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Suggested Tire Repair Policy for Tesla

Discussion in 'Model S: Driving Dynamics' started by Ed Hart, Feb 13, 2016.

  1. Ed Hart

    Ed Hart Member

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    Try to put yourself in this position before you respond:

    A few weeks ago, we punctured a tire on the way to Las Vegas. We were able to use the "inflate with sealant" pump I had bought from Tesla. I called the Tesla Service Center in Vegas, and I asked if they could make repairs. They said, "We can take care of you." So, with one additional stop for a re-inflation, we made it from Primm to the Tesla service center in Vegas. The tires had, by my estimate, at least another 5000 miles on them, but when we arrived we were told that Tesla will not repair tires. I ended up up buying two new tires for $750.
    The service folks were, as always, quite pleasant, but I did not feel like I had any other option...and no option was presented to me. There may have been a tire store or service station just a few blocks away, but none was suggested.
    Frankly, I did not want to risk going back on the highway to find a tire store with a tire with temporary sealant keeping it inflated.

    1) How many folks would like to see a change in Tesla's policy to allow plugging in those situations where good, safe service is likely after repairs?

    2) If Tesla will not make a change to the current "No Repairs" policy, how about a policy that tells callers a) Tesla does not repair tires, but b) provides connections to the nearest tire stores where repairs are possible and c) arranges for a tow if necessary?

    I have had about a dozen tire plugs over the last 30 years, and never had a problem with any of them. So....my views on this are highly bias towards plugging.

    Anyone? Anyone?
    Bueller?
     
  2. bluetinc

    bluetinc Member

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    Would you mind sharing a little more info on the damage to the tire, such as type of puncture, size, and location on the tire.

    Thanks, Peter
     
  3. jerry33

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

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    Because Tesla is a manufacturer, they have to follow stricter standards than a dealer or tire store.

    Plugs--at least the modern ones--hold air just fine. The problem is that if the tire is not dismounted to inspect the interior you don't know whether or not there is hidden damage that might bite you later. Whether there is damage or not is just luck of the draw.
     
  4. freeewilly

    freeewilly Member

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    I'm not familiar with sealant tire repair also, all the cars I had has spare or run-flat.
    I'm wondering after applied sealant in the tire, is it even repairable? How is the tire company going to clean the sealant from the tire?
     
  5. Ed Hart

    Ed Hart Member

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    I was led to believe that for repair, just put in the plug. The small amount of liquid goop supposedly just coats everything inside. When a new tire is installed, it is cleaned up, as was the cast in my tire replacement. Anyone know differently?

    - - - Updated - - -

    There was a single puncture on the tread about 1.5" off centerline, well within the radial belt edge.
     
  6. Xenoilphobe

    Xenoilphobe Active Member

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    I'm not sure I would have risked the plug option - this is a heavy high performance sedan - i probably would have chosen just to replace.
     
  7. NorCalSJ

    NorCalSJ Member

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    I would plug the tire in a heart beat and just keep an eye on it
     
  8. Xenoilphobe

    Xenoilphobe Active Member

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    Most tire manufacturers state the following even with plug and patch systems:
    Repair of Speed Rated Tires
    Tires that are speed rated may be repaired with the following procedures; however, these tires would no longer maintain their speed rating.
     
  9. Zroiron

    Zroiron Poodle Pack Leader

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    Bummer! There is a Huge Tire Store (TireWorks) just down the street at the traffic light!
     
  10. aus

    aus Member

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    I usually ask for a patch because that requires removing the tire so they can make sure it's ok.
    I've driven on a low tire and thought all I needed was a patch, but when the took the tire off, there was a few handfuls of tire crumble inside the tire. If it's deflated and you can pump it up, you save the tire.
    Now if you can get air in the tire and keep it pretty inflated, then it's fine to patch or plug. Some even propose to plug it and then patch it.

    Most tire shops just tell you to give the tire repair guy $10-20 and they don't even create any paperwork.

    And NO manufacturer will ever off patching or plugging a tire.
    OP could have just got on his phone, hit Yelp or even google maps and found a local tire store. Having said that, I've also seen a mess inside a tire after spray can sealant is used to get going after a flat.
    .
     
  11. jerry33

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

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    The goop can be hard to clean up and there is the possibility it will damage the TPMS sensors (I assume what Tesla sells won't, but don't know first hand).

    A plug will stop the leak, but there is always the potential for hidden damage that can't be determined without dismounting the tire. Also the goop may hide the damages. So put in the plug to get you going, and then at some more convenient time get the tire inspected (hidden damage usually takes a few months to become a problem. Of course, it depends on the damage so the key word is usually).
     
  12. ArtInCT

    ArtInCT Always Learning

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    I would have gone to a tire shop vs bothering Tesla regarding a tire repair or replacement.
    The tricky part is the TPMS sensor... once you goop the inside of the tire then the TPMS sensor would be a concern and probably not handily stocked anywhere else but Tesla Service.

    Depending upon where the puncture was and the overall condition of the tire at the time, a hot interior patch would work.
    Have done this in the past with high speed rated tires but was warned by the shop that the speed rating was gone as a result of the patching.
    BTW, any puncture on the sidewall or really large gash in the tread... the tire is toast...

    Tire needs rebalancing after the patch.
    Probable cost of pull, patch, remount and balance is $70 ish.
     
  13. dhrivnak

    dhrivnak Active Member

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    It was a tire so I would have and have gone to a tire store. 9 times out of 10 they can repair for like $10. And I have never had a problem with a patch or a plug. But as others have suggested I would not race or do high speed driving on a plug. But normal driving is fine.
     
  14. dgpcolorado

    dgpcolorado Member

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    Do you ever have any concerns about whether a tire store knows the proper lift points on the Model S (is it obvious?) and whether they will use proper torque settings for the lug nuts?

    Just curious. Perhaps it doesn't matter much.
     
  15. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    The tire stores around here all have a manual or computer system to print the lift points and torque specs right on the work order.
    Having said that ... I always watch the work being done and confirm the correct procedure with the tech. :cool:
     
  16. ArtInCT

    ArtInCT Always Learning

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    this is a very very valid point. As an owner and car guy I would certainly make it a point to instruct and show the tech and service personnel the data.
    In fact I think somewhere on my computer here, I have a single sheet with that data which is very probably an excellent thing to have printed out an in
    the glove box for such a situation. Very good point. I need to be prepared for this. In fact the guys at the Xpel shop put cars up on lifts as they work on the
    sides... I need this sooner vs later.
     
  17. tstafford

    tstafford Member

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    Jacking and Lifting Instructions are on page 158 of the OM. I printed this page and keep it in the glove box to be able to give to repair folks just in case.
     
  18. Ed Hart

    Ed Hart Member

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    Printing out that page is a very good idea. Doing it right now! Thanks!!
     
  19. FlatSix911

    FlatSix911 918 Hybrid

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    Here you go ... for TMC reference

    Tesla%20Lift%20Areas.jpg

    Jacking and Lifting.PNG
     
  20. ArtInCT

    ArtInCT Always Learning

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    I put both of those pages, along with the towing instructions and tow eye
    stuff into a few protective page holders and they will go into the glove compartment.
    I annotated the 125 LBs of Torque for the Wheel Lug Nuts on the jacking and lifting area.
    I think Tesla should create a card on sturdy glossy paper with that info on it.

    Thanks guys this is all super good. Appreciated.
     

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