Before getting started, let it be known that if you have a tire that needs fixing or replacing, the best thing to do is go to one of your local tire places. Tire places specialize in, well, tires, of course. They will know exactly what to do and how to get the job done properly. However, it is understandable that at time, tire places are just not available. Whether it’s after hours or you are in the middle of nowhere, sometimes, it’s good to know what to do when you have no other options. Having said that, let’s take a look at the best way to repair a tire in an emergency.
If you are going to be able to help yourself in an emergency then you are going to need to have emergency kits in your car. This should include everything from tire jacks to plugs to gas cans to jumper cables and more. This article is specifically about plugs and how to use them. Plugs cost about five dollars so it’s not a big deal to make sure you have a few on hand for when a nail decides to stand itself upright in the road.
Side note: Don’t ever plug a sidewall or attempt to. The sidewalls are under a different kind of pressure and strain then the middle section. Plugging sidewalls often end in blow outs so it’s not a good idea.
- Moving on! The first step is to find whatever the item is that punctured your tire. You’ll need to spin the tire around until you find. Generally speaking it will be a metal piece of something. Hopefully it’s big because that will make it easier to pull out. However, before pulling it out there’s some things you need to do but the first step, is finding the object.
- Before removing the offending object, mark just below where the nail or screw is with a piece of tape and a sharpie. This may seem pointless but it’s very hard to find the hole again once you have removed the nail so you’ll need to know exactly where it was, especially if it’s dark outside.
- Now you can take out the nail or screw or whatever metal piece is causing your life this trouble. If the piece is big enough you may be able to pull it out with your fingers. Otherwise you’ll need pliers or a screwdriver for a screw.
- Take a look in your plug kit. Most tire places will sell a whole kit with the plug itself. You need to find the file like tool. Push this into the hole and move it in and out several times in order to roughen up the area.
- Now take the little tar worms and peel one off and thread it through giant needle looking tool. You might have to pinch the end of the worm to get it through the eye of the needle. Center the worm in the eye.
- Push the end of the tool into the hole of the tire. It’ll be hard to push it but both the worm and the tool have to go in, in order to plug the hole. Push it in until only about half an inch is left on the outside. Pull the tool straight out, leaving the worm in place. You can trim the excess worm or not, it’s up to you. You should now be able to fill your tire with air to the proper tire pressure.
If the job is done right then it will hold for a very long time. You may not even need a new tire at all if you do the repair job correctly. There’s no reason to throw away a perfectly good tire because of a simple hole. Quality tire repair doesn’t only have to be done at tire shops, if you follow the instructions of this article then you should be able to help yourself without too much hassle. It may take some time if you’ve never done this kind of repair before, but once it’s done once, you’ll know exactly what to do next time. However, hopefully, you won’t have a next time! Maybe it’ll happen to a friend and you can help them out.