TPMS Light: Why Is It On & How Do You Fix It?

TPMS light on in car dashboard

New warning lights on your vehicle’s dashboard are never fun, but they usually come on for a reason, and you should never ignore them. The TPMS light alerts you when your tire pressure is too low, leading to uneven tire wear or failure. It’s important to understand what causes the light to come on and what steps to take when it does. 

When you understand your car’s warning signs, you can maintain your car’s safety, keep your car running longer, and improve your ride’s performance. Next time your vehicle’s TPMS light comes on, here is what you need to know. 

What Is That Light & What Does TPMS Mean

When the tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) light appears on your dashboard, one or more of your vehicle’s tires has low pressure. It can also indicate that the pressure in one or more of your vehicle’s tires is too high. 

This light typically appears when you start your car after overnight drops in temperature, which results in decreased tire pressure. As temperatures return to normal and your car heats up during use, your pressure will often return to normal throughout the day, and the TPMS light will go away. 

However, if the TPMS light stays on for a prolonged period, your tires may be damaged or leaking. It is essential to check your tire pressure with a gauge immediately after the warning light appears to avoid damage to your vehicle or compromised safety on the road. 

How Does It Work 

When working correctly, your TPMS constantly detects your tire pressure using factors like temperature and wheel speed. If your tire pressure becomes too high or low, the TPMS sensor sends a signal that activates the warning light on your vehicle’s dashboard. 

Tire pressure that falls below or increases above 25% of recommended inflation levels triggers your car’s TPMS sensors. The light will remain on until tire pressure automatically returns to normal, or the problematic tire is repaired. 

Associated Risks 

While the TPMS light can sometimes resolve itself when activated due to temperature fluctuations, it should never be ignored. Not taking these warnings seriously can result in numerous vehicle safety risks. 

If one or more of your car’s tires are inflated, continuing to drive can result in faster wear on your tires, decrease your gas mileage, or even tire failure, which leads to safety hazards on the road. These risks are especially prevalent when driving in icy or muddy conditions, as your tires will be more likely to deteriorate. 

When your TPMS sensor light activates, take the time to check each tire’s pressure and refill them at your nearest gas station or auto repair shop. If the problem persists, seek professional help to find a solution and keep yourself and others safe on the road. 

The Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) light is an essential tool that indicates the need to check your tires before bigger problems arise. When you see this warning sign, don’t wait to find a solution. At Big Chief Tire, we are an auto repair shop in Jacksonville, FL, that you can trust. Make an appointment at any of our four locations today. 

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