TPMS (tire pressure monitoring system) batteries have a lifespan of 5 to 10 years or 60k to 80k miles. However, bear in mind that the lifespan of this or any other type of battery cannot be predicted with certainty.
In a broader sense, the radio frequency emissions sent by sensors affect the battery life of TPMS. Apart from that, geographic location is important; for example, if you live in a tropical climate, the sensor batteries would last less than in a cold environment. Another factor to consider is how frequently you drive and the condition of the roads. For example, if you drive on a high-traffic highway, it will lower the TPMS’s life; on the other hand, when there is no traffic and you are driving at a consistent speed, the battery is not overworked.
This is because sensors communicate more frequently when the vehicle is stopped than when it is constantly moving. Therefore, maintaining a consistent speed, such as on a highway, lessens the pressure on TPMS sensors and allows for less frequent transmission. Additionally, rust on or inside the valve stem might cause tire pressure sensors to fail. Moreover, corrosion is a concern for aluminum-stemmed sensors but not for rubber-stemmed sensors.
When a TPMS sensor’s battery runs out, the system sends a malfunction alert, shown by a blinking TPMS light on the dashboard. Yet, many drivers are unfamiliar with what the TPMS warning light looks like or what it means; thus, the signal may go unnoticed. While the vehicle is still safe to drive as long as the tires maintain good air pressure, however, without the TPMS system, there will be no low tire pressure alert if a tire starts to go flat.
Are TPMS batteries replaceable?
A 3-volt lithium-ion battery powers tire pressure sensors. Also, 1.250-volt NiMH batteries are used in some TPMS systems. The battery is housed in the sensor’s plastic housing, which is made of molded plastic. It is necessary to replace the TPMS sensor assembly as a whole if the battery is running low or drained.
What are the signs of a malfunctioning TPMS?
TPMS warning light illuminated
Each sensor on your car is connected to the vehicle’s computer/ECU. These two devices are responsible for transmitting sensor data to the vehicle’s dashboard and informing the driver. The TPMS is also connected to the dashboard, and when the dedicated indicator illuminates, it shows that a tire is underinflated. Additionally, as soon as your car’s computer or ECU recognizes that there is a problem with your tire pressure monitoring system sensor, it will set off the TPMS warning light. Also, you may get a Tire Pressure Sensor Fault warning on your dashboard.
The TPMS sensor informs the driver when the tires’ air pressure is low. However, If you suspect your tires are underinflated, yet the TPMS sensor does not illuminate, this suggests a faulty TPMS, and you should get them checked. Additionally, you can use a tire pressure gauge to ensure that your tires are actually underinflated.
Jerky steering wheel
Low air pressure in your front tires causes jerky steering. When you have soft, low-pressure front tires, keeping the wheel straight and steady will be difficult. A defective TPMS sensor prevents you from receiving an alarm when your tires are underinflated.
Increased fuel consumption
A defective TPMS sensor could cause your car’s fuel usage to increase if your tire goes flat while you’re driving. Due to increased friction between the tires and the road, driving with a flat tire will require more traction to move forward. As a result, the engine will have to consume more gasoline in order to compensate for the loss of power. Hence, you should constantly check your tires and air pressure, whether or not the warning light is on.
Incorrect TPMS warnings
Your TPMS sensor light may illuminate, and you check the tires but find that they are in good condition. In some circumstances, the TPMS sensor light illuminates when there is a problem with the tire, but the sensor remains illuminated after the tire is repaired. These instances suggest that there is a problem with the data that sensors transmit to the car’s computer; therefore, you should replace the sensors. If you do not address these concerns, you will constantly have uncertainties with the sensor warnings, and you will not be alerted in a timely manner if anything indeed does occur.
How do you reset your car’s TPMS?
- Without starting your car’s engine, turn the key to the “ON” position and leave it there.
- Find the TPMS reset button. Under the steering wheel is where you’ll find it most of the time. There should be a button with the word “SET” written on it. Refer to the owner’s manual if you’re having trouble finding it since its position may change based on the model or brand of the vehicle you drive.
- To reset the TPMS, press and hold the button for roughly three seconds, then let go.
- Now, you may hear a beep or see a blinking warning light on the dashboard. This means that your TPMS has been reprogrammed.
- Start the engine after five seconds of hearing the beep or blinking.
- Continue driving for at least 30 minutes to complete the reset process. There is no restriction on how long you can drive.
If the tire pressure warning light is still on after you’ve reset it, take it to a mechanic to get it checked.