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Got screwed again...

7133 Views 36 Replies 16 Participants Last post by  GregBrew
Second time in the last 3 months I managed to get a screw in the tire (see picture). The tire started to deflate fairly quickly. Stopped, reinflated tire. Couldn't visually find the screw. Air still going down. Stopped again, found the screw, removed it and pumped to about 40 psi. Drove for about 10 km., stopped, let some air out to correct pressure and then drove on. So far so good with pressure holding. The trick seems to be to remove the object put air in, drive a while and that allows the goo in the tire to seal it up. Works like a charm though I don't want to keep testing this technology!


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These can be repaired with conventional inner patches. Tire stores don't like to do it because of the yukk they have to clean off to do it. I've lost the link to the Michelin website page that shows how. I got it to try and convince a Michelin dealer to patch the tire with no luck--They said it couldn't be done, and Michelin refused to contact them to explain otherwise.

Which is why I carry a copy of the official Michelin document (with pretty pictures) explaining the procedure.
Today I discovered a 10mm 3/4" bolt in my front tire. At home I unscrewed / removed it and expected air to rush out.
The self sealing tire did its job.

I would imaging that the self-sealing function will work better if the tire is warm from driving. If/when I get a puncture, I plan to remove the pointy object, verify that the leak is minimal/non-existent, then drive it for a while to warm up the tire (and goo) and check it again. Top up the pressure and be good-to-go...I hope.
I picked up a nail or bolt of some sort- I think while a local road was being resurfaced. It looked something like a roofing nail- flat round head, but the shaft was much thicker and came to a dull point.

The tire sealed around it for a while, but it began to lose pressure. I filled it and didn't see the nail at first. One morning it was down to 22 psi so I started looking and found the nail. I pulled it, but the tire went immediately flat. I tried to re-inflate it, but it would not hold pressure- you could hear it hissing out. I moved the car back and forth a few inches to see if I could re-distribute some of the self-seal goop inside, but no go.

So at that point it was either tow the Bolt in for repair or borrow a jack and remove the tire/wheel myself and use my wife's car to take it in for repair.(It was so flat that driving it as it was would have destroyed the side walls).

With no jack available in the neighborhood at the moment, and not wanting to deal with a tow service, I decided to re-insert the nail. It worked. The tire held 38 psi and I drove it about 5 miles to my repair guy. He said we could try plugging it (which is frowned upon these days?) but typically they would remove the tire from the wheel and patch it from inside. He wasn't sure if that would work with the goop inside, so we went with the plug (with an assist from the goop).

It's been about a week and a half and so far, so good. I haven't put that many miles on it yet, but I intend to do so before the end of the month when we set-off for a 700+ mile road trip to Vermont and back. I am still suspicious of the plug, but it seems fine so far..

The point of the story here is that the self-seal is only good up to a point (no pun intended). If the puncture is a larger diameter than a typical nail/screw, then it won't work- or at least it didn't for me.

For now, my work-around was to get the portable air compressor and extra goop that they sell as a Bolt accessory. If the same sort of thing happens again, hopefully I could re-inflate the tire well enough to limp in for help somewhere.

I don't want to lug around a spare, but when stuff like this happens, it makes you think that maybe the old way was the better way...

I carry a little electric compressor like many others here. Heck, IIRC, it's included as standard equipment for our Canadian contingent.

I also carry a plug kit. I've used plugs for decades, and have never had a problem with them. I think the biggest risk with plugging is that if inadequate glue is used, and the seal is deficient, air can get between layers in the tire, thereby becoming an even bigger (but hidden) liability later. This is why I ream the hole extremely well, use copious amounts of the included glue for my single plug, and wait at least thirty minutes before inflating. (The glue is going to evaporate in it's little tube before you need it again anyway, so buy another tube of glue.) There's also the risk that the tire can be damaged on the inside (and not visible from the outside) by driving it while flat. This shouldn't be a problem if you're paying attention to the TPMS.
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