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Info On Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems (TPMS)

I had a class the other day for work, and it was all about the Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems coming out on newer vehicles. I found out a good amount of information. I wanted to share it with the 03-newer Explorer owners, because most newer Explorers-Mountaineers have the TPMS!

What's Covered In This Section:

1. Hard Facts (Sub-Categories: (a) Reasons Why)
2. Two Types Of TPMS (Sub-Categories: (a) Indirect, (b) Direct, (c) Old Fashion)
3. What/Who Uses What
4. How Do I Know I Have It
5. Changing Tires and Wheels
6. How Do They Relearn
7. Aftermarket Wheels and Tires




Hard Facts:

-- NHTSA - New proposed rule requires TPMS on all passenger vehicles, trucks, and buses with a GVWR of 10,000 pounds or less. (excluding duallys under 10,000 pounds)

-- 100% compliance is required by January 1, 2007 subject to phase in schedule: 20% by September 2005, 70% by September 2006, and 100% by Jan 2007.

Reasons Why:

-- The National Highway Traffric Safety Administration conduced an inspection of 6,240 vehicles within a 14-day period in August of 2001. Found that out of those vehicles tested, 27 percent of the passenger cars had one or more tires substantially under inflated. They also found that 33 percent of light trucks and suVs had one or more tires that were also under inflated.

-- About 8,000 blowouts every year result in serious injury or death.

Note: some TPMS check and warn about HIGH air pressure. The NHTSA mandated systems do not require high pressure warnings.



Two Types Of TPMS:

-- One type measures the pressure in the tire directly (Direct TPMS). The other checks tire pressure indirectly (Indirect TPMS) by testing the effects on the tire from the pressure change (i.e. - through the ABS system - wheel sensors).

Indirect TPMS:

By watching the wheel speed sensors, the ABS module "knows" how fast each wheel is turning. Two modes of operation while driving: Calibration and Detection. After tires are rotated or replaced, the "reset" button must be pressed to clear the prior saved calibration from its memory.

When the vehicle reaches a predetermined speed (or speeds) for the first time after resetting the system, it enters into its calibration mode.

- In this mode, it "learns" how fast the individual wheels are spinning. It also takes a sampling of those measurments and saves those values in memory. It cannot detect a low tire in calibration mode.

The indirect method does not satisfy the NHTSA's requirements and will not longer be on new model vehicles after 2006. Diagnostics of these types of systems should not be a problem for any shop that does ABS systems. Same type systems, senosors, electrical devices, etc.


Direct TPMS:

dominion1.jpg


The only method that currently satisfies the NHTSA's requirements. It works by use of a radio trasmitter located inside the tire:

tpms.jpg


The radio transmitter is actually the valve stem's base. The valve stem is part of the transmitter and serves double duty as an anchor and as an antenna. If the vehicle is equipped with a spare, the spare will have a transmitter as well. The first direct TPM sensors (like found on some older Corvettes) were a rather large sensor (approx. 3 inches long, 2 inches high, and a inch wide).

The typical modern direct TPM sensor has a 10-year lithium battery that is not replaceable. The sensor weights just over one ounce. It's accurate up to 2 PSI of its reading, and have been tested over 200 MPH. they carry price tags in the low hundreds each (higher for BMWs, Lexus, etc.).

Transmitters/sensors are not constantly on. They only send a signal about every 30 to 60 seconds at speeds of 15 to 20 mph. then, when sitting still, they transmit a pressure reading about once each hour.

Every manufacturers system is different, and diagnosing and fixing these systems vary. should the module determine pressure to be too low, or fail to recieve a signal, the TPM light will illiuminate (on top of page) or will state so in message center. This INCLUDES the spare tire!

If a tire is low, and you inflate the tire, the light should go out (if that was the problem). However, if the tires are rotated, then most of these systems require retraining the sensors/modules. The TPM system "knows" the placement of each tire (LF, RF, RR, LF, and spare), the technician must retrain the module each time the wheel assemblies are rotated. Or if the tires are replaced and the rims are not put back in the origional positions.

Old Fashion/Aftermarket TPMS:

rubber1.jpg



What/Who Uses What:

Indirect TPMS:

- Ford: 2001-03 Windstar
- GM : 97-02 Park Avenue, 99-03 Century and Regal, 02-03 LeSabre, 2003 Rendezvous and Aztek, 00-03 Impala and Mone Carlo, 99-02 Alero, 99-02 Grand Am, 01-03 Aurora, 97 Grand Prix, 2000-03 Bonneville
-Toyota: Sienna Van
-Nissan: Pathfinder

Direct TPMS

-Chrysler: 02-03 300M and Town&Country, 03 Viper, 04 Pacifica
-Ford: '03 Explorer and Mountaineer
-Lincoln: 03' Navigator

-GM: 00-03 Deville, 97-03 Corvette (as well as some older Corvettes)


How Do You Know I Have TPMS:

-If it is factory equipped with Extended Mobility tires (EMT, A.K.A. "runflats"), then it will have a pressure monitoring system. Runflats are required by federal law to have a TPMS -- and any store that will sell you Runfalts on a non-TPMS, will require you to buy new wheels/Sensors.

-You can tell by a simple turn of the key or a look at the valve stem. Turn the key on the ON position and look on the dash for a light. If the vehicle is equipped with navigation, go through the menu and search for the TPMS. If you look at the valve stem and it looks to be metal/aluminum, and locked in place by a nut, more than likely you have a TPMS.

Valve stem looks similar to this:

4.jpg


-Be sure to inflate tires to the pressures specified on the vehicles data plate, no more going by the rating on the tire.


Changing Tires and Wheels:

If you replace new tires, it is highly recommend to get a new grommet, seal, and o-ring set. Replacing these seals are about $10 in parts per wheel. Here's a diagram:

tpms_wk_03.jpg


The TPM valve stem cap is made of aluminum and the valve core is nickel-plated for resistance of corrosion. The outer end of the valve stem functions as the sensor's RF antenna. Always place both the cap and the sensor/valve assembly on a clean, dry surface when they are removed from the wheel.

CAUTION:

- If the metal stem cap is stuck, DO NOT use plies to remove it -- it will break!
- DO NOT use a self calmping air chuck on the TPMS sensors, valve stems will break off! These things are VERY fragile!
- Valve Cores of the TMPS are not the same as regular rubber stems, do not lose them.
- DO NOT replace cap with a rubber one, it will mess up the transmitters
- DO NOT use "fix-a-flat" with a TPMS; it will clog the sensor and render it broken.


How Do They Relearn?

Different manufacturers use different ways to relearn or retrain the TPMS! Some use magnets with a certain process and some use a "reset" button. Here are some pictures of the magnets that GM Uses:

GMagnethn.jpg


tpmsmagnet2.jpg



Aftermarket Wheels and Tires:

This information is still up in the air. Some aftermarkte manufacturers are trying to make wheels that'll work with the sensors, but the problem is that the sensors are made to fit on the wheel a specific way (flush against the rim). If it does not sit flush, it may break off during normal operation. Most systems will allow you to change for bigger/smaller tires. The biggest problem right now is with low-profiles and these sensors.




Of coarse, I would like to hear some feedback, corrections, and opinions about all of this stuff. I hope this will help some people out. I can probably get the "relearn" steps for a Explorer/Mountaineer/Navigator if you all think I should.

-Drew
 



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Look at my post #89 above for resetting the clamp and band style (2006 to present). Buy the tool from Ford.

The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) monitors the air pressure of all four regular road tires. The wheel-mounted tire pressure sensors transmit via radio frequency (RF) signals, to the TPMS module (integral to the vehicle security module (VSM)), using the valve stem as an antenna. These transmissions are sent approximately every 60 seconds when the vehicle speed exceeds 32 km/h (20 mph). The TPMS module (integral to VSM), compares each tire pressure sensor transmission against a low-pressure limit. If the module determines that the tire pressure has fallen below this limit, the module communicates this on the controller area network (CAN) to the instrument cluster, illuminates the TPMS indicator and displays the appropriate message center message.

The system is not affected by wheel and tire rotation.

Sensor Training (Reset Procedure)

NOTE: The tire pressure monitoring system is not affected by wheel and tire rotation.

NOTE: The tire pressure sensor training procedure must be done on a single vehicle, in an area without radio frequency (RF) noise.

RF noise is generated by electrical motor and appliance operation, cellular telephones and remote transmitters, power inverters and portable entertainment equipment.


1.Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position.
2.Turn the ignition switch from the OFF position to the RUN position three times, ending in the RUN position. Do not wait more than one minute between each key cycle.
3.Press and release the brake pedal.
4.Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position.
5.Turn the ignition switch from the OFF position to the RUN position three times, ending in the RUN position. Do not wait more than one minute between each key cycle.

6.The horn will sound once and the TPMS indicator will flash if train mode has been entered successfully. If equipped, the message center displays "TRAIN LF TIRE", place the magnet on the valve stem of the LF tire pressure sensor. The horn will sound briefly to indicate that the tire pressure sensor has been recognized by the TPMS module.
7.Within two minutes after the horn sounds, place the magnet on the valve stem of the RF tire pressure sensor.
NOTE: If the VSM (TPMS module integral to VSM) does not recognize any one of the four tire pressure sensors during the tire training procedure, the horn will sound twice and the message center (if equipped) will display "TIRE NOT TRAINED REPEAT" and the procedure must be repeated.

8.Repeat Step 7 for the RR and LR tires.
When the tire training procedure is complete, the horn will sound once and the message center (if equipped) will display "TIRE TRAINING MODE COMPLETE".

PS. Your spare tire does NOT have a TPMS sensor in it, so if you put on the spare, you'll get a dashboard light soon.
 



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Hi,

two of the 4L2T-1A150-BA sensors on my Ford Explorer 2005 are broken (the aluminium valve was corroded and broke during tire change). The local dealer is selling them for about $120 a piece. As I suspect the other two are on the verge of their life span I need 4, and Im not thrilled at spending $480 on them !

So my question is, where can I buy them the cheapest ?

Has anyone experience with "Orange Electronic Original Equipment (OE) compatible TPMS sensors" part "SC50BA" ?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&_trksid=p4340.m748&item=140328749772&viewitem=&_trkparms=clkid%3D574515584843304597#ht_1846wt_939



Rg/ Arro
 






I'm surprised no one has come up with the obvious fix to these systems. Just drill 4 holes in a metal plate, & mount all 4 sensors to it. Then weld up a box around them & pressurize the box. Then place the box under a seat (or get all fancy & mount it up under the dashboard) & install whatever rims you feel like.
 






2005 Ford Truck Explorer
Sensor Training

1. Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position
2. Turn the igntion switch to the RUN position three times, ending in the RUN position. Do not wait more than two minutes between each key cycle.
3. Press and release the brake pedal
4. Turn the ignition switch to the OFF position.

-Drew


Does anyone know how to retrain (relearn) the TPMS sensors on a 2011 Explorer? There's no ignition switch! I'm looking at a Tire Rack winter tire & wheel package, and would like TPMS functioning.

Jim
 






2003 Aviator here...same basic system. I think. I did the three run, brake(and e-brake), three run, and got it into "training mode". Took a fairly strong tweeter magnet(peerless soft dome), and followed the dashboard instructions, train LF, train RF, train RR, train LR, and train spare(all in one sequence, not front axle rear axle like others I have read about here). The magnet sounded the horn after rotating it around each valve like it should, even the hard to get to spare honked the horn almost right away. System message was "training complete". YAY!

Wait, no, turned back to run, and before I even started it, I got "very low tire message"......GGRRRRRRR!!!

Any ideas? The spare might have been a little low, but before I would get a spare tire low message, not the very low tire message(which dings about every 30 seconds....impossibly annoying). FWIW I just had a new TPMS installed on left front...the tire had a slow leak and im pretty sure the grommet on the sensor was it. It was, along with the flaking chrome on the stock rims. Shop cleaned it up and got me setup with tire reinstalled and bead cleaned. They did warn that if one went bad the rest might be close to going bad soon. But all hold air just fine....for now.

Any ideas? I would have to drop the spare to air it up. We dont drive it enough and have free towing, so we dont even use the spare...should I just bite the bullet and air it up? Getting chilly around here these days, less time outside on the cold ground the better....(I'll get a heated garage one of these days....lol)
 












hi,

two of the 4l2t-1a150-ba sensors on my ford explorer 2005 are broken (the aluminium valve was corroded and broke during tire change). The local dealer is selling them for about $120 a piece. As i suspect the other two are on the verge of their life span i need 4, and im not thrilled at spending $480 on them !

So my question is, where can i buy them the cheapest ?

Has anyone experience with "orange electronic original equipment (oe) compatible tpms sensors" part "sc50ba" ?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/ebayisapi.dll?viewitem&_trksid=p4340.m748&item=140328749772&viewitem=&_trkparms=clkid%3d574515584843304597#ht_1846wt_939



rg/ arro
ill let you know tomorrow. :)
 






Try lowering the air pressure and raising it,then retrain.

Sorry for not getting back to this post earlier.......

I didnt have to do a thing. Got PO'd....went inside and called it a day. Two days later I got in and PRESTO!!!!! no tire extremely low....but still got the spare tire low(again dont care....no constant dinging). Will eventually get the spare right....maybe. Would rather get a set of murdered out 20's and do the rest the faded "grey" in the same color.

I did my dodge v10 with a "pole kit" that I had to put on....personally love the look. Sorry for the sacrilege....my toy (or broke down lincoln...lol....hauler)....

yeah....its not finished.....ignore the rusty lugs/hubs...and think lower...:)

IMG00070.jpg
 






I did it today it worked perfect! I got this one http://www.amazon.com/gp/aw/d/B001UCCNI4
Hi,

two of the 4L2T-1A150-BA sensors on my Ford Explorer 2005 are broken (the aluminium valve was corroded and broke during tire change). The local dealer is selling them for about $120 a piece. As I suspect the other two are on the verge of their life span I need 4, and Im not thrilled at spending $480 on them !

So my question is, where can I buy them the cheapest ?

Has anyone experience with "Orange Electronic Original Equipment (OE) compatible TPMS sensors" part "SC50BA" ?

http://cgi.ebay.com/ebaymotors/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem&_trksid=p4340.m748&item=140328749772&viewitem=&_trkparms=clkid%3D574515584843304597#ht_1846wt_939



Rg/ Arro
 






Tpms

I'm surprised no one has come up with the obvious fix to these systems. Just drill 4 holes in a metal plate, & mount all 4 sensors to it. Then weld up a box around them & pressurize the box. Then place the box under a seat (or get all fancy & mount it up under the dashboard) & install whatever rims you feel like.

Hi-your idea sounds like a good one, have you done this or know someone who has,please advise, i'd sure like to know.
 






TPMS will not enter programming mode

Howdy,

I just installed an alarm...let the gremlins fly! The battery was disconnected for about a month. upon re-initialazion, the alarm works fine. The TPMS low tire pressure indicator comes on during the initial check, and will not got out. It is solid. I have tried to enter reprogramming mode to no avail. Things i have tried:

Before attempting to enter reprogramming mode (O/R X3, brake, O/R X3)

pulled fuse on alarm
wake SJB with factory remote
ping Sensors w/magnet
drive for 5 mins

Just will not enter reprogramming mode.

Any suggestions?

Thanks
 






This sounds like a job for black tape on the display and electricians putty shoved into the dinger.
(I could remove the light behind the display symbol and unsolder the dinger, but that requires some real work.) This method worked on my '96 Aerostar and it will work on my '05 Exploder.

I have been checking my own tires for 50 years and I don't need some computer telling me to spend hundreds of dollars to repair a system that was intentionally designed to fail when the battery in each sensor gets low. I am completely fed up with people who think making up lots of new laws will cure stupidity. The idiots that can't or won't check their own tires will just ignore the flashing lights and annoying noises...or press the reset button every time they start the car.

If you're too stupid or lazy to check your own tires, Darwin will weed you out. Problem fixed.
 






I'm surprised no one has come up with the obvious fix to these systems. Just drill 4 holes in a metal plate, & mount all 4 sensors to it. Then weld up a box around them & pressurize the box. Then place the box under a seat (or get all fancy & mount it up under the dashboard) & install whatever rims you feel like.

Hi-your idea sounds like a good one, have you done this or know someone who has,please advise, i'd sure like to know.

The TPMS sensors require movement to wake them up and do their job. They go dormant when you park. That's how the batteries last 10 years. I've heard of folks putting the sensors in a length of PVC pipe with a Schrader valve, pumping in air and throw it under the seat. Not only does it not work, it looks (and acts) like a pipe bomb....under your seat.
 






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