What Does “Maintenance Tire” Mean For The Nissan Leaf EVs?

Most modern cars are a sea of lights, symbols, reminders and notifications. There are so many bells and whistles on new vehicles, and all of them come with additional controls, settings, and sooner or later maintenance requirements. The Nissan Leaf is no exception, and one of the slightly more baffling things that users encounter is the “Maintenance: Tire” warning, or it might show as “Tire Maintenance Needed.”

What Does the “Maintenance: Tire” Warning Mean?

Close up of the Nissan Leaf cabin
Close up of the Nissan Leaf cabin

Some user report never having seen this warning, while others have done and at seemingly random moments, too. In short, this warning light is giving you a reminder that a due date is approaching or has arrived to undergo certain tire maintenance. This could include things like a rotation, or a change of tires. These reminders can actually be programmed into the Leaf’s computer via the Vehicle Information Display.

The trouble seems to be, however, that some users are receiving these warnings at times they don’t expect, or without realizing that such a reminder has been programmed in. Other drivers sometimes in the Nissan forums refer to these as “Dummy Reminders.” Our advice is not to ignore it, and to check in with your Nissan service center or other maintenance provider to make sure that nothing is wrong.

One thing that is clear, however, is that the “Maintenance: Tire” warning is not something to do with tire pressure. The Nissan Leaf has a separate Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) that will warn you if tire pressure drops below the recommended rate. Should you receive a TPMS warning, all you need do is:

  • Check the correct tire pressure on the driver’s side door inside
  • Ensure that all tires have the correct PSI rating – should be around 36 PSI
  • Check to see the TPMS light has automatically reset
  • If it hasn’t reset, there could be a problem with the TPMS sensor, in which case it’s better to visit the dealership or service center

What to Do When You See “Maintenance: Tire” Warning

So, if it’s not really connected to tire pressure, and it’s about tire maintenance such as rotation, what should we do when we see this warning? If the light comes on before you’ve even completed a few thousand miles in your Nissan Leaf, then performing a simple reset of the warning is the best idea. This also applies if you’ve recently had your tires rotated, replaced or otherwise repaired and there is no reason to believe a genuine fault exists. We’ll describe how to perform this reset on different Nissan Leaf models further below.

If it has been some time since your last tire maintenance or rotation, however, then this warning may be coming at a timely moment. Typically, tires should be rotated every 3,000 to 5,000 miles, but you can consult your owner’s manual for more information on this. The manual for the 2019 Nissan Leaf, for example, states quite clearly that tires should be rotated every 5,000 miles (8,000km). This is why keeping track of your odometer is important, as knowing how many miles you’ve covered since your last tire rotation is important at this point.

Our suggestion is that if you know your tires were already rotated or replaced within the given distance/time, then you can perform a reset of the maintenance warning and move on. If, on the other hand, you are either at the recommended distance (or more), or are unsure about that distance covered, then visit your Nissan service center or dealership to find out more about why the warning is coming up.

How do You Reset the Maintenance: Tire Warning on Nissan Leaf?

The procedure for resetting these maintenance reminders is essentially the same in all Nissan Leaf models, but there are some small differences depending on what model year of Nissan Leaf you are driving. In fact, the following procedure equally applies if you want to reset the oil maintenance light, too. That’s another one that frequently emerges to bother (sometimes rightly) Nissan Leaf drivers.

Nissan Leaf 2010-2017

The process for a 2013 Leaf is shown in the video below, but read on if you prefer the text version:

Turn the ignition on, but don’t start the engine. Next, look to the cluster of four control buttons to the left of your steering wheel. Press the square button to navigate the menu to “Settings” and then press the circle button to confirm. Once you’ve made it into settings, you scroll to “Maintenance” and click the circle button again to select it.

Once inside the maintenance menu, you have to find “Tire” (look for “Engine Oil” if that’s the maintenance reminder you are resetting). Within “Tire,” you can reset the TPMS and the Maintenance: Tire warning lights. Select the one you need and hit “Reset.” Finally, turn the ignition off and then start up your Leaf to make sure that the warning lights have gone.

Nissan Leaf 2018-2020

The procedure for the later model years is pretty much the same, but you’ll immediately notice that the cluster of buttons you need to navigate the menu are now mounted to your steering wheel. Use the buttons to get into the maintenance menu, as you did above.

This time, however, one small difference is that the maintenance warning lights are in “Other”, whereas the “Tire” section is only for the TPMS. If you are still unsure, check both Tire and Other and the reset maintenance interval option should be clearly labeled. Note where you find it for future reference.

Resetting Via Your Nissan Leaf Touchscreen

If your Nissan Leaf comes with a central touchscreen, you can also reset the warning via this screen. Start up your car, and then hit the “Menu” button. After that, go to “Info” and then “Maintenance.”

Within the “Maintenance” menu, you’ll find numerous options for resetting your service reminders, including battery reset, a/c filter maintenance, your tires and more. Select the ones you want by selecting it and then hitting “Reset Distance.” Once you’ve done that, turn the ignition off and restart the car.

Nissan Leaf: Tire Maintenance Warning

In the end, there’s no need to panic when you see this particular maintenance warning, or any other maintenance warning on your Nissan Leaf. If you’ve been keeping track of your mileage, then you should be able to immediately tell if it’s a genuine reminder, or a so-called “Dummy Warning.” On the other hand, if you’re unsure about your mileage or maintenance record, it’s better to be safe than sorry by visiting the Nissan dealership or service center to find out more.

In any event, knowing how to reset the warning yourself is another positive step and will allow you to save yourself a journey to (and a bill from) a mechanic. Just be sure not to dismiss a maintenance reminder or warning off-hand as incorrect or as misplaced.

About Tristan Perry

Tristan is a software developer who is passionate about eco-friendly lifestyles - and products, such as green cars! He has loved seeing Nissan and Tesla sell loads of quality EVs over the last decade - with every other car manufacturer finally following suit.

EV adoption seems to be at a tipping point now, with 'ordinary folk' starting to order them too. This is naturally aided by very expensive gas prices, but also a genuine desire for people to try and improve the environment.

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