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Flat tire options

Discussion in 'Model 3: Driving Dynamics' started by Bobbo8, Nov 20, 2019.

  1. Bobbo8

    Bobbo8 Member

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    I was wondering if anyone had a Model 3 flat tire and called Tesla Road service. If so what where your options, replace the tire and at what cost OR would you have been better off just using tire foam, get back on the road and get to a tire store and possibly buy a tire a lot cheaper.
     
  2. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

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    You may want to look into a tire plug kit. They're easy to use and are often way more effective than the tire foam. A kit like the one in the link enabled us to drive the car to a tire store for them to replace the tire, saving us the time, trouble, and expense of a tow or more complicated solution. Depending upon the severity of the damage, you may need to reinflate the tire after plugging it, so having a compressor of some sort (including the one that comes with an optional foam canister) can be useful, too.

    My tire kit includes:
    • A combination air compressor/foam tire sealant device
    • A plug kit
    • A good pair of pliers
    • Work gloves
    This all fits nicely in the cubby adjacent to the foot well.
     
  3. ultimate_99

    ultimate_99 Member

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    Good suggestions.
    I just curb murdered a brand new X-ice making it slowly leak and had nothing in the car to help. I had to skip going to the movie and race to Firestone and get one of my summer tires to temp keep me going. I ordered a Tesla combination air compressor/foam tire sealant device.
     
  4. McQ14

    McQ14 Member

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    Agreed. This is great advice. Do you recommend any particular compressor kit? I get differing opinions on the Slime kits available. Reading the reviews on Amazon doesn't clear it up either.
     
  5. Bobbo8

    Bobbo8 Member

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    My original question was has anyone had experience with a flat and Tesla road service. What was the outcome, a new tire and what was the cost?
     
  6. Rockster

    Rockster Active Member

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    My only experience was six years ago, so Tesla probably handles things differently now. In my case, roadside assistance dispatched a flatbed that towed my S to the nearest service center and they replaced the tire, for which I paid. The tow was free.
     
  7. Chickenlittle

    Chickenlittle Banned

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    3 yrs ago here and on model x. Tesla sent tow truck that swapped tire out and I brought car in and they swapped back my repaired tire. Don’t remember cost other than it wasn’t more than what my local gas station would charge to plug tire. It did come with warning not to exceed 80 mpg on repaired tire so I eventually replaced tire
     
  8. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    Car with flat will 'always' be towed so just be SURE you have towing coverage in your insurance policy.
    --
     
  9. jjrandorin

    jjrandorin Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums

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    Yes, I have. Tesla roadside will contact one of their local "towing partners" on your behalf, and if that towing partner has a loaner wheel, they will bring it. The loaner wheel is always a 19 inch wheel without TPMS (per what I was told when this happened to me) regardless of what actual tesla tire size you have (18,19,20).

    My car has is a Model 3P with the 20s, and I had a discussion with the roadside assistance person about this, asking direct, pointed questions about why they would send a loaner 19 inch wheel for my car with 20 inch tires, and they told me that their engineers had determined that the 19 inch wheel was ok with any of the stock tire sizes tesla sells on the car.

    Since there is no transmission, I guess that is why they determined they can do this. Anyway, when they come with the 19inch loaner tire, they also bring a loaner tire agreement you need to sign. The tow truck driver will take your damaged wheel to the nearest service center, or, if you want, you can take your own wheel yourself to deal with it. The loaner 19 does not have TPMS so the car throws errors about not being able to read the TPMS. Tesla roadside sends you this fact in an email before hand as well, regarding the lack of TPMS. Guessing they get a LOT of complaints about the wheel still reporting flat... enough that they have a boilerplate email / text they send about it.

    The loaner wheel is marked to show it belongs to tesla (unfortunately I have hit 2 potholes this year that have damaged my 20s so am somewhat familiar with this process). In one case, the loaner wheel had red paint smeared on the various spokes in the shape of clumsy "T"'s. In the other case, the loaner wheel had 2-3 tesla red stickers on the spokes.

    Tesla has had an issue with people stealing the loaner wheels (as in, getting a loaner wheel and never dealing with their own, original wheel) even though they sign an agreement saying they will do so. Anyway, you have 72 hours to deal with your wheel. If you had the tow driver take it to the SC, then you make an appointment with the SC for them to sell you a tire / rim (or rim and tire) at whatever the rate is for that.

    If you took your own wheel, you can go wherever you want to repair, replace it, and then take the loaner back to tesla SC.

    In my case, once both rims were damaged and I wanted OEM replacement rims, and tesla charges, I believe 715 a rim for the OEM 20s. The OEM 20 inch tires are PS4S's and those are an expensive tire, I think they charge low 300s for those not including mounting / balancing / new TPMS.

    Tesla roadside is pretty communicative during the " I am stuck" process, with updates on the tow drivers progress etc. My tow driver got stuck in traffic so I was stuck for 1.5 hours the second time waiting for him. With that being said, They told me where he was at least 2 different times, and that he was stuck in traffic, so I felt communicated to.

    Also, all things considered, there are WAY worse ways to be stuck in a car than in your tesla. I was sitting there in my climate controlled car, took a conference call meeting (possible in other cars of course), and when done flipped on netflix and caught up on an episode of a show I am watching (not possible in other cars, at least not on the cars infotainment system).

    I even called my wife and told her to watch episode X of Y because I was watching it in my car while I was stuck. Fairly painless process actually, all things considered, especially because you can take your own wheel and get it repaired somewhere you want to, if you want to do that. I didnt want to be bothered (and my wheel was busted on the sidewall anyway so needed replaceing, and I wanted tesla TPMS etc. No worry about whether some tire shop was going to torque it down correctly or whatnot. Thats what I wanted, and I was willing to pay tesla replacment costs to get it. Not mandatory though.
     
  10. jjrandorin

    jjrandorin Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums

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    No, no it wont. Depends on whether the towing company they contract with in the area has loaner wheels. It absolutely will NOT "always be towed", as I have had to use it twice in the past 3 months unfortunately.
     
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  11. Bobbo8

    Bobbo8 Member

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    Thanks so much for the info. Would you have considered using “form sealant” in order to get back on the road and then deal with the tire later?
     
  12. jjrandorin

    jjrandorin Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums

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    Because teslas with stock tires (at least model 3s) have tires with acoustic foam in them, I have read that foam sealant does not flow properly in those tires. Have not experienced it myself, but read it and it makes sense, so no I would not carry any sort of foam sealant. I would either carry a plug kit, or use the roadside assistance. Having experienced roadside assistance from tesla first hand twice now (unfortunately), I will not bother with carrying a plug kit. In my case, neither times would a plug kit have helped me anyway since both times the tire was burst on the sidewall.
     
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  13. wycolo

    wycolo Active Member

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    #13 wycolo, Nov 22, 2019
    Last edited: Nov 22, 2019
    > Car with flat will 'always' be towed [wycolo]

    Hope you noticed the scare quotes. Admittedly my experience began when TM hardly existed and was rural, ex-urban. Good to hear that spare wheels of proper size can now be dispatched quickly to the roadside unfortunates and that they know exactly how to safely jack up a Tesla. This is progress. I've carried a full-size spare in my frunk for 7 years but the only incident was a double blowout, so I had to be towed anyway*. Out in the vast space of North America if you are lucky to get a service response, you will be towed - it's what they do.

    * No good deed ever goes unpunished.
    --
     
  14. jjrandorin

    jjrandorin Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums

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    I noticed the quotes but it appeared to me that those were emphasis on your word always, meaning doubling down on it. I did not know there was some other meaning to using the quotes you did in that manner.

    Also, looking at your signature and seeing the car you have, I would also say that, this is the model 3 section and my response and experience in this situation are only with the model 3. It is highly likely that a roadster would always have to be towed, as the towing partners probably dont have loaner wheels for those.

    Might be the same for the model S as well, but I dont know... I dont have those models. I also dont believe a model 3 would fit a spare, even a donut, in its frunk (but havent tried).

    Mentioning all this, because, in your situation, its possible nothing has changed... especially if one is making the towing call from rural america. The part I was disputing was the same word you quoted. "Always" is a strong word.
     
  15. jkoya

    jkoya NA2 NSX

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    If Tesla brings a 19" loaner, is it an OEM wheel and has the wheel been machined to accommodate the Performance Model's 3mm raised lip at the hub ?

    I decided to get the Modern Spare spare tire kit, as there are a lot of sections in Northern CA with no mobile service...
     
  16. jjrandorin

    jjrandorin Moderator, Model 3, Tesla Energy Forums

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    Its an OEM 19, but I am not sure what has been done to make it fit on the performance model. I just know it does, since I have had to use one on two different occasions in the past 2.5 months or so.

    I was joking with one of my co workers that, "I had calculated my savings over my BMW 435 in fuel costs, and it is approximately 2k a year. Unfortunately, I have spent more than that in the year I bought the car in replacing rims and tires".
     
  17. jkoya

    jkoya NA2 NSX

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    Sorry to hear you damaged two wheels and tires from pothole damage. I just got a set of 18" wheels (Titan7 T-S5 and they are machined to accommodate the lip of the Performance Model) in preparation for a road trip.

    In my VW R32, I hit a pothole and blew out a sidewall and bent the wheel. Of course, no mobile phone service and never saw a CHP on Hwy 101 South (near Eureka, CA). Luckily, I had a spare tire....
     
  18. Ficheh

    Ficheh Member

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    Here's my long flat tire story: I picked up my LR RWD Model 3 on 7/1/20. After 16,818 miles my tires prematurely wore out (that long story was posted as a reply to tires wearing out early). After bringing in my Model 3 to have the roof replaced (a rock or something hit the edge of my roof panel in just the right position to both chip and crack my roof), the tech told me my tires were worn out (2/32 in the rear and 4/32 in the front). I went ordered new Michelins and had them installed by Costco (their fairly regular tire sale). This was 2/26/20. Then the pandemic hit and driving stopped. On 4/4/20 I decided to bring a little joy to people I know. So I headed out to Krispy Kreme and bought 4 dozen various donuts. I asked for 11 bags to split them up in. I put 4 in each bag (1 had 5 since 1 family had 3 kids). Put each bag into a zip lock along with a note saying I just wanted to brighten their day and that it was from me (as opposed to some stranger trying to poisoning them). I head off to deliver 11 packages of donuts (I kept a few for myself). 5 deliveries no problem, people seemed uite happy and surprised. I'd call them and leave the bag @ the door, once they answered I'd wave and drive off to my next delivery (pandemic and all). My next delivery was going to be in Belmont (the previous one was in Millbrae). I hop onto 280 south. After a few minutes I notice the warning on my screen "Low Tire Pressure", I check and it says my rear right tire is @ 20psi. I think, ok I'll stop and fill it up before continuing. Less than 20 seconds later the warning becomes more urgent, I look and it now says the tire is @ 3psi. I pull over and call Tesla. A long conversation ensues. I ask them if after they change my tire, if I'll get "my" tire back after the repair as opposed to some other fixed tire. She says they can't guarantee that. Now I've had this tire on my car for all of 5 weeks and it has a whopping 126 miles on it. I want my NEW tire back. After much more discussion she says they can tow me to a Costco for repair (I told her I had just bought the tires from Costco). I then ask if Costco repairs tires on Sat (since it wouldn't be too helpful to tow me to a place that couldn't do it that day). She called them and found out that they were able to do it. While I wait for the flatbed tow truck, CHP shows up and says he can wait for the tow to show up (very nice actually) but I say it won't be long so it isn't necessary. The tow truck comes and asks if I have someone coming to get me because I can't ride with him (covid and all). I don't, so I ask if I can ride in my car? He says it'll be bumpy but I could (I'm sure if it wasn't a flatbed I wouldn't've been allowed to). I have to sit on the passenger side. He drives me down to Costco on El Camino. Thankfully Costco only took an hour or so to fix it. The lines to go into the warehouse were horrific, although everyone was 6 feet apart and all were wearing masks. I didn't go in. The 2.5 hour delay took me out of the mood for donut delivery and I went home in a bad mood. I ended up delivering the rest of the donuts the next morning (Sun). At least it only cost me time (which seems to be plentiful during this pandemic) since Tesla covers the tow and Costco includes tire repairs with purchase.
     
  19. Grump99

    Grump99 Member

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    We keep a tire plug kit and a bicycle pump in the trunk. Works like a charm.
     

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  20. SSonnentag

    SSonnentag Rocket Scientist

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    Our X had a sidewall blowout in the middle of the Arizona desert, 30 miles from the nearest town with a tire shop, with 113-degree temperature outside. AAA said, "we MIGHT be able to get a flatbed truck out to you tomorrow." Tesla roadside service got a flatbed truck there in about 2 hours from 90 miles away, the nearest one available. The very nice driver let us ride with him to the tire shop where we left the X for 2 days while a tire was ordered and installed. We took a taxi home from the shop for a cost of $100, including tip. Since then, we have purchased a Modern Spare tire kit for both our S and X. Rural flats are no fun.
     

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