There is a legal issue with run-flats as well as TPMS with respect to the big tire chains. Liability.Called Americas Tire today to get my winter wheels/tires mounted. I first ask how much its going to cost, and its free.99 (which I am all for).
Then he goes: "Do the wheels/tires have TPMS sensors in them"
and I tell him "no".
He goes, "well you are going to need to buy sensors for them, and then we will need to install them".
To that I reply "WTF?! Why do I need to do buy sensors? I am fine just seeing the little orange light for the winter. I dont want to pay for sensors, and I sure dont want to pay 50 bucks each season to have the sensors reprogrammed"
He tells me that it is law (oregon or fed not sure) that they cannot install a set of wheels and tires w/o TPMS sensors on a car that originally came with them. He tells me they are 60 a pop. So I make the appointment, but tell him I am going to look into the sensor thing.
I call the other major tire outfit in town Les Schwab Tires. I pretty much get the same schpeal; they wont install the wheels/tires unless I buy new sensors to go with. Says its Law. Said it went into effect on Jan 1 2012.
I would do it myself, but its raining and cold and I am quite frankly lazy. But its what I'll do if I cant get anyone to install them w/o the sensors. Going to make a call to the dealer tomorrow to see if they will do it.
Has anyone else heard of this? Is it complete Bull S*** and just a way for the tire stores to try to get MORE money from you?
Case in point - I picked up a nail in my RFT and it had a slow leak. Since I didn't want to buy a new tire (waiting to replace all four with non -RFT), I found an excellent identical OEM tire that had been taken off because the owner upgraded to larger wheels. Perfect, I thought, get the tire mounted and I'm in business.
Wrong! The tire chains wouldn't touch it. The logic is that one doesn't know the history of the tire and so if something goes wrong, they would be liable. I can understand that, given our litigious society but it is frustrating. The guy behind the counter told me to go to a nearby place, an independent garage with the same high-quality tire machines and Hunter balancer.
I see TPMS as being the same issue. Also, if you take the wheels to them instead of the whole car, there is apparerently a different set of rules. My suggestion is to find an independent garage and see if they will do it.