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Discussion Starter #1
After I purchased my 2016 two years ago I bought a set of Aluminum valve stem caps with the smart logo. The first year they were on the car, it was stored in the garage. During the second year the car resided outside. Recently the low air light came on. When I tried to remove the caps they wouldn’t budge! Even soaked them for days with penetrating solution but no go. Checked with the local garage I use for some things and they said it was a problem in the past for them and they no longer install such caps on wheel and tire packages they sell - plastic caps only. So, after removing all 4 wheels, drilling the caps to allow removal of tire valve, breaking the tires from rims and installing new stems I can finally add air to my tires. Tires were also rebalanced. Only cost $42 to be able to air up tires! :( The shop guy said they were the type stems Chrysler uses. I’ve had a similar set of caps, but made of SS, on my old Benz and never had an issue.
 

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You are much cleverer (SIC?) than I was. I used brute force and bloody ignorance on my 2008 when it was only a few months old. The front passenger valve cap was stuck so I took a pliers to it. Long story short, it was a $350 flat with towing fees, valve tpms replacement and a new spare/jack/breaker bar w/ deep socket. I have plastic caps now and it has been fine for over 9 years.
 

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Never had a that issue. Have them on all my vehicles. Been using them for over 10 years now.
Searching the web, it does happen. Two dissimilar metals corrosion. The only way, to remove them. Is with a Dremel tool, small cutting wheel.

I think I’ll toss mine now.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Knew about chance of damaging sensor so was careful. Also considered dremmel but had messed up a couple of the stems so went with complete stem replacement.
 

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Sure, if you know seizure would be a problem. Never had that happen in 50+ years!
Then, I guess you've never used alloy valve caps before. Whenever I've changed plastic valve caps to alloy or any
other dissimilar metal application, I've used anti-seize. This is based on MY 50+ years of experience...:D
 

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Discussion Starter #10
How long did those caps stay on without removal???
Can’t remember exactly how long but it was the last time the low pressure light came on. Caps came off at that time and I don’t recall having any difficulty. The only other set of custom caps I have ever used are those Stainless steel ones I bought from a Mercedes dealer and have had on my 1990 300E for about 15 years. I do remember metal caps on much older cars - before plastic was used - all the way back to cars I owned from the 1920s and 1930s. Never had an issue with those. These caps were aluminum and the ones my friends at the shop equipped on custom wheel/tire packages were chrome plated. Hope this helps others avoid the issue.
 

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I’m OC when it comes to tire pressures, so every two weeks or three I check nowadays,but I’ve definitely had trouble with stuck metal tire pressure caps in the past. In the past I also did not check pressures very often and actually had it done. Luckily the ones I purchased had hexagonal heads where you could put a socket or box wrench? on them, and I haven’t had one yet that I’ve needed to pay to remove. I’m guessing if they got really stuck I would have busted the rubber stem....

In July I got a replacement iQ for my totaled Smart, which had metal caps. One said N2, which irritated me so (this last week) I got replacement metal caps from Walmart. I got them thinking I could get rid of the N2 one, but they were different so I replaced all four. The Walmart cheap $0.88 black ones don’t have a rubber gasket on the inside bottom so I don’t exactly trust them much as well though....

Yes, this is a very good warning. We have very hot weather here and so this is not a common issue, nor is seasonal changing. (Boy was that a costly pain when we were in Cleveland)!!!
 
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