More Than a String of Letters

TP what? In your automobile, it’s the TPMS, or Tire Pressure Monitoring System. Thus, it’s more than a string of letters or a minor aggravation that a dashboard light is on. Instead, the TPMS actually provides you with timely and relevant information about your tire air pressure. If you’re in need of tire services, you can find reliable, friendly assistance nearby at First Tire & Automotive in Cinco Ranch, Katy, Texas. We’re located near Grand Parkway, so we’re very easy to find and reach. Even better, we’re committed to exceptional customer service which explains why we have so many repeat customers who have been with us for years.

How TPMS Works

The Tire Pressure Monitoring System keeps a constant check on the air pressure in your auto’s tires. It warns you when the air pressure is too low. It works by relaying a message between the sensor at each tire (either in the wheel wells or valve stem) to the car’s computer that triggers the dashboard warning. This is important information for the driver. Low tire pressure can lead to poor handling, premature tire wear, and perhaps even overheating which leads to catastrophic tire failure (blowout). Obviously, you can’t be at the valve stem of each tire with a pressure gauge taking measurements at every second, especially when you’re driving. Fortunately, the TPMS can. It gives you notice as soon as it detects insufficient air pressure, providing you with the opportunity to correct the problem before it becomes serious.

Potential Issues and Related Service

When the dashboard warning illuminates, you’ll know it’s the TPMS if the symbol looks like a flattened tire, a bit like a horseshoe with a straight rather than rounded bottom. But what specific issues can trigger this notification? Look to see exactly how the light is behaving. It may actually appear differently depending upon the nature of the problem. If the light illuminates as you’re driving and remains lit, at least one of your tires likely has insufficient air pressure. As soon as you can, stop in a safe place to check the pressure in each tire. You can find the manufacturer’s recommended air pressure on a sticker in the door jamb. If the light goes on and off, your tire air pressure is probably being affected by temperature changes, particularly if the weather has recently turned cooler. Finally, a flashing light upon starting the car that then turns and stays solid indicates a need for system service. No matter the issue, you can count on First Tire & Automotive for all tire services.