Vehicles nowadays feature a mind-blowing number of safety appliances, such as steam cleaners, meant to keep the driver safe behind the wheel. Many of them are mandated by the government and become the standard of every car manufactured. 

Among these safety features, the most ubiquitous is the Tire Pressure Monitoring System, also known as TPMS. Implemented by American carmakers in 2007, this system is responsible for warning the driver if any of the car’s tires begin to lose a significant amount of air. 

As practical as it is, the modern TPMS system also has its own setbacks. Over time, the components that form the system are susceptible to failure. The result is a tire pressure sensor fault, which DriveRevolve will discuss in this post. 

Keep scrolling to discover the cause of TPMS faults, as well as how to resolve the problems in the future! 

More About The Tire Pressure Sensor

Tire Pressure Sensor
The tire pressure sensor is a tiny but mighty part of your car – Source: Atlantic British

The tire pressure sensor is an important safety feature found in many modern vehicles. It is responsible for controlling the tires’ air pressure and will signal the driver when one of the tires is under-inflated. 

The most common type of tire pressure sensor is a direct system, which uses sensors mounted inside each wheel rim to monitor the air pressure. When these sensors detect a drop in air pressure, they send a radio signal back to the car’s computer, triggering an alert on the dashboard or console display. Some cars also have audible warnings that sound when there is an issue with one or more of your tires.  

Another type of system uses an indirect method for measuring tire pressures; this involves placing external transmitters on each wheel rim instead of having them built into them like with direct systems. These transmitters constantly monitor changes in air pressure from outside the rims and then relay this information back to your car’s onboard computer so you can be alerted about any issues with your tires.  

Both direct and indirect tire pressure sensor systems can help keep you safe while driving. Not only do they alert the driver to any potential issues with their tires, but they can also give you an early warning of other problems, such as a puncture or faulty valve. This helps ensure that your car is running at its best, so you can get the most out of your vehicle.

What Exactly Is The “Tire Pressure Sensor Fault”?

The “tire pressure sensor fault” occurs when there is either a malfunction with the tire pressure sensors themselves or their connection to other components in your car.  

tire pressure sensor fault
What does tire pressure sensor fault mean? – Source: Tire Dealer Sites

When this happens, you may find that your dashboard display lights up with an error message such as “Low Tire Pressure” or “Tire Pressure Sensor Fault.” If this happens to you, then it’s crucial to have your vehicle checked out as soon as possible by a qualified mechanic. He can identify and repair any potential problems before they become worse.

Causes Of The Tire Pressure Sensor Fault 

Reduced Sensor Battery Capacity 

One common cause of the tire pressure sensor fault is reduced battery capacity in the sensors themselves. Over time, batteries within these sensors may begin to degrade due to age or environmental conditions such as extreme temperatures, moisture, or vibration. 

Decreased Sensor Battery Capacity
Real-time battery capacity of a tire pressure sensor over time – Source: ResearchGate

This can interfere with their ability to accurately detect tire pressure changes, resulting in inaccurate readings being sent back to your vehicle’s computer system.  

Faulty Wiring 

Another potential culprit of a tire pressure sensor fault could be faulty wiring or connections between the sensors and the vehicle’s computer system. If this is the case, then it’s vital to have all wiring checked by an expert as soon as possible to avoid further damage. 

Damaged Sensor Assembly 

Another potential cause of a tire pressure sensor fault could be incorrect installation or maintenance from either yourself or a mechanic when installing them on your car. 

If any part of the system has not been correctly fitted, then it might not work properly and lead to inaccurate readings being displayed on your dashboard display unit (DDU). Additionally, if any parts have become damaged or lost over time, you should replace them as soon as possible to avoid further issues. 

Low Tire Pressure

Low Tire Pressure
Low tire pressure is also among the most common causes of a tire pressure sensor fault in cars – Source: My Cars Make Noise

The sensors are designed to measure air pressure inside each wheel rim directly so that any drop in air pressure will trigger an alert on either the dashboard display unit (DDU) or with audible warnings. 

If there is too little air inside one or more tires, this could lead to inaccurate readings being sent back to your car’s onboard computer system, which will result in an error message such as “Low Tire Pressure” appearing on the DDU. This can also lead to a squeaky noise while driving

Tire Pressure Sensor Lost Memory

Last but not least, tire pressure sensor fault can happen when the sensor’s memory is lost. When that happens, the tire pressure control module and the sensors won’t be able to communicate with each other. 

The quickest solution is to reprogram the sensors, which we will address in a minute. 

What To Do When I Have A Tire Pressure Sensor Fault? 

If you believe something is wrong with your car’s tires, then you must have them inspected by a qualified mechanic immediately. They will be able to diagnose the issue and advise on the necessary steps to get it resolved. This could involve anything, from replacing a faulty sensor or damaged component to changing your tires or simply adjusting the tire pressure to resolve the problem. 

In some cases, you may also be able to reset the fault yourself using your car’s onboard diagnostics. However, like the body control module reset, this should only be done if you are confident in your skills and have access to the appropriate equipment needed for the job. Otherwise, it’s best to leave the work to a professional who can ensure that the issue is fixed correctly and promptly.

How To Reset Your Tire Pressure Sensor 

As mentioned, if you find that your car’s tire pressure sensor has been displaying an error message, the fastest way is to reset the fault as soon as possible. In case you decide to do this without needing a mechanic, here is an easy guide: 

  • The first step is to locate the tires of your vehicle, which are equipped with sensors. So, where is the TMPS sensor? It is usually located near each steering wheel rim but may also be found on other parts of the car, such as inside the door frame or undercarriage. 
  • Once you have identified these sensors, use a flathead screwdriver to remove them from their mounting bracket before disconnecting any wiring harnesses attached to them. This should release all air pressure within each tire, allowing you to reset its reading level back down to zero (0). 
  • Once all of your tires have had their readings returned down to 0 PSI (Pounds Per Square Inch), it’s time to reconnect any wiring harnesses and re-installing each sensor into its original position. Make sure to double-check that everything is connected properly and securely before re-inflating the tires to the correct air pressure level. To do this, simply connect a tire pressure gauge to each wheel rim and inflate them back up until the desired PSI level has been achieved. 
  • Finally, you will need to reset the fault within your car’s onboard diagnostics. This can usually be done using a combination of buttons located on your dashboard display unit (DDU) and should restore the system to its regular working order. 

Tire Pressure Sensor Reset

However, suppose you are still experiencing problems after completing this process. In that case, it’s recommended that you seek professional assistance from a qualified mechanic who can diagnose and repair any further issues.

The Cost Of Replacing The Tire Pressure Sensor 

Replacing The Tire Pressure Sensor
How much is a TPMS sensor? – Source: Youtube

Depending on your car’s model and the type of sensors it uses, the cost of replacing a tire pressure sensor can vary. 

Generally speaking, replacing an individual tire pressure sensor will typically cost between $50 – $150 per wheel. If you need to replace all four sensors, then this could set you back anywhere from $200 – $600, depending on your vehicle’s make and model.  

However, some newer cars may require additional parts, such as special tools or software, to install new sensors, which could increase the total cost significantly. Ultimately though, if you want to ensure that your tires are operating at peak performance levels, then investing in quality replacement sensors is worth every penny!

Final Verdict

No matter the cause of your tire pressure sensor fault, it’s essential to address the issue as soon as possible. Whether you decide to replace a faulty or damaged component yourself or leave it in the hands of a professional mechanic, investing in quality replacement sensors is worth every penny when it comes to ensuring that your tires are operating at peak performance levels. 

With all these factors taken into account, there’s no doubt that keeping an eye on any potential “tire pressure sensor faults” should be the top priority for any car owner!

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