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  1. #1
    Sr. Apprentice
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    Default Wheel Leaking Air? 2010 GMC Sierra

    I bought my 2010 GMC last August and it came with some generic tires that the dealer installed new apparently. I noticed that one of the tires seemed to have a small leak, losing about 5 PSI per week, give or take. I figured it was the cheapo tires, and when winter rolled around and they became ice skates, I had had enough. So I replaced the no name tires with some Michelin LTX MS2 tires which seem to do a lot better in the snow.

    But now a week or two later, I am noticing that one of the tires is low again. I got the tires at Costco and they replaced the valve stems, so I don't think that is the source of the leak. I don't see any obvious dings in the rim near the bead. I'm baffled.

    Can a TPS sensor leak air?
    Alan

    2010 GMC Sierra SLT
    2007 Chevy Suburban LTZ 4WD, aka BB

  2. #2
    Jr. Engineer Jamm3r's Avatar
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    Default

    No substitute for putting the tire and wheel assembly underwater and watching for bubbles, although soapy water in a spray bottle will work too

    The TPMS sensor and the valve stem are an integrated component so if there are no bubbles from the valve stem, your troubles are elsewhere.

    In the vast majority of cases like this it's a bead leak due to rim corrosion. A careful tire shop will buff the beads on used aluminum rims before mounting.
    Minneapolis area - 1997 K2500 regular cab long bed + 8.5' Western Unimount plow + modified transmission + 2nd battery + modified camper charge circuit + 1971 Cayo camper -and- 2004 4x4 Suburban 2500 8.1 + Maxbrake controller + 2nd battery + modified trailer charge circuit + Reese receiver, pulls 30' Airstream trailer

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  4. #3

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    Much like Jamm3r said, there are several possible leaks that are not the tire itself:

    1) the vale, either a regular or TMPS valve can leak if not installed/tightened properly.
    2) the rim of the wheel where the wheels meets the tire bead - if you have "chrome" wheels, the chrome can corrode and peel and cause a leak at the bead.
    3) a cracked wheel, if it's not either of the 2 above, then a cracked wheel is probably the culprit.

    Again, like Jamm3r said, dunking the whole wheel/tire assembly under some water is the best way to find the leak.

    1) leaking valves can be fixed easily by tightening the valve core of the whole TPMS stem itself.
    2) peeling chrome can fixed by taking the tire off and putting a wire brush to the peeling area.
    3) cracked wheels can be fixed but for the price, just get a new wheel.
    Clint (TX) 2001 Silverado LS 4.8L auto 2wd ECSB [GARAGE]
    Gasoline or gunpowder: If you ain't burning one, you ain't having fun!
    NRA Endowment Member 5 24 48 88 - Hendrick Motorsports FTW!

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  6. #4
    Legend

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    everett, massachusetts
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    I disagree with the other reply's on how to find these leaks... with the tire on the vehicle you get a spray bottle..add some dish soap with water added to it , and spray down the tire and the rim...these rim can have casting holes...if you find the rim is with a hole clean out the hole and apply some metal mender. take out the valve out of the valve stem so no pressure in the tire will damage the epoxy ...

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  8. #5
    Sr. Apprentice
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    Default

    I tried the soapy water method Jamm3r and j cat mentioned and voila, the leak is coming from the valve stem area. I'm certain they replaced the stem when they replaced the tires, so I guess that points the finger at the TPMS sensor, or perhaps a crack in that area.

    Thanks for all the help!

  9. #6
    Jr. Engineer
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    Oct 2013
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    weedsport, NY
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    ,,,,or it could just be the valve stem! Take it back to Costco, I'm sure they will fix you right up!!!!They are a tire place, they should be able to handle it!

  10. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by Alan Crosby View Post
    I tried the soapy water method Jamm3r and j cat mentioned and voila, the leak is coming from the valve stem area. I'm certain they replaced the stem when they replaced the tires, so I guess that points the finger at the TPMS sensor, or perhaps a crack in that area.

    Thanks for all the help!
    Do you have some small, deep sockets? There is a "nut" at the base of the the stem that screws on and tightens/holds the whole TPMS/valve stem unit in place. Try tightening that and see if it fixes it. Just don't over-tighten it as it is only plastic and will crack and then leak more.

  11. #8
    Sr. Engineer Dana W's Avatar
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    Default

    The valve stem is subject to the same corrosion and trash issues as the bead area. They should clean the hole out for the new stem, but most tire jockeys just jamb a new one in the dirty hole with a little lube.

  12. #9
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    Quote Originally Posted by Dana W View Post
    The valve stem is subject to the same corrosion and trash issues as the bead area. They should clean the hole out for the new stem, but most tire jockeys just jamb a new one in the dirty hole with a little lube.
    they are for the most part sloppy workers... with these sensors being so expensive I do not want these on my vehicle..

  13. #10
    Sr. Engineer Dana W's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by j cat View Post
    they are for the most part sloppy workers... with these sensors being so expensive I do not want these on my vehicle..
    Yeah, I know what you mean. I have a grand plus worth of Eagle Chrome wheels, and a little more than that in tires on my truck. I stand right behind the tire monkey with a BFH in my hand and watch every move he makes.

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