Tire repair question


I was reading a Popular Mechanics in a waiting room, and they had an article on how to fix a flat.
They said that tire repairs involved putting a patch on the inside of the tire. That is how mine were fixed in the past, but the last few have had plugs put in. The plugs seemed to work fine. What is the proper method.
They also recommended a can of air and material to plug the hole for temporary repairs, and then getting a real patch. I was told that those cans ruin the inside surface so a patch can't be used. What is the story there?
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wrote:

Taking the tire off and patching without gunking up the inside of the tire is the best, strongest patch, but it means taking the tire off the rim, which is a pain in the ass, and may damage the tire more. Plugs work, and are easier, to do, but more likely to fail, and if they do fail, it means a bigger hole to try to patch next time.
Latex squirted into the tire to try to seal the hole is good for a temporary fix if you're just trying to get home, or are planning on replacing the tire soon anyway, but if you want to patch afterward, you have to clean all that crap off the area around the hole. Its also possible that the liquid goop will screw up the valve-stem. I've driven a fair number of beaters into the ground, and I've never had a tire "fixed" with spray-goop stay fixed for more than a couple weeks. OTOH, I have a 12V air-compresser in my truck, so adding a few psi of air twice a week isn't really that big a problem.
--Goedjn
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Cheap goop doesn't last, Gempler's goop usually lasts the life of the tire.
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Depends on the tire's construction, as I recall. I'm pretty sure I had a car with a Michelin tire on it that couldn't be plugged, but instead had to be patched.
A quick google on "tire plug patch repair" and we have: http://autorepair.about.com/library/a/1a/bl028a.htm

I've heard that too.
-- Todd H. http://www.toddh.net /
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The best thing you can use is a Patch Plug. It looks like a regular patch but has a tapered rubber plug protruding from the center. You smooth the interior surface around the hole with an abrasive disc, coat the area with adhesive, feed the rubber plug through the hole from the inside, and smooth the patch in place as you pull on the plug from the outside. Let dry and trim the remaining plug from the outside. I wouldn't use anything else on a car tire.
If you have a shop do this, don't waste your money on a rebalance. Tell them to mark the tire at the valve stem and put it back on the same place they took it off. It's just profit otherwise.
Some people swear by plugs, but I've heard that if you don't get the plug punched all the way through the hole that air pressure can work it's way between the layers of the tire and cause tread separation.
With a plug or a patch-plug, be very careful with the probe to find the exact hole left by the nail. It's super easy to miss and end up poking a second hole on the inside. Work it around and let it follow the path of the existing hole.
The aerosol can you're thinking of is Fix-A-Flat. Don't EVER use that unless you absolutely have to. And if you do, make damn sure you tell anyone who works on the tire that it's full of that crap. A co-worker popped the bead on a tire full of that and got it in hit eyes. Damn near blinded him (yeah, should have been wearing goggles).
Have you checked your spare tire pressure lately? People rarely check tire pressures and almost never check the spare tire. Check all 5 monthly or when the weather changes.
-rev
Bewildered wrote:

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On 17 Jan 2007 12:10:16 -0800, "The Reverend Natural Light"

I don't get it. Hadn't he drained the tire of air before he tried to separate the bead? I've never seen anyone do otherwise. They remove the valve.
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You still get a good POOF of air when you break the bead. Fix-a-flat is shit and contains ammonia. It works by softening the inner liner of the tire. It will ruin a tire if left in there more than about a day.
--
Steve Barker


"mm" < snipped-for-privacy@bigfoot.com> wrote in message
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You suppose to use both patch and plug but I've been using just plugs for about 20 years on seven different cars without a single problem. YMMV
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Speaking as a former mechanic and present supervisor (26 years total) in a fleet maintenance shop, the tire manufacturers generally say the correct way to repair a tire puncture is to use a patch on the inside, and if the puncture diameter warrants, a plug as well. In practice, though, a correctly installed plug will outlast the tread life of the tire and the patch is not necessary. Do not use the "fix-a-flat" type products from an aerosol can if the tire is work keeping, they will make it almost impossible to permanently repair with a plug or patch, and make a mess inside the rim & tire that needs to be cleaned up when the next tire is mounted.
--
No dumb questions, just dumb answers.

Larry Wasserman - Baltimore, Maryland - snipped-for-privacy@charm.net
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wrote:

I've got a plug in one of my tires, and it's been no problem. The only thing I wonder about is how easy it would be for some asshole (car radio thief, for instance) to rip the plug out with a pair of pliers.
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You've got valve-stems sticking out already, right?
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Good point.
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I don't think radio thieves have time to entertain themselves this way.

Not me. I have innies.
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wrote:

imho:
This is what I was told, and first I want to say I've repaired my tires many times with the plugs(NJ commuter for years).
1. Plugs work, but often damage the belts, causing a posible premature failure.
2. Patches internal to the tire are the best. Tire pressure can help seal them, and they do not damage the belts.
3. Fix-A-Flat Stuff, can coat the inside of the tire, but a good tire dude, or dudet, can clean off the spot, and path properly. Also, dont' keep a can forever, they rust, and every few years they come out with better material.
Just passing on what I was told. I now let the professionals do the work, and I keep my spare full of air.
tom @ www.YourMoneyMakingIdeas.com
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wrote:

Patching from the inside is best, but you can't do it yourself. You can put in a plug yourself, once in a while while the wheel is still on the car! If not, you can remove the wheel and do it by the side of the road, if you carry and air pump or a can of fix-a-flat.
When I lived in an area with a lot of glass, I had a flat maybe every year, so I carried a can of the stuff. Then I realized that if I used the can, I wouldn't have a can, so I bought another can and carried two. Then I realized that if I had a flat and used a can, I'd only have one, and I'd have to rush to the store to buy another can, so if I had a second flat, I'd still have one more can. So I carried three cans for several years and occasionally used one, and then bought a replacemnt third at my leisure. The logic that got me from one to two to three didn't seem to apply to four. They weren't all fix-a-flat, but whatever they were selling. (One brand said it worked as a fire extinguisher too, but I can't find that brand anymore.)
When I moved to Baltimore, and the suburbs no less, I stopped having flats. But a couple months ago a friend had a slow leak, had to add air from his pump every 2 days or the tire was too flat to drive on. One of my 3 remaining cans wouldn't work after maybe 23 years (maybe less, if I got the can at a yard sale or somethiung, since I moved here) but the other one, which had to be at least 10 years old, worked well and stopped his leak.
I've never had the stuff gunk up a valve. I know the pros don't like it. If I were in their shoes I wouldn't like it either.
I also bought a medium priced rasp and plug inserter, every since I super-torqued one of those tools while using the ones that come in the really cheap kits.
BTW, I think I like strings better than plugs. They still sell those, don't they. They're cheaper, they don't make the hole bigger (at least their diameter is not as big as plugs) and they're softer, it seems. There is no space to be filled. No flat actually ilnvolves cutting out some of the rubber. It's only necessary to stick the sides of the hole to the opposite sides. A string seems better (they're actually square in x-section, about an eighth inch on the side and 3 or 4 inches long. You push one end in, twist some, and pull out the tool, with more of the stink. Remove the tool, cut off the part outside the tire and you're good to go.
I've had strings last for years.
Tire repair in NYC was about 6 dollars 23 years ago. 2 years ago, here, they wanted 18! That's real money. And while he did it, he complained about the police. Scarey. For some reason I couldn't fix that one myself.

I think the surface can be cleaned in a couple minutes. They don't want to do it and neither would I, but they'll do it if they have to.
What is the story

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