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Plugging tires?

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by yo mama, Jul 11, 2016.

  1. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    I have (another) slow leak in one of my low-pro tires (21" cyclone rims). I suspect a nail, like last time.

    Last time this happened I took my MS to the Fremont mothership and I was told they don't plug tires, so I just bought a new tire. But that was expensive. Is there any reason to avoid taking my MS to my old "Joe Public" garage guy, who routinely plugged tires on my old ICE vehicle?
     
  2. Drewflux

    Drewflux Member

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    I would not even think twice about pluging a tyre. Although the best method to repair a tyre is to patch it from the inside. I have always carried a plug kit and a small compressor in all of my vehicles
     
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  3. JPP

    JPP Active Member

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    FWIW just plugged my 19" Goodyear tire--using my compressor and standard Slime plug kit (sticky black threadlike plugs and cement). My 'DIY kit' also has a pair of pliers, yellow tire marking crayon, disposable gloves, wet wipes--all fits inside the bag for the compressor. Easy and secure. Nice to have air suspension to raise car up enough to get better access.
     
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  4. Don85D

    Don85D Member

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    I have plugged many tires over the years and none have failed. I ran these plugged tires until they needed replacement. Tradesmen plug tires constantly because they pick up nails on the job sites. The process works however I would never plug a sidewall puncture or a long cut due to glass. I would also consider the speed rating of the tire to be reduced if it has a plug but that reduced limit was always higher than I needed.

    The best advice is to not let tires run down to the wear bars as this is when they pick up nails more easily, in my experience.
     
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  5. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    thanks, y'all
     
  6. jaguar36

    jaguar36 Member

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    A good tire shop will take the tire off and do a plug-patch from the inside. Significantly more reliable than just a plug from the outside and should only cost you 20 bucks. Only concern is to make sure they use the jacking points on the Tesla.
     
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  7. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    Thank you. That's exactly the kind of Tesla-centric advice I was worried I might need.
     
  8. Skipdd

    Skipdd Member

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    I picked up a nail one week into ownership, discovered same thing as you that Tesla would not fix. I decided to buy a new tire and then took bad tire to a tire shop the SC recommended. They patched the tire and now I have a spare, albeit it's not mounted. There was another silver lining to this as well. I'm about to replace all 4 tires due to wear (~25k miles), and I will likely use the shop that patched the tire as I know they are recommended by the SC and I've already seen their operation.
     
  9. rfmurphy81

    rfmurphy81 Member

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    For those who plug themselves, could you link to the product you carry in your car with you? And also advise whether you've used it and recommend it.
     
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  10. Drewflux

    Drewflux Member

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  11. Don85D

    Don85D Member

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    The kits are essentially the same with a tool to make the hole through steel belts and a tool to insert the plug and then retract leaving the plug and glue behind. The only things to watch are that the glue needs to be sealed or it will dry out and be useless when you need it and chances are that you will not need it ever.

    If you are plugging in your home workshop/garage a power drill with small bit is a good way to make a uniform hole through the steel belts.

    Like most emergency tools you need to practise a few times to have the confidence to use it. Get an old rim and tire at a wrecker and apply a few plugs. You can check for leaks with soapy water. I'm sure that you will be impressed with the ease of making this repair. You still need a source of compressed air to refill the tire. An internal patch can be applied later if you need the speed rating to be maintained.
     
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  12. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    <sigh> it wasn't a nail - it was a cracked rim that was allowing air to escape. I swear, Tesla's factory rims are about a durable as stale gingerbread.
     
  13. JPP

    JPP Active Member

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    ...the 21's might be...the 19's are fine....
     
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  14. kort677

    kort677 Active Member

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    there is nothing special or different about the tires on a tesla, if the hole is in the tread it can be plugged. as for the low profile 21 inch rims you need to be careful with those just like you would with any other car with similar wheels.
     
  15. jerry33

    jerry33 S85 - VIN:P05130 - 3/2/13

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    The main problem with plugs is that the tire is not demounted and so there is no inspection for hidden damage (nails and such often scratch the inside of the sidewall causing a sudden deflation at some later date). So after the tire is plugged to get you going, visit a tire shop at your earliest convenience and have them inspect the interior of the tire. They can also put on a real patch at that point.
     
  16. SomeJoe7777

    SomeJoe7777 Marginally-Known Member

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  17. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    Actually, the old mechanic I used to take my ICE car to declined to patch the tire (back when I thought that was the problem) because of Tesla's fancy tires. Props to Wheel Works for at least trying to help, and then identifying the actual problem.
     
  18. yo mama

    yo mama Member

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    As (some) women say, "beauty is pain." The 21's are beautiful, in my opinion.

    ETA: apparently the "pain" is $1,510 to replace the wheel.

    [​IMG]
     
  19. kort677

    kort677 Active Member

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    not knowing exactly what your tire issue was it appears that your tire guy isn't very good
     
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