Wheels and Tires

Does this plugged tire look safe?

  • Last Updated:
  • Nov 2nd, 2020 1:09 pm
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[OP]
Sr. Member
User avatar
Dec 16, 2007
651 posts
203 upvotes
Mississauga

Does this plugged tire look safe?

Got a nail on the front passenger tire. Hubby took it to the only opened tire place on Sunday. In and out in 5 mins.

Online research says string plugs are temporary fix. I took it to the dealer and asked to see if repair is OK and to redo proper plug/patch combo. I was expecting them to say I need a new tire but the Dealer said plug was OK. I said don't you need to do a proper plug/patch too and service consultant said sometimes all you need is a plug and rambled on about best not to break the bead.

I left and they didn't charge me anything. I go to the dealer because the car is a lease and it says I have to do all repairs there, plus if they scratch the rims, it's on them (a Dealer scratched the rims on a previous car I had doing a tire patch). I have 8 months left in the 27 month lease.

Based on the picture, does the puncture/plug look too close to the tire shoulder for a proper repair. Do I need to buy a new tire?

Would I be in danger of potential tire blowout driving with a plug? I drive my toddler daily to daycare so this is nagging me and I'd rather be safe.

Do I just go back to the dealer and buy a new tire and have them install it? I suppose I can keep the plugged one as a spare tire and put some cheap rims on it?

It sucks as the tire has 21,000km on it only.
20201015_175805.jpg
Last edited by dragonflower77 on Oct 16th, 2020 2:44 pm, edited 1 time in total.
13 replies
Jr. Member
Nov 25, 2007
172 posts
66 upvotes
Ottawa, ON
plugs are usually fine. keep an eye on your tire pressure.
Sr. Member
Feb 17, 2015
741 posts
823 upvotes
Canada
Plugs are safe. I had one before and it lasted the life of the tire. Lucky you it did not hit the corner.
Member
Dec 1, 2009
211 posts
149 upvotes
No dealership or reputable shop would repair that. Too close to the sidewall. According to the TIA (Tire industry Association):

A plug by itself or a patch by itself is not an acceptable repair because the plug does not permanently seal the innerliner and the patch does not fill the void left by the penetrating object, which allows water to enter the body of the tire and starting corroding the steel belts.

Puncture repairs are limited to the center of the tread area. If there are punctures or damage in the shoulder or sidewall of the tire, it is not repairable.
Member
Aug 30, 2020
230 posts
281 upvotes
liplip wrote: No dealership or reputable shop would repair that. Too close to the sidewall. According to the TIA (Tire industry Association):

A plug by itself or a patch by itself is not an acceptable repair because the plug does not permanently seal the innerliner and the patch does not fill the void left by the penetrating object, which allows water to enter the body of the tire and starting corroding the steel belts.

Puncture repairs are limited to the center of the tread area. If there are punctures or damage in the shoulder or sidewall of the tire, it is not repairable.
True, a dealership / shop would not repair because of liability reasons

But I have done 3 repairs with a plug close to the sidewall, one of which was right at the edge, and none have leaked or failed.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 26, 2008
6303 posts
1947 upvotes
BC
dragonflower77 wrote: ....... I took it to the dealer and asked to see if repair is OK and to redo proper plug/patch combo.
.........
A plug & patch combo wouldn't be an option there. A patch needs as flat an interior surface as possible for best long-term adhesion. Too much curvature and flex in the shoulder area.

The tire shop that did the plug would know that, and would also have judged that the angle that the foreign object went in was ok.
(That is, not angled toward the sidewall where they couldn't safely use the plug insertion tool.)

I had a plug just like that done by a Pirelli dealer, equally close to the shoulder, at less than 8K kms on a new SUV. Lasted until the tires wore out at 90K kms.

The risk is probably no different than the likelihood of sudden damage in one of your other tires from encountering a chunk of sharp metal or glass in the road.
Have to balance the risks in life.

It's not surprising that the tire industry provides the advice it does.
Both the dealership and the tire place that did the plug had ample opportunity to sell you a new tire, but chose not to extract money from you without good cause.
Deal Addict
User avatar
Sep 22, 2005
3774 posts
2881 upvotes
Ottawa
I too had a plug (not that close to the shoulder) that lasted the full life of the tire. Repair was done by an independent tire and rim shop.

Had a puncture close to the shoulder on another tire like you have and had to replace with a new tire.

I had another brand new Michelin Primacy A/S tire with a nail puncture within a month and was repaired from the inside by Kal Tire in the summer of 2018 and no problems since.

If it was repaired properly then it should be fine. I trust that the tire shops know what to do with the punctures and repairs since they do this for a living everyday.

Here is the information on tire repairs by the TIA
https://www.tireindustry.org/tire-maint ... 20scrapped.

What is your spare tire, a full size or a smaller donut? If full size then I'd swap the spare. If no full size spare then I'd also start shopping for a replacement if you're not comfortable driving daily with that repaired tire and keep it as a spare instead.
Deal Expert
User avatar
Jun 12, 2007
15679 posts
4736 upvotes
London
liplip wrote: No dealership or reputable shop would repair that. Too close to the sidewall. According to the TIA (Tire industry Association):

A plug by itself or a patch by itself is not an acceptable repair because the plug does not permanently seal the innerliner and the patch does not fill the void left by the penetrating object, which allows water to enter the body of the tire and starting corroding the steel belts.

Puncture repairs are limited to the center of the tread area. If there are punctures or damage in the shoulder or sidewall of the tire, it is not repairable.
dragonflower77 wrote:
..... I have 8 months left in the 27 month lease.

Based on the picture, does the puncture/plug look too close to the tire shoulder for a proper repair. Do I need to buy a new tire?

Would I be in danger of potential tire blowout driving with a plug? I drive my toddler daily to daycare so this is nagging me and I'd rather be safe.

Do I just go back to the dealer and buy a new tire and have them install it? I suppose I can keep the plugged one as a spare tire and put some cheap rims on it?

It sucks as the tire has 21,000km on it only.
He's right. It's perfectly "safe" until it's not. A least put the tire on the rear until the lease is over

A lot of leases have optional tire wear and protection packages bundled in. Check yours to see if this might be covered, but beware that there might be a hefty deducible
[OP]
Sr. Member
User avatar
Dec 16, 2007
651 posts
203 upvotes
Mississauga
I ended up just buying another tire and paid $350 total at Active Ross. They told me it was too close to sidewall and would normally not patch it. I figured it could hold or not, but the peace of mind and safety is worth more than wondering if the plug will hold.

The same dealership I leased it from didn’t have the same tire and the old curmudgeon told me that a plug is only temporary, which is the opposite of what another service tech said last time I brought it in. They even said I needed to change both tires to make them the same as they only had the V speed rating and not the H speed rating of model of my tire, even though the last guy I talked to said it was fine to just change one and go up in speed rating, but not down.

So with the dealership techs giving me different opinions, I figured I might as well just buy it now from someone else who had the same tire and not worry about it as I have a feeling when I return it, they’d make me purchase a new tire or two since this tire is discontinued!

I didn’t buy the tire package during the lease, so no hazard insurance for me. It was something like $300 as well.

I did keep the old tire...maybe I can make a spare, but then the plain black rims are $100.

Cadillacs don’t come with a spare tire anymore! You used to be able to buy a kit for an extra $300 or so, but I think they even discontinued that.
Jr. Member
Jul 3, 2017
113 posts
113 upvotes
I have done numerous plugs on various width of tires over last five years and all held up tire pressure fine without any leaking. They lasted until tires wore out, like many other posts had mentioned.

If you have any uneasy feeling about using plugs, then go with patch from inside (if it can be patched) or replace tire(s). I wouldn't hesitate to use plugs from my own experience and carry a kit in my car trunk along with tire compressor, just in case, when travelling any long distance.
Deal Addict
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Jan 14, 2007
3381 posts
620 upvotes
GTA
Just curious, if you try and return a leased vehicle with a plugged tire, will they force you to replace it? I don't know if AutiVin checks for that when they perform their inspection.

Regardless, if it were me I'd just replace the tire as OP eventually did for the safety and peace of mind.
Deal Fanatic
Oct 26, 2008
6303 posts
1947 upvotes
BC
The_Professor wrote: Just curious, if you try and return a leased vehicle with a plugged tire, will they force you to replace it?.......
In general, they couldn't distinguish between a recommended interior plug/patch combo and this exterior plug without dismounting the tire.

So I doubt they have such blanket rule. More likely any rule would involve any repair within a certain distance to the tread edge or sidewall, whether plug/patch combo or plug alone.
But they have lots of other easier options to nit pick - sidewall abrasions, uneven tread wear, dry rot.
Deal Fanatic
Jun 24, 2006
8624 posts
3067 upvotes
8 months remaining. 1/2 of which are winter months, and thus, should have winter tires on anyway.

I would be fine with that for 4 months of driving.

Not much risk of a catastrophic blow out really, more likely a slow leak, or nothing.
[OP]
Sr. Member
User avatar
Dec 16, 2007
651 posts
203 upvotes
Mississauga
With the last lease we had, we plugged the tire on the truck. We literally had 2 months left into the lease. Autovin comes to your house and depending how you parked, they may not notice the plug. The guy just checked the car from the driveway and was focusing on threadwear. I don’t think he even noticed the plug. We did have to pay for a new windshield as we had a chip in it, so $500 was retained from the deposit.

In this case, the dealer itself Is the lessor and owns the car, so they may hoist the car up and have the tech do a thorough check and based on all the flip flopping from the different service tech about being able to patch it or not at that dealership, I have a feeling they’ll make me pay for a new tire or two at the end of the lease (because their supplier are sold out of my discontinued tire). Hence why I just bought a new tire. Might as well use the new tire now and not worry about a leak or potential blowout if I’m going to have to pay for a new one when I return it in 8 months.
macnut wrote: In general, they couldn't distinguish between a recommended interior plug/patch combo and this exterior plug without dismounting the tire.

So I doubt they have such blanket rule. More likely any rule would involve any repair within a certain distance to the tread edge or sidewall, whether plug/patch combo or plug alone.
But they have lots of other easier options to nit pick - sidewall abrasions, uneven tread wear, dry rot.

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