at acceptable levels and do not require topping up, do not continue driving. If after adding oil, the warning light still remains lit, do not continue driving.

Subaru Outback Engine Oil Level Warning Light
Oil Level
Name: Subaru Outback low oil level warning light.
Description: The red low engine oil level warning light appears on the dashboard when engine oil levels are at the lower acceptable limit. If the low engine oil warning light comes on while driving:
1. Pull off the road when safe to do so and stop ideally on a level surface.
2. Wait a few minutes for the oil to drain into the oil pan.
3. Open the hood and remove the dipstick (1). Wipe the end of the dipstick clean with a cloth and replace it.
4. Remove the dipstick again and check that the oil level is between the MIN and MAX marker.
5. If it is close to the MIN or below it, add engine oil (2).
Checking engine oil level on your Subaru Outback
Checking engine oil level on your Subaru Outback

The oil level warning light can come on temporarily due to oil movement in the engine. This can occur when driving up or down a steep slope, due to harsh acceleration or deceleration, harsh steering and continuously undulating roads.
Subaru Outback AT OIL TEMP Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback AT OIL TEMP warning light.
Description: The AT OIL TEMP warning light illuminating on the dashboard indicates that the transmission fluid temperature is too hot and overheating. Unless cooled, this may result in damage. If driving, stop as soon as safely possible and leave the engine to idle until the warning light goes off. Once the warning light has gone off, the transmission fluid is cool enoigh for you to continue your journey.
Flashing AT OIL TEMP
If the AT OIL TEMP is flashing, it indicates that there's a fault with the transmission control system. Avoid excess load on the transmission system such as heavy acceleration and keep the vehicle at a moderate speed. Contact a Subaru workshop as soon as possible.
Subaru Outback Tire Pressure Warning Light
Tire Pressure
Name: Subaru Outback tire pressure warning light.
Description: The tire pressure warning light illuminates in yellow for about 2 seconds when the ignition is set to 'on'. When the system has determined that tire pressures are acceptable, the warning light goes out. If the tire pressure warning light comes on, stop as soon as possible by avoiding harsh braking or steering. Check or replace the deflated tire.
Flashing tire pressure light
A failure of the tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) is indicated by the warning light flashing on the dashboard for about 1 minute, then remaining on.
Checking tire pressures
Tires, including the spare (if provided) should ideally be checked once each month and when cold. Tires should be inflated to the recommended pressure located on the tire pressure label found inside the driver's door. If you have different tires than those recommended by Hyundai, inflate those to the recommended values for that manufacturer. Driving with under-inflated tires increases the amount of fuel used and decreased the life of the tire.
Tire pressure system reset
After adjusting tire pressures, the system will automatically reset when you drive at speeds of 20 mph (32 km/h) or more. The tire pressure warning light will go out shortly.
Subaru Outback ABS Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback ABS warning light.
Description: The anti-lock braking system (ABS) is responsible for preventing wheels from locking up during emergency braking or when braking on a slippery surface. This then allows the driver to steer the vehicle where locked wheels would prevent this. The ABS system is faulty when:
▷ The ABS warning light does not illuminate when the ignition is switched to 'on'.
▷ The ABS warning light stays on even after starting the vehicle.
▷ The ABS warning light comes on while driving.
The Subaru Outback ABS light on usually relates to a faulty sensor on one of the wheels, the ABS module or a blown fuse. It's recommended to have diagnostic equipment hooked up to locate the faulty sensor location.
The ABS is a separate system to conventional braking system and normal brakes will work as usual. However, there is a risk that wheels will lock under heavy braking.

Subaru Outback Brake System Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback brake warning light.
Description: Depending on your model of Outback, this red warning light may be displayed as the circle with an exclamation point or as 'BRAKE' text. If the brake warning light stays on after the engine has started and the electronic parking brake has been released, switch off the engine and restart it. If the warning light remains on or comes on while driving, it may indicate low brake fluid levels, a leak in the brake system or worn brake pads.
What to do
It's advised that you stop as soon as possible and check the brake fluid reservoir. If the brake fluid level is below the MIN mark and the brake pedal feels spongy and require greater force to apply the brakes, it indicates a leak in the system. Under these circumstances, do not drive the vehicle any further and arranged to have it towed. Brake fluid level does drop over time as the brake pads wear. If you are confident that your brakes are working to their full ability, drive carefully to your nearest Subaru workshop and have the brake pads and brake system inspected.
Subaru Outback Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD) Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback EBD warning light.
Description: The red brake warning light illuminating along with the yellow ABS warning is a fault with the Electronic Brake Force Distribution (EBD). EBD varies brake pressure on individual wheels providing greater braking efficiency and ability to stop. EBD is independent from the conventional braking system, so normal brakes will continue to work. ABS will not be available and so there is an increased risk of wheels locking. If the EBD warning light comes on (brake + ABS), stop the vehicle, switch off the engine and restart. If after a restart the warning lights remain on, check the brake fluid level. If the brake fluid level is below the MIN mark, do not continue driving. If it is above the MIN mark, drive carefully to a Subaru workshop to have the brake system inspected.
Subaru Outback Electronic Parking Brake Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback electronic parking brake warning light.
Description: Under normal operating conditions, the electronic parking brake warning light illuminates when the parking brake is applied and with the ignition set to the 'on' position and goes out when the parking brake is released. If the electronic parking brake warning light flashes, the system may be malfunctioning. However, if the light stops flashing after the engine has started and when the parking brake has been released, the system is not malfunctioning. The parking brake warning light may also flash is the system is used too frequently in a short amount of time. This is a protection system preventing the motors from overheating. A warning sound may also be heard. If you are unable to release the electronic parking brake, the switch may be faulty. Attempt the automatic release by gently applying the accelerator (you will need your seat belt fastened and the doors shut).
Subaru Outback Hill Holder Warning Light
Hill Holder
Name: Subaru Outback hill holder warning light.
Description: The hill holder warning light should illuminate when the button is pressed to activate the function. If the hill holder warning light doesn't illuminate when the switch is activated, the electronic parking brake may have malfunctioned.
Subaru Outback Low Fuel Warning Light
Low Fuel
Name: Subaru Outback low fuel warning light.
Description: The low fuel warning light illuminates when the tank is almost empty with approximately 2.6 US gal (10.0 liters, or 2.2 Imp gal) remaining fuel. Refuel as soon as possible. Running an empty tank can cause the engine to misfire which may result in damage.
Subaru Outback AWD Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback AWD warning light.
Description: The all-wheel drive (AWD) warning light flashes if the vehicle is driven with tires of different diameters fitted on the vehicle's wheels or with the air pressure excessively low in any of its tires. This can include the temporary / spare tire. Use the spare tire for a restricted amount of time only and replace with a conventional tire as soon as possible.
Continued driving with the AWD warning light flashing may result in powertrain damage. If the light begins to flash, stop to check tire pressures and to also check if all tires are of the same diameter.

Subaru Outback Power Steering Warning Light
Power Steering
Name: Subaru Outback power steering warning light.
Description: Power steering makes it easier to turn the steering wheel and is only operational when the engine is running. The warning light comes on indicating a fault with the system. In order to protect system components such as the control computer and drive motor from overheating, the system may temporarily limit power assist. This can occur when:
▷ The steering wheel is turning frequently and sharply at slow speeds. This could be due to a maneuver such as parallel parking for example.
▷ The steering wheel remains in fully turned / full lock for long periods of time.
In this instance, the warning light may come on but will go out when the system has cooled. During these periods, the steering wheel will have greater resistance.
Subaru Outback VDC Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback VDC warning light.
Description: The VDC (Vehicle Dynamics Control) uses the ABS to determine any loss of tire traction and as a result decreases engine power or applies the brakes automatically to help stabilize the vehicle. If ABS fails, VDC will also become inoperable. In this instance the ABS light will also illuminate along with the VDC warning light. If the electrical circuit of the VDC system fails, only the VDC warning light illuminates and ABS remains in operation.
Flashing VDC warning light
The flashing of the VDC warning light is an indication that the system is attempting to stabilize the vehicle. This may include skid suppression or traction control.
Subaru Outback Security Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback security indicator warning light.
Description: The car and lock symbol is the security indicator light and it shows the status of the alarm system and indicates operation of the immobilizer system.
Subaru Outback High Beam Assist Warning Light
High Beam Assist
Name: Subaru Outback high beam assist warning light.
Description: The high beam assist function is activated when the indicator light is green. If the warning light is yellow, it indicates a malfunction with the system. In this instance, you will have to operate the high beams manually until the system is repaired.
Subaru Outback Automatic Headlight Beam Leveler Warning Light
Headlight Leveler
Name: Subaru Outback automatic headlight beam leveler warning light.
Description: The headlight beam leveler automatically adjusts the beam height in accordance to the weight being carried by your vehicle. This allows for optimal observation for the driver and less glare for oncoming vehicles. This warning light illuminates on the dashboard when the system has a fault.
Subaru Outback LED Headlight Fault Warning Light
LED Headlight
Name: Subaru Outback LED headlights warning light.
Description: The light and exclamation point is the LED headlight fault symbol. This light illuminates if the LED headlights

Subaru Outback X-Mode Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback X-Mode warning light.
Description: Subaru X-Mode is a safety feature that optimizes vehicle systems to help reduce wheel slip on slippery surfaces. X-Mode is also beneficial on steep slopes and rough terrain.
Subaru Outback SRH OFF Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback SRH OFF warning light.
Description: SRH stands for Steering Responsive
Headlight. SRH headlights move in the direction that the driver steers in resulting in increased visibility at night. This warning light illuminates when the SRH system has been turned off or flashes when there's a malfunction with the system.
Subaru Outback Blind Spot Monitor Warning Light
Blind Spot
Name: Subaru Outback blind spot detection warning light.
Description: The blind spot detection (BSD) / rear cross traffic alert (RCTA) warning light illuminates on the combination meter display when the system are not functioning. The system may temporarily malfunction due to:
▷ Extremely high or low temperatures or when abnormal voltage exists.
▷ One of the radar sensors is blocked.
▷ A malfunction has occurred.
If the malfunction is due to a temporary fault, the system will resume operation once the fault has been cleared.
Subaru Outback Icy Road Surface Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback Icy Road Surface warning light.
Description: The Subaru Outback snowflake symbol is a warning that the road surface may be icy due to outside temperatures being 378°F (38°C) or less. The outside temperature indicator shows the temperature in the area around the sensor. Therefore, the temperature indication may differ from the actual outside air temperature.
Subaru Outback RAB Warning Light
Name: Subaru Outback RAB warning light.
Description: RAB, or 'Reverse Automatic Braking' helps to avoid collisions or reduce collision damage when reversing the vehicle. If an obstacle or a wall is detected by the system a warning will sound and the brakes may automatically be applied. The RAB warning light illuminates when the system has malfunctioned. The fault may be due to:
▷ On the rear bumper around the area of the sensors a sticker, paint, or a chemical is has been applied.
▷ The rear bumper has been modified.
▷ The rear bumper has been removed and attached incorrectly.
▷ Due to vehicle load weights, the ground clearance is changed.
▷ Ice, snow or mud is adhered to the sonar sensors or the rear bumper near the sonar sensor.
▷ The rear bumper has had a strong impact.

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