How Do Tire Pressure Sensors Work?

A tire-pressure sensor is a small, programmable electronic device permanently installed in the pressurized space between a wheel and tire. The sensor sends a signal to the car’s computer and, if equipped, to an appropriate screen in the dashboard cluster. Indicating low tire pressure in pounds per square inch (psi), it also flashes an amber warning light.

The Tire Pressure Monitoring System relies heavily on tire pressure sensors (TPMS). Since they became required in the 2008 model year, millions of these devices have been installed in passenger vehicles across places like the United States. Pressure monitors for tires are typically powered by batteries and fitted to the valve stem assembly of each wheel. Learn more about how tire pressure sensors work as a means of a tire change.

What is an Indirect TPMS?

The anti-lock brake system’s wheel speed sensors are often used in indirect TPMS systems. On-board computers may compare the data gathered from these sensors to other operational data like speed to determine how fast each wheel is spinning. The computer can calculate the size of your tires by measuring how fast each wheel spins. If a revolution begins to turn more quickly than usual, the computer will determine that the tire is underinflated and sound an alarm.

To sum up, an indirect tire pressure monitoring system cannot accurately gauge tire pressure. It’s not doing anything similar to what you’d see with a tire gauge in electronic processing. On the other hand, indirect tire pressure monitors merely track the rate at which your tires are spinning and transmit signals to the car’s central processing unit to trigger the warning light if the rotation speed suddenly changes.

What is a Direct TPMS?

Instead of relying solely on data from the anti-lock brake system, direct TPMS utilizes sensors embedded into each tire to track individual pressure levels. The sensors in a direct TPMS system may also be able to offer tire temperature measurements. The direct tire pressure monitoring system sends all this information to a central control module, which is processed, interpreted, and sent to the dashboard as an indicator light if the tire pressure is too low.

This information is often transmitted wirelessly via a direct tire pressure monitor. One can quickly identify a specific sensor by its serial number. It allows it to differentiate between itself and other vehicles’ systems and between different tire pressure measurements. These systems are often built with proprietary technology, so changing a TPMS in a fashion that is consistent and compatible with your vehicle would require the expertise of a mechanic.

When Does TPMS Warn You?

Suppose the sensor detects that the tire’s air pressure is less than 25% below the recommended air pressure, as mandated by federal rules.

In that case, a warning message or light will illuminate the instrument cluster. A sticker on the driver’s door sill should have the manufacturer’s recommended tire pressure.

Although the batteries used in TPMS sensors are made to survive for years, their power will ultimately fade. When a sensor’s battery dies, it requires replacing the entire sensor rather than just the battery.

What to Do When it Turns On?

Check the information displayed on your instrument cluster and then use a tire-pressure gauge to see whether any of your four tires are low on air if the TPMS warning light comes on.

This light resembles a flat tire when viewed from behind the vehicle. It fills it to the manufacturer’s recommended level as quickly as possible. Remember that your tires will warm up and need to be uniformly inflated if you’ve driven several miles to reach an air hose.

You probably have a tire leak if the TPMS alert turns on again after a few hours or days have passed. Quickly locate a tire shop and have the problem fixed. To make matters worse, driving on a severely deflated tire can cause you to lose control of your vehicle and cause an accident.

TPMS is not a standard feature on all vehicles, particularly older models. If your car doesn’t already come equipped with one, you can purchase an aftermarket accessory that includes one. They are not difficult to install and are found in most stores that sell auto parts. In light of this, you ought to hurry up and acquire a TPMS as soon as possible.