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Discussion Starter #1
I read previous posts and will describe my situation.
Just purchased a 2005 RAV4 L. The owner took care of it and it was serviced by the dealer. He described pretty much everything honestly. Mentioned that the TPMS light was pretty much always on.
Sure enough, I cleared it and it came back.
I am getting new tires soon but my question is this...
He took it to the dealer and several times they "cleared" and reset it.

Is this something I just have to live with and reset, as needed, or can it be fixed? While I am getting the new tires should I replace the sensors? If so, what am I looking at in terms of price?

Thanks in advance.
 

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After reading the owners manual for the 2005 RAV4, I don't think your RAV has sensors mounted in the valve stems of each tire. Correct me if I am wrong.

I believe your RAV uses an "indirect" TPMS system. Your RAV uses the ABS wheel-speed sensors to determine if a a tire is turning at a different speed than the other tires. A tire that is low in pressure will have a smaller diameter (from the axle to the surface contacting the road) and will revolve faster than a tire with a higher pressure.

If your tires are all set at the correct pressure (at least all the same pressure) , then the cause may be that you have installed a tire of a different size, or manufacturer.

If none of these conditions apply, then I would suspect a problem with the system which would include a dirty or defective wheel speed sensor. I think the TPMS alert is triggered by very small speed differences, whereas the ABS system is only affected by large speed differences (like a wheel not spinning at all).
 

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Discussion Starter #3
Dirty or defective sensor?

What is the fix for that and, roughly, what does it cost to fix?
What is entailed for the repair? Clearly, this is a long term issue that
was never addressed by the dealer, even though the owner wanted it fixed, according to my records.
 

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What is the fix for that and, roughly, what does it cost to fix?
What is entailed for the repair? Clearly, this is a long term issue that
was never addressed by the dealer, even though the owner wanted it fixed, according to my records.
That is an impossible question to answer. How can anyone tell you what the repair costs will be and what is entailed, when we don't know what the problem is?

You never confirmed if your RAV has a direct or indirect TPMS system. Does it use sensors in each tire, or does it use the ABS wheel sensors to determine low tire pressure?

You never confirmed if your tires are set to identical pressures, or if you have different sizes or different brands installed on the different wheels.

Even if you provide that information I have no idea what the costs may be, you could simply have a wire that has come unplugged, or you may have an ECU that has become defective.

I'm just suggesting you start with the things you can check yourself before heading off to see a mechanic.
 

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You can either take it to your dealer and start over or find out what specific attempts to fix it have already been made.
 

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W/o knowing for sure how your system works - indirect someway I've never heard of via the ABS system as Rickl found, or the very familiar 4.3 system with pressure sensors on each of 5 rims - we really can't be of much help.
 

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Discussion Starter #7
I will get it figured out in due course and will post results.

Resetting is simple but obnoxious. HOPEFULLY the sensors are inside the tire and the malfunction can be isolated/replaced.
Thanks again, and Happy New Year!
 

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In order to confirm my earlier statement, I performed some additional searching. This page seems to confirm that the 2005 RAV4 does indeed have an indirect TPMS system.

Are you following the reset procedure exactly as described.

Quote:
The reset procedure starts with turning the ignition key to the ON position (but don’t start the engine), then press and hold the RESET button until the flashing TPMS warning light goes off. Or, if it is not flashing, hold the RESET button until the light flashes three times. Once that happens, turn the key off.
The relearn procedure is not complete until the vehicle is driven at 19 mph or faster for at least one continuous hour.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Yes...except for the driving part.,I have only owned it

a short while but tires go on this week and I will have the installers check it. Then I will give it a road test.
Question...if it is an indirect sensor, does that mean it is outside the wheel, unlike the sensor inside the tire that requires
tire removal?
How easy is it to replace the sensors?
Thanks.

ALSO, as I said, the issue goes way back in the paperwork and the seller informed me of the problem. It does not bother me but I would like to
finally fix the problem. I had the same issue with a FORD...the concept is silly as far as I am concerned. If one does not know if he/she has a low/flat tire, one should not be driving!

FINALLY, as one person responded...could it have something to do with the ECU?
 

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If it does use the indirect method Rickl found then there are no sensors on the rims and somehow it works off of the ABS sensors which are part of the car's braking system. If that is the case and the light doesn't go off with the new tires (which would all be the same size for sure) I'd be investigating how to disable the system. We know how to do that on the 4.3s but not on the 4.2s.

In the meantime try the reset procedure Rick posted to see if there's any response. If there is (a 4.3 wouldn't) and there are no rim sensors (a 4.3 would have them at least on the original rims) we'll know which way to proceed.
 

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tires go on this week ...
Question...if it is an indirect sensor, does that mean it is outside the wheel, unlike the sensor inside the tire that requires
tire removal?
How easy is it to replace the sensors?

FINALLY, as one person responded...could it have something to do with the ECU?
Back in post #2 I said that the indirect system makes use of the wheel speed sensors which are also used by the ABS system. A defective speed sensor should also cause ABS malfunction light on the dashboard to come on. Do you have any other warning lights on ( in addition to the TPMS warning)? Does the ABS warning light come on during the bulb testing period when starting the RAV?

You still have not answered these questions......
1) You never confirmed if your tires are set to identical pressures, or if you have different sizes or different brands installed on the different wheels.
2) Are you following the reset procedure exactly as described.

Since you plan on putting on new tires, which I assume will all be made by the same manufacturer, and all the same size, just wait and see if that resolves the problem.

And yes I agree with myself that it might be a problem with the ABS ECU, but that is the least likely cause. Diagnosis would be easier if you eliminated the more common causes by answering some of the questions already asked.

Some new questions for you.
1) After resetting the light, how long before it comes back on?
2) Are all 4 tires set at the same pressure?
3) Do you have any tires that are dropping in pressure?
4) Is the pressure set to match the recommended pressure on the drivers door pillar?
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Again, thanks. When the new tire are on I will

take a long trip (eight hours of driving) and see if I have the issue. I will check when the tires are mounted to see, if by chance, I have internal sensors on the wheel but
my guess is that I won't be that lucky.
Again, all the current tires are the same. Time will tell. And, again, thanks.
 

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Discussion Starter #13
Sorry, I missed your post.

You still have not answered these questions......
1) You never confirmed if your tires are set to identical pressures, or if you have different sizes or different brands installed on the different wheels.
--Pressure is the same and all tires are identical.

2) Are you following the reset procedure exactly as described.
--No. I have not driven the required mileage.

Since you plan on putting on new tires, which I assume will all be made by the same manufacturer, and all the same size, just wait and see if that resolves the problem.

And yes I agree with myself that it might be a problem with the ABS ECU, but that is the least likely cause. Diagnosis would be easier if you eliminated the more common causes by answering some of the questions already asked.
--I hope it is not too complicated!

Some new questions for you.
1) After resetting the light, how long before it comes back on?
--My guess is twenty miles, or so. I have not had it that long and have not driven it much.
2) Are all 4 tires set at the same pressure?
--Yes
3) Do you have any tires that are dropping in pressure?
--Always possible but I do not think so. New tires will rule that one out.
4) Is the pressure set to match the recommended pressure on the drivers door pillar?
--I think so but not absolutely certain.

For now, on this second day of the year, I am occupied with other obnoxious stuff...can you say leaky well water holding tank?!! Gonna cost me more than a new set of tires! Just what I needed to begin 2017.
Thanks, and I will keep you posted!
 

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Discussion Starter #14
New tires on. Light reset and, sure enough, in

fourteen miles it went back on. I guess, in due course I will go to the dealer. Drag...but hardly the end of the world and Iam not in any sort of a rush to waste money on it.
 

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I was having this same problem with my 05 Rav4. Followed the reset procedure in the manual, although time consuming, it fixed the problem.
 

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Discussion Starter #16
Thanks. Other than driving for one hour after reset I have

followed all instructions. I have a long trip soon, so will reset before I leave.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
Light still comes on every eighteen miles,or so.

I have it at the mechanic today and asked him to give me his opinion. Still have not made the long trip but my guess is that resetting and driving the required mileage won't cure my issue. I will advise as I think I am taking a drive this weekend.
Again, Thanks to all who offered advice.
 

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You can ask him to clean the ABS wheel sensors, an accumulation of dirt on the cogs could make it seem like that wheel was going slower.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
Mechanic could find nothing wrong. Roadtrip was my final attempt at resetting (driving over sixty for an hour) but the light still goes on every eighteen miles. I suppose it must be a faulty sensor but replacing them is almost beyond my skill set and pretty expensive, even if I do it myself.
I do not feel bad as the seller told me about the issue. I am bothered that the dealer could not fix the problem way back when, but so be it.
Thanks for the input.
Resetting every once in a while is no big deal.
 

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It has an indirect system (no sensors in the tires). The reset procedure is on page 134 of the Owner's Manual. Basically, inflate tires to correct pressure, ignition on, push and hold the reset switch until the low tire pressure warning light blinks three times. Then drive around for an hour between 30 and 60 mph. You said you were driving over 60 mph for an hour, but the manual says:
If the following driving conditions are satisfied, initialization will be completed in about one hour.
- The vehicle speed is between 50 km/h (31 mph) and 100 km/h (62 mph).
I suspect your "over 60" was too fast. I don't think you have to stay within those limits, but any time driving outside of them doesn't count toward the hour.
 
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