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AirAware Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)

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  • AirAware Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS)



    Most 4wders would be aware of one of the most important assets on your 4wd are your tyres. We tend to be particular with brands and more importantly what pressure we should run in them within the different scenarios we find ourselves . Tyre pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) have come a long way over recent years and due to the fiasco with the Firestone tyre separaration on the Ford Explorer in the USA it will be mandantory from 2008 on all US vehicle to have tyre monitors fitted.
    I have over the last month been testing the AirAware TPMS system supplied by Repco and find these to be invaluable for keeping an eye on what exactly your tyres are doing whilst you are driving at speed or at low speed and low pressure.

    Its a very simple system really with 4 snap in valve stems with sensors on them and a little control box with lcd readout that can be stuck on anywhere with the supplied velcro strips. Of course you either need to be proficient with replacing valves and reseating tyres yourself or do what I did and got a professional tyre fitter to fit them for the cost of around $80.00 . The claims are that the batteries in the sensor once fitted to the tyres will last five years and I suppose time will tell on that one.
    Once you have the sensors in the tyres fitted it is a simple process of setting up the in car unit by actually letting air out of each individual tyre for the I D Learn to react to each tyre. The other main setting on the in car unit is what tyre pressure you want to set them to before the audible alarm lets you know your tyre has gone down to that pressure or lower. For my test I had them set on 30psi for the alarm set whilst running 38psi in Cooper STT tyres.
    One more quick selection for tyre temperature sees all the setting done and I had these set at 40c.
    So how do you simulate a leaking tyre, well thank god for Stauns. Finding a back country road I fitted a Staun to one of my rear tyres (set for 23 psi) and drove slowly along the road and bingo right at 29psi one alarm with flashing light on the console . The other three tyres were tested in the same way and resulted in alarm at 29 28 and 30 psi.
    Testing for overheating of the tyres had me stumped for a while until I accidently did the test wthout realising. Remembering having set the tyre temp alarm to 40c I could have dropped the alarm setting to say 25c to make it an easy test but it seems I like to forget to take my handbrake off and seeing that my handbrake light is permantly on for reasons I haven’t explored yet I did not notice that I had driven the 4 klms from my sisters place to home with the handbrake on. You sort of find that out when you park in your driveway and find the hanbrake in place and 30 seconds later the alarm going off . Yep that alarm works fine!
    The in car unit runs on 2 AA batteries and one great asset with it is that if it senses no movement or vibration of the vehicle it will turn itself off after five minutes. One other good thing about these units is that you can grab the in car unit and bring it outside whilst pumping your tyres up and actually watch the pressure go up to whatever you run your tyres at, and they are very accurate.
    In summing up these units are brilliant. They would have to be an absolute must for the desert driver or for any situation really. You have spent the money on good tyres, now add the insurance with the monitors.
    Costs.....reccomended retail is around $380.00, add another $80.00 to fit the monitors in the tyres and your in business.
    Where do you get them.....only from REPCO.
    Dave Howard
    Technical Officer
    Pajero 4WD Club of Vic













    Copyright Pajero Club of Victoria
    NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
    Member 1228 Pajero Club

  • #2
    Dave,

    Nice report. Do you think it would be possible to use this with two sets of tyres? I sent an email off to Repco a few weeks ago however unfortunately I've not received a reply.

    Cheers,
    Mike
    Retired - 2001 NM Exceed V6, 2" Lovell/Bilstein Lift, Wildcat Headers and Custom 2.5" Lukey Ultra Flo System, Milford barrier, Cooper HTs and GY MT/Rs, TJM sump and transmission bashplates

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    • #3
      Originally posted by Endorphin View Post
      Dave,

      Do you think it would be possible to use this with two sets of tyres?
      ,
      Mike
      I don't see why not Mike. But in that sense you would have to buy two units.
      This unit has the capacity to monitor a spare as well but that's as far as it goes. So a total of five tyres per unit. There are other units by other manufacturers that can monitor 8 tyres or more but have read not so good reports on those and some even have to have external arials fitted.
      I have had these on for over two months now and they have performed exactly as they claim.
      Dave
      NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
      Member 1228 Pajero Club

      Comment


      • #4
        Thanks Dave.
        Retired - 2001 NM Exceed V6, 2" Lovell/Bilstein Lift, Wildcat Headers and Custom 2.5" Lukey Ultra Flo System, Milford barrier, Cooper HTs and GY MT/Rs, TJM sump and transmission bashplates

        Comment


        • #5
          Great report Dave. Hopefully they are on the money withbattery life. Any idea if the batteries in the sensors can be replaced?
          Last edited by Eastie; 17-09-07, 11:17 PM.
          NS oil burner shorty

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          • #6
            Well I am sure they can be Eastie, looking through all the documents I have on them there is nothing said about battery size or replacement. Just a mention of 5 years battery life under normal use. But hey what can't you get a battery for nowadays.
            Dave
            NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
            Member 1228 Pajero Club

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            • #7
              Looks like a great idea.

              Does it pose any problems with balancing the wheels?
              -------------
              2002 100 Series to suit the growing family

              SOLD: 2007 NS DiD SWB - great little car

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              • #8
                Originally posted by Daniel Fo View Post
                Looks like a great idea.

                Does it pose any problems with balancing the wheels?
                No not at all Daniel.
                Dave
                NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
                Member 1228 Pajero Club

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                • #9
                  Just had these fitted and they are pretty good. Just a note though, the manufacturer does not recommend them for trailers.
                  NS oil burner shorty

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                  • #10
                    are the batterys in the lcd screen lasting ok? is there anyway that you could hard wire the monitor in for convience

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                    • #11
                      My second set have just crapped out while I was in Adelaide this week. So two AA batteries for roughly two months. Then again I suppose it depends on how often you use the vehicle as they go into sleep mode when the car is stationary for a period. You can hard wire it but you would have to have a regulator of sorts.....put it this way , I think 12-14.6 volts might be a bit to much juice for it.
                      Dave
                      NX Pampas Cat GLS MY16
                      Member 1228 Pajero Club

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                      • #12
                        Still on the first set of duracells
                        NS oil burner shorty

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                        • #13
                          What I have noticed is that the unit rattles a bit on dirt roads. It seems to be the hard moulded buttons against the casing.
                          Also, it can take them a while to register a pressure change when stationary, so you can't rely on it to give an instant reading while deflating or inflating. All of the alarm features work well which is primarily what I've got them for - however it would have been usefull if they gave an instant reading.
                          NS oil burner shorty

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                          • #14
                            So what happens if you lower your pressure for some beach work? The alarm is going to be going crazy, so you have to reprogram the alarm levels, or just turn off the unit

                            or can you set 2 pressure levels and switch between them?

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                            • #15
                              You can set it low, but from memory not low enough (mid 20's PSI) so I just remove the batteries. I've never had to re-learn it when putting the batteries back in. I ran the coopers at 40psi and dropped them to 30 offroad and the alarm would go off after the first cold night sitting still, but it's pretty simple to adjust the limits.
                              NS oil burner shorty

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