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Thread: Tire pressure monitoring systems - 2005 GS

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    Registered User ROBERTSI's Avatar
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    Tire pressure monitoring systems - 2005 GS

    I am looking at installing an aftermarket tire pressure monitoring system on my 2005 GS. Any recommendations???
    Last edited by deilenberger; 04-19-2013 at 05:44 AM. Reason: added year/model to title

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    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by ROBERTSI View Post
    I am looking at installing an aftermarket tire pressure monitoring system on my 2005 GS. Any recommendations???
    Seemed like TireGard had low weight sensors, battery powered readout thing, and good reviews. $139 on Amazon.
    BMWMotorcycles, fun when they're running...
    My other bike is a BMW.
    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

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    Registered User greenwald's Avatar
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    Cool

    Quote Originally Posted by ROBERTSI View Post
    I am looking at installing an aftermarket tire pressure monitoring system on my 2005 GS. Any recommendations???
    My recommendation? Don't.

    Seriously, they don't seem worth the grief - predictably, they will react on hot days when you been traveling for many hours on scorching asphalt and of course, the tire's pressure is now significantly raised.

    If you bleed off the excess air, the next morning, they will react to pressure being too low.

    Release air when over-pressured; find an air hose the next day; repeat. Much like a dog chasing its tail.

    I'd be happier if my bike did not have them. More gimmick than necessity.

    Best monitoring system is between your ears.
    Kevin Greenwald - Touring Tips Editor
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    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    I noticed on the tpm that my rear tire dropped 2 psi. Checked it that evening and found a small nail. I plugged the tire, watched the tpm and rode a thousand miles home without worry since my tire pressure was steady. I like the tpm. BTW, the BMW one does not change when the tire heats up (much). It corrects for temp and reads the cold psi.
    BMWMotorcycles, fun when they're running...
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    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

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    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenwald View Post
    Seriously, they don't seem worth the grief - predictably, they will react on hot days when you been traveling for many hours on scorching asphalt and of course, the tire's pressure is now significantly raised.
    Might depend upon the type of sensor you have. I had temperature compensated sensors in my bike for a while. It would report the pressure as if the temperature was 68 ?F. I experienced none of the too high on hot days, too low on cool days reactions that you report.

    I did have other issues, though, and no longer use them.

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    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
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    Hi Robert and welcome to the forums!

    Please take some time to read: http://www.bmwmoa.org/forum/showthread.php?46055 - I'm going to add that info to your thread title.

    As far as TPMS for your GS - the one I currently am using is excellent, but due to the design of the GS rims, I'm not certain if it can be used. And it's not readily available in the US (wish some vendor would change that..)

    It's from MobleTron: http://www.mobiletron.com.tw/b_eng_p...kindNo=S000032 I bought mine from their UK branch, but it involves some overseas phone calls, and getting it shipped via British-Post. Even so - to me it was worth it. What you'd have to determine is if the GS rim has enough drop in it to work with the internal sensor.

    As far as usability - it's great. It tells you tire pressure and temperature. The two are real-time readouts, and can be read without the need for the wheels to be turning, so I can check my pressure before I even leave the garage. That does away with chasing pressure due to temperature change. If you fill your tires to BMW's spec at room temperature (ie - 70F or about 20C) - the TPMS display will show you increasing pressure as the temperature goes up, and decreasing as the temperature goes down. Once you know what's "normal" for any temperature, you're set to to. The warning system on it is temperature compensated, so it knows that the tire changes pressure as it heats up.

    So far - mine is going on about 2 years of use, and about 24,000 miles. Still working just fine. The claimed life on the transmitters is 7 years. Love it, and it has been a great addition as far as safety.

    I just checked and cannot find the UK website, so I've sent an inquiry directly to the Taiwan manufacturer. I'll let the forum know if I receive a reply.
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

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    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by greenwald View Post
    My recommendation? Don't.

    Seriously, they don't seem worth the grief - predictably, they will react on hot days when you been traveling for many hours on scorching asphalt and of course, the tire's pressure is now significantly raised.

    If you bleed off the excess air, the next morning, they will react to pressure being too low.

    Release air when over-pressured; find an air hose the next day; repeat. Much like a dog chasing its tail.

    I'd be happier if my bike did not have them. More gimmick than necessity.

    Best monitoring system is between your ears.
    Sorry Kevin,

    I absolutely disagree. And I've been using TPMS for about 5 years now. Almost all that I've seen are either temperature compensated (to show what the pressure would be if the tire air was at 70F) or displays both pressure and temperature. It requires no brain power at all to learn what's "normal" at different tire temps. I have never adjusted the air pressure due to temperature changes - that's counter to what the motorcycle manufacturer says to do. If you read your BMW owners manual they VERY specifically tell you to set the pressure at 70F (20C) - and on the bikes they sell with their own compensated TPMS - they explain how it "normalizes" the readout so it reads what the pressure would be if the tire is at 70F.

    I've luckily been bright enough to figure this out - and I suspect the majority of BMW riders could too (I'm not a rocket scientist, nor brain surgeon.) So far among my riding companions who have put TPMS's on their bikes, I know of NONE that regret it, or would want to do without it. You may be an outlier in not liking yours. If you're chasing pressure due to temperature changes, you're not using the TPMS correctly. You do not want to bleed off pressure or add pressure due to temperature changes - that temperature change happens if you have a TPMS or not, so do you do it without a TPMS? No? Then why do it with one?

    Best,
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

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    Its rare that I disagree with Don but this time I'm with Kevin. My reasons are perhaps a bit different.

    First, a tpms has no ability to warn ahead about a major tire failure- a large hole with instant pressure loss.For me. that's the only type that I'd consider possibly hazardous.

    Second, a slow leak or small puncture of the type a tpms could warn of is readily detected by simply paying attention to the feel of your bike. If you're good at this (I am) you can readily detect a 4 lb air loss when not in a straight line though for many it might take a 15 lb loss. Even then you're in essentially no danger, a tire won't be in any danger of peeling off a rim until its pressure is almost entirely gone- somewhere around 8 lbs is the value often given. Sure, handling will be impacted some with a 15 lb loss but really, if that terrifies you, it would be wise to quit riding before you get hurt- your skills aren't sufficient..

    Some use the argument that it might find a leaking tire repair but why care about that? If you survived that slow leak the first time, you will the second time also. Not a big deal. Anyway, I've used string plugs on race tires in a pinch with no problems and they operate at temps way above street use- definitely eould not recommend this practice to anyone else- it is in the red zone....

    Although I'm certain Don doesn't, the evidence, from cages is irrefutable- people use these systems mostly to avoid ever getting out a tire gauge or air pump, instead waiting for their electronic nanny to remind them. These days it is normal for any rental car one gets to show a tpms warning- I always ignore them knowing that the tire will stay on and hoping I can actually mamge to damge it a bit (so far, no luck) to remind the rental guys to actually service their junk..

    The BMW system is expensive to maintain.

    Aftermarket systems generally put a weight (sensor) on the wheel stem when rubber wheel stems already fail at an alarmingly high rate- many now are Chinese made crap. ALL rubber stems should be replaced with metal stems for reliabilty, especially if you want to attach a sensor..

    If you want best tire life, handling, and safety, check your tires regularly and inspect around your wheels for other stuff like frayed sensor lines, etc. Every 2 weeks is a safe practical interval but at least once a week is better- bike tires have small internal volume and need more frequent checking than a cage

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    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
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    Racer7 - many of the arguments you make against the TPMS are in my mind - arguments for it.

    People don't check their tire pressure near enough, but that's true TPMS or not. At least with the TPMS, the tire pressure is staring at me every time I start the bike. It requires no user intervention to make it display, when I start the bike it turns on and displays the pressure and temperature. Every time. It's mounted where it is in my line of sight, so I get to see it while I'm riding. If for no other reason, it's valuable to have when riding in temps below 40F - to know when the tires have built up at least a bit of heat in them and I can enjoy some cornering.

    I've noticed something from when I didn't have TPMS systems. When I didn't it seemed I always was 1-2 PSI low on my tires when I checked them (which was probably about weekly.) Why? Well - the reason became apparent once I got a TPMS system - you lose 1-2 PSI by the act of checking the tire pressure. Since my TPMS system is on when I'm checking the pressure, it's really obvious. It may vary a bit with the design of your gauge, or the valve stem (I use a bourden-tube gage - dial.. and my stems are both metal.) The late model hexhead with cast rims - the rear filler is offset. Seems a good idea, but actually makes it a bit harder to get a tire pressure gage straight and leakfree on the stem, meaning a 2 PSI loss caused by checking the pressure is pretty common.

    Noticing a slow leak may be easy for you - but there have been times when it felt like I had a rear tire going down, and it turns out - it was road surface giving a soft wiggling feeling to the rear. A quick glance at my TPMS showed me my tires were fine.

    The one fast deflation I had - which was at about 70 MPH on the NJ Turnpike (not a place to have this happen) was what convinced me I wanted a TPMS system. One would have avoided the excitement which I didn't need. I'd pulled into a rest area to adjust something on my riding gear, and pulled over to the side to be out of the way of the large tractor-trailers lurching around the rest area. After I adjusted whatever it was, I started pulling out of the rest area. A truck merge lane came into the exit lane just as you start to enter the Turnpike, and a truck pulled in behind me. I accelerated as briskly as a K75S was capable of and got up to speed on the main road. Within about a minute the rear end started the soft side-to-side swing that is a sign of a rear tire failure, and I was somehow able to move from the center lane to the breakdown lane without being run over by trucks. Long story short - there was a large puncture in my tire - that was undoubtedly caused by something getting into the tire while I was in the rest area. The leak turned from a slow leak to a very fast leak in the matter of about 1 minute. There was no warning - but there would have been if I'd had a TPMS. Close enough for me to look into getting one.

    The ones I use are mounted IN the tire - just like your car ones. Some are part of the valve stem, some are held in with a long hose-clamp type band that goes around the ID of the rim in the drop center. In no case do I use ones that attach to a valve stem. I don't like those systems and would not recommend them. Besides adding weight to the valve stem (not desirable as you point out), they also depress the Schrader valve, removing one level of protection from deflating. Some of them lock onto the stem with small setscrews - making them a PITA to remove to adjust the pressure. I'd only suggest a system that uses internal sensors.

    I think you also have to consider you're the only member I know on the MOA forum with a username that includes "Racer".. which I assume implies that you DO race. Your skill level is undoubtedly higher than most of us mortals..

    I'll continue using, and recommending TPMS systems, and as I noted - the people in my local club (and it's about a dozen now) who have a TPMS system do not want to be without one. Sorta "ask the man who owns one.."

    I believe the OP's question wasn't IF he should install one - he was looking for recommendations on which one to install. I'd highly recommend the MobileTron system if it can be obtained (which may be a problem since it appears the UK office has been closed.) I'm waiting to hear back from the main office in Taiwan.
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

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    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    Reasons!

    I vote no on'em too. Another gadget! Wonder how we ever rode without'em all these years and still survived? I think they are a neat sales item, candy to the buyer of sorts. My Daughters new F700GS has the BMW TPS. Yes, a slow leak will get determined in advance. My stick tire pressure gauge is mounted on my GSA windscreen frame in plain sight, to remind me my precheck list includes tires. TOO MANY don't use'em because its a hassle to find the gauge, dig it out of luggage. It should be as your ignition keys, never far from USE! As a Pilot, my airplanes do not even have TPS. I compare frequently my "bikes and airplanes" to similar preflight checklists. What you "miss" will kill you. A TPS comes on most cars and a ton of bikes now, but I am not certain anybody that never had the mind to use a tire gauge is ever going to keep track of the TPS either??? Randy

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    K Bikes Complex by Choice cjack's Avatar
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    Silly. TPS is better than no TPS. If you want to check tire pressure with a stick, great. I don't. Some of my ham radio friends still use dial phones...and complain bitterly when they need to press 1 for English
    BMWMotorcycles, fun when they're running...
    My other bike is a BMW.
    Jack Hawley MOA and RA #224, KE9UW ("Chuck")

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    A bozo on the bus deilenberger's Avatar
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    Randy,

    Just wondering - do the airplanes you fly have an altimeter? Seems a useless item to me, after all you can watch out the window to see what height you're at right? Or drag a rock on a string. Put knots in the string every yard apart, just like on boats. New fangled planes - put this sorta stuff on them and anyone can fly'm.

    Almost as bad as putting that thing called an "electric starter" (that Kettering guy invented it) on auto-mobiles.. next thing you know women folk will be driving them, and you know how that will go.

    Tongue firmly in cheek,
    Don Eilenberger http://www.eilenberger.net
    Spring Lk Heights NJ NJ Shore BMW Riders New Sweden BMW Riders
    '07 R1200R (current ride) and some bimmers.. and a Porsche

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    Registered User websterize's Avatar
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    The OEM TPMS brings me peace of mind, especially while under way, when the rear tire suddenly feels squirrely. My biggest complaint with the set up is that you have to replace the entire unit when the battery dies, according to a tech at the local dealership, or about $200. Coming up five years this September since the build date, and so far, so good with the TPMS.

    They also make an outstanding electronic tire-pressure gauge I use on my TDI -- 82121467187, ~$20
    Bill Webster
    2013 K 1600 GT
    2009 R 1200 R alumnus

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    Polarbear Polarbear's Avatar
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    I know:)

    Figured as much, LOL. I know many many of us are old timers and the question came out, did we ride safe before all this farkle mania struck m/c'ism? I wonder. My stick stainless pencil gauge is not a cheap item either. I got a good one, high end model from NAPA.. Always works, probably checking my air as quick as technology quick TPS on BC. I like new fangled toys on bikes, just I want the choice to NOT pay for it. My 10$ stick gauge vs. a 250$+ factory thingy in wheel? I get more exercise bending down there checking air, a PLUS. I'll probably live to see a bike you just sit, enjoy the day, no input at all! 42 years a Pilot, still know where the ground is. We have fun, I laugh with you, not in harm. You should see my pals getting lost trying to read GPSs giving poor advice....every time out! They too must have TPS. The adventure begins, not the opposite. I LIKE hands on wrenching and the like with my bikes. Tire pressure, I'll be real happy with my stick gauge, thx....Randy PS; My Daughters new F700GS has the TPS and all else and I AM happy for her.

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    Cam Killer marchyman's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cjack View Post
    Silly. TPS is better than no TPS.
    A TPS that lies is worse than no TPS. A TPS that you can not adjust for lowered off road pressure when GSing is a TPS that lies. It is what I don't like about the BMW TPS system. Other systems have an easily changed set point.

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