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Dodge OEM Or Third Party Parts

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I bit the bullet and took my 09 Ram 1500 to the dealer to get several things repaired.
I had a TPMS indicator light on. They replaced all four wheel sensors. Light off. A few days later light is back on.
This is when I noticed the replacement stems were rubber not metal like the originals. I expected OEM Dodge parts not third party parts and they verified the stems are third party. I don't like the look, but the principle is I took it to Dodge service and expected the stems to be OEM metal. Like I had when I brought it in to this dealer. Same dealer I bought the truck from in 2009.
How far would you push this issue? The service rep told me the OEM stems are 3 times the price of the OEM stems and he quoted the job using third party stems.
Do I have a leg to stand on here? He did not give me a choice between OEM and third party at the quote. He said I did not request them either. I told him you did not ask either.
Would you insist on the OEM stems? And how far would you take it?

Oh...I must return for the TPMS light as they said it was a computer thing and they would need more time. I told him to get the stem issue resolved so when I go back for the TPMS light they can replace the stems with OEM.
The service rep is not happy at all. I assume its going to fall on him as he was the one that quoted me.
TIA
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Just a data point on TPMS battery life, at least on my Tacoma that has Denso Pacific sensors with Panasonic batteries. Bought the truck, 2009 model, in November 2008. I just popped the bead on one of my take off wheels and tires (had them all replaced last year), pulled out the sensor, and removed the battery. If I had known it was that easy I would have done that instead of getting new sensors. All the sensors were still online last summer when these wheels were removed and the battery in that one wheel I tested today was still functional, reading 2.9V down from about 3.2V for a brand new one. Maybe getting close to the low volt limit for the sensors but still pretty amazing after almost 14 years.

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Why? Are people breaking the metal ones?
Metal ones are made from aluminum. A lot of people make the mistake of sticking a steel cap on the aluminum stem which is a big mistake. When people do this the two dissimilar Metals weld themselves together and you are unable to remove the cap. Another very common problem with the aluminum valve stems is when the aluminum wheels start to corrode or if you live in an area that receives freezing weather in the winter time the aluminum is susceptible to cracking from the expansion of the corrosion or the ice. Additionally the aluminum valve stems still contain a valve core that is made from a different metal than aluminum strem. This too can be subject to galvanic corrosion due to dissimilar Metals being in direct contact with one another. This galvanic corrosion in many cases causes the valve stems to need replacement when they normally would not need replaced. Aluminum stems also are subject to the same corrosion that causes aluminum wheels to leak between the bead seat of the wheel and the tire. The white powdery substance that forms between the bead and the tire and causes it to start leaking is aluminum rust.
If you insist on a metal valve stems they do make ones that are nickel plated or stainless steel.
 

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Interesting. I guess in a tire shop you see it all. My original aluminum ones lasted 13 years on the road and another in the basement. As you can see in the photo they still look good even after lots of snow and salt. The wheels themselves look like crap which is why I replaced them. I wonder if the metal stem materials quality vary by mfg?


Metal ones are made from aluminum. A lot of people make the mistake of sticking a steel cap on the aluminum stem which is a big mistake. When people do this the two dissimilar Metals weld themselves together and you are unable to remove the cap. Another very common problem with the aluminum valve stems is when the aluminum wheels start to corrode or if you live in an area that receives freezing weather in the winter time the aluminum is susceptible to cracking from the expansion of the corrosion or the ice. Additionally the aluminum valve stems still contain a valve core that is made from a different metal than aluminum strem. This too can be subject to galvanic corrosion due to dissimilar Metals being in direct contact with one another. This galvanic corrosion in many cases causes the valve stems to need replacement when they normally would not need replaced. Aluminum stems also are subject to the same corrosion that causes aluminum wheels to leak between the bead seat of the wheel and the tire. The white powdery substance that forms between the bead and the tire and causes it to start leaking is aluminum rust.
 

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Discussion Starter · #25 ·
As much as a PITA as these can seem to be sometimes TPMS is a really good idea. You always have the option to just let the sensors die and ignore it, if you are so inclined.
Ignoring was not an option for me. The indicator light was and is still bugging me.

I worked in a tire shop for 6 years and I'm going to tell you from experience you're better off with rubber stems than you are with them s***** aluminum ones
The service writer told me the same thing. I told him I had the metal stems for 13 years with zero issues and thats what they should have put on the truck. They did not give me the option for metal or rubber. Principle.

Just a data point on TPMS battery life, at least on my Tacoma that has Denso Pacific sensors with Panasonic batteries. Bought the truck, 2009 model, in November 2008. I just popped the bead on one of my take off wheels and tires (had them all replaced last year), pulled out the sensor, and removed the battery. If I had known it was that easy I would have done that instead of getting new sensors. All the sensors were still online last summer when these wheels were removed and the battery in that one wheel I tested today was still functional, reading 2.9V down from about 3.2V for a brand new one. Maybe getting close to the low volt limit for the sensors but still pretty amazing after almost 14 years.

View attachment 694997
So they batteries can be replaced? I was not given that option and its my fault for not finding out on my own. Had this been possible there would be no issue.
I presented with metal stems and that is what I expect to get when I picked up the truck.
 

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Yes and no. They are not designed to be replaced. It is a DIY hack but not all that difficult. requires some disassembly and soldering. Mine are pretty easy because the original potting around the battery is a sort of lower density stuff that I could scape out easily. I did that above one in the photo just for fun of it because I already have a full new identical set of these metal valve sensors. Like you, I had zero issues with the metal stems for over 13 years, even here in snow and salt land. And I have seen broken rubber stems once or twice. No way those rubber stem sensors would last 13 years like the OEM ones... but then they probably use cheaper batteries that will die sooner anyway.

Edit: to be clear no shop will agree to replace batteries in sensors that are not designed to have them replaced. Too risky to get call backs and no way they could warrant the reliable operation of 13 year old sensors. This is strictly a DIY thing.

So they batteries can be replaced? I was not given that option and its my fault for not finding out on my own. Had this been possible there would be no issue.
I presented with metal stems and that is what I expect to get when I picked up the truck.
 

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Discussion Starter · #27 ·
Update: The service writer emailed me and told me they were going to replace the stems with metal at no charge. That they are on back order.
I hope the computer issue does not add a balance to what I have already paid. The light was off for a couple days before it came back on. They said computer so I hope they don't try and make up the difference here!
 

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I bit the bullet and took my 09 Ram 1500 to the dealer to get several things repaired.
I had a TPMS indicator light on. They replaced all four wheel sensors. Light off. A few days later light is back on.
This is when I noticed the replacement stems were rubber not metal like the originals. I expected OEM Dodge parts not third party parts and they verified the stems are third party. I don't like the look, but the principle is I took it to Dodge service and expected the stems to be OEM metal. Like I had when I brought it in to this dealer. Same dealer I bought the truck from in 2009.
How far would you push this issue? The service rep told me the OEM stems are 3 times the price of the OEM stems and he quoted the job using third party stems.
Do I have a leg to stand on here? He did not give me a choice between OEM and third party at the quote. He said I did not request them either. I told him you did not ask either.
Would you insist on the OEM stems? And how far would you take it?

Oh...I must return for the TPMS light as they said it was a computer thing and they would need more time. I told him to get the stem issue resolved so when I go back for the TPMS light they can replace the stems with OEM.
The service rep is not happy at all. I assume its going to fall on him as he was the one that quoted me.
TIA

I would go with OEM parts, unless you really know what you're doing
 
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