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Old 12-08-2008, 01:45 PM   #1
elwray
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Default Moving TPMS to new wheels?

Hi all,

I'm looking to buy a set of winter tires/wheels for my 09 WRX, and this is the first car I've driven with the TPMS.

I've been browsing on Tire Rack, and they say that either the existing sensors can be used on the new wheels, or I can buy sensors for almost $200.. obviously, I'd like to use the existing sensors and save the money if it's not a huge hassle to change them over with the wheels at the beginning and end of the season.

I tried searching but didn't find anything about how to change the sensors over/if it's worth doing. Compared to the price some manufacturers want for sensors, this isn't bad but still -- if I don't have to spend the money I'd rather not.

Any suggestions??
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Old 12-08-2008, 02:56 PM   #2
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Are you talking about a winter and summer set of wheels and tyres, or just different rubber that you R&R on the same wheels?

I'm not 100% sure that the tyres have to come off the wheels to change the sensors, but the bead has to be broken to remove the sensors from the inside. Then the sensors can be transfer to the other set the same way.

The good thing is with one set of sensors you would not have to tell the ECU which tyres you had on. There can only be one set of sensors married at one time.

It seems like many people are using a little black electrical tape over the warnig light for the second set of shoes to avoid the PIA of multiple sets.
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:07 PM   #3
elwray
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Thanks for the response --
Yes, I will have two complete sets (8 wheels w/ tires)

After doing some more in depth research, it seems like the black tape is the best way to deal with this :-\

It will depend on how much the dealer will charge to marry the new sensors to the ECU. I've read some people have been charged $50 each time, and for others it was free!


I guess my question should have been -- how do I remove the plastic cover to the gauges to get to the light to tape over it??
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:32 PM   #4
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It's just a yellow light, is it that bad to deal with it?
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Old 12-08-2008, 03:34 PM   #5
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Well... haven't seen it yet -- is it solid or does it blink? I've read about both .. ?
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:10 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elwray View Post
Well... haven't seen it yet -- is it solid or does it blink? I've read about both .. ?
It blinks when you first start it, maybe a minute then it becomes solid. This is from a '09 Outback w/snows + 16s.
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Old 12-08-2008, 06:21 PM   #7
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Well then, as another member said somewhere else, I guess it will be the "winter tire" alert icon!
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Old 12-09-2008, 02:32 PM   #8
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Yep, blinks for about a minute then steady yellow light. Doesn't seem to bother me as much as I thought it would. Drove to Florida and back, didn't even notice it. I can't justify paying over a hundred bucks to have a light tell me what I should already know. RP
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Old 12-09-2008, 02:41 PM   #9
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Yep, blinks for about a minute then steady yellow light. Doesn't seem to bother me as much as I thought it would. Drove to Florida and back, didn't even notice it. I can't justify paying over a hundred bucks to have a light tell me what I should already know. RP
Why was the light on during that trip, you had snow tires on? just kidding,
Or did you change the wheels and just never change the sensors?

How can I take the cluster out of the dash on the 2009? It's different than the write-ups for the 08 I think ..
I'd like to poke around in there, if I can isolate the wire/bulb for that, maybe just put a resistor in place or sharpie over something to dim the light, I don't want to eliminate it I don't think ..
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:15 AM   #10
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Sorry 'bout that. Yeah, bought a cheap set of wheels for winter and put them on prior to Florida trip. Wasn't going to spend the bucks on sensors. Changed to 17's as I already had new (one winter) tires from the 04 WRX. RP
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Old 12-10-2008, 09:40 PM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by elwray View Post
Why was the light on during that trip, you had snow tires on? just kidding,
Or did you change the wheels and just never change the sensors?

How can I take the cluster out of the dash on the 2009? It's different than the write-ups for the 08 I think ..
I'd like to poke around in there, if I can isolate the wire/bulb for that, maybe just put a resistor in place or sharpie over something to dim the light, I don't want to eliminate it I don't think ..
I pulled the cluster in my 08 and removed the TPMS signal wire from the harness. Needless to say it didn't do the trick, which is understandable, because the computer thinks the TPMS system is not functioning.

The light gets its power from the same circuit as the ABS and other needed components, so a fuse or power wire is out of the question.

To fool the light we need to figure out what signal that wire is giving the TPMS "computer." My guess is a resistance value, but I don't feel like mounting my summers back up to check it right now.
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:15 PM   #12
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Be careful. The TPMS is designed to be hard to defeat. IIRC there is a $10,000 fine for dinking with the system. As private parties we may be exempt, but Do Not expect any shops, or businesses to help. Do send a Christmas card to Ford, Firestone, and your congressmen to say thank you...

(The sensors are broadcasting short range RF. There has to be a receiver somewhere...)
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:35 PM   #13
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The RF receiver (control unit) is in the trunk (hatch) area, but then the signal wire runs to a micro computer which basically tells the light what to do:

http://techinfo.subaru.com/diagnosti.../tpm00051e.pdf

You can see here pin 34 at the gauges has the goods, just need to get the resistance and voltage of this pin from a normally functioning TPMS. (or pin #2 at TPMS control unit), then we should be able to simulate.

http://techinfo.subaru.com/diagnosti.../wi-18768e.pdf

(This is all of course for fun in theory, I would never do anything to my car which would affect the warranty)
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:45 PM   #14
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(This is all of course for fun in theory, I would never do anything to my car which would affect the warranty)
Or piss off the federallies.

It looks like the magic wire Red/Yellow. Now does the CAN bus back talk with the speedo and TPM Controle Module?
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Old 12-10-2008, 10:54 PM   #15
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Or piss off the federallies.

It looks like the magic wire Red/Yellow. Now does the CAN bus back talk with the speedo and TPM Controle Module?
Definitely needs tested, but I'm hoping it isnt that smart.
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Old 12-10-2008, 11:07 PM   #16
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Some one just did a clutch job on an "04 STi and broke the Speedo sensor. Stuff occurs. The strange part is the Speedo in the instrument cluster still worked. It's not a CAN car and I'll be dammed how the gage cluster is getting the signal. I know the ABS has 4 other speed sensors...

We are straying from the OP's question.
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Old 12-11-2008, 07:19 PM   #17
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I've been trying to find a source for cheap sensors (so I can run two different set of wheels/tires), but I'd much rather find a cheap defeat for it

I don't want to pay a fee twice a year either for the "marrying"

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Old 12-12-2008, 09:53 AM   #18
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I had winter tires put on my stock rims a few weeks ago. The next morning it was -2 degrees and the TPMS light came on when I started the car. It stayed on most of the day, then went off and hasn't come back on. I'm not sure if the cold temps had anything to do with the light coming on or if it was from switching tires, but I haven't had a problem since.
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Old 12-12-2008, 09:56 AM   #19
elwray
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Cold temps will cause the air in the tires to condense, thereby lowering the pressure. You might have to pump them up a bit... but if the light went out then I guess it was just borderline too low... the TPMS has a +/- 5 degree margin around the ideal pressure... so even if the light went off I'd personally want to check with a gauge just to be on the safe side.

EDIT: I believe there's a 5 degree buffer zone, it might be smaller on this car, but most have a zone of 3-5 I think.

Last edited by elwray; 12-12-2008 at 09:58 AM. Reason: clarification
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Old 12-12-2008, 08:58 PM   #20
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You can have more then one set of sensors for you vehicle. There is a simple reset procedure that is done for free at many tire places (discount tire). If you have more then one set of wheels and tires it is smarter just to purchase the extra sensors. that way you wont have to pay labor every season change to put your sensors in. Other wise dont move your sensors and live with the light.
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Old 12-12-2008, 10:21 PM   #21
elwray
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You can have more then one set of sensors for you vehicle. There is a simple reset procedure that is done for free at many tire places (discount tire). If you have more then one set of wheels and tires it is smarter just to purchase the extra sensors. that way you wont have to pay labor every season change to put your sensors in. Other wise dont move your sensors and live with the light.
Yeah, but is a tire place going to reset the light for free twice a year? I figure just the first time they put the new wheels on.
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Old 12-12-2008, 11:30 PM   #22
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If I knew they would reset the sensors for free- I'd definitely go w/ another set of sensors.

I'll check w/ some tire places and see if 1- the have the proper equipment, 2- if there is a charge

I might even be able to sweet talk the dealer in doing it as well- third WRX (fourth car) I've purchased from them (not to mention $$$$$$$$$ spent on parts! )
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Old 12-13-2008, 08:42 AM   #23
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When I was originally searching before posting this thread, I came across ONE person who said their dealership does it for free. But I don't remember where they were... they said they suspected it had something to do with the dealership being a "gold" club Subaru dealer or something? sorry I don't remember the details...

Obviously if they will do it for free, then this whole thread is a moot point and I will just buy extra sensors as well. But for some reason, I'm not expecting that to be the case.

I'll give the service guy a call at the dealership I bought the car at ... he's actually been a pleasure to deal with compared to the unorganized sales dept. One of the only anything-dealership service people I've actually had had multiple good experiences with.
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