Auto manufacturers are utilizing technology to reduce accidents on the road. The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) allows drivers to know when the air in the tires is low. Low tire pressure affects your ability to control the car, the fuel economy of your ride and the wear on the tire. In today’s cars, the TPMS sensor is commonplace. When the light comes on, you should be aware that your tires may need service. But before you bring your car into Sun Devil Auto, check a few things to make sure you need our technicians’ help.
If the Light Goes on When You Start the Car
It’s normal for the tire pressure sensor light to come on when you start the car. It should only stay on for a few seconds, then go off. When it stays on, you may want to do some troubleshooting. The first thing to check is the tire pressure. Look in your owner’s manual or on the sticker inside the driver’s door to find the recommended PSI for your vehicle. Then, use a tire pressure gauge to check each tire. It’s common for tires to lose a little bit of air each month. You just need to add air to the required PSI, and you should be good to go.
The tire pressure sensor may need to reset itself once you’ve added air to the tires. Drive for a little bit. The light should go off as the sensor reads the new pressure levels. If the light stays on, you should have us check your tires for a leak or another issue that may not be immediately visible. If the tire pressure is stable, then it could be a bad sensor. It’s safe to drive, but you cannot count on the TPMS sensor to alert you to a problem.
The Light Comes on While You’re Driving
When the tire light on the car comes on while you’re driving, don’t panic. It is possible that you have a leak or just drove over something that is causing your tires to go flat. It’s important to keep a cool head if you have a serious problem. If your system alerts you that one tire has a problem, you should safely pull over and check your tires. Driving on a tire that is losing air could damage your rims, making the repairs much costlier than simply replacing a tire. Keep in mind that when the tire pressure is low in one tire, your car may not handle like you’re used to. Slow down until you can get off the road.
If the tire pressure sensor shows that all four tires have low pressure, it could be due to a change in the outside temperature. When the temperature drops 20 degrees or so, it can cause the air in the tires to slightly contract. The sensor believes that the tires are losing pressure. Continue to drive to heat the air in the tires. The sensor may also go on when the temperature rises, but it’s more likely that the sensor will be affected in the cold.
The TPMS Shouldn’t Replace Tire Maintenance
If the tire pressure light blinks instead of staying steady, it is most likely a problem within the system. The tire pressure monitor may simply need to be reset. Bring your car to us. We’ll take a look and get you back on the road safely. If the system needs a reset, this is not something you can do yourself.
Although TPMS systems are common in today’s cars, it is still a good idea to manually check your tire pressure throughout the year, especially when the seasons change. It’s recommended to check and adjust your tires when they are cold, not hot. Taking care of your tires prevents uneven tread wear and lengthens the life of your tires.
Pay attention to the lights on the dashboard of your car because they will indicate an issue that needs to be addressed. Sun Devil Auto technicians are here to diagnose, repair and find solutions for your car problems.