The flat tire has been all drivers’ common roadside issue. So when a flat tire happens, it is never in a convenient situation for you. In comparison, fixing a truck tire is tougher than fixing a car tire; a truck tire requires more safety and should not be done in taking a short cut.
Whether one should go for tire repair or tire change will depend on the damage that occurred to the time, so a proper inspection will help decision making.
Are There Bubbles in the Tire?
The fastest and most certain way to find out if there is tire leakage is to check the tire pressure with a tire gauge that is accurately calibrated. If tire gauge is not available, it is to carefully inspect the tire surfaces. The focus will be watching out for possible failures in a tire. For example, When the person should look out for ballooning areas on the sides of tires or the tire surfaces. When something is swelling from a tire, examine whether air is leaking from the tire.
A technician will have precise guidelines to perform the inspection on tires. The tire has to be positioned in a safety cage and inflate the tire to appropriate pressure. After which the technician can use soap water or liquid solution to find out and locate the air leakage.
Can the Tire be Repaired?
A tire can be fixed if the puncture is half an inch or more away from the edge of the tire tread, where the internal steel belts are present. In other words, the area of repair is limited to the middle area of the tire or the center of the tire tread. Tires that have punctures on the sidewall, on the steel belts or less than half an inch away from steel belts, should not be repaired but replaced instead. If multiple punctures and damage are overlapping on the tire, then it is advised to change the tire.
The size of the puncture also matters in determining to fix or changing the tire. For light truck tire, the diameter is roughly a quarter of an inch. The tire has to be replaced if the size of puncture is more than a quarter of an inch in diameter.
When the leakage is located, it is time to fix the tire. For car tires, they can be repaired with rubber string plugs. For commercial and big truck tire repairs, they need to be filled in the puncture and patching of the inner casing. With the use of a spreader, the tire can be opened up the damaged part in the inner casing can be accessed. With the use of clean cloth, remove any foreign objects or damaged section of the tire, and clean the area. Buff and polish the puncture in the inner casing area with a low-speed drill or wire brush. By doing so, you can patch and cement the tire with a clean and tactile surface.
A Point to Note on Tire Plugs
A tire plug is an expandable and sticky object which is pushed into the damaged area of the tire from the outside. It is then used to fix to prevent air from leaking from the tire. Although the leakage may stop, the plug may still fail after some time.
When tires are repaired correctly, the tire life is extended. This can in turn help the company or owner to save up tire costs. On the other hand, if tire repair is done incorrectly, it will increase the risk of tire failure, which may, in turn, lead to car accidents and injuries. Thus, good training and practices help restore damaged tires at a fraction of the cost compared to changing new tires.