When your check engine light comes on, it’s usually accompanied by a message on your dash telling you to check or service your engine. But what does it mean when that message specifically says to check your tire pressure sensor?
There are a few different things that could be going on here. First, it could simply be that one of your tires is low on air and needs to be inflated. If this is the case, you can usually resolve the issue by filling up your tires with air using a standard air pump.
However, it’s also possible that there’s something wrong with your tire pressure sensor itself. In this scenario, you’ll likely need to take your car in for repair. In this article, we’ll explore what a tire pressure sensor fault means and how you can resolve the issue.
What Does the “Tire Pressure Sensor Fault” Mean?
Put simply, a tire pressure sensor fault means that there is an issue with one or more of your tires. The sensor itself is located in the valve stem of your tire, and it monitors the air pressure in your tires. If the pressure in your tires drops below a certain level, the sensor will trigger a warning light on your dash, letting you know that you need to add air to your tires.
There are a few different reasons why your tire pressure sensor may trigger a warning light. One possibility is that your tire simply has a slow leak and needs to be refilled. Another possibility is that the sensor itself is damaged or faulty and needs to be replaced. In either case, it’s important to take care of the problem as soon as possible, as driving on underinflated tires can be dangerous.
If you see the “tire pressure sensor fault” warning light on your dash, the first thing you should do is check your tires to see if they need to be inflated. If they do, add air to them using a tire pump. Once your tires are properly inflated, the warning light should go off. If the light doesn’t go off, there may be a more serious problem with your sensors and you should take your car in for repair.
Also Read: How to Reset Tire Sensor
How does a TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitor System) work?
A TPMS is a system that monitors the air pressure in your tires. It does this by using sensors that are mounted on or in your tires. The sensors send information to a receiver, which then displays the pressure readings on a dashboard gauge or readout.
If there is a problem with one of the sensors, the TPMS will detect it and will set off a warning light on your dash. This warning light will usually be either a “check engine” light or a dedicated “TPMS” light.
The sensors in a TPMS can fail for a number of reasons. They can become clogged with dirt and dust, they can stop working properly due to age or corrosion, or they can be damaged if you run over a curb or hit a pothole.
These sensors measure the pressure inside the tire by using air pressure to create an electric current. This current is then measured by the sensor and the reading is sent to the receiver. If the pressure in the tire changes, so does the electric current.
5 Causes of Tire Pressure Sensor Fault Message
The following are the most common causes of the tire pressure sensor fault message:
1. Low Tire Pressure
More often than not, the “tire pressure sensor fault” message is caused by simply having low air pressure in one or more of your tires. If you see this message, the first thing you should do is check your tires to see if they need to be inflated.
This is normally an easy fix; all you have to do is add air to your tires using a tire pump or an air compressor. Once your tires are properly inflated, the warning light should go off. If the light doesn’t go off, there may be a more serious problem.
2. Faulty Tire Pressure Sensor
A very common reason behind the “tire pressure sensor fault” message is a faulty sensor. The sensors themselves are located in the valve stems of your tires, and they can become damaged or broken if you hit a pothole or run over a curb is wear and tear from normal use.
If the sensor is damaged, it will not be able to properly measure the air pressure in your tires. This will cause the warning light to come on, and you will need to have the sensor replaced. This is typically a pretty easy job, but it can be a bit costly. You can usually get a new sensor from the dealership or an auto parts store.
3. Problems with TPMS System
A little rarer, but still possible, is that there is a problem with the TPMS system itself. This could be caused by a faulty receiver or a problem with the wiring. If you think there may be a problem with your TPMS system, you should take your car in for repair.
When the programming or calibration of the TPMS system is done incorrectly, it can also trigger the “tire pressure sensor fault” warning light. If you have recently had your tires rotated or your car serviced, and the light comes on, you may want to take it in for a check-up.
4. Wiring Issues
There are a wide array of potential wiring issues that could cause the TPMS system to malfunction. These can range from a short in the wiring to a broken connector. If you are experiencing problems with your TPMS and you can’t seem to find the source, you may want to have a mechanic take a look at the wiring.
Some parts of the harness or wiring may be corroded, damaged, or loose. This can cause all sorts of problems, including the “tire pressure sensor fault” message.
5. Wheel Replacement
As mentioned earlier, the tire pressure sensor is located in the valve stem of your tires. If you get new tires or wheels, they will need to be re-calibrated to work properly with your TPMS system.
If you don’t have the new tires or wheels calibrated, especially if they are not within specifications set by the manufacturer, it can cause the “tire pressure sensor fault” message to come on. It’s important to have any new tires or wheels installed by a professional and to make sure they are properly calibrated before you drive away.
How to Fix the Tire Pressure Sensor Fault Message?
Looking to fix the tire pressure sensor fault message? Here are a few things you can try:
1. Check the Tire Pressure Manually
You can start by checking the tire pressure manually. This can be done with a simple tire gauge. Simply measure the air pressure in all of your tires and compare it to the recommended levels found in your car’s owner’s manual.
If one or more of your tires are below the recommended pressure, you can add air to them using a tire pump or air compressor. Once your tires are properly inflated, the warning light should go off.
2. Read the Trouble Codes
If that doesn’t work then you can read the trouble codes to see what is wrong. This can be done by using an auto scanner or a code reader. The codes will give you an idea of where to start when it comes to fixing the problem.
By reading the code you may be able to determine the source of the problem, and then take your car in for repair or fix it yourself if it is simple enough. Don’t forget to clear the codes after the repair is made!
3. Disconnect and Reconnect the Battery
Sometimes, the “tire pressure sensor fault” message can be caused by a glitch in the system. If this is the case, simply disconnecting and reconnecting the battery may reset the system and clear the message.
This is a pretty simple fix, and it doesn’t require any tools or knowledge of car repair. Simply disconnect the negative battery terminal for a few minutes, then reconnect it. If the problem persists, then you may have a more serious issue that requires further inspection.
4. Reprogram the Sensors
Another thing you can try is reprogramming the sensors. This can be done by using a scanner or by taking your car in for service. If you have a scanner, connect it to your car and follow the instructions on how to reprogram the sensors. If you don’t have a scanner, you can take your car in for service and have the technicians reprogram the sensors for you.
Also Read: What happens when a Camshaft Sensor goes Bad
5. Replace the Faulty Tire Pressure Sensor
Lastly, if you’ve tried all of the above and you are still getting the “tire pressure sensor fault” message, then you may have a faulty tire pressure sensor. In this case, the best thing to do is to replace the sensor with a new one.
You can buy a replacement sensor online or at your local auto parts store. Once you have the new sensor, simply remove the old one and install the new one in its place.
6. Reset the TPMS with Scanner or Button
However, if you are still experiencing problems after trying the above methods, you can reset the TPMS system by using a scanner or reset button.
If you have a scanner, connect it to your car and reset the system. If you don’t have a scanner, you can use the reset button located on the dashboard near the steering wheel. Push and hold the button until the light turns off. This will reset the system and should take care of the problem. If not, you may need to take your car in for repair.
7. Is it Safe to Drive with Tire Pressure Sensor Fault?
Tire pressure is there for a reason, so the answer is usually no. Driving on underinflated tires can lead to damaged tires with excessive wear and tear within hours such as fissures and cracks or the grooves of the tread pattern, reduced fuel economy poor braking and handling, and if are overinflated then a dramatically increased chance of a blowout or skid.
So, in summary, the “tire pressure sensor fault” message means that there is a problem with one or more of your tires. If the message appears, you should check your tire pressure and add air if necessary. You can also try reading the trouble codes, disconnecting and reconnecting the battery, reprogramming the sensors, or replacing the faulty sensor.
The most common causes of this message are low tire pressure, a faulty sensor, or a glitch in the system. If you are still experiencing problems after trying these methods, you can reset the TPMS system by using a scanner or reset button.
Driving on underinflated or overinflated tires is dangerous and should be avoided as this could lead to serious problems with your car. Always make sure that your tires are properly inflated and follow the instructions in your car’s owner’s manual.
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