As we venture into the cold season and winters are getting colder, it’s more important to know how to look after your tyres and TPMS sensors.

As we’ve gone over before in a previous post, low tyre pressure can be a sign of slow punctures and result in tyre ruptures, but cold weather can add to this equation, with reduced pressure and fuel economy. Therefore, cold weather trigger TPMS lights come on to a car’s dashboard even though it may disappear later in the day.

While it can be this, it’s also important to safeguard that it isn’t for another reason entirely that requires further investigation. They can include any of the following:

  • Vehicle owner not understanding how TPMS works
  • A dead battery causing the TPMS sensor to cease functioning
  • A weak or failing battery is causing the TPMS sensor to work irregularly
  • Antenna or wiring problem that causes a TPMS a TPMS module to not receive signals
  • After a service, the relearn procure has not be carried out correctly

Diagnosing TPMS Problems

Using a TPMS diagnostic tool is the first step to take when diagnosing a TPMS warning light that is intermittent. It is used to check the response signals from each TPMS sensor by confirming that it is indeed functioning and if the tyre pressure reading is correct.

Another factor to consider is educating customers on TPMS and how to read tyre pressure – our brief guide makes a great starting point.

Many people still use a stick-style gauge that is spring-loaded to read tyre pressure, but the problem with this is that the readings can vary by 5 PSI or more and this can come into play when tyre pressure drops 25 percent below OEM-recommended pressure.

It’s crucial to prompt vehicle owners that correctly inflated tyres to be safe on the road but also fuel economy. For every 1.25 kilos the tyre is under the recommended PSI measurement, 1% of fuel economy is lost. It’s also important to consider that tyre pressures also change about 2% or approximately 1 PSI for each 12OC drop in temperature.

Therefore, as temperatures from the British Summer drop to winter, it can mean a drop of 6 PSI, which can consequently mean a drop in fuel economy and the TPMS icon lighting up on the dashboard.