Automotive

TPMS + cold temps

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  • Jan 25th, 2013 2:10 am
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[OP]
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Jan 3, 2013
222 posts
23 upvotes

TPMS + cold temps

i've been getting low tire pressure warnings that wouldn't go away even after a 30 min drive on the highway, so i had my tires checked just to be on the safe side and there was no leak. i know that cold temps will decrease tire pressure significantly, but is it really a good idea to fill them up to the recommended temps when it's still cold outside? i don't think TPMS warns of over inflation, and i don't want that to happen when temps warm up again this coming tuesday/wednesday.
13 replies
Deal Fanatic
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Oct 19, 2003
5156 posts
259 upvotes
The TPMS on my Impreza goes wonky in cold temps. It just erroneously reports low tire pressure. I have checked it several times and the tires were properly inflated. So if the light goes on and off then it could be just the system.
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Deal Addict
Feb 11, 2007
1110 posts
168 upvotes
Whitby
The TPMS on my old truck went wonky in the cold too. I wouldn't worry about it.
Deal Fanatic
Dec 3, 2007
5352 posts
632 upvotes
Calgary
Get a tire pressure gauge to check the tire pressure. The TPMS are good for general warning but not accurate measurement.
Deal Fanatic
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Mar 13, 2004
8916 posts
1344 upvotes
Toronto, Ontario
I wonder if it could also be related to corrosion due to the snow/salt/dirt. Might be a good idea if its possible to put some Dielectric grease or some other product on it to help protect it? Just an idea.
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[OP]
Banned
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Jan 3, 2013
222 posts
23 upvotes
is this just a case of the TPMS sensors glitching? i'm pretty sure that tire pressure really does decrease when it gets colder.
Deal Addict
Dec 24, 2002
2749 posts
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Ajax
Yah cold temps play havoc with the sensors sometimes moisture freezes on the sensor causes it to not transmit.
Sr. Member
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Jan 3, 2008
842 posts
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W.GTA
I read somewhere that the battery in the sensor is good for about five years, maybe someone in the know could comment.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 26, 2008
5653 posts
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BC
toyorav4me wrote:
Jan 24th, 2013 9:39 pm
I read somewhere that the battery in the sensor is good for about five years, maybe someone in the know could comment.
I've heard 8 - 10 years, but the truth is no one knows for sure until the first ones start dying maybe around 2015 (2007 plus 8).

That will be a unpleasant surprise expenditure for a lot of people - not just 4 new sensors but the cost of demounting tires, re-mounting and balancing. Figure around $500.

Just when they felt good with their timing chain engine and no costly belt to replace every 5 years.

When I next go car shopping, if it's between one with direct TPMS sensors in the rims and one with an indirect ABS implementation, guess which one wins? Especially for a used car.
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Jan 3, 2008
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W.GTA
By that time comes, I'm going with an universal programmable sensor.
Deal Fanatic
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Sep 6, 2002
7487 posts
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Toronto
Don't forget to check the tire pressure in your spare (if equipped). Some cars have a TPMS sensor in there as well. Easily overlooked.
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Deal Addict
Dec 27, 2007
1060 posts
275 upvotes
Edmonton
I work at Nissan and we get complaints about TPMS all the time. This is what the technicians do to combat this issue. If the vehicle states inflation of tires to 35psi. The techs will inflate them to 37-38 psi to compensate the flucutation in the temperature dip. So when it gets cold out, the 38psi dips down to 35psi and won't set off the sensor.
Member
Oct 3, 2006
334 posts
11 upvotes
I switched to nitrogen and now get about a 2psi difference between + 20 in my parkade and -20 after sitting outside at work all day, my tpms doesn't go off until the psi drops about 10 from the recommended fill so its solved my problems
Banned
Aug 8, 2012
1115 posts
83 upvotes
Dallas, Texas.
Nothing to worry about, my Acura's have this problem around this time of year. The sensor even shows the proper PSI but still says there is a tire pressure error, a few minutes on the freeway takes care of it though.

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