Tyre pressure warning light: What is it?

tyre pressure warning light

Has a tyre pressure warning light appeared on your dashboard? The yellow symbol looks like the cross-section of a tyre with an exclamation mark inside. But what does the warning light mean, and what should you do about it?

Tyre Pressure Monitoring System

What is the tyre pressure warning light?

The warning light is an alert message to the driver that there may be a loss of air pressure from one or more of the vehicle’s tyres. It comes from the Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS), an active safety technology that has become a legal requirement for all newly launched and factory updated passenger cars sold in Europe since November 2014.

Tyres represent the only contact your vehicle has with the ground, so maintaining the correct tyre pressure has many safety and efficiency benefits. These include:

  • Prevents accidents caused by a critical decrease in tyre pressure
  • Helps the vehicle perform predictably
  • Saves fuel
  • Reduces emissions
  • Optimises tyre wear

How does a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System work?

There are two types of TPMS: direct and indirect. Direct systems are installed in the majority of Toyota’s current passenger car line-up, and this method uses a battery-powered sensor integrated into the valve assembly (see images below) to physically measure air pressure from within the tyre cavity itself.

Tyre Pressure Monitoring System

Data from the sensor in each wheel is transmitted wirelessly to a control module connected to the car’s central computer, which prompts a visible alert for the driver if any of the tyres lose pressure. The control module is programmed with the unique serial numbers of the valves within the car’s system. This ensures that the TPMS assembly in each wheel only communicates with its host control module.

Tyre Pressure Monitoring System

The only exception within Toyota’s passenger car line-up is the Proace Verso MPV. This model is equipped with an indirect system, which uses the existing wheel speed sensors within the anti-lock braking system to ‘measure’ tyre pressure by detecting differences in the rate of wheel rotation. A tyre with less air pressure will have a smaller circumference and therefore spin at a faster rate than a wheel that has not lost air pressure.

Data from the wheel speed sensors is communicated directly to the ABS control unit, which prompts a visible alert for the driver if any wheel speed abnormalities are detected.

What should I do if the tyre pressure warning light comes on?

If the tyre pressure warning light comes on, the air pressure in at least one of your tyres will have dropped below a minimum tolerance level – often a deflation of around 20-25%. This may indicate a leak, puncture, or some other kind of damage.

Dramatic changes in ambient temperature, such as driving from a snow-capped mountain to a warm and sheltered valley, can occasionally cause direct systems to prompt an alert until the temperature has stabilised. Similarly, indirect systems can occasionally mistake uneven tyre wear for a fluctuation in tyre pressure.

Irrespective of the circumstances, if the TPMS warning light comes on you should pull into a safe area and visually check the tyres. If any appear to be deflated yet undamaged you should try to re-inflate them to the correct pressure and reset the TPMS (see subheading below).

If the tyre has sustained more serious damage, it will be necessary to either continue your journey on the spare wheel, carry out a temporary repair using a tyre repair kit, or call an emergency breakdown service for a lift to a tyre centre.

tyre pressure warning light

How do I turn off the tyre pressure warning light?

Use the box below to identify the type of TPMS fitted to your car (only current models are listed below). You will also need to know whether the reset function is accessed via a button or sub-menu within the main display.

Once you have accessed the right sub-menu, instructions for resetting the TPMS will be shown within the main display. For those with a physical button, you simply need to turn the ignition on, then press and hold the TPMS button. The warning light will flash a couple of times and then extinguish, at which point the system has been reset.

Aygo XDirectSoftware menu Vehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
YarisDirectSoftware menu Vehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
Yaris CrossDirectSoftware menu Vehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
CorollaDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
Toyota C-HRDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
bZ4XDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
RAV4DirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
RAV4 Plug-inDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
GR86DirectButtonLower dashboard on passenger’s side
GR SupraDirectSoftware menuVehicle Status menu on Supra Command
Land CruiserDirectButtonUnder dashboard on driver’s side
HighlanderDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display
Proace VersoIndirectSoftware menuDriving Functions menu on Pro-Touch display
MiraiDirectSoftware menuVehicle Settings menu on Multi-info Display

What should happen if I replace any tyres?

Direct: The condition and function of the TPMS valve and sensor assembly should be checked each time the tyres are replaced. This will involve a physical inspection and electronic diagnosis using a proprietary technology (example device in image below).

The integrated battery has a life expectancy of around ten years and cannot be replaced. Electronic diagnosis should reveal the health of the battery, which will help you decide whether to replace the entire unit at the same time as the tyre.

Although the main valve assembly is robust, parts exposed to the atmosphere can deteriorate over time. So if the battery level is adequate and the main unit is being retained, it would still be wise to have the grommets, washers, collars and cores (see image below) replaced as a matter of course.

Indirect: As this system is not directly related to the tyres, no further measures are needed, assuming the tyres are being replaced on a like-for-like basis. However, it is always wise to replace the valves when changing tyres.

Will changing the wheels affect the TPMS?

Not if your car features indirect TPMS measuring. In which case, you can switch to and from winter tyres with no additional system programming.

Due to the accuracy and complexity of direct measuring, the TPMS control module is designed to recognise and communicate with only one set of wheels at a time. So if you regularly switch to and from winter wheels it will be necessary for a qualified technician to reprogramme the control module through the vehicle’s OBD port.

There are occasions when it may be necessary to drive on a wheel that is not equipped with a TPMS valve, such as after a puncture when the spare wheel is fitted. Under such circumstances, the warning light will remain illuminated. The vehicle or tyre monitoring system will not be damaged but the vehicle cannot pass its annual MoT test if the warning light is on.

Do I still have to check my tyres manually?

Although TPMS is designed to deliver a safety alert in the event of a significant loss of tyre pressure, it does not replace manual inspections. Each tyre should be regularly checked to see if it is inflated to the correct air pressure and has sufficient tread depth.


  1. Hi, I’d just like clarification on something please! My yaris hybrid is 10 years old this October and I have been benefitting from the relax additional warranty every year. If I get my car serviced at my Toyota garage at the end of September do I get a full additional year of warranty despite my car being 10 years old in October? From your example above this would appear to be the case… But as I wasn’t expecting it I wanted to check!

    1. Hi Jean, thanks for your question.

      Providing that your vehicle is serviced before the 10 year/100,000 mile mark, you will benefit from an additional 12 months, regardless of whether your vehicle hits 10 years during this time.


      1. Hello, I have a UK 2016 1.3 auto petrol yaris.my manual says I can use Unleaded 95 or higher. I have recently used a little bit of super Unleaded and it ran better and was smoother. Is it ok to use e5 super Unleaded 99 Ron all time?

  2. Bought a used Toyota Aygo 2017, from a Toyota dealer. The warning light came on 2 days after buying the car, I checked all pressures and were all good, reset the warning light reset button and light came on again after 1 week. Went to my local garage had both front tyres replaced with a good quality reputable manufacture. I noted the valves were standard valves with NO electronic sensor. I now note the light has just come back on again, be it tyre pressures are still good 30 PSI on all 4. I note your chart above does not cover Aygo,s hence may need an update to reflect this both conditions of valves fitted to wheels. I will go back to the local garage who is a tyre fitting garage and have a word. Then may be go back to Toyota to have the system reset.

  3. I’ve got a toyota aygo its 4 years old, i brought it in january 2023 as a part exchange, when i brought it i had to return to the garage as the tyre pressure light came on and wouldn’t go off they resealed the tyre and put the required tyre pressure in it. This was on the passenger side. Fast forward to today, now the tyre pressure light has come on again i pulled over and checked the appearance and also tyre pressures, the tyre pressure machine for some reason and i used 2 different ones seemed to be trying to take air out of the tyre not put it in, however i ended up with a flat tyre on the drivers side, and had to call my breakdown cover company to replace with a temporary.. however on further inspection from breakdown service they say it looks like nothing wrong with the tyre they have took off and is brand new ? how can it go to full flat tyre when there is nothing wrong with the tyre and the tyre pressure light remains on.

    1. Hi Claire, thanks for your comment.

      We are very sorry to hear about this issue and apologise for the inconvenience this has caused.

      We would recommend contacting your Toyota Centre, as they are best placed to inspect this issue.


  4. 2022 Yaris and the tyre pressure sensor is acting up initially for one tyre (offside rear) and now all wheels. When the car is started up no reading is available, just dashes. The ECU also seems confused at times as looking for equipment that is not installed on the car or random calls when mobile phone attached. Doesn’t bode well. Toyota seem disinterested when I call and defer to dealer but the nearest dealer isn’t helpful.

    1. Hi Tomas, thanks for your comment.

      We are sorry to hear about this issue.

      We are unable to diagnose vehicle problems online. Therefore, we would recommend taking your Yaris to a Toyota Centre to get this inspected. You can find Toyota Centres in your area, here: https://www.toyota.co.uk/find-a-dealer.


  5. Hello, I have a Toyota Corolla 1.8 Hybrid 2019. I’ve got a problem with the tyre sensor – it was blinking for a couple of seconds and then it just stopped and the light remained on all the time. I tried to reset it through the TPMS menu of the car but it did not fix it. Is there anything I could do to fix it?

    1. Hi Ivaylo, thanks for your question.

      If there is an issue with your vehicle, please contact your Toyota Centre. They are best placed to inspect and diagnose any problems.


  6. Have a Yaris design hybrid 72 plate notice the tyre pressure symbol on dash when starting up but if it appears in future showing a deflated tyre how do I reset this as cannot see anything on menu for this or will it show on menu when this light is illuminated

  7. Hi, have 2015 UK Rav4, TPMS reset button above pedals. At transmitter valve assy, leak of air between wheel & cap nut and valve centre tube & cap nut. Corrosion of alloy wheel metal. Cap Nut turns but will not come away from the valve centre tube. Please advise how I get cap nut off the centre tube. This not uncommon according to local tyre yard. Thsnk you.

    1. Hi Michael,
      Thanks for your comment.
      Your nearest Toyota Centre would be best placed to assist you further with this.

      1. Hi I’m wondering if someone could please help me? I’m trying to find a toy model car of a Toyota Starlet 1997 I think, in a dark mint green colour? I’ve searched everywhere and can’t seem to find one…it’s for my son who’s just recently passed his test and would love to suprise him with one as a present, ( he also just purchased a real one as his first car in the same colour lol) I would really appreciate if someone could point me in the right direction…I’ve searched eBay etc but to no avail.
        Kind regards Chrissy.

  8. I have a 2022 Yaris hybrid design where would I find the tyre pressures reset button or how do I cancel the tyre pressure warning light

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