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Old 11-10-2017, 05:24 AM   #1
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1st time ERS, TPMS and dead towed batt.

When I stored our coach a couple of weeks ago I removed the TPMS sensors to extend their battery lives. So when we went to retrieve the coach for our November club rally, first thing I did was install the TPMS sensors on both the coach and towed because sometimes it takes several minutes for each sensor to get logged into the main display unit.
I then went about preparing the coach and about 5 minutes after installing the sensors I checked tire pressures. To my surprise all 10 had logged in and tire pressures were as they should be.



DW and I continued loading the coach, pulled the coach out of its bay and attached the tow car. This took about 45 minutes and per my normal actions I looked under the coach from the front just before getting underway to check for anything out of place and I noticed the right inner dully tire had a greater than normal bulge where the tire meets the road. I went to the rear and looked under again and it looked normal so I disregarded the previous observation and we got underway.



About 3 miles down the road I noticed that same tire sensor had a red dot on the TPMS display unit. Past experience has shown that these sensors sometimes loose connection with the main display unit but only briefly and when that happens the red dot will appear at the lost sensor location on the main display unit. We were turning on an access ramp to the interstate so I cycled the main display to that tire and it read "--" which is consistent with a connection failure. I briefly thought about continuing on and waiting to see if it connects but then remembering the low tire observation as we were getting underway and our location, I felt the on ramp was a better place to stop than the interstate, I pulled over to check it out. The shoulder was about 3 feet wide so I had to pull off into the grass to clear the road and there was a bit of a drop off, the coach leaning several degrees when we came to a stop. This was important as I learned later.



So I removed the TPMS sensor and checked the tire pressure with my hand held battery operated gauge and a manual gauge and saw 0 tire pressure, in fact the battery gauge display would not even come on - to save battery life the display is off until some pressure is measured.
At this point I knew the sensor had not seated properly and in the time it took us to load the coach all the air had leaked out.

I retrieved our air hose and connect it to the coach air connection and tried to air up the tire. No go, could not get any air in the tire. I held the tire inflator on the tire stem for a good 2 minutes with the engine running and not 1 lb of air was measured on the tire. I'm thinking - what the heck how can this be. So ignoring the sand spurs on the grass I get under the coach and observe the tire - right inner dual- there is a gap between the tire and the rim. Now I know why no air is going in.

So now I figure I'm dead in the water. Time to use my just joined Good Sam ERS. I called them and the operator who I found out later is located about 1000 miles away tries her best to locate us from my description. What made this difficult is we were not on a named road but an on ramp to the interstate. It took about 45 minutes to straighten this out but before they would dispatch help they want $170 from my credit card. The dispatcher said they pay only for the cost of the dispatch not labor or materials. I did mention that I had new spare but I though the tire only needed to be put back on the rim and aired up if no damage had been done to the tire. After approving the $170 they dispatched a local tire shop and 45 minutes later they showed up. Not bad as this was rush hour and we were in the middle of it.

I told the tire guy our situation and he went under and looked at it, pulled out an air operated jack he got from Harbor Freight, got the weight off the inside dully and it aired right up. He said the reason the tire was no longer sealed to the rim is because of the drop off of the shoulder. That put a side ways motion to the tire un-seating it from the rim. He said that I could have used my jacks to raise the tire and it would have aired up just like he did.

I asked him if the tire had been damaged after 3 miles of driving it either flat or mostly flat and he said hard to tell. He suggested monitoring it closely with my TPMS and also monitoring for any unusual vibration in the rear of the coach.

We got to our campsite 3 hours late but safe and sound and the tire has not caused any vibration and has the same pressure as it's dually mate. Disconnecting the tow car at the camp site and we find the car battery is dead. Sometimes things just don't go right.

I don't know why the TPMS did not alert us with a loud alarm; it has before when towed tire pressures drop due to cold morning air.
Good Sam said since we used no parts and only needed air they will remove the CC charge. We'll see, but they did a good job on this one.
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Old 11-10-2017, 07:45 AM   #2
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You did not mention which TPMS system you have?
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Old 11-10-2017, 08:06 AM   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by timjet View Post

We got to our campsite 3 hours late but safe and sound and the tire has not caused any vibration and has the same pressure as it's dually mate. Disconnecting the tow car at the camp site and we find the car battery is dead. Sometimes things just don't go right.

I don't know why the TPMS did not alert us with a loud alarm; it has before when towed tire pressures drop due to cold morning air.
Good Sam said since we used no parts and only needed air they will remove the CC charge. We'll see, but they did a good job on this one.
Could it be that the tire had 0 psi from the start and that's why it didn't register? You did say it was good when you started though, so something is wrong.
By the way, did you use your portable lightweight jump start kit to get your toad going? They're super handy for times like that.
Happy Glamping.
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Old 11-10-2017, 08:10 AM   #4
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Does removing the TPMS sensor actually disengage the battery or do you remove the battery as well? Seems like a lot of trouble to save a few dollars in batteries that only need replaced once a year.
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Old 11-10-2017, 08:22 AM   #5
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I take the TPMS off and replace with regular caps when we are parked for long periods. I take the batteries out and store everything. Prior to reinstallation I check the voltage on each battery, check the tire pressure with a gauge and then install the sensor.

We used to have some issues with the inner duals but after replacing the extender we have had no issues.
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Old 11-10-2017, 04:05 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Polyian View Post
You did not mention which TPMS system you have?
Pressure Pro

Quote:
Originally Posted by Unplanned View Post
By the way, did you use your portable lightweight jump start kit to get your toad going? They're super handy for times like that.
Happy Glamping.
Couple of guys in our club asked me that. I should get one. Actually with the tow car behind the motorhome our jumper cables just fit and I was able to start the car. Bought a new battery the next day and all is good.

Quote:
Originally Posted by David3811 View Post
Does removing the TPMS sensor actually disengage the battery or do you remove the battery as well? Seems like a lot of trouble to save a few dollars in batteries that only need replaced once a year.
Yes, way to much trouble. I am no longer removing them. They are suppose to last about 5-7 years of continuous use. The batteries are not removable, you have to send them in to have batteries replaced.

Quote:
Originally Posted by Gordon Dewald View Post
We used to have some issues with the inner duals but after replacing the extender we have had no issues.
I think that may be my issue.
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