It's the middle of November. It's about the time where the temperatures start to leave the comfortable Fall range and enter the bitter Winter range. Over the past seven years, there has been a trend emerging during this temperature change that's only going to get worse as the years go on. You see, all vehicles produced from September 2007 forward are required by law to have some form of a tire pressure monitoring system, or TPMS for sure. During that mid-November temperature drop, most vehicles with TPMS will tend to turn on a warning light on the dashboard, indicating low tire pressures. Which leads us to the question: Why does my tire pressure light always come on when it gets cold out?
The answer to that question will bring you back to science class. When things get hot, they expand. When things get cold, they condense. The same goes for the air in your tires. So, if you checked your tire pressures during 60° weather, when the temperature drops to the 30s, those pressures are going to read much lower. It's not because the tire lost any air, it's because the air in the tires has become more dense.
"So, how do I shut the tire pressure warning light off?", you may ask. All you have to do, in most cases, is reinflate your tires to the proper pressure, drive your vehicle for a few minutes to allow the system to recheck itself, and the warning light should go out on its own.
Of course, this isn't the only reason the tire pressure warning light can come on. If the system senses a 20% pressure difference in one or more or your tires, it will turn the warning light on so you know that there is a problem in the works. It's up to you at that point to have the issue corrected before you're stuck on the side of the road changing your tire because it's completely flat.
If you have any other questions about tire pressure monitoring systems, stay tuned to this blog as I'm going to be posting another article going a little further in detail about the systems in the near future. And be sure to like this post if you want to see more content like this. You can also keep up to date with us by following us on social media. And, If you have a topic you'd like to see us cover in a future blog post, you can use the submission form at the bottom of the page to send it to us. Thanks for reading!