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Old 10-30-2011, 08:53 AM   #1
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Aftermarket TPMS for Trailer Tires

Anyone out there using aftermarket Tire Pressure Monitoring Systems for watching the trailer tire pressures while underway? What do you think of them? I have heard the ones which screw onto the valve stem can over time introduce a leak in the rubber valve stems, due to flexing from centrifical forces, which seems quite possible.
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Old 10-30-2011, 12:57 PM   #2
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I have looked at them, but had a hard time pulling the trigger. Part of my problem is if I get 4 for the camper, I want 4 more for my vehicle so the price keeps creeping...

They look nice, but they cost more than my deductible ok - that is probably not a good way to view it.
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Old 10-30-2011, 02:21 PM   #3
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One day I was traveling down an interstate at 65 mph or so and a guy drove alongside my trailer gesturing and pointing. I'm usually somewhat leery of such odd behavior around our trailer, but I decided to pull over and take a look at my tow vehicle and trailer. I found one tire completely shredded. Had that guy not warned me, and had I not overcome my usual doubts about strangers, I would have continued down the road until the second tire failed, and I started dragging my brake drums down the road.

So I decided I had to get a TPMS system. I got a TST system, and for it I had to have installed metal valve stems. It tells me the pressure and temperature in each tire, and will alert with beeping if there is a sudden change in pressure. My truck has a factory TPMS system. I've used the TST system for about 10 months on 10,000 miles and it has worked well.
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Old 10-30-2011, 02:38 PM   #4
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I've been looking ito them as well. The externally mounted ones will most likely cause trouble with rubber valves stems which is why the manufacturers recommended one installs metal valve stems.

They are costly but I feel the expense would be well worth it. They give near constant monitoring of tire pressure for each tire and warn you visually and audibly when tire pressure goes too low for safety. They will also let you know which tire is acting up and many will report relative tire temperature. ASFAIK, the TMPS installed on vehicles do not go into that detail. They would be well worth the price if they could prevent a blowout that could damage or destroy the RV or cause an accident that could endanger life and limb.
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Old 10-30-2011, 03:25 PM   #5
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I have to agree with tafische . To get to that 8th wheel the price jumps. Fortunately for me I can see all 4 of my trailer tires in my mirrors. I just look at them frequently and never move the trailer in the morning without checking the pressure in each as well as my TV.
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Old 10-30-2011, 04:50 PM   #6
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I have to agree with tafische . To get to that 8th wheel the price jumps. Fortunately for me I can see all 4 of my trailer tires in my mirrors. I just look at them frequently and never move the trailer in the morning without checking the pressure in each as well as my TV.
Frankly, my old, trifocal assisted eyeballs just aren't quite good enough to see if tire pressure is going down while I'm driving because a tire picked up and threw a nail or if tire temperature is going up due to slight dragging because a wheel bearing is starting to seize or a brake decided not to fully release. And even if my eyes were good enough, my ADD wouldn't allow me to concentrate on watching the tires while also concentrating on the road and the morons (other morons?) I'm sharing it with. Too much input at once and my mind goes on vacation.

TPMS - expensive as all get out. Peace of mind - priceless! When I get my TT, I'll probably get a 10 wheel system so I can monitor my spares as well (the system that comes with my truck leaves a bit to be desired). That will beat the hairy heck of crawling under truck and trailer to check spare tire pressure.
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Old 10-30-2011, 07:22 PM   #7
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I'm sure I am just as lax about checking my spares as everyone else, but knowing the problem I have had through the years finding a source of air on the road, I have a compressor. Since I have a generator onboard my 5'er, I have a 120v compressor so I can air up a spare when needed. I have had very poor luck through the years finding stations where I can get a good enough air supply to air up a tire to 80 psi and I will be needing 110 psi by next year so the problem will only get worse.
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Old 10-30-2011, 08:57 PM   #8
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Quote:
Originally Posted by edatlanta View Post
I have to agree with tafische . To get to that 8th wheel the price jumps. Fortunately for me I can see all 4 of my trailer tires in my mirrors. I just look at them frequently and never move the trailer in the morning without checking the pressure in each as well as my TV.
I can see mine as well with my extended mirrors. Tough call....it is one of those things, like so many others, that starts to add up $$$$. When you add an ems, backup cameras, tpms, etc, etc ....it can really start to add up. at what point do you have to say - I have done due diligence? I guess it is a personal choice, I have just had a hard time throwing the cash into this one.
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Old 10-31-2011, 02:25 PM   #9
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I can see mine as well with my extended mirrors. Tough call....it is one of those things, like so many others, that starts to add up $$$$. When you add an ems, backup cameras, tpms, etc, etc ....it can really start to add up. at what point do you have to say - I have done due diligence? I guess it is a personal choice, I have just had a hard time throwing the cash into this one.
I have always used the method of gauging the pressure before hitting the road, as well as a good visual inspection while i'm at it. Never had a problem on the road. This past August, while trailering thru Michigan, we saw 3 TT's pulled over at different spots, all with a flat tire. This got me wondering if there is more risk there than i'm accounting for..........RV Hiker's experience noted in post 3 above, is something to consider. In my case, since the TV has factory TPMS, i would only need 4 sensors for the trailer, if i go that route.
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Old 10-31-2011, 07:45 PM   #10
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I am more concerned about the trailer tires than the truck. Over the years they are the ones that fail even though I am anal about checking pressure and temps.
Many years of towing and only 1 truck tire problem due to a road hazard. Trailer tires are another story. Many blown tires back there.

A TPMS system is on my short list and I will likely wait on the 4 for the truck.
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