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Hi all,

I followed the tire pressure listed on the door jamb for my Civic GT Hatchback '17 which suggests 35 psi for the fronts, and 33 psi for the rears. They were previously all at 35. Now my TMPS indicator is going off. Is the PSI on the jamb incorrect for this vehicle?
 

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Hi all,

I followed the tire pressure listed on the door jamb for my Civic GT Hatchback '17 which suggests 35 psi for the fronts, and 33 psi for the rears. They were previously all at 35. Now my TMPS indicator is going off. Is the PSI on the jamb incorrect for this vehicle?
I think you need to go into your infotainment center and recalibrate now.
 

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what if you don't have an infotainment system.
The lower trim levels have a button on the left side of the dashboard for TPMS calibration. I believe this is covered on pages 120-121 of the owner's guide which should have came with your car but also can be found online in the downloadable Civic Owner's Manual.
 

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Questions about tire pressures and the TPMS system seem to pop up quite often here. I'd like to share my views on using this system and hopefully this will serve to aid people in managing this system.

First, there are some things that we should all understand about tire pressures. Recommended tire pressures are listed on a placard placed on the driver's door sill on the NA delivered cars; this may not be the case with all models delivered worldwide and if yours isn't there it's a good idea to learn specifically where it is located. A common misconception is that the tire pressure information is listed on the tire, but this is not true. . . The tire lists the MAXIMUM INFLATION PRESSURE that the tire is rated for, but as this size of tire can be installed on a variety of cars in a variety of configurations and weights it is important that the user refer ONLY to the car manufacturers tire placard attached to the car.

Second, tire pressure is greatly affected by temperature. Ambient temperature can have some effect on this, but that is negligible. The temperature that we need to concentrate on is the frictional temperatures caused by the tire flexing and rotating through use. As we drive down the road the sidewall and treadwall flex constantly to provide a contact patch with the road, which in turn creates friction which is required to keep our cars firmly planted to the road surface. Even a small amount of driving (just a few blocks) can increase the tire temperature, and in turn increase the internal air pressure within the tire. For this reason alone the tire pressures given are listed as a "Cold Tire Pressure", that meaning that the tire is cool and undriven. It is best that tire pressures are checked at least an hour after the car has been driven, but the most ideal situation is that this is done after many hours of inactivity. I've found that first thing in the morning is the best time to do a tire pressure check, and that instead of checking only one tire that all four should be checked and adjusted at the same time (if possible).

The TPMS system in the 10th Gen Civic doesn't use individual TPMS sensors like many other cars do. Instead, it uses a system which measures the rotational differences in each tire using (as I understand it) the wheel speed sensors for the ABS system. The common issue that I believe many owners are experiencing is that they get a notification that one tire is low (and this system isn't sophisticated enough to indicate WHICH is the low tire), so they drive to a place to add air to one or more tires and quite probably cause an imbalance in the pressures from tire to tire. Because this system doesn't look for actual pressure values but relative pressure values, adding air to one or more of the tires only serves to offset the imbalance from one reading to a different reading.

Does this suck? Yes, it does, especially if one doesn't have the means at their immediate disposal to check and adjust their tire pressures at home and at a convenient time. For those of us who do, however, this is the procedure that I follow to avoid the annoyance of the low tire pressure warning:

First thing in the morning once every-other week (usually on a Saturday) I will check the pressures on all (5) of my tires and make adjustments as necessary. Whether I have added pressure or not I will run a TPMS calibration and take the car for a drive to ensure that the TPMS system is calculating the pressures normally. Making adjustments to tire pressures without running a calibration only serves to confuse the system and will cause the system to send the alert as it's fooled into thinking that there's an issue, whether there really is or not.

Now, and here's the important bit: this system can easily be fooled. As it only looks for a differential between tire pressures it doesn't matter if you're running 20psi or 75psi in your tires, the system only cares if there's a difference from one to the next. Obviously, if the pressure is significantly lower than what's recommended there will be more heat generated which will increase the internal pressures in the tire and may also cause the system to flag as a low tire when in reality the pressures have gone over the threshold values the car recognises. I believe that the window that the car looks at is ±6psi, but since it isn't looking at real pressure but the difference in the circumference of each tire the real pressure value should be located close to the manufacturer's specification instead of deviating.

For those who don't easily have the means to make these adjustments at home there are a few things you can do:

Begin by checking pressures at home and noting the pressure readings on a sheet of paper, which tire has what pressure. Calculate how much air should be added to each tire to bring it to the desired value. After driving to the local service station or Quik-E-Mart, re-check the pressures at each wheel and add the calculated amount of air to bring them up to spec rather than inflating a warm tire to the cold tire pressure.

Alternately, with warm tires you can slightly over-inflate them (to perhaps 40psi or so) when on the way to your home. After returning home and allowing the car to sit an hour or more, re-check the pressures and deflate as appropriate to bring the values to the spec, but be sure to re-run a calibration with your next drive to keep the system satisfied.

Does all of this seem tedious? Yes, and it is, but it also is the most accurate way of managing tire pressures and keeping the TPMS system happy. As someone who lives in a part of the country where very cold temperatures are experienced (along with very hot temps), I've found this system to be almost fool-proof, but just when I figure that something is fool-proof someone brings me a bigger fool.

 

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good explanation naked...

but, next week, there will be a new thread asking questions about TPMS.

to note: when checking tires when cold, the tires should be acclimated to the OUTSIDE ambient air temps. many people will check their tires in the garage, which can very drastically from the outside temps (think heated garage in the winter). this can cause errors in this indirect system.

the plus side to this type of system. for those of us that have a dedicated summer and dedicated set of winter tires, no need to buy new TPMS sensors for each wheel. just change, air, calibrate.
 

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the plus side to this type of system. for those of us that have a dedicated summer and dedicated set of winter tires, no need to buy new TPMS sensors for each wheel. just change, air, calibrate.
Spot on, Fear. The cost of sensors for additional wheel sets is high and they have to be programmed to the vehicle, which requires specialist equipment that most of us don't have. Also, TPMS wheel sensors are a little bit delicate and they break, often, and require replacement by someone with the proper equipment.
 

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Great info in this thread, but this is true as well:

2psi shouldn't trigger your TPMS. Especially in a car that doesn't actually even have TPMS sensors in the wheels. You'll get more than that much pressure variance just having a cold morning.

And if you have a sport like mine, or any model with low profile tires on them (read: "big wheels") do NOT run your pressure too low - I wouldn't go under 30psi. Sure, the resulting softer tire will feel nice and compliant on the road, smoothing out cracks and bumps - but it becomes easy to find potholes or parking lot curb-cuts that result in a bent rim. If you keep your tire pressure high (but still in recommended range), you'll avoid that.


...and on that note, if you did (or didn't) read that great explanation above on how these systems work - bear in mind on a cold day, ALL of your tire's pressures will (should) go down evenly, and would make sense that would NOT trip the tire pressure sensor. That could be dangerous! So if you live in an area like I do, where we get summers in the 90's and winters filled with snow, check your tire pressure.
 

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Spot on, Fear. The cost of sensors for additional wheel sets is high and they have to be programmed to the vehicle, which requires specialist equipment that most of us don't have. Also, TPMS wheel sensors are a little bit delicate and they break, often, and require replacement by someone with the proper equipment.
I always have a second set of wheels with TPMS sensors on them. They aren't usually a hassle.

I got a set of Kia Soul wheels for my old Optima off Ebay, and they included Kia TPMS sensors.
Before that, I had a Sonata lease and bought a set of aftermarket wheels. I used the stock wheels for the snow tires, and found a company that refurbished TPMS sensors for a fraction of the price - I think it cost me $40 for all four of them.

And most cars auto-program these days. When I'd switch my wheels over, summer to winter, or winter to summer, the TPMS light would initially go on, but would go out after driving for not even my entire commute, as the computer began communicating with them. No biggie.

It is nice not to have to worry about it at all, with this car - though I do wonder if having sensors is a better approach.
 

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Great info in this thread, but this is true as well:

2psi shouldn't trigger your TPMS. Especially in a car that doesn't actually even have TPMS sensors in the wheels. You'll get more than that much pressure variance just having a cold morning.

...and on that note, if you did (or didn't) read that great explanation above on how these systems work - bear in mind on a cold day, ALL of your tire's pressures will (should) go down evenly, and would make sense that would NOT trip the tire pressure sensor. That could be dangerous! So if you live in an area like I do, where we get summers in the 90's and winters filled with snow, check your tire pressure.

@geolemon - No, 2psi shouldn't. The system uses the calibration to set up a baseline, and the reason it requires you to drive for approximately 30 miles is so that it can read from cold pressure to warm in order to establish its basic window of operation. I've found that the actual pressure in any one wheel has to drop below 6psi (from the calibrated value) before it triggers the warning. A variance between tires will be ignored so long as all four remain within the variance window.

If, on a cold day, all four tires did drop an equal amount of pressure the system shouldn't trigger unless the amount they dropped falls below the accepted value (again, I've observed this to be 6psi from the nominal calibration value)
 
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