Warning light lacks good design

Dear Car Talk:

My mom’s car is a Honda 2011 minivan, and on the dashboard there is a yellow-orange fishbowl with an exclamation mark. I was wondering what that means? — Kathleen

Dear Kathleen:

It means it’s time to feed the guppies.

“Fishbowl” is a funny description. The icon is actually supposed to be a cross-section of a partially deflated tire. The warning light is on because the air pressure is low in one or more of your mom’s tires.

It’s not a great icon. And you’re not the first one to have no idea what that image is, Kathleen. To me, it looks like someone’s large posterior sitting on a lawn chair. But once you mentioned it, I can see it as a fishbowl, too. Chalk it up to bad icon design.

For the rest of the Car Talk readers: What do you guys see in the “low tire pressure” icon? Send us your thoughts, and your answers will be shared with Dr. Freud.

Tom and Ray Magliozzi

Tom and Ray Magliozzi

Get more Click and Clack in their new book, “Ask Click and Clack: Answers from Car Talk.â€ Got a question about cars? Visit the Car Talk website at www.cartalk.com.
Tom and Ray Magliozzi

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