How to Reset Tire Pressure Light

Hand Filling Tire with Air

When you see that tire pressure light come on while driving around O'Fallon, your first thought is probably “what does that even mean?” The purpose of the tire pressure light is to alert you to a problem with your tires. The tire pressure monitoring system (TPMS) is an important safety feature of your car, truck, or SUV, so you should always make sure that it is activated and operating properly.

Auffenberg Dealer Group is here to help you troubleshoot and get that light turned back off (and help you with service if there’s a more serious problem).

Don’t Ignore Your Tire Pressure Light

As far as dashboard warning lights go, the TPMS is one of the least severe — but it should never be ignored. If one or more of your tires are underinflated, it can:

  • Reduce fuel economy
  • Lead to unpredictable vehicle handling
  • Decrease tire lifespan through uneven wear and tear
  • Impact your safety on the road (underinflated tires experience damage to the sidewall that can lead to blowouts)

Your TPMS Light Came On, What Should You Do?

If your TPMS light comes on while you’re driving or stays on after you start your car, your next stop should be at a gas station or rest stop with an air pump and inflate the tire(s) to the recommended PSI. Tires typically lose pressure from one of two things:

  1. A sudden decrease in temperature
  2. Small puncture or leak
If you’re looking to reset that tire pressure light, there’s a good chance you woke up to a cold snap. When the temperature drops, air gets denser and takes up less space, meaning reduced pressure from the air in your tires — think of adding a bit of air like topping off your gas tank.Unfortunately, the TPMS light can also be when a driver notices they need tire repair — most likely there’s a puncture that will lead to a flat. Topping off the troublesome tire might get you to a service center, but if you have more than a few miles to drive, you should consider installing your spare.

Temporary Spare Next to Flat Tire

What if Your Tire Pressure Light is Still On?

You’ve topped off your tires to the right PSI and checked for leaks. By all measures, you should be good to hit the road, and yet that TPMS light is still burning yellow on your dash. We covered the two most common reasons the TPMS light can turn on, but there can be other causes.

Once you have checked your tire pressure with a gauge and ensured they are all fully inflated (and not overinflated), it’s time to consider resetting your tire pressure light. Unlike taking on common maintenance issues yourself, resetting a warning light should be a last resort.

Resetting Your Tire Pressure Light

If your tire pressure light stays on even after you’ve added the correct amount of air to the tires, you’ll need to reset it. You can follow these steps to reset the TPMS light, or if you prefer, you can bring the vehicle into one of your local Auffenberg Dealer Group service centers and have our expert auto techs take care of the problem for you.

If your TPMS light remains on after inflating the tires to the proper pressure, try these steps:

  • Drive the car at 50 mph for about 10 minutes. This should reset the sensor, and the next time you start the car the TPMS light should be off.
  • Without starting the car, turn the key to the “On” position. Press the TPMS reset button and hold it until the light blinks three times, then release it. Start the car and let it run for 20 minutes to reset the sensor. You’ll usually find the tire pressure monitor reset button beneath the steering wheel. Check your user’s manual if you’re having trouble locating it.
 Tire Pressure Warning Light

There are a couple of other ways to reset the TPMS light that are a bit more involved and time-consuming. If these seem like more than you can handle, just bring your car into our Collinsville-area Auffenberg Dealer Group location:

  • Inflate each tire to 3 PSI over the recommended amount, then deflate them completely. Your spare tire may also have a sensor so make sure to include it as well. After all the tires have been deflated, reinflate them to the proper PSI.
  • With the vehicle off, open the hood and disconnect the positive battery cable. Turn the key to the “On” position and honk the horn for about three seconds to discharge any power still stored in the vehicle. Then reconnect the battery.

What Does a Flashing Tire Pressure Light Mean?

If your TPMS light is blinking when you start your vehicle, only to turn off a few seconds later, this is normal. Most vehicles flash all of their dashboard warning lights on startup. If the light continues flashing or starts flashing when you’re driving, there could be a problem.

A flashing tire pressure light could indicate that there’s a problem with the sensors or the sensor battery. You should schedule service at Auffenberg Dealer Group so that our technicians can isolate the problem and take care of it for you.

Get Professional Auto Service at Auffenberg Dealer Group Today

The certified auto technicians at Auffenberg Dealer Group will help you keep up to date with all of your scheduled maintenance, from oil changes to tire rotations, we do it all. Still doing research? Find out if premium gas or regular gas is right for your car. We can also teach you about proper leather car seat care or show you how to clean car floor mats. Then, check out our service specials to find great deals on maintenance services in the Belleville area. Feel free to contact us if you have any questions.

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