Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors
Did you buy aftermarket Wheels?
Don’t forget to put in a new set of Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors into your new wheels.
If you don’t put in a set of TPMS (Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors) into your new wheels then your dash will alert you that there is a sensor error. This can be quite annoying to turn off every time you get in your car.
I picked up a set of Valve Mounted Sensors from LRS. These 2010-12 Mustang Tire Pressure Monitoring Sensors are sold as a set of 4, 1 kit is all you need for your new wheels on your 2010-2012 Ford Mustang. These particular TPMS sensors are not compatible with 2007-2009 Mustang.
Your Ford Mustang’s TPMS continuously monitors tire pressure
through sensors located in the tires. Because under-inflated tires are hard to detect with the eye the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, requires that all passenger cars, light trucks, and vans (Gross weight less than 10,000 pounds) be equipped with TPMS starting in model year 2007. For the 2010 Mustang, Ford went to a Schrader Valve mounted TPMS sensor that makes for much easier installation. This same sensor carries over to the 2011 & later Mustangs.
When the TPMS warning light on the instrument panel lights up it means the system has detected at least one tire with pressure below the accepted minimum psi for that vehicle. Ford vehicles use an image of a cross-section of a tire with an exclamation mark inside.
Things You Should Know About TPMS
Whether the vehicle you are working on uses Banded or Valve Mounted bolt-on or snap-in applications, there are several things you should be aware of.
Batteries … All Direct sensors (Banded or Valve Mounted) contain a small battery to power the sensor and transponder. These
batteries are designed to have an estimated life of 10 years or 150,000 miles at which point the batteries will go dead and the
entire sensor will need to be replaced. As battery voltage gets to the low limit, it may cause the TPMS control unit to generate
a diagnostic trouble code. If any tire work is performed as the vehicle nears the 10-year/150,000-mile mark, good preventive
maintenance suggests replacement of all the sensors.
ID … Additionally, each sensor has an identification code which signals its ID to the control module.
(This also tells the control module that it’s reading the right tire signal and not one from a nearby TPMS-equipped vehicle.)
Reset … The TPMS needs to keep track of which wheel is which. This means, for example, when the tires are rotated on a “split placard” vehicle – generally a heavy duty application with different front and rear tire pressures – the system must be reset to allow the control module to learn the new position of each sensor.
The reset tool instructs the sensor to send its ID code – with its unique “address” – to the control module so it can recognize the sensor and identify its location. The control module learns where each tire is by the sequence that the sensors are programmed. (Motorcraft TPMS-19)
Tire Rotation … Tire rotation requires that all tires be “re-calibrated” with the TPMS control module on vehicles with
Mounting Tires to Wheels … Special care must be taken when removing or mounting tires on wheels with bolt-on Valve
Mounted sensors, as the sensors can be easily damaged if direct leverage is applied to the sensor. On these wheels, the tire
should be deflated and the valve pushed down into the tire before breaking the tire bead away from the wheel.
(Refer to accompanying graphics or to the vehicle shop manual.)
Aerosol Inflators with Sealant …And as pointed out earlier, tire inflator/sealants should only be used for emergencies, and
with the awareness that TPM sensors can be damaged by the use of these products. The gummy sealant will clog up the valve
and the pressure-sensing port of the sensor. The warning light will go off and the sensor will need to be replaced.