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BMW 3-Series (E90 E92) Forum > E90 / E92 / E93 3-series Technical Forums > Wheels and Tires Forum Sponsored by The Tire Rack > Tech Bulletin from Tire Rack - TPMS FAQ

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      11-07-2006, 04:12 PM   #1
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Drives: Formerly 1995 M3
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Tech Bulletin from Tire Rack - TPMS FAQ

To help general understanding of TPMS my marketing dept has asked me to post this in the appropriate forum.


Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems and Aftermarket Wheels

A direct tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) will be standard equipment on every vehicle sold in the U.S. after September, 2007. The criteria for TPMS standardization is that the vehicle must have only four wheels (no dual-wheeled trucks or motorcycles), and weigh less than 10,000 lbs.

All new MINIs and many older BMWs are equipped with an indirect style TPMS (see TPMS facts below), which doesn’t affect wheel or tire replacement. On BMWs equipped with direct TPMS, several different valve sensors have been used. All current BMW valve sensors are produced by BERU and sold in two parts: the sensor component and the metal valve.

The Tire Rack has sensors available for every direct system-equipped BMW up to the 2007 models. Not all wheels will be compatible with BMW sensors. The size of the sensor shouldn’t be a problem for mostwheels, but if the valve hole is in the middle of the wheel’s barrel, then the sensor will not fit properly. Wheel manufacturers are aware of the issue and are making most of their wheels TPMS-compatible. We have carefully determined which wheels that are currently available will be compatible with the system installed on your vehicle, and only those fitments are listed on the site


TPMS Facts

Direct TPMS use a sensor in the wheel/tire to wirelessly relay pressure back to the driver via a display inside the vehicle. Some vehicles have a digital screen that continuously shows all four tire pressures (five if spare has sensor). Others simply flash a "low tire pressure" light on the dash. Additionally, there are two different styles of sensors for a direct system: a valve sensor and a strap/band sensor. Only valve sensors are used on BMW direct system-equipped vehicles. If you bought an aftermarket SmarTire TPMS, its sensors are held on by a strap around the barrel of the wheel.

Indirect systems work in conjunction with the ABS wheel speed sensors that “count” the number of revolutions of each tire. If the right front tire is low (25psi) it will spin faster than the left front tire (35psi). The ABS system will recognize this change and alert the driver with a flashing light and possibly a loud chime. BMW's indirect systems do not affect the fitment of aftermarket wheels.

NOTE : You can now purchase TPMS valves and sensors for TPMS equipped 2007 BMW 3 series cars directly from me. Current price as of May 2007 is $49 per corner for a total before shipping of $196. UPS ground shipping should be under $10 to most locations.

If you aren't buying wheels from us *please* be sure to verify with a dealer of the wheel or the manufacturer of the wheel that you are buying that the wheel is TPMS compatible. I've already had a few forum members have to go to the trouble of shipping back sets on wheels that were not compatible with sensors.
Gary. Tire and Wheel Forum Moderator. Tire Rack Sales Rep Gary@Tirerack.com

Please refer to 'Gary/E90 Post' as your previous contact when you order online to help support this forum.

Last edited by Gary@TireRack; 05-09-2007 at 02:21 PM..
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