What Does the Parking Assist Indicator Light Mean?

How Park Assist Works

Model Y has several sensors designed to detect the presence of objects. When driving slowly in Drive or Reverse (for example, when parking), the vehicle alerts you if an object is detected in close proximity of your Model Y. Objects are only detected in your chosen direction; front objects in Drive, rear objects in Reverse.

A warning icon, calling your attention to a possibly risky situation

WarningYou may not be alerted if Model Y rolls freely in the opposite direction (for example, Park Assist does not display an alert if Model Y rolls backwards down a hill while in Drive).

The sensors are activated when driving slower than 5 mph (8 km/h).

An informational icon, calling your attention

NoteRear sensors are disabled when a bicycle is detected or Model Y is in trailer mode.

A warning icon, calling your attention to a possibly risky situationWarningNever depend on Park Assist to inform you if an area you are approaching is free of objects and/or people. Several external factors can reduce the performance of Park Assist, causing either no readings or false readings (see Limitations and False Warnings). Therefore, depending on Park Assist to determine if Model Y is approaching an obstruction can result in damage to the vehicle and/or objects, and can potentially cause serious injury. Always inspect the area with your own eyes. When reversing, perform shoulder checks and use all mirrors. Park assist does not detect children, pedestrians, bicyclists, animals, or objects that are moving, protruding, located too far above or below the sensors, or too close or too far from the sensors. Park Assist is for guidance purposes only and is not intended to replace your own direct visual checks. It is not a substitute for careful driving.



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Limitations and False Warnings

The parking sensors may not function correctly in these situations:

  • One or more of the ultrasonic sensors (if equipped) or cameras is damaged, dirty, or obstructed (such as by mud, ice, or snow, or by a vehicle bra, excessive paint, or adhesive products such as wraps, stickers, rubber coating, etc.).
  • The object is located below approximately 8 inches (20 cm) (such as a curb or low barrier).

    A warning icon, calling your attention to a possibly risky situationCAUTIONShorter objects that are detected (such as curbs or low barriers) can move into the blind spot of the sensors. Model Y cannot alert you about an object while it is in the blind spot of the sensors.

  • Weather conditions (heavy rain, snow, or fog) are interfering with sensor operation.
  • The object is thin (such as a sign post).
  • A sensor’s operating range has been exceeded.
  • The object is sound-absorbing or soft (such as powder snow).
  • The object is sloped (such as a sloped embankment).
  • Model Y has been parked in, or being driven in, extremely hot or cold temperatures.
  • The sensors (if equipped) are affected by other electrical equipment or devices that generate ultrasonic waves.
  • You are driving in a location where the sensors’ (if equipped) ultrasonic waves are deflected away from the vehicle (such as driving next to a wall or pillar).
  • The object is located too close to the bumper.
  • A bumper is misaligned or damaged.
  • An object that is mounted to Model Y is interfering with and/or obstructing the sensor (such as a bike rack or bumper sticker).
  • Model Y rolls freely in the opposite direction you selected (for example, Park Assist does not display an alert if Model Y rolls backwards down a hill while in Drive).


Park Assist is a system designed to make urban parking easier by automating some of the manoeuvres you need to get safely into and out of parking spaces.

Perpendicular/Traditional Parking Assistance

For assistance with backing into traditional or perpendicular parking spaces, press the Active Park Assist button two times and use your left or right turn signal to let the system know which side you would like to park on. After this, just follow the directions on your dashboard display. If for any reason you would like to disable the parking process, press the activation button or grab the steering wheel.

Intelligent Parking Assist System

Intelligent Parking Assist System (IPAS), also known as the Advanced Parking Guidance System (APGS) for Toyota models in the United States, assists drivers in parking their vehicles using computer processors tied to multiple sensors. For those equipped with the IPAS, the car itself steers into a parking space with minimal help from the driver.

Using special sensors, the processor determines the steering angle and displays it on the touchscreen with the obstacle information. Further, the IPAS activates as the vehicle shifts into reverse. This triggers the backup camera, allowing drivers to see behind their vehicles.

Is it safe to drive with the parking assist light on?

Using the park assist feature when trying to get in or out of a tight spot will help keep you out of unwanted accidents. Even if the system is disabled, you can continue driving normally because it is a nonessential system and doesn’t affect your car’s overall driveability. That being said, you shouldn’t rely on the parking assist 100% when trying to park. It is possible for the system to make errors, so you should always be looking over your shoulder when reversing. The parking assist mainly helps by checking blind spots that you can’t see even when looking over your shoulder.

If your parking assist feature doesn’t seem to be working as intended, one of our certified technicians would be able to inspect it for you.

Parallel Parking With Ford Active Park Assist

All you need to do is accelerate, brake and shift as directed and the system will do everything else. It gives exact instructions such as “Pull forward to starting point,” “Stop vehicle to begin parking” and “Remove hands, Shift to reverse.” While the system is semi-automated, ensure that you watch your mirrors and pay attention to surrounding objects.

Available on many new Ford models at our car dealership in the Dallas area, Active Park Assist is a huge stress reliever for anyone who dreads having to pull into parallel parking spots – plus it can do much more, too!

How can we help?

Our service team is available 7 days a week, Monday – Friday from 6 AM to 5 PM PST, Saturday – Sunday 7 AM – 4 PM PST.

1 (855) 347-2779 · hi@yourmechanic.com


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