4 Things a Subaru Dashboard Flashing Car & Lock Symbol Mean

When you see a flashing car and lock symbol on your Subaru dashboard, it’s the vehicle’s way of communicating vital information. 

This article will demystify these symbols, providing a comprehensive understanding of their significance and the steps you should take. 

Dive in, and let’s decode your Subaru’s language.

What is the Subaru Dashboard Flashing Car & Lock Symbol?

The car and lock symbol, typically located on your Subaru’s dashboard, appears as an outline of a car with a padlock superimposed over it. 

This symbol is easily identifiable and distinct, ensuring it catches your attention immediately when it appears.

The flashing car and the lock symbol is not just another light on the dashboard; it’s a critical alert indicating a potential issue with your vehicle’s security system or otherwise. 

Ignoring it could lead to inconvenient situations, such as an inability to start your car or a complete lockout. 

Therefore, understanding and responding promptly to this warning symbol is paramount for the smooth operation of your Subaru.

Meaning of Flashing Car and Lock Symbol on Dashboard Subaru

1. Security System Activation

The main reason or one of the primary reasons your Subaru could be flashing the car and lock symbol is when the vehicle’s security system is activated. 

The flashing light is an anti-theft measure, deterring potential intruders and discouraging break-ins.

When your car’s security system is armed, this distinct symbol flashes, serving as a visual confirmation of its active status. 

This serves as a deterrent, effectively indicating to potential intruders that the vehicle is safeguarded.

The benefits of having an active security system are manifold. Knowing your vehicle is protected against theft or vandalism offers peace of mind. 

Secondly, some insurance companies offer discounts on car premiums with active security systems, meaning you could save money. Lastly, an active security system can increase the resale value of your vehicle.

2. The Car is Locked and off

Another normal explanation for the flashing car and lock symbol is simply that your Subaru is locked and turned off. 

When you secure your car and exit, the vehicle’s security system engages, leading to the flashing car and lock symbol as a sign of this activation. 

In this case, the Security Indicator Light will blink steadily after switching off the ignition. This is to indicate that the security system of your Subaru is armed.

The flashing symbol will continue until you unlock the vehicle with your key fob, which will stop blinking and turn off. In some models, the security light may remain.

This feature is a standard among many modern cars – not exclusive to Subarus – and should not cause alarm. 

It’s simply your vehicle’s way of reassuring you that it’s securely locked and its internal security systems function as they should. 

This additional layer of protection keeps your vehicle safe when not in use, safeguarding against unauthorized access or potential theft. 

Therefore, seeing this flashing symbol when your car is off and locked is entirely normal and indicates that your vehicle’s security features are operating correctly.

3. Indicator of a Healthy Car Battery

The flashing car and lock symbol also serves as a real-time indicator of your car’s battery health. 

When your car is off and locked, the continuous blinking of the security light not only signifies that the security system is active but also implies that your car battery is healthy, providing sufficient power to support the vehicle’s security systems.

However, if the symbol is not blinking when the car is off and locked, it might indicate a possible malfunction or a dead car battery. 

In such scenarios, the absence of the flashing light is an alert to a potential issue, as it signifies that the security systems may not be receiving the necessary power from the car battery to function effectively.

In the event of such discrepancies, scheduling a service appointment with a professional is recommended. 

Their expertise can help diagnose and rectify the issue, ensuring your vehicle’s security system and car battery are operating optimally. 

Therefore, the flashing car and lock symbol is integral to your vehicle’s self-monitoring mechanism, providing insights into its operating health and security status.

4. Immobilization System is NOT Engaged

Contrary to what one might assume, the flashing car and lock symbol on your Subaru dashboard does not mean your vehicle is immobilized. 

In fact, it indicates just the opposite. This symbol illuminates to signify that your vehicle’s immobilizer system is disengaged and that your car is ready to be driven. 

If the light comes on and remains illuminated, it indicates that the immobilization system, which is a part of the car’s security suite, is activated. 

Consequently, the car will be rendered immovable and unable to start. This situation may arise due to tampering or the use of an unauthorized duplicate key inserted into the transmission. 

In the event that the light is illuminated despite using the correct key and operating it usually, it signifies a malfunction that necessitates your immediate attention.

The immobilizer system is designed to prevent engine operation without the correct key or a specific start sequence. 

Therefore, when you correctly insert the key into the ignition or the car recognizes the correct start sequence, the flashing car and lock symbol cease to flash, indicating that the immobilizer system is disengaged and the car can move freely. 

However, if the symbol continues to flash even after the key is inserted, it may indicate a problem with the immobilizer system, and professional assistance should be sought.

What to Do If Your Subaru is Not Flashing Car & Lock Symbol?

Understanding the intricate systems and symbols within your Subaru can significantly enhance your driving experience and ensure your safety. 

Among these symbols, the flashing car and lock symbol on your dashboard can be a source of confusion. However, its purpose is crucial. 

If your Subaru fails to display the car and lock symbol appropriately, it could signal a potential problem with the vehicle’s security system or battery health. Here are the recommended steps to resolve this issue:

1. Check the Security System

If the car and lock symbol in your Subaru fails to light up, it could indicate a problem with the security system. To check this, you should close all doors and windows before starting the vehicle. 

2. Check Battery Health 

The flashing car and lock symbol can also indicate issues with the battery’s health. If the symbol remains lit even after the vehicle’s security system is disengaged, it could mean that the battery has weak or low power. 

The best way to check this is to use a multimeter and measure the voltage of your car battery in order to determine its current state. 

This will help you identify any issues with the battery before they become more serious and require professional assistance. 

3. Seek Professional Assistance 

If the above steps do not resolve the issue, it may be necessary to seek professional help in order to troubleshoot and diagnose any potential problem with your Subaru’s security system or battery health. 

A qualified mechanic should be able to identify the exact cause of this issue and provide a suitable solution. 

Keeping your Subaru in good running condition is important for your vehicle’s longevity and performance. Taking these steps to properly diagnose any issues with the car and lock symbol can help ensure you stay safe on the road. 

4. Verify Immobilization System Status

Once the issue is resolved, you should verify that your Subaru’s immobilization system works correctly. This system prevents your vehicle from being started without the proper key or code to access it. 

To check this, ensure the car and lock symbol lights up when you insert the key in the ignition or press the brake pedal after opening the door. 

If not, you should contact a professional to ensure your vehicle’s immobilization system functions correctly. 

Proper care and maintenance of your Subaru will help keep it running in peak condition for years.

Knowing how to identify any issues with the car and lock symbol will allow you to take swift action when necessary. You can ensure your Subaru is always running at its best with simple steps and precautions. 

Happy driving!

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