Retail

TIA to NHTSA: TPMS regs burden retailers

Posted on January 23, 2013

The Tire Industry Association (TIA) has submitted comments to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) on the economic impact of its regulations on small entities as required by Section 610 of the Regulatory Flexibility Act.

Specifically, TIA commented on Federal Motor Vehicle Safety Standard (FMVSS) 49 CFR 571.138 that regulates tire pressure monitoring systems (TPMS) on passenger cars and light trucks.

TIA's comments focused on the section that related to the written instructions that must be included in the owner's manual. TIA feels that the requirements are inadequate and do not properly explain the different TPMS telltales or educate the consumer on the need for regular maintenance.

As a result, these tasks are left to the tire retailers who must bear the burden of providing this information. Additionally, the lack of information regarding the need for relearn procedures creates confusion in the minds of consumers which often leads to small businesses giving away services in the interest of customer satisfaction.

"As an industry, we embraced the role of TPMS and readily accepted the challenges that it created for tire service providers," says Roy Littlefield, TIA executive vice president.

"Our members have invested thousands of dollars in tools and training to service all makes and models, so we feel the vehicle manufacturers must do their part by playing a greater role in educating the motoring public. By requiring the addition of TPMS telltale identification and maintenance costs in the owner's manual, NHTSA can ease the burden on small businesses."

TIA also commented on language that relates to vehicles with a TPMS telltale that temporarily remains illuminated following service. TIA has learned of several occasions where customers assumed the tire retailer damaged the system so the vehicle was immediately taken to the new car dealer.

Some car dealers have taken advantage of the situation by needlessly replacing all of the sensors at the expense of the retailer. If the manufacturers were required to identify vehicles in the owner's manual that must be driven to extinguish the TPMS telltale after tire service, these instances could be avoided.

"The lack of information and consumer awareness regarding TPMS often leads to motorists getting different explanations from retailers and new car dealers," says Kevin Rohlwing, TIA senior vice president of training. "The owner's manual should be the sole authority on the operation and maintenance of the TPMS for each specific make and model. This would provide retailers with an undeniable reference that they could use to explain why certain procedures are necessary and justify the additional cost."

TIA also prompted NHTSA to release a final rule on the consumer information and education program that was mandated by the Energy Independence and Security Act of 2007. TIA stated that in order for TPMS to meet the long-term goals of improving safety and fuel efficiency, consumers will need a lot more than a few nondescript paragraphs in the owner's manual and low rolling resistance ratings that do not influence tire buyers.

TIA says it believes the only way to achieve that goal is to develop a comprehensive education campaign that targets consumers and retailers with a consistent message, and as the leader for training and education in the tire industry, they urged NHTSA to issue a final rule that names TIA as the coordinator of this effort.

For more information visit www.tireindustry.org.

Related Topics: Kevin Rohlwing, NHTSA, Regulatory Flexibility Act, Roy Littlefield, TIA, TPMS

Comments ( 0 )
More Stories
Article

Despite Lackluster Results, Dealers Still Speculate Volumes Will Increase Going Forward

According to the results of our survey, demand for passenger and light truck replacement tires declined again in April. Indeed, from a volume standpoint, the dealers reported they sold 0.9% fewer tires in April relative to the previous year’s period. The soft results marked the fourth straight month of lackluster results, including three consecutive months of negative volumes. The weak results come despite weather patterns and the disbursement of tax refunds normalizing.

The tall ceilings of Jeff Hall's Gardiners Road store give it a modern look and feel.
News

The Secret to Success for Midas in Canada: Tires

The owner of the two busiest Midas locations in Canada says offering an extensive tire inventory and more than a dozen tire brands has transformed his business. Consider Jeff Hall’s success a sign of what’s to come at Midas stores across North America.  

News

Six Hankook Tire Dealers Will Host Events for Veterans

Six tire dealers will help Hankook Tire America Corp. continue its partnership with the Disabled American Veterans (DAV) organization. Those dealers will host the group's Mobile Service Offices (MSO) at their stores so the DAV can reach out to veterans in those communities.  

Joe Venezia will lead Bridgestone's retail efforts at its 2,200-plus company-owned stores.
News

Bridgestone Retail Stores Have a New Leader

The 2,200-plus retail stores owned and operated by Bridgestone Americas Inc. have a new leader. Joe Venezia is the president of Bridgestone Retail Operations LLC (BSRO) effective June 19, 2017.  

News

Giti's Made-in-USA Tires Earn Fitment on Volkswagen Passat

Two sizes of the All Season Giti ComfortA1 tire will be featured as original equipment tires on the 2019 Volkswagen Passat. Giti Tire (USA) Ltd. says the tires represent the first OE fitment that will be manufactured at the company's U.S. tire plant.

News

Texas Governor Vetoes Used Tire Bill

Texas Gov. Greg Abbott has vetoed a bill that would prohibit the sale of unsafe used tires. "Texas does not need to impose new criminal penalties on people who put tires on cars.

Be the First to Know

Get the latest news and most popular articles from MTD delivered straight to your inbox. Stay on top of the tire industry and don't miss a thing!