Need advice on TPMS tire shop v. dealer

Discussion in 'Gen 2 Prius Main Forum' started by grady123, Jan 7, 2021.

  1. grady123

    grady123 Junior Member

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    Sorry for yet another TPMS post but after much reading I'm still not clear on the car's problem and need advice. I had two TPMS sensors replaced at a tire shop and also reprogrammed but the light comes on after a few trips each time. It first flashes for about a minute then solid. I believe this indicates a problem with the TPMS system and not a pressure problem.

    The order of events:
    • The light came on and took it to my tire shop. They said two TPMS sensors are bad and need to be replaced. I had them replace them. The light was off.
    • After a few trips the light comes back on. I go back to the tire shop. They admitted "they didn't have the right cable to program" and said to get it programmed at the dealership and they will pay (which is fraud since they charged me to for a fix they could never perform).
    • The dealer performed the reprogramming and the light was off.
    • After a few trips the light comes back on. I got back to the dealership and they reprogram. They said the tire sensors were holding the reprogramming so they had to perform the programming twice. I said I don't think the sensors get programmed (the ECU does) but the service advisor insisted it did. The light is off.
    • Guess what happens after a few trips??? The light is back on.
    So at this point I'm not sure if there is a problem with the sensors being intermittent or if there is a problem with the ECU. I'm not even sure if any of the programming was successful if the dealership just reset the error. I figure I have one more shot with the dealer so I want to be informed. If it is the ECU then I'm going to put tape over the light and call it a day. If the sensors are bad I would like the tire shop to fix them. It would be nice to have it working for peace of mind having my wife and son drive the car.

    What do you think I should do?

    TIA
     
  2. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    Thanks for doing lots of reading. It's so much easier to help people who put a legitimate effort into solving their problem first! One time I was faced with a similar challenged and solved it by pumping the tires up to near 40PSI, which not only got rid of the lights for good, but gas mileage was improved too. And if that doesn't work I'd take it back to the tire shop and argue that they used sensors that aren't compatible with Prius and they're going to replace them for you to solve this problem. Maybe buy your own TPMS sensors from someone on Ebay who sell them often to Prius owners to improve your odds. Main reason I always purchase on Ebay instead of Amazon is they have a very generous refund policy for anything less than $300 and you don't even have to waste your time sending the product back.
     
  3. cyberpriusII

    cyberpriusII Prodigyplace says I'm Super Kris

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    JUST a WAG....any chance the OTHER sensors could be going out, thus causing the issue?
    kris
     
  4. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    That's a good way to go about it. One would assume the Toyota Stealership would of been able to check this, especially on the return trip when it failed again, but sometimes the mechanics at the stealerships are newbies, or suck at their job, or just plain not as smart as you're being right now.
     
  5. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    I’ll bet tire shops miss the good ol’ days, selling tires, putting in $2 valve stems.
     
  6. mr_guy_mann

    mr_guy_mann Active Member

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    I would suggest you take your car to a shop that is properly equipped and staffed by competent technicians.

    If I saw a car like this, my task list would be:
    Check and adjust tire pressures.
    Connect a (capable) scantool to the vehicle and readout diagnostic trouble codes from all modules.
    IF the codes indicated a fault with one of the tire pressure sensors, use a TPMS tool to wirelessly "ping" all 4 sensors to determine if the sensors respond correctly and show good battery condition. This step will also read the unique ID code for each sensor.
    Use the scantool to read what ID codes are programmed to the car- if any are different then go to programming mode and manually enter the correct IDs.
    Test drive the car to see if the scantool shows that the TPMS system now correctly shows updated pressure info from the sensors.

    Most "hardware" faults that trigger the TPMS light to flash are sensor problems- but not all. If the sensor IDs are not correctly programmed, the system will revert to the previous IDs and might take 20 to 30 minutes of driving before it throws a code because it hasn't received data from the sensors as expected.

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
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  7. DutchPrius

    DutchPrius Member

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    Are the TPMS sersors on all Gen 2 Prius models? Because on my Dutch one I don't have them... Would be nice to get a hint if your tires are about to get messy because they are at low psi. Is it US standard? Did buy second hand wheels, main advantage I have now is that I can dit any set if wheels I want, as long as it fits correctly, don't have to look out for sensors.

    Best regards, Nick

    Black 2007 Prius
     
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  8. grady123

    grady123 Junior Member

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  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    Thankfully Canada they’re not mandatory yet.
     
  10. DutchPrius

    DutchPrius Member

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    Thanks for the update!! Wasn't aware of this. Now I know why you need this to work as supposed for your Prius.

    Best regards, Nick

    Black 2007 Prius
     
  11. grady123

    grady123 Junior Member

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    An update. The dealer reports no signal from the new sensors. Thankfully my records show which sensors were replaced and which failed at the dealer. Now I'm going back to the tire place to have them address the problem.

    Is it possible to register the IDs with a Mac laptop? It appears Techstream is PC only.
     
  12. mr_guy_mann

    mr_guy_mann Active Member

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    Techstream is the "cheapest" scantool that has the capability to program the TPMS sensors. I don't know if any budget scanners will do that on Toyota. The pro-level aftermarket scanners like Autel are $1000 and up (some like SnapOn are several thousand) . Some of the fancier TPMS tools should program the car as well, but those are over $500.

    It is a bit of work but one option is to get a cheap used windows laptop just for Techstream. Another would be to put VMware on your mac and download a generic win7 virtual machine (I think Microsoft has it somewhere). You can then install and run Techstream on the virtual machine.

    Posted via the PriusChat mobile app.
     
  13. grady123

    grady123 Junior Member

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    Well the tire shop is temporarily closed now. It is a local chain and I went to another of their locations.

    They said the new sensors were the wrong type and that is why the ECU can't read the signals. In this case, the "bad" sensors had a metal post and the "good" sensors have a flexible plastic post. I have no idea why Toyota said they were able to read the signals. Maybe they just read them with the scan tool, programmed the ECU, and hoped for the best.

    The "new" tire shop replaced the sensors with the "correct" sensors and now the light is off for now. Hopefully off for good. I'll find out after a few cycles. They said the aftermarket sensors are comparable to the OEM. They don't have many problems with them.

    So it appears the first shop just installed the (wrong) sensors and then did some kind of reset to get rid of the light. The "new" shop volunteered (without me asking) to talk to the first shop regarding using the correct sensors.
     
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  14. PriusCamper

    PriusCamper Senior Member

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    At least Toyota Stealerships are relatively consistent in not noticing stuff that's obvious for other shops.
     
  15. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Requires the quality OEM Denso tpms.

    Amazon $50.
     
  16. Aegean

    Aegean Member

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    Here is one thing I noticed. Every time you program the sensor IDs successful, the light stays off for a couple of days. Eventually it starts blinking and stays on to show an issue like a dead battery on a sensor.
     
  17. qmanqman

    qmanqman Member

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    Denso 550-0103

    Is that the right part #? They seem to be $35 everywhere.
     
  18. edthefox5

    edthefox5 Senior Member

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    Yes I checked price has come way down in the last 10 years.

    that’s the one.
     
  19. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

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    $58 CDN for me on Amazon right now. In Canada it’s nice to (at least for now) forgo sensors, just use traditional valves.
     
  20. ski.dive

    ski.dive Active Member

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    I check my own tire pressure often
    Have not seen the TPMS light on my dash in years...I covered it up;)
     
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