A tire-pressure monitoring system (TPMS) monitors the air pressure inside the pneumatic tires on vehicles. – direct (dTPMS) and indirect (iTPMS).A TPMS reports real-time tire-pressure information to the driver, using either a gauge, a pictogram display, or a simple low-pressure warning light. TPMS can be divided into two different types
TPMS are installed either when the vehicle is made or after the vehicle is put to use. The goal of a TPMS is avoiding traffic accidents, poor fuel economy, and increased tire wear due to under-inflated tires through early recognition of a hazardous state of the tires. This functionality first appeared in luxury vehicles in Europe in the 1980s, while mass-market adoption followed the USA passing the 2000 TREAD Act after the Firestone and Ford tire controversy.
Mandates for TPMS technology in new cars have continued to proliferate in the 21st century in Russia, the EU, Japan, South Korea and many other Asian countries. From November 2014 TPMS was mandatory for new vehicles in the European Union; in a survey carried out between November 2016 and August 2017, 54% of passenger cars in Sweden, Germany, and Spain were found not to have TPMS, a figure believed to be an under-estimate.
Aftermarket valve cap-based dTPMS systems, which require a smartphone and an app or portable display unit, are also available for bicycles,automobiles, and trailers.
Due to the influence tire pressure has on vehicle safety and efficiency, tire-pressure monitoring (TPM) was adopted by the European market as an optional feature for luxury passenger vehicles in the 1980s. The first passenger vehicle to adopt TPM was the Porsche 959 in 1986, using a hollow spoke wheel system developed by PSK. In 1996 Renault used the Michelin PAX systemfor the Scenic and in 1999 PSA Peugeot Citroën decided to adopt TPM as a standard feature on the Peugeot 607. The following year (2000), Renault launched the Laguna II, the first high volume mid-size passenger vehicle in the world to be equipped with TPM as a standard feature.
In the United States, TPM was introduced by General Motors for the 1991 model year for the Corvette in conjunction with Goodyear run-flat tires.[ citation needed ] The system uses sensors in the wheels and a driver display which can show tire pressure at any wheel, plus warnings for both high and low pressure. It has been standard on Corvettes ever since.
The Firestone recall in the late 1990s (which was linked to more than 100 deaths from rollovers following tire tread-separation), pushed the United States Congress to legislate the TREAD Act. The Act mandated the use of a suitable TPMS technology in all light motor vehicles (under 10,000 lb (4,500 kg)), to help alert drivers of under-inflation events.
This act affects all light motor vehicles sold after September 1, 2007. Phase-in started in October 2005 at 20%, and reached 100% for models produced after September 2007. In the United States, as of 2008 and the European Union, as of November 1, 2012, all new passenger car models (M1) released must be equipped with a TPMS. From November 1, 2014, all new passenger cars sold in the European Union must be equipped with a TPMS. For N1 vehicles, TPMS are not mandatory, but if a TPMS is fitted, it must comply with the regulation.
On July 13, 2010, the South Korean Ministry of Land, Transport and Maritime Affairs announced a pending partial-revision to the Korea Motor Vehicle Safety Standards (KMVSS), specifying that "TPMS shall be installed to passenger vehicles and vehicles of GVW 3.5 tons or less, ... [effective] on January 1, 2013 for new models and on June 30, 2014 for existing models".Japan is expected to adopt European Union legislation approximately one year after European Union implementation. Further countries to make TPMS mandatory include Russia, Indonesia, the Philippines, Israel, Malaysia and Turkey. After the TREAD Act was passed, many companies responded to the market opportunity by releasing TPMS products using battery-powered radio transmitter wheel modules.
The introduction of run-flat tires and emergency spare tires by several tire and vehicle manufacturers has provided motivation to make at least some basic TPMS mandatory when using run-flat tires. With run-flat tires, the driver will most likely not notice that a tire is running flat, hence the so-called "run-flat warning systems" were introduced. These are most often first generation, purely roll-radius based iTPMS, which ensure that run-flat tires are not used beyond their limitations, usually 80 km/h (50 mph) and 80 km (50 miles) driving distance. The iTPMS market has progressed as well. Indirect TPMS are able to detect under-inflation through combined use of roll radius and spectrum analysis and hence four-wheel monitoring has become feasible. With this breakthrough, meeting the legal requirements is possible also with iTPMS.
Indirect TPMS (iTPMS) systems do not use physical pressure sensors; they measure air pressures using software-based systems, which by evaluating and combining existing sensor signals such as wheel speeds, accelerometers, and driveline data to estimate and monitor the tire pressure without physical pressure sensors in the wheels. First-generation iTPMS systems are based on the principle that under-inflated tires have a slightly smaller diameter (and hence higher angular velocity) than a correctly inflated one. These differences are measurable through the wheel speed sensors of ABS/ESC systems. Second generation iTPMS can also detect simultaneous under-inflation in up to all four tires using spectrum analysis of individual wheels, which can be realized in software using advanced signal processing techniques.
iTPMS systems are sometimes referred to by other names, such as Ford's ‘Deflation Detection System (DDS)’or Honda's ‘Deflation Warning System (DWS)’.
iTPMS cannot measure or display absolute pressure values; they are relative by nature and have to be reset by the driver once the tires are checked and all pressures adjusted correctly. The reset is normally done either by a physical button or in a menu of the on-board computer. iTPMS are, compared to dTPMS, more sensitive to the influences of different tires and external influences like road surfaces and driving speed or style. The reset procedure,followed by an automatic learning phase of typically 20 to 60 minutes of driving under which the iTPMS learns and stores the reference parameters before it becomes fully active, cancels out many, but not all of these. As iTPMS do not involve any additional hardware, spare parts, electronic/toxic waste, or service (beyond the regular reset), they are regarded as easy to handle and customer friendly. As mentioned however, the sensors must be reset every time changes are done to the tire setup, and some consumers do not wish to have this added responsibility.
Since factory installation of TPMS became mandatory in November 2014 for all new passenger vehicles in the EU, various iTPMS have been type-approved according to UN Regulation R64. Examples for this are most of the VW group models, but also numerous Honda, Volvo, Opel, Ford, Mazda, PSA, FIAT and Renault models. iTPMS are quickly gaining market shares in the EU and are expected to become the dominating TPMS technology in the near future.
iTPMS are regarded as less accurate by some due to their nature—given that simple ambient temperature variations can lead to pressure variations of the same magnitude as the legal detection thresholds— but many vehicle manufacturers and customers value the ease of use.[ citation needed ]
Direct TPMS (dTPMS) directly measures tire pressure using hardware sensors. In each wheel, most often on the inside of the valve, there is a battery-driven pressure sensor which transfers pressure information to a central control unit which reports it to the vehicle's onboard computer. Some units also measure and alert temperatures of the tire as well. These systems can identify under-inflation for each individual tire. Although the systems vary in transmitting options, many TPMS products (both OEM and aftermarket) can display realtime, individual tire pressures whether the vehicle is moving or parked. There are many different solutions, but all of them have to face the problems of exposure to hostile environments. The majority are powered by batteries, which limit their useful life. Some sensors utilise a wireless power system similar to that used in RFID tag reading which solves the problem of limited battery life. This also increases the frequency of data transmission up to 40 Hz and reduces the sensor weight, which can be important in motorsport applications. If the sensors are mounted on the outside of the wheel, as are some aftermarket systems, they are subject to mechanical damage, aggressive fluids, as well as theft. When mounted on the inside of the rim, they are no longer easily accessible for battery change and the RF link must overcome the attenuating effects of the tire, which increases the energy need.
A direct TPMS sensor consists of the following main functions requiring only a few external components — e.g. battery, housing, PCB — to get the sensor module that is mounted to the valve stem inside the tire:
Most originally fitted dTPMS have the sensor mounted on the inside of the rim and the batteries are not exchangeable. A discharged battery means that the tire must be dismounted in order to replace it, so long battery life is desirable. To save energy and prolong battery life, many dTPMS sensors do not transmit information when parked (which eliminates spare tire monitoring) or apply a more power expensive two-way communication which enables wake-up of the sensor. For OEM auto dTPMS units to work properly, they need to recognize the sensor positions and must ignore the signals from other vehicles.
Aftermarket dTPMS units not only transmit while vehicles are moving or parked, but also provide users with some advanced monitoring options including data logging, remote monitoring options and more. They are available for all types of vehicles, from motorcycles to heavy equipment, and can monitor up to 64 tires at a time, which is important for commercial vehicles. Many aftermarket dTPMS units do not require specialized tools to program or reset, making them much simpler to use.
The first generation of TPMS sensors that are integral with the valve stem can suffer from corrosion.Metallic valve caps can become seized to their valve stems due to galvanic corrosion and efforts to remove these caps can break the stem, destroying the sensor. A similar fate may befall aftermarket brass valve cores installed in their stems by an unwary technician, replacing the original specialized nickel-coated cores. Seizure to the valve stem can complicate the repair of a tire leak, possibly requiring replacement of the sensor.
There is controversy regarding the compatibility of after-market tire sealants with dTPMS that employ sensors mounted inside the tire. Some manufacturers of sealants assert that their products are indeed compatible,but others warned that the "sealant may come in contact with the sensor in a way that renders the sensor temporarily inoperable until it is properly cleaned, inspected and re-installed by a tire care professional". Such doubts are also reported by others. Use of such sealants may void the TPMS sensor warranty.
The dynamic behavior of a pneumatic tire is closely connected to its inflation pressure. Key factors like braking distance and lateral stability require the inflation pressures to be adjusted and kept as specified by the vehicle manufacturer. Extreme under-inflation can even lead to thermal and mechanical overload caused by overheating and subsequent, sudden destruction of the tire itself. Additionally, fuel efficiency and tire wear are severely affected by under-inflation. Tires do not only leak air if punctured, they also leak air naturally, and over a year, even a typical new, properly mounted tire can lose from 20 to 60 kPa (3 to 9 psi), roughly 10% or even more of its initial pressure.
The significant advantages of TPMS are summarized as follows:
Further statistics include:
The French Sécurité Routière, a road safety organization, estimates that 9% of all road accidents involving fatalities are attributable to tire under-inflation, and the German DEKRA, a product safety organization, estimated that 41% of accidents with physical injuries are linked to tire problems.[ citation needed ]
The European Union reports that an average under-inflation of 40 kPa produces an increase of fuel consumption of 2% and a decrease of tire life of 25%. The European Union concludes that tire under-inflation today is responsible for over 20 million liters of unnecessarily-burned fuel, dumping over 2 million tonnes of CO2 into the atmosphere, and for 200 million tires being prematurely wasted worldwide.[ citation needed ]
In 2018, a field study on TPMS and tire inflation pressure was published on the UN ECE Working Party on Brakes and Running Gear (GRRF) homepage.It covered 1,470 randomly selected vehicles in three EU countries with dTPMS, iTPMS and without TPMS. Main findings are that TPMS fitment reliably prevents severe and dangerous underinflation and hence yields the desired effects for traffic safety, fuel consumption and emissions. The study also showed that there is no difference in effectiveness between dTPMS and iTPMS and that the TPMS reset function does not present a safety risk.
Because each tire transmits a unique identifier, vehicles may be easily tracked using existing sensors along the roadway.This concern could be addressed by encrypting the radio communications from the sensors but such privacy provisions were not stipulated by the NHTSA.
U.S. National Highway Traffic Safety Administration regulationsonly apply to vehicles under 10,000 pounds. For heavy-duty vehicles (Classes 7 and 8, gross vehicle weight greater than 26,000 pounds), most of the above-mentioned systems don't work well, requiring the development of other systems.
The US Department of Transportation has commissioned several studies to find systems that work on the heavy-duty market specifying some goals that were needed in this market.
The SAE has tried to disseminate best practices since legal regulations for heavy vehicles has been lagging.
The first country to have TPMS mandatory was the United States of America. In the early 2000s, numerous traffic accidents such as rollovers and tire blowouts occurred due to insufficient air pressure level. NHTSA regarded flat tires as a potential threat to safety which was soon followed by the enactment of FMVSS 138 on attaching TPMS for every vehicle by September 2007.
TPMS became obligatory for every vehicle under 3.5t sold after 2013. Later in 2015, every vehicle had to have TPMS regardless of its size. In 2011, Hyundai Mobis successfully developed the TPMS and first applied it in the Veloster. As a result, the sensor's power usage is about 30% lower than that of existing products, reducing battery size and reducing sensor weight by more than 10%.
An anti-lock braking system (ABS) is a safety anti-skid braking system used on aircraft and on land vehicles, such as cars, motorcycles, trucks, and buses. ABS operates by preventing the wheels from locking up during braking, thereby maintaining tractive contact with the road surface and allowing the driver to maintain more control over the vehicle.
A tire or tyre is a ring-shaped component that surrounds a wheel's rim to transfer a vehicle's load from the axle through the wheel to the ground and to provide traction on the surface over which the wheel travels. Most tires, such as those for automobiles and bicycles, are pneumatically inflated structures, which also provide a flexible cushion that absorbs shock as the tire rolls over rough features on the surface. Tires provide a footprint, called a contact patch, that is designed to match the weight of the vehicle with the bearing strength of the surface that it rolls over by providing a bearing pressure that will not deform the surface excessively.
A tire-pressure gauge, or tyre-pressure gauge, is a pressure gauge used to measure the pressure of tires on a vehicle. Tire-pressure gauges can be used both professionally and casually and come in many different sizes.
Cold inflation pressure is the inflation pressure of tires before a car is driven and the tires (tyres) warmed up. Recommended cold inflation pressure is displayed on the owner's manual and on the placard attached to the vehicle door edge, pillar, glovebox door or fuel filler flap. Most passenger cars are recommended to have a tire pressure of 2.1 to 2.4 bars when not warmed by driving. A 2001 NHTSA study found that 40% of passenger cars have at least one tire under-inflated by 0.4 bars (6 psi) or more. Drivers are encouraged to make sure their tires are adequately inflated, as under inflated tires can greatly reduce fuel economy, increase emissions, cause increased wear on the edges of the tread surface, and can lead to overheating and premature failure of the tire. Excessive pressure, on the other hand, will lead to impact-breaks, decreased braking performance, and cause increased wear on the center part of the tread surface.
A beadlock or bead lock is a mechanical device that secures the bead of a tire to the wheel of a vehicle. Tires and wheels are designed so that when the tire is inflated, the tire pressure pushes the bead of the tire against the inside of the wheel rim so that the tire stays on the wheel and the two rotate together. In situations where tire pressure is insufficient to hold the bead of the tire in place, a beadlock is needed.
A tell-tale, sometimes called an idiot light or warning light, is an indicator of malfunction or operation of a system, indicated by a binary (on/off) illuminated light, symbol or text legend.
A run-flat tire is a pneumatic vehicle tire designed to resist the effects of deflation when punctured, allowing the vehicle to continue to be driven at reduced speeds for limited distances. First developed by tire manufacturer Michelin in the 1930s, run-flat tires were introduced to the public market in the 1980s. They have increased in popularity over time.
A flat tire is a deflated pneumatic tire, which can cause the rim of the wheel to ride on the tire tread or the ground potentially resulting in loss of control of the vehicle or irreparable damage to the tire. The most common cause of a flat tire is puncturing of the tire by a sharp object, such as a nail or pin, letting the air escape. Depending on the size of the puncture, the tire may deflate slowly or rapidly.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to automobiles:
Tire uniformity refers to the dynamic mechanical properties of pneumatic tires as strictly defined by a set of measurement standards and test conditions accepted by global tire and car makers.
A tubeless tire is a pneumatic tire that does not require a separate inner tube.
Inspection and maintenance of tires is about inspecting for wear and damage on tires so that adjustments or measures can be made to take better care of the tires so that they last longer, or to detect or predict if repairs or replacement of the tires becomes necessary. Tire maintenance for motor vehicles is based on several factors. The chief reason for tire replacement is friction from moving contact with road surfaces, causing the tread on the outer perimeter of tires to eventually wear away. When the tread depth becomes too shallow, like for example below 3.2 mm, the tire is worn out and should be replaced. The same rims can usually be used throughout the lifetime of the car. Other problems encountered in tire maintenance include:
Canned tire inflators are single-use devices intended to provide a quick, temporary solution to drivers who experience flat tires. These devices seal the punctured tire and then reinflate it with pressurized gas, providing enough pressure to allow the auto to be driven for a short period at low speed. This allows the motorist to have the damaged tire professionally repaired or replaced, avoiding the need to replace the wheel at the roadside.
The Michelin PAX is an automobile run-flat tire system that utilizes a special type of rim and tire to allow temporary use of a wheel if its tire is punctured. The core of Michelin's PAX system is the semi-rigid ring installed onto the rim using special equipment. It provides support to the tire and its sidewall to allow emergency operation at limited speed until such time as the tire can be replaced. Cars that use the system include supercars like the Bugatti Veyron EB 16.4, luxury cars like the Rolls-Royce Phantom, and more common vehicles like the Honda Odyssey and Nissan Quest.
Direct TPMS, or direct tire pressure monitoring systems refers to the use of a pressure sensor directly mounted on the wheels or tires of a vehicle. The pressure inside the tire is measured using a pressure transducer with the pressure information being subsequently sent to the vehicle to warn the driver of under or over inflation of a tire. The pressure information is commonly transmitted to the vehicle using radio frequency (RF) technology, though systems using mechanical, electrical or magnetic methods have been used over recent years.
A tire changer is a machine used to help tire technicians dismount and mount tires with automobile wheels. After the wheel and tire assembly are removed from the automobile, the tire changer has all the components necessary to remove and replace the tire from the wheel. Different tire changers allow technicians to replace tires on automobiles, motorcycles and heavy-duty trucks. New tire and wheel technology has improved certain tire changers to be able to change a low profile tire or a run-flat tire.
NIRA Dynamics AB is a Swedish company focusing on research and development of signal processing and control systems for the automotive industry. It supplies automotive original equipment manufacturers (OEMs) and suppliers in Europe, North America, Latin America, and Asia with its products and systems. In 2021, the number of vehicles equipped with NIRA's main product, TPI, exceeded the benchmark of 75,000,000.
The following outline is provided as an overview of and topical guide to tires:
This glossary of automotive terms is a list of definitions of terms and concepts related to automobiles, including their parts, operation, and manufacture, as well as automotive engineering, auto repair, and the automotive industry in general. For more specific terminology regarding the design and classification of various automobile styles, see Glossary of automotive design; for terms related to transportation by road, see Glossary of road transport terms; for competitive auto racing, see Glossary of motorsport terms.