If you own a vehicle built after 2007, it has a tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS). The tire pressure monitoring system indicator light on your dashboard shows when air pressure is low, and it is easily identifiable on most vehicles as a U-shaped flat tire tread and sidewall with an exclamation point inside.
The various tire pressure monitoring systems used by auto makers are designed to monitor the air pressure in a car's tires. Underinflated tires lead to vehicle instability, but more importantly there is a safety hazardtire underinflation often cause blowouts. Using the dashboard indicator light, tire pressure monitoring systems show you when your vehicle's tires are underinflated. These systems work using sensors within the tire or on the vehicle send information to one or several modules in the vehicle.
There are actually two types of tire pressure monitoring systems, direct tire pressure monitoring systems and indirect tire pressure monitoring systems.
DIRECT TIRE PRESSURE MONITORING SYSTEMS
Direct tire pressure monitoring systems use a sensor, or transmitter, in each wheel inside the tire's air chamber. Most Original Equipment Manufacturers (OEMs) usually place the sensors on the valve stem of each tire.
Tire pressure monitoring system sensors warn drivers of underinflation when the air pressure falls below a certain level, caused by either rapid air loss following a puncture or gradual loss of air over time. Some direct tire pressure monitoring systems use dashboard indicator lights that can provide the ability to check current tire pressures from behind the wheel.
The sensors broadcast a radio signal to the vehicle's receivers and the information is then processed and triggers the dashboard indicator light when issues are discovered.
INDIRECT TIRE PRESSURE MONITORING SYSTEMS
Some Original Equipment Manufacturers developed indirect tire pressure monitoring systems to comply with legal guidelines set forth by Federal government agencies.
Indirect tire pressure monitoring systems work with the wheel speed sensors that are part of the vehicle's antilock braking system (ABS). These systems rely on information from the wheel speed sensors to interpret the size of the tire and its revolutions per mile a small tire rotates faster than a larger tire, and underinflated tires are smaller than properly inflated tires. If one tire is underinflated, its circumference changes enough to roll at a higher number of revolutions per mile than the other three tires.
Direct tire pressure monitoring systems are more accurate than indirect tire pressure monitoring systems. An indirect system does not inf
orm the driver of underinflation in individual tires. Also, they do not alert the driver during fall and winter months when temperatures are colder, causing all four tires to lose pressure at a similar rate. Additionally, indirect systems can generate false warnings, proving that it is important to check tire pressure at regular intervals.
2019 Models - Based on 2019 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions and other factors. 2018 Models - Based on 2018 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions and other factors. 2017 Models - Based on 2017 EPA mileage ratings. Use for comparison purposes only. Your mileage will vary depending on how you drive and maintain your vehicle, driving conditions and other factors. Hybrid Models: Ratings determined by EPA. Use for comparison purposes only. Your MPGe/MPG will vary depending on driving conditions, how you drive and maintain your vehicle, battery-pack age/condition, and other factors. NHTSA Government 5-Star Safety Ratings are part of the U.S. Department of Transportations New Car Assessment Program (www.safercar.gov). Model tested with standard side airbags (SAB). For more information, visit Kelley Blue Book's KBB.com. Kelley Blue Book is a registered trademark of Kelley Blue Book Co., Inc. View U.S. News Best Cars at http://www.usnews.com/cars. Car and Driver, January 2017. 2017 CR-V won compact SUV category. 2017 Ridgeline won mid-size pick-up. Car and Driver, January 2018. The 2018 Motor Trend SUV of the YearÂ® includes the full Honda CR-V lineup. 2018 IIHS Top Safety Pick+ with Honda Sensingâ„¢ and specific headlights. 2018 IIHS Top Safety Pick with Honda Sensingâ„¢ Virtual Inventory, Available Configurations and In-Transit inventory contains vehicles that have not actually been manufactured. These vehicles show consumers sample vehicles that may be available. Pricing, Options, Color and other data pertaining to these vehicles are provided for example only. All information pertaining to these vehicles should be independently verified through the dealer. Some vehicles may have dealer installed options that are not included in the price. Used vehicles may not be equipped the same as when they are purchased new from the factory.