National average cost of a Tire Repair for popular vehicles:
Avg. cost $60
Avg. cost $166
Avg. cost $118
What is a tire repair and how does it work?
A tire repair is a service aimed at sealing a hole in a tire that is flat or leaking air. If a tire suffers a puncture from a nail, screw, or other object, a tire repair service might allow the tire to remain in operation. Not all flat tires are candidates for tire repair, however. Those with punctures, tears, abrasions, or cuts to the side wall of the tire cannot be repaired. Neither can tires that have worn below the minimum amount of tread for safe use. Three types of tire repairs are common: patch, plug, and a combination of the two.
How do I know if my vehicle needs a tire repair?
It is not unusual for a tire on a vehicle to lose air gradually over time. For that reason, vehicle manufacturers recommend checking the tire pressure regularly. When your tires lose air, they no longer perform as they should. Therefore, the federal government mandated that each vehicle in the US (beginning with the 2008 model year) be equipped with a Tire Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) to alert its driver if a tire gets low on air.
If you notice that your tires are slightly low on air, either by the way they appear, by measuring them with a tire gauge, or by way of the TPMS, you should have them properly inflated to the manufacturer’s recommended pressure. This is not necessarily a problematic condition.
If, on the other hand, you see that a tire loses air frequently or is flat, there is likely a problem that needs to be remedied with something more than air. Same goes if you find a nail or a screw embedded in the tread.
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To repair your damaged tire, a technician has three options. In each case, the wheel and tire must be removed from your vehicle and deflated. One can be performed while the tire is still mounted on the wheel. The other two require that the tire be removed from the wheel for the repair and remounted and balanced afterward.
The first repair is done using a plug to fill in a hole in the tread area of the tire where it contacts the road. A technician will remove the foreign object if it is still in place. UThen, using a carbide cutting tool, the technician will ream out the hole to strip away any damaged cords or belts inside the hole. A special adhesive and a rubber plug are inserted and allowed to dry before the tire is inflated and reinstalled.
For the second option, the technician not only removes your wheel and tire from your vehicle, but also separates them from one another. The area inside the tire around the damage (puncture) is cleaned and prepped, and a patch is installed. The tire is remounted on the wheel, the two are balanced, and they are reinstalled on your vehicle.
The third and best option is the most comprehensive. It incorporates both the plug and patch methods, ensuring that air remains inside the tire and preventing contaminants from entering from the outside through the puncture. Once the plug and patch have been installed, the tire is mounted and balanced, and the assembly is reinstalled on your vehicle.
OTHER QUESTIONS CUSTOMERS ASK
Can I fix a flat tire myself?
Whether or not you can fix a flat tire yourself depends on a number of things. For instance, can you discern whether the tire is a candidate for a repair? Do you have the ability to safely lift and support your vehicle so that the tire and wheel can be removed? Do you know how to use a tire repair kit properly? For best results, a tire should be separated from the wheel so that it can be plugged and patched for a safe and lasting repair.
Can you drive with a flat tire?
You should not drive with a flat tire. Instead, pull over to the side of the road where the tire can be replaced with a spare or your vehicle can be towed. Driving on a flat tire is not only dangerous, you can also cause a good deal of damage, especially to the tire and wheel. Besides, if your tire was a candidate for repair before you drove on it, it certainly would not be a candidate afterwards.
Can you drive on the highway with a plugged tire?
If your tire was properly repaired with a plug (and especially if it was also patched from the inside), you should have no trouble driving it on the highway. On the other hand, if the repair was poor or conducted using substandard materials, you probably shouldn't drive on the tire at all. Make sure that any repairs done to your tires are completed by a qualified technician.
What parts are related to a Tire Repair?
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