As tires have evolved, so has the tire valve. Many vehicles now have a valve stem with sensor that accurately measures TPMS and will warn the driver when any one or more of the tires is significantly underinflated.
A tire begins to lose its ability to manage a vehicle’s weight when pressure drops as little as five percent. As a result, steering, braking, and suspension all suffer. If the pressure drops too low, the tire can fail resulting in a complete loss of control.
There are currently two different types of systems employed by car manufacturers. An ‘indirect’ TPMS uses the car’s ABS system to calculate the difference in tire circumference and gauge inflation pressure. A ‘direct’ TPMS employs an electronic sensor inside the tire itself (usually part of the valve stem). It continually monitors inflation pressure and relays this data to the car’s on-board computer system.
In April 2005, the NHTSA (National Highway Traffic Safety Administration) passed a law requiring car manufacturers to install TPMS in all new passenger cars and trucks by 2008, beginning with a gradual phase-in with 2006 models.
In order to comply with the new government imposed regulations, the price of changing, repairing and installing tires on your vehicle will rise due to increased costs associated with TPMS training, equipment, and labor. Though TPMS will cost more initially, it will make your car safer to drive and will extend the life of your tires by preventing premature tread wear and improving gas mileage. Studies show that the cost associated with TPMS will even out in the long run. For more information on TPMS contact a Kal Tire location near you or visit TPMSMadeSimple.com.
Please note that new sensors need to be installed with a second set of wheels.