Top TPMS Tools for Under $250 – UnderhoodService

Top TPMS Tools for Under $250

When even tire irons are being designed to be TPMS sensor friendly, advice on TPMS tools may be welcomed. Andrew Markel, editor of Underhood Service and Brake & Front End, offers his take on what to look for when purchasing new tools.

TPMS Torque Wrench Bundle
The nut and grommet seals are one-use items that have very specific torque specifications. These specifications are measured in inch-pounds and not foot-pounds, so a TPMS-specific torque wrench is your best option for making sure the range is right. These kits are typically bundled with the right tools for nuts, stems and self-tapping screws. If you choose to use the “feel” method and conventional tools, you’ll be stripping nuts, breaking sensors and costing your shop more than what a good TPMS torque tool kit costs.

A Better Tire Gauge
Buy yourself or the shop a quality tire pressure gauge. A quality tire pressure gauge should have a tolerance of ±1%. Anything beyond 2% can cause you to set tire pressures too low or too high. Also, treat a tire gauge like an expensive torque wrench. Dropping a gauge from only 4 feet can change the readings — this goes for digital and ­analog gauges.

Tub of Tire Paste
Soap is for washing cars, not mounting tires. Trade in the container of soap and water for a tub of tire paste. If you use the soap-and-water mix, you could be leaving enough water inside the tire to change how the pressures react under changing temperatures. Only use mounting paste. The price of a small bucket of paste is less than the cost of a comeback.
Dry air and humid air have different properties. TPMS sensors are calibrated to deal with normal ranges of humidity found in the real world. But, if water is trapped inside the tire, it can change how the pressure relates to temperature. Humidity or the amount of moisture in the atmosphere changes the density of air. Surprisingly, more moisture results in lower air density. At high humidity, the air density ­inside the tire decreases due to the reduced mass in a given volume. This will cause the TPMS light to come on sooner as the tire cools or heats up.

Shorter Air Chucks
The long-style air chuck is great for working on larger trucks, but should not be used on passenger vehicles with TPMS sensors. These chucks can create enough leverage to bend or break an aluminum stem.

Upgrade Your Changer
Existing tire mounting machines can benefit with an upgrade to the mounting heads and accessories to prevent TPMS sensor damage. Better mounting heads can reduce the possibility scratching rims and making contact with the sensor. Even new tire irons are being designed to be TPMS sensor and drop ­center friendly. 

You May Also Like

Dorman Launches New Repair Solutions

Among the new releases are Dorman OE FIX repair solutions designed to help save time, money or increase reliability.

Dorman Products Inc. has announced the release of 400 new motor vehicle parts, including what the company says are 130 aftermarket exclusives. The new products advance Dorman’s mission of providing repair professionals and owners greater freedom to fix passenger, commercial, and recreational vehicles with internal combustion, hybrid, and electric powertrains. Among the new releases are a dozen Dorman OE FIX repair solutions designed to help save time, save money, or increase reliability.

Opus IVS Announces Launch of Master Class Free Training Series

Seminars and coursework focused on advanced vehicle technologies for those wishing to advance their skills.

Autoshop Solutions Partners With Turnkey Marketing

Both companies only focus on the automotive aftermarket and have the same goal of keeping those bays full.

AP Emissions Releases January New Part Number Update

The release includes direct fit EPA converters covering more than 6.6 million vehicles in operation.

.01 Micron Superstar Filter

The .01 Micron SuperStar Filter includes a differential pressure gauge and comes with mounting brackets.

Other Posts

Dayco Expands H-D Belt Kit Line

Dayco says six new SKUs cover hundreds of thousands of Class 8 fleet vehicles on the road today.

asTech’s Patented Rules Engine Now Available

asTech users, insurance carriers and their customers can be confident with the accuracy and cost of the recommended scan type.

Standard Motor Products Announces Pro Training Power Hour

The free, live/virtual technical series presented by Standard’s professional trainers will be geared toward technicians.

MAHLE Aftermarket Expands Cylinder Head Gasket Portfolio

New part numbers for Asian and domestic models join more than 12,000 part numbers for 900,000+ applications.