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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
3-part topic - hopefully short because there's a gadzillion replies to the other threads and wading through them all has left me dazed and confused.

Part the first:
Is it worth the hassle of getting a second set of TPMS sensors for my winter wheels and getting the car reprogrammed to see them? I can live with the light on the dash for three months but if that light means I can't turn off the VSA, that's a different problem entirely.

Part the second:
Where do you get Honda TPMS sensors? H&A don't seem to do them (which is odd because I could swear they did at one point). According to hondatpms.com I need TRW 42753-SNA-A83 for my 2009 Element. eBay is awash with "deals" but they all seem a bit dodgy.

Part the third:
Because none of the previous topics seem to agree - can a national chain reprogram my ECU to the new sensors or not? I don't want to pay dealer prices if I don't have to but equally I don't want to go to a chain and have them give me some **** and bull story about needing a "special" tool that they either don't have, or want to charge me extra for.
 

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You should be able to get TPMS from dealer for around $30 each, like here.

If you are looking for it in the part list, should be "Chassis/Wheel Disk (KA)/26"

 

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Good thread chrisell. I too am interested in the issues you raise, particularly the ability of third party garages to program the sensors. I HATE the idea of having to pay for this twice a year when swapping wheels.

The frigging TPMS will stop me from buying a new car until these issues are sorted out.
 

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If I could afford a second set of winter tires I wouldn't spring for the extra to use the sensors. Besides, the TPMS seems to malfunction often during the really cold days. It's the only time I've ever seen the light come on.


I got into the habit of doing a visual inspection of my tires every morning. I still do that even though I have the computer to tell me.

Seems like overkill to me. JMO.
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
FYI I did some snooping today after posting my initial question.
My local Honda dealer will fit the sensors to my winter wheels and register them with the car for about $170. That's taking the snow tyres off the rims, fitting the sensors, putting the snow tyres back on, balancing the wheels and then registering the sensors.

Come spring they said it's about $45 to re-register the summer wheels if I bring the car in with them already on. Which I can do at home.

That's tolerable.
 

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Never mind. Mis read what you wrote. Thought you were using the same rims but just changing tires from summer to winter and then back.
 

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they're not unmounting or rebalancing them.... sneaky sneaky, pinch the bead on the machine, rip out the gumby stems, sneak the sensors in, and fill em back up with air. ask me how i know ;) this is how i rebuild a tpms stem that's leaking or frozen and needs replacing usually. time is money unless it needs to be unmounted and the bead cleaned, i judge once i see what's inside on the rim surface.
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 · (Edited)
they're not unmounting or rebalancing them.... sneaky sneaky, pinch the bead on the machine, rip out the gumby stems, sneak the sensors in, and fill em back up with air. ask me how i know ;) this is how i rebuild a tpms stem that's leaking or frozen and needs replacing usually. time is money unless it needs to be unmounted and the bead cleaned, i judge once i see what's inside on the rim surface.
Oh - sneaky. Didn't think of that. Well - if it gets the sensors in there .....
 

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they're not unmounting or rebalancing them.... sneaky sneaky, pinch the bead on the machine, rip out the gumby stems, sneak the sensors in, and fill em back up with air. ask me how i know ;) this is how i rebuild a tpms stem that's leaking or frozen and needs replacing usually. time is money unless it needs to be unmounted and the bead cleaned, i judge once i see what's inside on the rim surface.
But, since the TPMS sensors are not weightless wouldn't a rebalance be required?
 

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TPMS tool information

Here's some good information on the Honda TPMS system from Bartec a leading TPMS tool manufacter.

http://www.hondatpms.com/

As every new car is coming with TPMS most reliable tire shops are forced to have these tools.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
Followup : I've ordered 4 TPMS units from www.hondapartsnow.com. Total cost with shipping was $131. (My local dealer wanted $47+tax per unit).

I'll keep this thread updated as things progress.
 

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Part the first:
I can live with the light on the dash for three months but if that light means I can't turn off the VSA, that's a different problem entirely.
Do we know that is what happens? I thought VSA turns off in certain situations. I'm not sure which but I thought TPMS absence was one of them. I can understand why you'd want it off as it really only helps if your goal is to stop.
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
Do we know that is what happens? I thought VSA turns off in certain situations. I'm not sure which but I thought TPMS absence was one of them. I can understand why you'd want it off as it really only helps if your goal is to stop.
VSA only helps if you want to go - ABS helps if you want to stop. Ideally I'd be able to turn both off for snow driving but Honda says no.
I suspect they don't want VSA to work if there's any chance of a tyre being dead. :?:
 

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VSA only helps if you want to go - ABS helps if you want to stop. Ideally I'd be able to turn both off for snow driving but Honda says no.
I suspect they don't want VSA to work if there's any chance of a tyre being dead. :?:
Right but, VSA does it's thing by slowing the car down. The end goal seems to be to bring an out of control vehicle to a stop. For example, the other week it was raining pretty heavily, I was going down the highway and hit some puddles. Engine seemed to drop RPMs, I glanced at the dash to make sure nothing was wrong and saw the VSA light blinking. I can now see why so many people say the Goodyears suck :) .
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
Right but, VSA does it's thing by slowing the car down.
Not so much that it's trying to slow you down - it's trying to prevent wheelspin by interrupting the engine timing, throttle response and/or transmission. (Which as a side effect makes you slow down). In your case I suspect one tyre began to aquaplane and the system sensed one wheel spinning much quicker and the VSA kicked in to bring everything back to "normal".
That's why I need to turn it off in the winter. Pulling out across storm-drain-sized gutters at intersections in the snow will result in one wheel spinning as it loses traction. VSA will neuter the engine output and I'll be left with no drive.
 

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What's the range on these things? I like the idea of stuffing all 4 in a wheelbarrow tire or something small like that, pumping that tire up to 35 psi and just stow that somewhere in the car.

Hell, if there was a way to get a really small container you can fit into your glove box to hold the sensors and the 35 psi, that'd be awesome!!!
 
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