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Discussion Starter #1
Was putting air in my tires today, and noticed that the valve stem on one of the tpms sensor has/is starting to break.

It seems ok in the sense that it is still holding air and hasn't broken completely, so it is still holding the valve core, keeping it inflated
(I think even if it did break, the valve core would stay in place, but I don't want to risk it)

But I will be taking it to a tire shop tomorrow.

Is it possible just to replace the valve stem since the sensor is ok, or is it a whole piece?

Is this common on the 3's, due to salt/winter weather causing that kind of wear and tear on the sensors?
 

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i think you have to replace the entire thing but i am not sure.

pretty helpful, huh?
 

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Pretty sure you'll have to replace the whole thing. First time I've ever heard this so it isn't a common occurrence.
 

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Whole sensor for a Mazda. Very common to corrode and break/crack. Chryslers are especially common in my experience, its why every MFR that had aluminum sensors are slowly switching to rubber sensors with a separately replaceable sensor(GM, Ford, and Chrysler are all doing/have done this). VW I think is using ABS to sense low tires now(indirect system) as opposed to the direct systems.

Here's a decent article that hits the major points:
http://tires.about.com/od/Tire_Safety_Maintenance/a/Achey-Breakey-Parts-Tpms-And-Corrosion.htm
 

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Discussion Starter #6 (Edited)
Back from the tire shop, bill wasn't as bad as i expected.
It was as i expected though, the stem was cracked, so you couldn't get the valve cap off without breaking it completely.

It was all 1 piece, so no way to remove the stem from sensor

The replacement uses a rubber valve stem, and is removable from the sensor, so if it happened again, the stem could be replaced, but by having a rubber valve stem now, it is less likely

Then I got the great news of one of my rims is slightly bent...when it rains it pours
 

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Back from the tire shop, bill wasn't as bad as i expected.
It was as i expected though, the stem was cracked, so you couldn't get the valve cap off without breaking it completely.

It was all 1 piece, so now way to remove the stem from sensor

The replacement uses a rubber valve stem, and is removable from the sensor, so if it happened again, the stem could be replaced, but by having a rubber valve stem now, it is less likely

Then I got the great news of one of my rims is slightly bent...when it rains it pours
Ah that sucks. Those aftermarket sensors are great... at work I install them on anything they're compatible with, I've never replaced one of those twice yet. The aluminum blows especially because if you slip or whatever while filling a tire up you can rip the end of it off and you're stuck with a flat tire.

Did they say/show you how badly the wheel is bent? There is a place local to me that we send bent wheels out to be straightened and they have saved some pretty bad stuff. Saved a Jaguar owner some $1600 for two bent rims :shocked:
 

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All you should have to do is replace the stem. you don't have to replace the sensor at all because it screws into the stem. I wouldnt recommend a straightened one but it gets the job done. I would look for a used one.
 

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Discussion Starter #9 (Edited)
Did they say/show you how badly the wheel is bent?
I saw the bent rim yesterday, since I replaced my rear brake pads and rotors and they had rotated it to the rear so it won't wobble/shake so much on the highway.

Not bent bad, but there is a noticeable flat spot on the rim, especially on the inside of the rim where the wheel weights are

I did contact a local junk yard that has 2 MZ3 rims for $100 each...might take a look at them and see if they're worth it.
I saw some rims online for $150
Not sure how much they are OEM from the dealer

All you should have to do is replace the stem. you don't have to replace the sensor at all because it screws into the stem. I wouldnt recommend a straightened one but it gets the job done. I would look for a used one.
According to the tire shop tech, he said the screw that holds the aluminum OEM valve stem to the sensor can't be removed.
Maybe BS, not sure, but with the new sensor having a rubber valve stem that is replaceable, at least gives more options in the future
 

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All you should have to do is replace the stem. you don't have to replace the sensor at all because it screws into the stem. I wouldnt recommend a straightened one but it gets the job done. I would look for a used one.
at one point, i would have suggested used as an option, but 7 years after purchase, it appears all my sensors quit working (battery life) so I am not inclined to give out that advice. would suck to replace one only to have the battery fail soon afterwards.
 

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How do I even remove the thing? The nut just spins inside the sensor. Sensor is good metal part is good, but it is impossible to remove.
Any advise?
 
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