With every revolution, a tyre runs the risk of being punctured or damaged by a foreign object, and since the average tyre will experience millions of revolutions throughout its lifespan, it is usually a matter of when you get a flat, not if. Knowing the difference between a professional tyre repair and an improper tyre repair could be critical to your safety and that of your passengers’.
When an object such as a nail breaks through the inner liner of a tyre, the most immediate concern is the loss of air pressure. Prolonged pressure loss results in loss of the tyre’s potential mileage and increased drag resulting in more fuel used. But the main risk is that the instability around the penetrating object can lead to tread separation and blow out.
Some things to remember when considering a tyre repair:
- A tyre repair should only be completed by a tyre service technician who has been trained to do a complete, proper repair.
- The tyre technician should remove the tyre from the rim so that the inside can be thoroughly inspected. Many times, a simple object such as a nail in the tread can result in severe damage to the sidewall that cannot be seen on the outside of the tyre. Therefore, on-the-wheel wheel repairs like string plugs are not recommended and must be considered dangerous as you do not know what damage is in your tyre. A string plug repair must only be used as a temporary “get you home” product.
- The only way to properly repair a tyre is to demount it from the rim so it can be inspected on the inside, remove the damaged material, fill the void with rubber, and seal the inner liner with a plug patch unit.
- A plug by itself or a patch by itself is not an acceptable repair because the plug does not permanently seal the inner liner and the patch does not fill the void left by the penetrating object, which allows water to enter the body of the tyre and starts corroding the steel belts which will lead to a blow out in the future.
- The use of sealants or emergency inflators that contain a sealant is not recommended as long-term solutions to a flat tyre for the same reasons.
- Puncture repairs are limited to the centre of the tread area. If there are punctures or damage in the shoulder or sidewall of the tire, it is not repairable.
- If the injuries are close enough so that the repairs overlap or the injuries are directly across from each other, the tyre cannot be repaired and must be scrapped.
- Never repair tires with a tread puncture larger that ¼-inch (6mm).
- Tyres that are worn to the tyre’s tread wear indicators or 1.6mm remaining tread depth in any area of the tread should not be repaired.
- Not all tyres can be repaired. Specific repair limits should be based on recommendations or repair policy of the tyre manufacturer and/or type of tyre service.
When tyres are repaired improperly, the results can be deadly. Be sure to ask your tyre service technician if industry standard procedures are used in the repair process. When a puncture is within the limits established by the industry and properly repaired, you can expect the tyre to continue to deliver thousands of kilometres safely and return reliable performance.
Naas Tyres offers permanent ‘best practice’ repairs as advised by tyre and repair products manufacturers and leading safety standards in the industry. Permanent repair €15.00 with a lifetime warranty. Temporary repairs or plugs are not done at Naas Tyres.