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Old 12-27-2013, 11:13 AM   #29
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Gary, shouldn't the common failure issue be directed toward the tire discussions and the monitors a secondary consideration?
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:31 AM   #30
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Quote:
Originally Posted by GCinSC2 View Post
.

You can choose an external or internal monitor. Which one do you choose?


Gary

I chose the external sensors simply because I wanted the ability to easily change batteries - and to change the sensor if defective without needing to remove the tire. (I have a whole bunch of spares I bought from a fellow who no longer needed his TPMS - which was identical to mine.)

I don't know how accurate the temperature reading would be with the external sensor when stuck out in the wind as it is at the end of the valve stem.

I suppose it gets its temperature reading by heat transmitted through the metal stem.

I know that the sensors on the "sun side" of the trailer run quite a bit warmer than those in the shade! To be expected I guess.

My feeling was though that I am not so much looking for an accurate temperature reading but rather to see one wheel showing a significantly higher reading than the other three.

That would give me cause to pull over for a look see and a closer check on things.

Apart from the automatic alarms you get from a TPMS dependent upon the limits you have programmed, while we are driving I make a habit of periodically cycling the monitor through all four wheels to keep an eye on pressure and temperature readings.

Even with the TPMS I am a firm believer at doing a complete walk around the trailer at each and every stop to check the hitch, the tires, and the trailer in general.

One we had a GYM tire lose a piece of tread the full width of the tire by over one foot long. We didn't have a TPMS at that time - nor was it on an AS trailer.
but interestingly, the tire lost no air whatsoever so a TPMS would not have helped in this case.

Luckily I felt a very slight unusual vibration coming though to the tow vehicle and stopped for a look. damage to the trailer was luckily minimal.

When we stopped and found the destroyed tire, close examination of the other three revealed two others where the tread was just beginning to lift away from the carcass of the tire!

Four new tires bought 2 miles down the road in Fort Stockton, Texas! Lucky they had tires to fit - had to pay the guy extra to keep his little outdoor tire shop open and do the work that supper time!

Brian.
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Old 12-27-2013, 11:43 AM   #31
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Agree, I'm looking for TPMS precision and accuracy when it comes to tracking changes over time. I'm not going to worry too much about a pound or two on the PSI, just want to know when things are changing in an unacceptable way - getting hot too fast, losing air too fast, etc.

BTW, when I spoke with the TST rep on the phone yesterday to place my order, he said that air flows throughout the tire, including up and down the valve stem, when sensors are attached. He didn't say anything about needing metal valve stems to transmit temperatures. We'll see what we see when the product arrives; maybe the instructions will recommend metal valve stems to transmit temps from the wheel to the sensor. I can intellectually grasp why that could be important and I may do it anyway, but I will be eager to see what the printed instructions actually say.
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:13 PM   #32
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By the time the batteries go south in the Dill internal sensors the tires need to be replaced anyways for time.The Dill unit display constantly cycles through all four tires giving PSI or internal temp.You need to make sure that whatever you buy that the valve stems are metal not rubber.
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Old 12-27-2013, 12:31 PM   #33
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Silvery Moon View Post
Agree, I'm looking for TPMS precision and accuracy when it comes to tracking changes over time. I'm not going to worry too much about a pound or two on the PSI, just want to know when things are changing in an unacceptable way - getting hot too fast, losing air too fast, etc.

BTW, when I spoke with the TST rep on the phone yesterday to place my order, he said that air flows throughout the tire, including up and down the valve stem, when sensors are attached. He didn't say anything about needing metal valve stems to transmit temperatures. We'll see what we see when the product arrives; maybe the instructions will recommend metal valve stems to transmit temps from the wheel to the sensor. I can intellectually grasp why that could be important and I may do it anyway, but I will be eager to see what the printed instructions actually say.
I don't quite see how air would flow in the valve stem - it is a dead end!

To some extent the temperature would be transmitted through dead air space or through rubber - but I would think best through steel.

I think the main reason that many TPMS companies recommend metal stems is just due to the added mass of the sensor on the end of the stem. Light as it is, I guess they are concerned about the possibility of flexing of a rubber stem eventually causing problems.

If remember, the Hawkshead instructions say you can use rubber (as long as they are in good shape) or metal stems but the recommend metal.

I have metal on the Airstream but still have rubber on my motorcycle until I get chance to change them for metal. So far they have been fine with the sensors.


Sounds as though the system you are buying will allow you to check pressures before you leave on a trip. Mine does not do that - in fact the pressures don't start to register until quite a few minutes into the ride.

I do a walk around anyway, so I would certainly see any major problem, but it would be nice to have that feature just to see if any tire needed topping up a few pounds before getting underway.

I still don't really understand how mine work and whether they have some sort of motion switch in the sensors that turn them on.

I always remove the sensors when we get home from a trip, then remove their batteries. I check the voltage on the batts before re-installing, and replace any giving signs of weakness as they cost me so little on Ebay bought in bulk. Helps ensure no loss of signal on a trip.

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Old 12-27-2013, 12:40 PM   #34
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Quote:
Originally Posted by dkottum View Post
Gary, shouldn't the common failure issue be directed toward the tire discussions and the monitors a secondary consideration?
Dkottum,

The OP's question was for TPMS reviews with specific questions about performance and comments. My follow up was about temperature monitoring which is included with some TPMS systems.

Gary
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Old 01-02-2014, 12:01 PM   #35
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Tire Traker TPMS

If you are using the Tire Traker brand of TPMS, did you get the booster? Is it more necessary with a diesel tow vehicle?
Thanks for your help.

Rick
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Old 01-02-2014, 12:32 PM   #36
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Originally Posted by Denis4x4 View Post
No problem checking the tire pressures every morning as I can also do a visual tire check at the same time.
Which, ironically, lets air out of the tire each time. Not much, granted, but I feel I'm better off not checking the pressure unless I have reason to think there might be a problem. I check and inflate all 10 tires (truck and trailer) before each trip, then I only do visual checks at breaks.

Quote:
Originally Posted by rodsterinfl View Post
Sure, as it should be Denis4x4. The rationale for having a TPMS for Airstreamers is being able to know what is going on "back there" while traveling before the steel belts eat the side out of the trailer- at least shorten the event. Motorhomes are needy too as they may get stranded.
Yep. Driving home Sunday, I hit one of those weights used to hold highway barrels down with our truck and trailer (all four tires on the right side). Before I hit it, I said, "I sure hope we can drive over those things," because I didn't have much choice in the matter. Afterward, we had no way to confirm the right tires on the camper were unaffected. I had my wife look in the mirror as we took a curve on the next exit to see if she could see anything; she could only see the front tire but it seemed fine. (Both tires were fine, fortunately.) A TPMS would be very nice to have in this situation, even if it only covers the trailer tires.
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Old 01-02-2014, 01:28 PM   #37
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I've used the Hawkshead for several years and have been basically happy. As mentioned earlier, waking up the sensors is kind of a mystery. I have found that I can walk to each tire, holding the monitor, and slightly loosen each sensor to wake them up if I want to check pressure. Loosen them just enough to bleed a small burp of air and they warn of a leak and report the data.

I also bough a repeater but haven't used it in years.
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Old 01-02-2014, 01:49 PM   #38
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I wound up having to buy a repeater last fall. I had used my Doran in many full sized pickups and SUVs and never had dropped signal issues. This fall I was forced to use my 1/2 ton Express Conversion Van (long story) instead of my company vehicle. I started having a lot of signal issues. I couldn't understand what was going on, until I remembered years ago doing some custom wiring work and discovering it has a foil type insulation throughout the entire truck. I believe it is blocking signals. After the booster, all is good.
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Old 01-02-2014, 02:52 PM   #39
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I use the Dill TPMS. The sensors are inside the tire. It reads pressure and temp. For my setup, I needed to use the external antenna by mounting it at the rear roof of my Suburban. I mounted the readout with Velcro on my dash.

The only negative comment I have is that it doesn't display all four tire readings at once, which is absurdly stupid. It cycles through the four tires giving each one two seconds of display. Therefore, it takes 8-seconds to check the tires instead of a simple glance. Pretty close to the dumbest thing I have ever seen on a digital product, especially since there are actually four LED displays! (The proper program would simply update each reading, but leave the display for each lit from the previous reading. This change would take two minutes of a programmer's time.)

Good luck!
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Old 01-09-2014, 04:57 PM   #40
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Quote:
If you are using the Tire Traker brand of TPMS, did you get the booster? Is it more necessary with a diesel tow vehicle?
I have no booster and no issue with signal. I am not sure if diesel would matter as much as distance.
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Old 01-09-2014, 06:24 PM   #41
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I use a Tire Minder, purchased on line from Costco. It has external transmitters that are easily taken off for storage. They work most of the time but I find I am frequently cleaning the internal battery contact points. I have mounted the booster in the battery box. I don't know how accurate the read outs are while underway and am really not concerned with accuracy but am concerned that the thing provides both temp and pressure warnings. I guess it does but don't know. (Michelins) so far the only warnings have been the check battery warnings. Tires all have the same air pressure which is now 77 lbs cold (pressure gauge measure) , down from the original installation in 2012 of 80lbs. Still looking for the sweet spot. The thing seems to be doing its job. Jim
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Old 01-09-2014, 07:02 PM   #42
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Hardly a week goes by that I don't see a utility trailer or camper on the side of the road with a tire issue.
Last Sunday was coming home behind a Denali 5th and the right rear tire was bubbled out ready to pop - at least it looked like it. I motioned the driver's wife and yelled that they may want to check it when possible. That is hopefully what a TPMS would avoid.
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