Annual Required Maintenance
A TPMS is not a “maintenance-free” device. As the TireMinder® transmitters are an exterior electronic device, the following maintenance needs to be performed annually:
- Change the CR1632 batteries. This should happen at least every 9 to 14 months (regardless of time spent using the system).
- When changing the batteries, also change the O-rings.
- Make sure each cap is free from any cracks.
- Make sure each battery bracket is intact and free from any corrosion.
- Once you have changed each battery and O-ring, confirmed each cap is free from cracks, and the battery brackets are intact and free from corrosion, confirm your system is ready for travel by using “Auto-Search” (see Pages 29 & 30).
Broken Transmitter Battery Bracket - Keep The Transmitter Away From The Tire Rim
When placing the transmitter on the valve stem, it is important to consider the proximity of the transmitter to the tire rim. If the transmitter is placed in a position where it can freely hit or vibrate against the tire rim, the battery bracket will eventually fail. If the transmitter is too close to the tire rim, it is recommended that the direction of the valve stem be changed. It is advised to contact a tire specialist to change the angle or direction of a valve stem.
Can The Transmitter Be Submerged In Water?
Yes, the TireMinder® transmitters can be submerged in up to 3 ft (1 meter) of water for up to 30 minutes. This should leave plenty of time to launch a boat in fresh, salt or brackish water. Please note, the transmitter must be securely screwed, hand tightened, onto the valve stem to be submerged in water. Submerging the air intake valve of the transmitter can lead to transmitter failure. If for any reason the air intake valve of the transmitter is submerged in water, remove the battery and allow up to 24 hours for the transmitter to dry.
Do Not Use In A Car Wash
Prior to going through a car wash, it is important that your transmitters be removed from the valve stems. Failure to remove the transmitters from the valve stems can result in transmitter, valve stem, and/or tire failure. See “Storing Your TireMinder® TPMS” (Page 40) for storage tips.
Storing Your TireMinder® TPMS
If you are storing your RV and you are in an area that is susceptible to snow, frost, or extreme heat, it is best to store your TireMinder® system indoors in a moderate climate (40°- 85°F / 4°- 26°C).
The most important consideration when storing your system is to make sure each transmitter is returned to the same position it was removed from (e.g. the transmitter that came off the passenger front tire goes back on the passenger front; the driver’s rear tire goes back on the driver’s rear). We recommend marking the caps of your transmitters to easily identify where the transmitters originated from prior to putting the system into storage.
When you are ready to travel again, and you marked or identified your transmitters, use the following directions to install your transmitters:
- Turn on your TireMinder® A1A monitor.
- Place the transmitters on your RV in their original positions.
- Confirm that your system is ready for travel by using “Auto-Search” (see pages 29 & 30).
Aluminum Valve Stems & Galvanic Corrosion
Please note Minder Research makes two types of transmitters, the TM-2BRASS and the TM-2ALUM. The basic kits come with either 4 or 6 of the TM-Brass type transmitters. These will fit ALL Motorhomes (Class A, B or C), ALL 5th wheel trailers and ALL towables. If your RV has aluminum wheels (e.g. Alcoa) the valve stem will be brass with nickel plating.
All towed vehicles, manufactured from 2007 or newer with a built in TPMS, will have either rubber (brass) or metal (aluminum) valve stems. If you have a rubber valve stem, you will need brass transmitters. If you have a metal valve stem, you will need aluminum transmitters.
Older towed vehicles will almost 99% use the brass valve stem, unless an aftermarket aluminum valve stem was installed.
If you have any questions, please give us a call (we really don’t mind).
If you have purchased or received the wrong type, simply contact Minder Research and we will arrange to exchange them at no charge.
These could be considered the “necessary evil” many RVers can’t live without. If you are installing new valve extenders, we highly recommend the solid steel type (rather than the flexible mesh or rubber type). If you are mounting TireMinder® transmitters to a valve extender, you must test for leakage using the latest high tech technique. It’s commonly called the “soapy water test”.
- First attach the transmitter to the extender.
- Second, using a highly concentrated mix (more soap than water), soak the transmitter end as well the end attached to the original valve stem. If the extenders are the flexible type, soak them along their entire length (not just the two ends).
- Hopefully we do not need to tell you what you are looking for.
From experience, when users call or write complaining their TireMinder® transmitter is leaking, it invariably turns out the problem is with their valve extenders. It should be understood that most valve extenders (especially the flexible ones) are not pressurized until a gauge is pressed against the open end of the valve. They are then only pressurized for a few seconds (long enough to take a reading on the gauge).
When a TireMinder® transmitter is attached, the entire length of the extender becomes permanently pressurized (until it is removed). This is when a leak would appear. So, please check carefully.
Accuracy Of Pressure Gauges & TPMS
No reasonably priced pressure gauge is going to be 100% accurate. Likewise, No TPMS is going to be 100% accurate. What’s important is that they are reasonably close and relatively consistent. You engineers and pilots probably have steam coming out of your ears after that last sentence!!
Maybe this will help.….
- The TireMinder® transmitters are accurate to ± 3%.
- TireMinder® brand pressure gauges (mechanical or digital) are among the most accurate on the market at ± two PSI.
So, if you are running 100 PSI in your tires, you could have a gauge reading 2 PSI high and a TPMS transmitter reading 3 PSI low leaving a difference of 5 PSI. This is not uncommon and is considered totally acceptable. We have had calls from customers doing their initial installation saying all 8 or 10 TireMinder® transmitters are reading 9 to 11 pounds low. Can you guess what the problem is? What is important to understand is that the TireMinder® TM-A1A (and any other brand, for that matter) is designed to warn you of changes. For example, it really does not care whether it starts at 97 PSI or 108 PSI. It is the changes and deviations from the baselines you need to know about.
So, please look at “the big picture”. You may use your trusty pressure gauge as the “standard” or you can use the TPMS as the standard. The important point is that they are all relatively consistent.
Checking Tire Pressures & Temperatures
The TireMinder® TM-A1A™ TPMS will constantly monitor all tires which have been programmed. If you wish to check each tire pressure and temperature, press either a RIGHT BUTTON OR LEFT BUTTON while in the “M” mode.
The tire position will be displayed along with its exact pressure. Press again and that tire’s temperature appears. Press again to scroll to the next tire. If a tire position shows “no5 (S)”, it tells you that communication has been lost between that transmitter and the monitor. This needs to be addressed ASAP (See pages 38 & 39).
System Expansion (Adding A Towed Vehicle At A Later Date)
So, you’ve had the A1A™ installed for two trips and love it. Now you want to add four more transmitters for your towed vehicle.
- Method A: Install the new transmitters following the directions at the very beginning of this book (Learn mode “L” and Pressure Setting mode “P”). Follow these instructions and you’ll have the new transmitters installed in no time.
- Method B: Delete all the original tire positions and start over (See Full Delete see pages 31 & 32).
- Method C: Call a Minder TPMS specialist who will be happy to walk you through it.
This would be a good time to remove all transmitters and check the batteries (3.0V or higher), check the O-rings and the black protective caps for damage.
CR1632 Lithium Battery Installation
Look at the illustration below. Note that the battery slides under the aluminum “bridge,” "clip," or “bracket." Do not place it on top. Be sure the plus (+) side is up. Incorrect insertion will burn out the circuit or break the solder connection.
The cover should only be finger tight (snug) so as to remain waterproof. Please, do not use pliers or a pipe wrench. Over tightening will damage the O-ring.
Transmitter O-rings will also need to be replaced at some point. Their life varies greatly depending mostly on climate conditions. If you are not sure of their condition, consider changing them annually when you replace your batteries. Contact Minder Research on our website or by phone to order. We can replace them at minimal expense. Please do not try to find them at Home Depot or Lowe's. They will cost you more and will not be the right size. We know, because we've tried.
The TireMinder® caps are a crucial piece of the transmitter. The cap, along with the O-rings, keeps the transmitter away from any weather and environmental damage. Like the O-Ring, their life depends mostly on climate conditions. The caps should be checked frequently. If one becomes broken or cracked, it should be replaced as soon as possible. Remember, caps are significantly cheaper than replacing a whole transmitter!
Quite frankly, this is not something you should be watching constantly. If there is a problem the unit will beep and the red light will flash. Therefore place it somewhere within your peripheral vision.
- Try to keep the monitor away from other major electronics. We know this is not easy given how high-tech most of you RVers have become.
- Many of our Class A users have found the windshield is too far away to use the window mounting bracket.
- Most end up using Velcro and sticking it beside their left knee (away from the dash and GPS).
- For 5th wheelers, we recommend mounting it in the bracket on the rear window (assumes you have an extended cab type truck). You will see it in the rear view mirror and if the red light flashes, your peripheral vision will pick it up instantly. This will get it away from the electronics in the dash and closer to the rear wheels at the same time.
Whenever you are checking your tire pressures with a normal gauge (removing the TireMinder® transmitter) be sure the monitor is always turned on.
Transmitter & Friction
Do not let the transmitter rub against the wheels. Once a transmitter is mounted on the valve stem, be sure it does not touch any solid portion of the wheel or hub cap. This can cause the friction from constantly rubbing up against the wheel, damaging the transmitter.
Once a transmitter is learned to a specific wheel location, they are dedicated to that position. Mark and remove your transmitters before a tire rotation. That way, they can be easily put back on. If your A1A seems to be acting strange after a tire rotation, start over. See “Start Over” (Pages 31 & 32)