There are things worse getting a flat tire unexpectedly, but frankly we’re having trouble thinking of what those are at the moment.
Bottom line is: flat tires suck, and even if the tires available today are more durable that those of years past and and are designed for most road hazards, a flat tire can still happen.
Although all drivers should know how to replace their flat tire with their spare, not all of them do or are at least willing to do the job. Mobile flat tire repair services can come to the rescue. Flat tires are one of the most common reasons that require roadside assistance. They can change your flat tire with your spare so you can bring the damaged one to the shop for repair. But how are flat tires repaired?
How Are Flat Tires Repaired
Flat tires are repaired depending on the damage that they have. There are some that can still be repaired but there are others that can’t and should be replaced. Flat tire repairs are done by a tire service technician. They are the ones who are experienced and knowledgeable about troubleshooting the damage that the tire received and determining how it can be properly repaired.
Determine If Flat Tires Can Be Repaired
The very first step in repairing a flat tire is to determine whether it can still be repaired or if it has already reached the end of its life. Repairs are usually done only to puncture damages that are not more than 6mm. Also, the location of the damage is noted. If the damage reaches the belt area or if it is already at an angle into the shoulder area, it cannot be repaired.
Tire technicians don’t bother repairing some tires with severe damages because it is very risky to use. The probability for the tread-belt to detach or separate is high with highly damaged tires. And this can cause serious and fatal accidents.
Another thing considered by tire technicians when trying to repair tires is the recommendations or repair policy of the tire manufacturers. They know their tires well and can tell when it is still worth repairing or not. Also, there is a limit to the number of repairs a tire can have and this is also recommended by the manufacturers. Today, there are also tires that come with run-flat technology, which cannot be repaired by tire technicians
Common Types Of Tire Repair
There is still hope for flat tires. Although you might want to throw them away and buy new ones, these 3 types of repair can help bring back your flat tire to life:
- Plug and Patch
The easiest and fastest way to fix a flat tire is through plugging. In this method, a plug, usually a piece of leather, is coated with adhesive and shoved into the hole. As the tire is used, the heat it is received while driving the vehicle hardens the rubber with adhesive, making it seal the hole permanently.
This is the only type of repair that can be done without the need for removing the tire. However, this repair is also limited to the shape of the hole. This is only meant for minor punctures that are found in the tread crown area only. It shouldn’t also be too irregularly shaped or too big because the plug won’t work. It can become loose instead of hardening when used in such cases. The patching method is a better choice for this kind of hole.
Before plugging the hole, the area is first cleaned and buffed. This helps make sure that the adhesive will really stick and that it won’t fall off because the adhesive just sticks to the dirt.
The patching method is used for larger holes that can’t be plugged. It can also be used for more irregular holes or gashes. With this, the tire needs to be removed from the wheel because the patch is to be placed inside the tire. Just like the plugging technique, a glued rubber patch is also used to cover the hole. Then, while the tire is used, the adhesive and rubber patch harden.
Due to the need for removing the tire from the wheel, this kind of tire repair is a bit more expensive than the plugging method. It also takes a longer time to do.
Plug And Patch
Combining the two methods, plugging and patching, can also be done to repair the tire. With this method, there is a need to remove the tire from the wheel. A rubber patch with a tail is used inside the tire. The tail is plugged through the hole to improve the seal. Due to the combined procedures, this method is considered the most effective and maybe the most expensive of the three. It takes the longest while to do too.
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