Reasons why tire pressure light is on after changing tires

TPMS is an electronic system that informs drivers when tire pressure falls 25% or more than the manufacturer’s recommended level. The information is relayed to the driver through the pressure light. There are two types of TPMS, direct and indirect.

An indirect TPMS works by employing the antilock braking system (ABS). It measures the tires’ revolution rate to anticipate their diameter. It immediately sends out a warning whenever a tire spins faster than recommended.

The direct TPMS is aided by sensors stationed at individual tire assembly. They transmit data to the car’s computer system whenever air in the tire has an incorrect value.

So, why tire pressure light is on after changing tires?

If you replaced your tires but the tire pressure won’t go off, the problem might be within the pressure monitoring system itself. Each tire has an independent sensor that communicates with the main computer independently. The TPMS light might come on because one tire is low or one sensor is not communicating correctly with the main computer. After changing tires some systems need a reset, that might be the problem.

Another scenario is where your mechanic replaced your tire pressure sensor with an aftermarket sensor which might not be compatible with your car’s computer. This could be possible if they were damaged as a sensor when changing the tires.

You should have the car checked to establish which sensor is malfunctioning. If the sensor is the problem you have to replace it with a proper one. Remember; try to reset the TPMS first before thinking about broken sensors.

Causes Of TPMS On After You Have Installed A New Set Of Tires

The Tire Pressure Sensor Could Be Malfunctioning

The tire pressure sensors have a lifespan of around 8-10 years, this is quite a long lifespan, but if the car is old enough you might want to have the sensors checked. They could have failed due to normal wear and tear or their battery could have run out.

Another cause could be the presence of anything other than air and nitrogen in the tire. To reduce the chances of ever needing to replace the sensors you are advised to avoid using patches to repair sealants on a tire with tire pressure sensors.

Change In Temperatures

Warm air takes up more space in the tire compared to cold air. If you measure the tire pressure on a cold morning and drive off, you will notice that the tire pressure rose after some hours of driving.

As the tire spins it gets warmer and so does the air in it. Warmer air will expand and increase the tire’s pressure. When temperatures fall, the tire pressure falls too.

This change in pressure will have you filling the air in a hot afternoon only for temperature to change and you end up with lower pressure even when the tires and sensors are working just fine. For every 10 degrees of temperature fall, you can expect around a 1 psi drop in tire pressure.

You Might Have Changes Or Rotated The Tires Recently

During rotation of tires, they are moved to a new location while new tires might not have TPMS sensors, the car might need to re-adjust itself to accommodate the new changes.

Some cars only need a slow drive for some minutes to reset while others need to have a technician work on them. The information is in the owner’s manual.

The Spare Tire Might Have Low Pressure

When you replace a puncture with a spare tire ensure the pressure is correct. It is not common to have sensors in spare tires so the only option is to have them well inflated.

Is It Normal For Tire Pressure Light To Come On After Getting New Tires?

You do not expect to have the tire pressure light on after changing the tires but it is no big deal. There are several reasons why this can happen.

  • The TPMS needs a reset: Some cars require this operation after changing tires, rotating tires, or adding air. The owner’s manual should offer more insight.
  • The TPMS needs service: If you are sure your tire pressure is correct and the light is blinking, you might need to have it serviced. But, a general cause of a flashing tire pressure sensor is ofter a worn battery of the TPMS.
  • The tire might have air leaks: If the TPMS was stable after filling and then gets issues, later on, the tire could be leaking air. Take it to the tire repair shop.

Do You Need To Reset TPMS After Adding New Tires?

It is a requirement that you reset your TPMS after changing tires or rotating them. Some manufacturers will recommend that you reset them after even adding air. What this entails is simply retraining the system to recognize the new sensors or their new location.

How to reset the TPMS after changing the wheels

This procedure is subjective but it means changing dashboard settings, ignition, and paddling, use of resetting tools among other processes. You can use the following procedures.

  • Drive the car for around 15 minutes maintaining a speed of 50 mph. This should get it back on track
  • Turn the ignition to the on position and reset the TPMS. When the pressure light blinks three times wait for 25 minutes before restarting.
  • Inflate the tires with more air than recommended, then deflate them and re-inflate them to the recommended pressure level.

If it still doesn’t reset drive to the repair shop for help

How Much Does It Cost To Replace TPMS?

The cost of replacing tire pressure sensors ranges from $6-$10 while the cost of servicing/resetting them is around $60-$260.

Can The TPMS Sensor Be Installed On A New Set Of Wheels?

If you replace all your tires all at once you might not need to buy new sensors

Bottom line

Most of the time when the tire pressure light comes on, the tire pressure is not enough. It might be a single tire or a set of tires. TPMS has prevented many car accidents. The light must not necessarily signal anything serious but you should not ignore it.

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