At Bowers Automotive we welcome any queries from car owners who want to understand more about their vehicles.
Drivers have a wealth of information available to them right on their dashboards. In addition to the check engine light and other warning lights for low oil pressure, ABS malfunctions, drivers of newer vehicles might notice the TPMS symbol. So, what is my car’s TPMS system and what should I do if this light turns on?
TPMS stands for Tire Pressure Monitoring System. Vehicles with this system have sensors inside their tires that measure the air pressure. If the air pressure is either too low or too high in any of your tires, this integrated electronic system will send a warning to the driver by illuminating the TPMS light on the dashboard. Some systems display a gauge, showing whether the pressure is below or above the optimum level.
The advantages of having this system installed are many. Under-inflated tires can cause bad fuel economy in a vehicle, over-wearing certain areas of the tire treads and causing overall instability. If your tires are over-inflated, you may experience discomfort when driving over bumps and potholes in the road as well as increasing your risk of a blowout. For a safe and comfortable driving experience as well as good fuel economy, you should keep your vehicle’s tires within 6psi of the advised inflation pressure.
If you see the TPMS light illuminate, this is your signal to get your tire pressure checked and adjusted. An ASE certified technician can carry out this service for you. Once you see the light turn on, do not delay in getting your tires checked. If you are far from an auto shop when you see the light, you can put extra air in your tires at any gas station as a temporary fix. A severely under-inflated tire can cause sufficient instability to make you lose control of your vehicle and cause an accident.
If your TPMS light flashes, this indicates a problem with the TPMS system itself, often happening after you install a spare tire. If there is no detectable pressure sensor in the new tire the TPMS light may flash. Your local auto technician can configure the TPMS system when you get new tires or rotate your tires. Keeping your TPMS system well maintained, and functioning makes your car safer to drive.
Some things that can damage your TPMS system include driving on bumpy roads, hitting potholes and curbs or letting your battery die. Keeping your tires well maintained is also vital in extending the life of your TPMS system. If you have any doubts about the function of your car’s TPMS system, do not hesitate to visit an auto shop for a check-up.
Here at Bowers Automotive in Colorado Springs, we use modern diagnostic tools to perform quick analysis and tune-ups on the electrical systems found in all makes and models of vehicles. We hope we have thoroughly answered the question, what is my car’s TPMS system, for you today. For questions, feel free to call or stop by the shop.