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What Are Run-Flat Tires And Can You Plug Them?

How Long Does A Tire Plug Last

You are all dressed up and driving to an important meeting when all of a sudden, your car seems to skip to the right a bit. Your car rides rough and you suddenly realize that you are riding the rims. You pull off to the side of the road to put on your spare tire, wrinkling your outfit in the process. 

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Not only can getting a flat tire be costly and time-consuming, but it can also be very dangerous. You could get hit while you're trying to change that tire.


Fortunately, there are run-flat tires that are designed to continue driving after they lose air pressure. They are built with reinforced sidewalls that enabled them to rotate without air. 


Run-flat tires will let you drive for a longer time period than a regular tire. They have set speed and distance limits. the manufacturer generally sets the standards. These kinds of tires will give you more space in your trunk because there is no reason to carry a spare.


What to Look for When Buying Run Flat Tires

You can buy run-flat tires from most manufacturers, such as Goodyear, Alliance, and Michelin. Not every vehicle will be able to accommodate run-flat tires. If your car didn’t come with them, you may want to call a tire shop in advance, to see if the work can even be done. You can also research it on the internet.


Plugging Run Flat Tires


There are some run-flat tires that can be plugged by putting a patch over the tire. Your ability to patch a run-flat tire will depend on the kind of damage your tire has endured, the size of the rupture, and the manufacturer. 


There are manufacturers that recommend replacing run-flats with splits. Read your warranty carefully. If you repair a run-flat tire, you may well void your warranty. Even if it is possible to repair the split, it will be difficult and the speed rating of the tire will be lost. You will not even be able to drive it over around 40 miles an hour.


There are two different types of run-flat tires; self-supporting or a support ring system.

Professionals who specialize in mounting and balancing tires have said that the run-flats unique construction makes them a bit hard to mount and demount.

Tire manufacturers tell customers to reference the auto manufacturer’s replacement tire instruction when determining whether or not a run-flat tire should be patched. The BMW owner’s manual says that you should never replace flat run tires. However, there are many other manufacturers who say that you can patch them. Whenever you fix any kind of tire, you should always consult your owner’s manual.


You may have a hard time finding a mechanic to repair run-flats. The majority of auto manufacturers do not stock run-flats, so you may have to wait a few days to replace them. 

Inspection and Repairing a Tire

When a car gets a flat, you will take it to a tire shop or auto body shop to get fixed unless you are an aspiring mechanic yourself. A tire seller will take the tire off of the car to ascertain the damage. Tires must be inspected inside and out to locate the leak. You also have to inspect the walls of the tire for tears. 

There is little that can be done about a tear in a tire’s wall.  It can be hard to find a hole in the wall of the tire. You can submerse a tire in water to look for bubbles. The bubbles tell you where the hole is.

If the tire shop worker has located the hole and determines that they are able to repair it, they will plug the outer layer of the puncture. To do this, a worker will scrape out the hole. Then they will score the rubber inside it so that the tire plug has something to grasp. A patch will be used on the interior of the tire. This will seal the interior liner. 

The work should take about half an hour. If a tire shop worker says that they can do it faster than that, you should go to another shop. When they work that fast, they have no intention of checking the inside of the tire. If the inside of the tire is damaged, it can cause it to blow out in traffic and that can be very dangerous.

When you get a flat tire, you may want to get your tire fixed before replacing it. It is better for the environment and lighter on your pocketbook. A proper repair will help if you maintain air pressure if you have a slow leak.

When Should I Have My Tire Inspected?

Optimal car maintenance should involve a monthly inspection of your tires. If there is any damage, or if you are experiencing continuous pressure loss, you can take your car to a tire shop or full-service autobody shop and see if a repair is possible.


Cost of Flat-Run Tires

Flat run tires are quite a bit more expensive than regular tires.  A full set of regular tires will run you around $600. Run-flat tires typically cost $150 to $500 for each tire on a standard vehicle. Most tires have to be replaced in pairs. A lot of tire shops will give you a deal on a set of four.


Get to Know Your Tires

It is always a good idea to know a thing or two about the tires on your car. That way, you can have an informed discussion with mechanics or tire shop employees. You should know the age of your tires. That way you will have a better idea of when to get them checked. 


You can find out a tire’s age by checking a four-digit number that is on the tire. The numbers follow the letters “DOT.” They will show the week and year your car was made. For example, if the numbers read “DOT3214,” then that means the tire was made in the thirty-second week of the year 2014. Even if your tires look pretty good, you should replace them every six years. 

Monitor Your Tire Pressure

If you have a newer car, it should have a tire pressure monitoring component, or TPMS, that monitors the pressure in your tires automatically. It will tell you when the pressure is running low. 


TPMS warning lights only come on when the tire pressure is very low. The tires are usually dangerously low by the time you get this kind of warning.


Monitor your tire pressure monthly, so that they stay full. If you have good tire pressure, you can extend the life of your tires. It will also improve traction and handling when you drive in bad weather. You can check your tires with a gauge that cost a dollar or two. You can fill up your tires as needed at most gas stations for only a few dollars.

Check Your Tires for Damage

You should always watch for wear and tear on your tires. It is more advisable to do routine maintenance on your car than to have a blowout when you are driving. you should look at your car for both damage and any kind of foreign objects. there could be a nail or a piece of glass stuck in your tire that you may not notice when you are driving, which can cause a blowout.


There is a  “penny test” you can do to check the tread of your tires for damage. Place a penny, with the head facing down, in several treads of the tires. If the tread is deep enough, you will not see Lincoln’s forehead on the penny. If you can see this forehead then your tread is dilapidated enough that you can get your tire replaced.


In some cases, your car may be so old that it is simply not worth replacing the tires. If you are ready for a new car, you will have several options for where to sell the old one. Each of them has its benefits and drawbacks.


Sell Your Car Online

Depending on the condition of the car, you may be able to sell it online. There are many websites that will let you list your vehicle for a monthly fee. They may have discounts if you buy several months of advertising. They do this because you may have to list your car for several months before actually finding a buyer.


These sites will let you put up several pictures of the car along with its basic specs. You will be in competition with many other sellers if you list your car this way.


When you do get somebody interested in your car, you will have to take time out of your day to show it to them. They may decide not to take it or they may try to talk you down in price. If your car is very old or not running, the only people interested in buying it will be mechanics. They may not want to buy the whole car but rather a part or two. You may end up with a parted out car on your property that you will have to pay to have towed.

Use Your Car as Trade-In

When you go to buy a new car, the salesperson is likely to offer you a trade-in allowance for your old vehicle. They may not give you much money for a trade-in. If your car is older it will be of little value to them.


They may also offer you a very good price for your old car. If they do this, go over your final offer with a fine-tooth comb. Question any charges that you do not understand. They may tack the amount of money that they give you for the trade-in right back onto the final price of your new automobile. 


It is best not to tell them about your old car when you go in to look for a new car. Let the salesman make you a final offer and then tell them about your old car. That way, they will have to give you an honest price. 


Donate Your Vehicle

There are several different charities that take used cars as donations. They normally sell your car to a junkyard and keep the proceeds for their organization. They will give you a receipt for a tax write off when you donate your car.


Although it is a great idea to donate to charity, you may want to eliminate the middleman and just sell your car to a junkyard and give the money to the charity of your choice. This means less work for them.


If you have a couple of different charities you want to support, you can divide the money between the two of them. If you only want to donate a portion of your money and keep the rest, you can do that as well.


Sell Your Car to Us

Cash Cars Buyers is far and away the best place to sell your used vehicle. We often pay up to $500 for junk cars.


All you have to do is fill out our simple form. We will ask you for your name, telephone number, and email address. We will also need to know the make, model, year, mileage, and VIN number of your car.


When we get your information, we will call you back with an offer. If you accept our offer, we will make an appointment with you to come to get your car. We will pay you in cash and tow the vehicle away for free. It really is just that easy.


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