There are a number of reasons that your tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) warning light might be on. The main thing to remember is that your TPMS light doesn’t only light up when your tire pressure is low. It can also light up when your car’s computer loses contact with one of the sensors in your tires. If there is anything wrong with your TPMS, the light will come on. Here are some of the possible causes, how to test them, and how to fix them.
Different TPMS light meanings
If the light comes on and stays on, you likely have a tire that is low on air pressure.
If the TPMS light turns on and off intermittently, you likely have a tire that is on the cusp of having low air pressure.
If the TPMS light flashes when you first start your car or truck, there is a problem with the TPMS itself.
Low air pressure in one or more of your tires
If your TPMS light is on, the first thing to suspect is that one of your tires is low on air pressure. You can check your tires’ air pressure with a tire pressure gauge. The tires should be inflated to the pressure marked on your car or truck’s identification sticker. You can find this sticker on the body of your car inside the driver’s side door. Some cars and trucks recommend need different amounts of air in the front and rear tires.
If you find that one of your tires has low air pressure, refill it at a gas station. Most gas stations offer free air for your tires. Otherwise, you can get your own air compressor. After filling your tires, drive your car or truck for a few miles to see if the TPMS light turns off.
Tire damage or leak
If the light does turn off, but turns back on after a few days or weeks, you have a leak in one or more of your tires. You should take it to a professional auto service technician to have your tires inspected. If you check your own tires and see something embedded in one of them, do not remove it. Take the vehicle to your local Blain’s Farm & Fleet service center
If you’ve checked all of your tires, and their air pressure matches the amounts on the inside of your door, then there may be a problem with your TPMS. This is rare, but it happens. Usually, but not always, the TPMS light will flash when you first start your car or truck if this is the case.
There are a few different problems that could cause your TPMS system to malfunction.
Computer or receiver error
Sometimes the computer that reads your tire pressure has an error that can be fixed by resetting the TPMS Your car or truck’s owner’s manual should have a procedure to reset your vehicle’s TPMS system. Follow this procedure, and the TPMS light should turn off.
Broken tire sensor
If you follow the procedure and the light doesn’t turn off, you probably have a broken tire sensor in one of your wheels.
To get your sensors checked, take your car or truck to your local Blain’s Farm & Fleet service center. Our technicians have special testing tools that are designed to check TPMS.