Friday, 31 October 2014

Tire Pressure Monitoring System - Third Time the Charm?

At home near Fort Worth, Texas...

During our trip outbound to Tennessee a few weeks ago, our Tire Tracker pressure monitor had a spasm and began to show tire pressure warnings that were clearly bogus, setting off the alarm when there was no problem. Changing the sensor batteries didn't help, and I refused to call the company for assistance since I had been treated poorly by them in the past. The owner's manual was very poorly written back then, so I gave them a call. I got the impression that the outfit was being run from a cranky old couple's kitchen table, as they answered the phone with "hello" instead of the name of the company, and they had been quite condescending when I started explaining the difficulties I was having--acting almost as though some dimwit had interrupted their dinner.

Now I won't deny that I may be slow at some things, but I can point to a few achievements that might indicate at least modest brain activity. However, I was obviously not able to summon enough intellectual acumen to figure out, for example, how to add more sensors and program them correctly. The instructions they gave over the phone only confused me more. So, with this background, I had a decision to make there in Tennessee: Call Ma and Pa Kettle and wake them up or toss the system. I chose the latter.

I had been quite complimentary of the Tire Tracker in a previous post, thinking that I had found a good system at a price lower than most of its competitors. And, to its credit, it gave good service for about three years. But there was still the problem with a faulty owner's manual and poor support (I never was able to add more sensors successfully). Now, with this unexplained failure, I just decided to give up.

I also might mention that this was the second tire pressure monitoring system that I have had to throw away. The first was a Pressure Pro that didn't work properly from the beginning. I didn't like the monitor, either, so it got the heave-ho without having made a single trip.

The latest system is from Truck System Technologies and, so far, I'm very pleased.

You may notice that I use this to monitor only the toad's tires. This is because Phannie's powerful engine could drag poor little Mae halfway across the country before I would know of a low or flat tire. (The toad's tires, of course, are not visible in the rearview TV monitor.)

I know quite a few RVers who don't use a monitor of any kind and, if that works for them, it's fine with me. However, this arrangement gives me an adequate comfort level for now, and I suppose I will stick with it unless something happens to change my mind in the future. Perhaps because I'm very careful about tire upkeep and replacement, I haven't had a single tire problem in almost ten years of RVing, and I hope it stays that way.

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