How to Install a Tire Pressure Monitoring System
A tire pressure monitoring system, often shortened to TPMS, is a device which can be installed on your vehicle's wheel to continuously assess the real-time air pressure for that tire. This report is beneficial in many ways, as it can prevent breakdowns, accidents and general wear of your tires. Many newer vehicles now come automatically equipped with this tire pressure sensor, but installing aftermarket parts on your current vehicle is possible, as well.
1. Parts Check and Preparations
In order to effectively install a tire pressure monitoring system on your vehicle, it helps to first be sure you've got all the necessary parts which are appropriate for the year, make and model of your vehicle. When you purchase a TPMS, make sure to have the proper screwdriver, and verify that the transmission frequency and spacer rings are the right fit for your vehicle. The transmission frequency (in MHz) will be printed on the sensor, and the spacer ring will either be beveled or not, depending upon your particular valve holes. You should also verify that the following parts are included in the tire pressure monitoring system kit:
- Self-locking mounting screw
- Spacer ring
- Collar nut
- Valve cap
- Mounting pin
Installing a tire pressure monitoring system takes only a few simple steps. Each step should be performed in order, and during installation you'll want to make sure all parts are secure. The order of steps is indicated as follows:
- Set the valve into the sensor, and loosely thread the mounting screw into the bottom.
- Position this assembly to the rim, passing the valve through the hole in the rim, and the mounting pin through the hole in the side of the valve.
- Slide the spacer over the exposed side of the valve and thread the collar nut. Tighten with your fingers.
- Hold the collar nut and tighten the valve by moving the mounting pin about a half turn. Remove the mounting pin.
- Thread the valve cap over the exposed part of the valve.
3. Verify Proper Installation
Once you've finished installing your new tire pressure monitoring system, it's important to verify that the process has been completed correctly. First, you'll want to make sure that all parts are securely attached to the rim, especially tightening of the valve stems. Once complete, verify that the indicating light or other driver information mechanism is functioning. Often, a solid light will indicate if the tires are improperly inflated, and a flashing light may indicate problems with the system that need troubleshooting. Refer to your owner's manual to discover what different indicator symbols mean.
Once your tire pressure monitoring system is properly installed, there are a few points to keep in mind when utilizing the system. Depending upon the weather in your area, tire pressure can change rapidly. This is normal, but should be reported by your sensors. Simply adjust the pressure in your tires to reflect the information you've been given by the system. If a malfunction has occurred, either indicated by the instrument panel or the sensor units themselves, have them checked immediately. If one sensor is experiencing problems, it may benefit you to replace them all, depending upon the time of last installation.