Thanks for taking my post in the spirit it was intended.
As an automotive technician, I am constantly amazed by the idiotic ideas that the car makers come up with. I had felt that way about TPMS for years, until I started seeing that it really was useful for the average person. When cloneable sensors came along, I finally felt that we had been given enough repair options that the system came of age, so to speak.
Now the big problem we have, is, how to let the manufacturers know when they have a really bad idea. Like the car that has to be hooked up to a high speed Internet connection in order to have the computer reset so it will know that you replaced the headlight bulb and it is safe to turn that circuit ON again. That is such a stupid idea I bet half of you reading this will think I am making it up! I'm not! Oh and that same car won't let you reset the light circuit if the computer serial numbers don't match anywhere in the car.
This is one of the reasons they want the digital rights act. So they can lock up your car and lock out the non-dealer repair shops. They tried to do it with OBD2, but our "interfering" federal government thought that under the Clean Air Act, they had the authority to mandate a single hardware and software interface that had to be open to everyone. It was brilliant and and it kept us able to work on cars. Without it there would be pretty much no alternatives to the dealer for anything but tires and brakes.
A Leaf example of bad design (IMHO) is the shifter. When you put a car in gear, the lever should stay in that physical location. That tells you that you have selected a specific gear and you can feel and see it is there. Because the Leafs's lever pops back into a rest position, we are dependent on the debounce software to be sure we have not moved the shifter too fast or too early. I am often finding myself trying to accelerate away in N, because I moved the shifter too fast or too early after key on. I am still having this problem after driving a Leaf since 2012 (please be nice here....).
Another Leaf bad design (shared by most manufacturers) is the smart key-push button start. I have been driving with this type of system since 2004 when it appeared in my '04 Prius. (IMHO, again) It is very easy to get out of sync with the button pushing and find yourself in ACC or even back OFF again when trying to power up. It just happened to me the other night in my '15 SL when I tried to power back up and check my charging completion times.
Compare our system to a Rogue, which I got as a rental car a few years back when my Leaf was in for software completion. (I say completion, 'cus if the manufacturers would write the software correctly the first time, us consumers would not be on the hook paying for upgrades for the rest of the life of the car.) The Rogue had the same key fob and smart capabilities, but the ignition switch was a hefty bump on the steering column, just like a key sticking out. It acted just like a key, just like all of us drivers are used to, but it was just a permanent bump. You would turn it like a key into ACC, On, and of course start is optional. All of the software recognition/authorization went on behinds the scenes, just like the push button start. The other advantage of the Rogue bump system is that it can be physically tied to a physical switch, and not a software switch. Toyota has had serious software problems that can send their cars into a redundant loop and the push button command interrupt is not seen. This would appear to be why some Toyotas have run away, causing fatalities. My Point is that if you have a physical switch which the driver can turn, you are not dependent upon software to see and interpret button pushing. (Which may sound simple, but ask any software engineer how easy switch debouncing software is.) If I had a hand in writing software standards, physical switches would be encouraged where possible in any critical safety systems. Or at least some better driver feedback than some tiny character on a dim display.
OMG So sorry for the rant.
One more thing about TPMS, about the type that has the transmitter in the wheel, like the LEAF. The transmitter in the wheel is a dumb microcontroller. It just sends out a string of data wirelessly. When we clone a sensor, we program the clone to arrange the data in the right order, and what the ID number is that it needs to spoof. All of the learning about which sensor belongs on the car, or is on which corner, is done in the TPMS controller/computer in the car (not the wheel). This is the learning that needs to be done.
How this learning is done is COMPLETELY up to the manufacturer. Some of them have tried to keep this work in house by making it necessary to use a dealer scan tool to change settings in the TPMS controller. Other manufacturers will let the controller learn an new sensor if it sees the same signal over a range of speeds. in other words, just install the sensor and drive the car till the light goes off. (Can I just say DUH now....) Can you see why we get frustrated?
So using it or not is your choice, just be informed about it and know your options and risks.
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