What Is A TPMS Sensor?
An RV tire pressure monitoring sensor (TPMS sensor) is an essential piece of gear for any camper. RV tires are some of the most important pieces of equipment, and it’s ideal for them to function at 100% efficiency.
Tire leaks or pressure imbalances can throw off the entire driving process, but the damage is often too small to spot with the naked eye. That’s where a TPMS sensor comes in handy.
Why use a TPMS sensor?
These tiny RV TPMS sensors can be attached to all the tires on your rig to will keep you updated with real-time information about your RV tire pressure. Just like RV tires, there are lots of different models, and each one has its own unique features and benefits. However, whether you go for something simple or something fancy, everyone with an RV should have a good TPMS sensor as part of their gear.
Below we’ll explore some of the top benefits that a TPMS sensor can provide, as well as some of the different types and some top products you may want to keep in mind.
Benefits of an RV TPMS sensor
There are several reasons why you should invest in a good tire pressure monitoring system. The primary reason is because it keeps you safer on the road, but there are some additional benefits that make it a worthwhile piece of equipment.
Prevent RV tire blowouts
RV tire blowouts are an RVer’s worst fear. When you’re traveling at highway speeds, it can be incredibly dangerous if one of your tires goes down. You might start to sway or even flip over. Blowouts are potentially deadly for you, your passengers, and other drivers on the road. So, you need to do everything in your power to prevent this from happening.
A TPMS sensor provides an early warning signal to let you know if your tires are damaged. Some models can even let you know in real time if you’ve developed a sudden leak. This alarm system will give you some advance warning so you can pull over and get to safety.
This gadget will also reduce the risks of blowouts altogether. If you regularly check on your tires and know when to replace them, it’s likely that you’ll never need to deal with a popped tire. The peace of mind alone is a huge benefit!
Improve fuel efficiency
Sometimes tires don’t explode dramatically, but they slowly lose air pressure over time. This may not seem like a big deal at first. But underfilled tires make it harder for your RV to travel. The harder your engine works, the more fuel it burns. Therefore, if your tires are leaking, you’ll lose some of your precious fuel efficiency.
Anyone who owns an RV can tell you that it’s not cheap to fill up the gas tank of a motorhome or tow vehicle. So, you’ll be losing money if you fail to fix an issue with your tires. Although a TPMS sensor does cost a bit of money up-front, it can ultimately save you money down the road.
Reduces carbon footprint
If you own an RV, chances are you drive a lot. This inevitably leaves an environmental impact, but you can reduce your emissions if you have well-filled tires. If your tires are properly inflated, this will make your vehicle travel more smoothly and reduce drag.
The easier it is for your engine to propel the RV, the fewer emissions it creates. This may be a small change, but it’s still a benefit that a tire pressure monitoring system can provide.
Helps RV tires last longer
RV tires need to go through a lot. They support a massive amount of weight, and some of them need to endure long road trips. Rough road conditions can also wear them down, especially if you prefer to camp in more rural areas.
It can be expensive to replace your RV tires on a regular basis, so it’s great if you can extend the lifespan of these items. Luckily, TPMS sensors come in handy! If you pay attention to the information your TPMS sensors provide, you’ll know when tires are wearing down, when to rotate them, and when to replace them altogether.
Preserve your RV tires
If your tires are overinflated, the center of the tread will wear down faster. If they are underfilled, the sides/edges of the tire will spread across the road and become weaker. Therefore, to get the most out of your tires, you need to fill each tire to the correct level. This will ensure that there’s an even spread of wear and tear across every tire.
Direct vs. indirect TPMS sensors
Now that you know a bit about the benefits of a tire pressure monitoring system, let’s break down the differences between the two main types: direct and indirect sensors.
Direct TPMS sensors are much more common. These are generally the ones that are available for sale.
As the name suggests, these sensors attach directly to the tire itself and can provide information about the tire pressure as it rises or drops. The information might be displayed on a separate control panel or app.
This type of monitoring system is less common, but those that are used often come pre-installed in RVs. Instead of checking the tire itself, these systems monitor how fast each tire spins.
If one tire is spinning faster or slower than the others, an indirect TPMS system can alert the driver that there is probably a pressure issue.
The best RV TPMS sensors
Finally, let’s review some of the best RV TPMS sensors on the market today. Again, most units that are available for aftermarket sale are direct sensors, but your RV might have an indirect system pre-installed. Check your owner’s manual for information about this.
EEZTire-TPMS6ATC Real Time/24×7 Tire Pressure Monitoring System
This system is one of the best overall options. Customers can choose from a huge selection of different options, such as the number of tire sensors, anti-theft capabilities, and various mixes and boosters.
While active, this system checks the tire pressure every six seconds so nothing will sneak up on you. Each model also comes with a three-year warranty.
TireMinder i10 RV TPMS with 6 Transmitters
The next model has a great range on it. It can transmit information about the tires up to 200 feet away, so you can spread the sensors out between multiple vehicles.
If you want a system that allows you to monitor several wheels, no matter how far apart, this is a good option. It’s also quite small and compact.
Tymate Tire Pressure Monitoring System
This TPMS sensor is actually solar-charged, so you don’t need to worry about batteries or plugging it in. There are five different alarms included in this system. It can alert you when there’s high or low pressure, rising temperature, or rapid air leaks.
The Tymate will also let you know if its charge is running out. It’s a wonderful all-purpose solution.
GUTA Tire Pressure Monitoring System for RVs
Finally, we have the GUTA RV TPMS sensors system. This package is great for big rigs because it has eight different tire sensors.
You can easily monitor all the RV tires, plus the tow vehicle and any cars you might be towing in the back. This system has a ton of different alerts and information readouts, so you can always stay up-to-date with the condition of your tires.
Track your RV maintenance
Make sure you keep track of all your RV maintenance and repairs with an online tool such as RV LIFE Maintenance. Not only can you keep all of your documents in one place, but you’ll also receive timely reminders when maintenance is due to help you avoid costly repairs and potentially serious accidents.