© 2017 Elsevier B.V. The STAR experiment at RHIC is planning to upgrade the Time Projection Chamber which lies at the heart of the detector. We have designed an instrument to measure the tension of the wires in the multi-wire proportional chambers (MWPCs) which will be used in the TPC upgrade. The wire tension measurement system causes the wires to vibrate and then it measures the fundamental frequency of the oscillation via a laser based optical platform. The platform can scan the entire wire plane, automatically, in a single run and obtain the wire tension on each wire with high precision. In this paper, the details about the measurement method and the system setup will be described. In addition, the test results for a prototype MWPC to be used in the STAR-iTPC upgrade will be presented.