A survey has found that 90 per cent of British motorists can't recognise some of the symbols on their dashboard.
The research by Accident Advice Helpline found that out of the 2,000 people surveyed, 27 per cent couldn't identify the 'check engine' symbol and 29 per cent couldn't distinguish the 'headlamp indicator'.
But out of those who could recognise what each of the symbols meant or identify any issues with their vehicle, very few could rectify them or knew how to.
Of those asked, 63 per cent didn't know how to check their vehicle's oil levels, just under half could change a tyre when needed and 44 per cent wouldn't know how to change their windscreen wipers.
Also, 58 per cent of those asked didn't know the point at which tyre treads became illegal or how to check them to make sure they were roadworthy.
David Carter, spokesman for the claims company, said: "It's worrying how little drivers know about their own cars.
"Knowing the meaning of a dashboard symbol on your car could be the difference between having an accident or not."
One in four motorists also admitted they had been late MOTing their vehicle, with eight per cent of those leaving it more than 20 days. Reasons given included they couldn't afford it, they didn't know where to go or they felt their car was safe.