Posted under Car Tires

It’s the dreaded symbol of a flat tire with an exclamation point at the center, though some drivers think it resembles a lucky horseshoe with a flat bottom… and if you see it’s lit, you may feel very unlucky! It’s your tire pressure light, which could let you know there’s a problem with one or more of your tires. Sometimes referred to as the low tire pressure light, check tire light, or flat tire light, it’s the dashboard indicator for your vehicle’s Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS).

What Is the TPMS?

Mandatory for vehicles built after 2007, the TPMS is a multi-component system. Typically, sensors are inside the vehicle’s Anti-lock Brake System (ABS) or valves mounted inside the tires. Some spares come equipped with sensors, too. These valves and sensors monitor the air pressure of each tire. You can refer to your owner’s manual for more information about the TPMS for your specific vehicle. 

Why Does The Tire Pressure Light Matter?

It’s designed to let you know when there’s an unsafe change in the air pressure of one or more of your tires. When the air pressure drops, your tire is underinflated, which can lead to dangerous driving, including:

  • Increased braking distance
  • Poor traction and handling
  • Increased likelihood of flat tires and blowouts

Underinflated tires can cost you money, too:

  • Accelerated and uneven tire wear can shorten the life of your tires
  • Lower air pressure can result in poor fuel mileage

Low Tire Pressure Light On: Next Steps

So, the low tire pressure light is on. Now what? Don’t ignore it because it could be a safety issue. Here’s what you should do instead:

  • If you’re driving and the light comes on, stay calm and find a safe place to pull off the road. If you don’t have a flat, drive carefully to the nearest service station to have your tires checked.
  • If the light comes on when you start your car, inspect your tires visually before you hit the road. Then, at your earliest convenience, test the tire pressure using a tire gauge. You can usually find the tire pressure information on a placard or sticker on the driver’s side door jamb or in your owner’s manual. You can also take your vehicle to a professional and have them test your tire pressure. 

How to Reset Low Tire Pressure Light

In most cases, the tire pressure light will shut itself off when your tires are properly re-inflated. If it doesn’t turn off, check your owner’s manual for instructions on resetting it. When you bring your vehicle to a local service station to have your tires checked, the technician will handle this.

Visit Your Local Jiffy Lube for Any TPMS Light Needs

With summer comes lots of travel, so now is the perfect time to check your tire pressure and ideally, check the pressure regularly, at least once a month. After all, the tire pressure light may not come on until a 25% drop in pressure occurs. By making sure your tires are always properly inflated, you’ll:

  • Enjoy a more stable ride
  • Help avoid dangerous blowouts
  • Get better fuel efficiency

Tire care is an important part of maintaining your vehicle, and Jiffy Lube® technicians are trained in preventive maintenance. They can inspect your tires, check and adjust their pressure, and measure tread depth. They’ll also help you ensure your brakes, suspension, and steering operate “as designed.” They’ll use service and repair components that meet or exceed Original Equipment Manufacturer (OEM) specifications when repairs are needed.

NOTE: Not all services are offered at all Jiffy Lube service centers. Please call ahead or check to ensure the service is available at the Jiffy Lube location near you.