How much does it cost to have a tire plugged

Everything You Need To Know About A Tire Repair

What is Tire Repair?

Tire repair refers to the process of replacing a faulty tire with a new one or simply repairing a tiny puncture. While it sounds like a job anyone with two hands can handle, it’s recommended to go to a shop that specializes in repairing tires to ensure that you get your problem solved completely.

Why You May Need Your Tire Repaired?

Years ago, car owners frequently dealt with the superfluous hassle of repairing their tires due to the quality. Thanks to the manufacturers and present day technology, tires are meant to withstand even the worst conditions on the road. While this holds much truth, it is not uncommon for people to find themselves needing to have their tire(s) repaired due to weather or other hazards on the road.

How Much Will A Tire Repair Run You?

While a tire repair won’t cost you an arm and a leg, it will cost you a bit of your time. If you’re looking into having a puncture repaired on a tire, you’re looking at spending on average between $10 to $20 dollars. The size of the puncture makes a huge difference and will determine the amount you will spend on getting your tire repaired.

Important Facts You Should Know About Tires

  • While you can purchase your own kit and repair the tire on your own, it is recommended that if possible, you go to a licensed repair shop.
  • You have a host of options when determining a specific kit to fit your repair needs.
  • If your tire happens to endure sidewall damage, you should replace your time. Failing to do so can result in damaging your tire even further. Sidewalls cannot be plugged .
  • While repairing your tire at a shop will run you anywhere between $10 to $20, purchasing your own kit will cost you about $9. Depending on what shop, you might have the pleasure of getting your tire repaired free of charge.

What Process is Used When Repairing a Tire?

A tire plug is exactly what it sounds like; a sticky expandable plug that is inserted into the puncture in hopes of keeping the injury secure long enough for the tire to re-inflate with air. A patch is also pretty self-explanatory when it comes to description. Better known as a radial patch, this piece of material is used to seal up the damaged tire. Due to the heat caused by driving, the patch eventually melts into the tire completely erasing all notices of repair.

Most vehicles are equipped with a spare tire if you happen to be running on a flat. In some cases, you might have to go to your local car shop to purchase a tire depending on the circumstances.

The Difference Between a Plug and a Patch

While the plug takes less time and can be down without removing the entire tire in comparison to the plug, it’s more likely for a car owner to come back in a shorter amount of time for yet another repair after getting a plug opposed to a patch.


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How Much Does It Cost To Get a Tire Patched?

Tire patches are a huge money maker for auto shops. They don’t require much labor, and the cost of a patch is really low compared to most other auto parts.

But what is a good price to pay to get a tire patched? Well, that depends. If you patch the tire yourself, expect to spend $6.00. If you take it to the shop, you’re looking at spending anywhere between $10-$40, depending on the situation.

Patching tires yourself is always everyone’s first instinct, since the cost is so low. But many people are deterred when they find out they can’t, due to any number of reasons. Deciding when to do it yourself, versus taking it to the shop is what we’ll explore in this article along with why tire patches can be so pricey. We’ll outline the different reasons you should, or shouldn’t do it yourself. We’ll also examine the different types of patches and the pros and cons of each.

I used to work at a shop on a main highway. Every day, during rush hour traffic, at least 3 customers came in requesting a tire patch. Over the years, I’ve learned the simplicity of the tire patch can be deceiving. Not all tires are created equal and the same goes for patches.

‍Tire Patching Costs

When a shop patches your tire, most of the cost stems from the mechanic’s time.The wholesale price of a tire patch is less than $2.00. The glob of bead sealer that’s used to seal the patch costs less than $0.10.

But it takes the average mechanic about 15 minutes to patch a tire. Most shops charge around $120 per mechanic hour, so you’re looking at $30-$40 for time and parts. If you want the tire re-balanced, as is recommended, tack on another $13.00.

While a tire patch is among the most simple jobs, it takes time away from mechanics who could be working on higher paying, more demanding jobs. Hence, the hourly rate being applied to the job.

Tire Repair Rules

Not all tires can be repaired. There are some tests that mechanics, or you yourself, can perform. Doing these tests will give you a good idea as to whether or not your tire can be repaired.

When your tire becomes flat, the first thing to do is not drive on it. Driving on a flat tire, even for a short amount of time, can damage it beyond repair. When a tire is operated without air, the vehicle’s weight crushes the tire’s innards turning it to dust.

The next thing to do is see what caused the flat. Nails directly in the middle of the tread are a common occurrence. They can be easily spotted from a distance. If you can’t see it, running your hand around the tread will reveal the location of the nail.

Edge Test

Tire punctures that occur within 2 inches of the sidewall are considered non-repairable. This means neither you, nor the shop, can repair this.

It’s actually against the law for auto-shops to repair tires that have punctures close to the side wall. The issue is, tire patches placed close to the side-wall often result in tire blowouts, due to the shifting nature of a tire’s sidewall to tread relationship.

A good test to measure the distance between the puncture and the sidewall is to place your thumb in that space. If the puncture is a thumbs width (or more) away from the side wall, you’re in the clear.

If not, sadly, it’s time for a new tire.

Length Test

The length of the puncture is the next thing to look at. Most nail punctures are just as wide as the nail itself. In this case, with the puncture being so small, it’s ok to plug the tire yourself. But if the length of the puncture is 2 ½ inches or more, you cannot patch it.

You cannot patch it, or a shop cannot either. Punctures this large are not repairable, because patches aren’t meant to hold in air over that big of an area.

The inner tire liner doesn’t become fully sealed, even with the largest patches available. If your puncture is more of a gash in the tread, it’s time for a new tire.

Patching A Tire

Fully patching a tire requires you to complete the following steps.

  1. Remove the tire from the car.
  2. Dismount the tire from the rim.
  3. Clean the inside tire liner with some sand-paper like material.
  4. Clean the puncture hole with a drill, or some other type of long object.
  5. Place the patch’s tip through the puncture hole, and pull it through until the base of the patch is flat along the tire.
  6. Add some bead sealer to the base of the patch.
  7. Mount the tire back on the rim, and rebalance it.
  8. Place the tire back on the car.

So as you can see, the full, official way to patch a tire is quite involved. This is why you can see prices up to $45.00 for a simple patch.

If the tire has to be rebalanced, that’s around $13.00 and if it needs new valve stems, or a TPMS sensor, this can also tack on extra costs.

This patch is so effective that it saves you from having to purchase a new tire. You can enjoy the full length of the tire as if no puncture ever happened. Patching a tire can be quite the life saver when you’re in a jam.

The obvious issue here is that tire machines aren’t commonplace in the average driver’s house. So doing it yourself this way isn’t really feasible, but the method we discuss next can be done almost anywhere.

Tire Plugging

Tire plugging is a simple fix applied to various types of tire punctures. The majority of tire punctures can be repaired by doing a plug yourself.

To plug a tire, just push the plugging strip with the T-Handle in as far as it will go. Then, with all your might, quickly pull the t-handle out. This will plug the tire, and all that’s left is for you to cut the excess plugging strip away.

Tire plugging is looked down by Tire Shops because they consider it not fully seal the surface. But I’ve plugged well over 500 tires, and have never had an issue. Most independent shops are fond of tire plugging as well, since it keeps prices down for them, and the customer.

Tire plugging can be done by yourself, in your driveway. If you don’t feel comfortable doing it, call up an independent shop and ask if they plug or patch tires. Most likely, they probably offer both, but they’ll charge half for a plug, compared to what they would for a full patch.

When To Do It At Home

Plugging tires, while usually a simple task, can turn into a complex issue. For example, if you plug a tire, and you can still hear a slow hissing noise, it can be a pain to hunt down the source of the leak.

Or if you spray the whole tire down with soap in order to locate the leak, and can’t find it. You might start to question your sanity. Don’t! These issues can take up hours, even for master techs.

There’s actually a machine in some tire shops that puts the tire under water using a crane-like object from above. Even this machine still fails sometimes, and mechanics are left scratching their head. So if you start to encounter any issues of locating the leak, or plugging a leak, it’s time to take it to the shop.

If the tire is totally flat when you walk out to your car, you should be able to use your spare tire, and repair the issue at home with a plugging kit. But if you plug the tire, and it’s still leaking, take it to the shop and let them repair it.

If you are questioning the length test or edge test results, it’s also recommended that you take it to the shop. Some mechanics will say, “use double the amount of plugs”, to fix large gashes. This is wrong. If one plug can’t fix it, take it to the shop and see what you can recoup.

But for the majority of situations, where a nail has punctured your tread somewhere in the middle of the tread face, it’s totally acceptable to purchase a plug kit, and do the repair yourself. It will save you a couple bucks, and you will have had the opportunity to go under your car to do a quick visual inspection. Or take off the tire and glance at the brake pads.

How to seal a tubeless tire quickly and easily - Life hack

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An easy way to quickly restore tire tightness and continue your journey. True, for this you need to have the right wheel repair kit with you.

Maxim Stroker

“Catching” a nail, screw or piece of wire in a wheel on the track is a trifling matter and somewhere even everyday. However, it turns into a serious "trouble" if this happens, for example, at night or a couple of tens of kilometers from the nearest tire fitting point. In theory, in this case, you need to put a spare wheel and go further. Although, in the case of a family trip on vacation, the process of digging it out from under a pile of junk in the trunk can turn into an adventure that deserves a separate story. Be that as it may, often the trouble does not come alone and the spare tire can be broken literally on the next kilometer. After all, where one carnation fell on the road, there may well be another one, and another, and another ...

With a couple of crippled wheels, you'll either have to wait an unknown amount of time for a tow truck to be sent in, or fix it yourself. Therefore, in a not particularly urbanized area, it makes sense to carry a repair kit with you to eliminate punctures in tubeless wheels. In principle, it can be of any manufacturer. The main thing when choosing it in the store is to make sure that the “drill” included in the repair kit is not very toothy and sharp. After all, his task is simply to clear a puncture hole in the tire, and not to break its metal cord. The second recommendation: the flagella, which are supposed to close the puncture hole, should be plump and reinforced with thin wire or plastic threads.

And the third criterion for choosing a wheel repair kit is the obligatory presence of a tube of glue in it. Yes, yes: there are also “glueless” sets on sale, which are essentially useless.

So, we notice that the wheel is flat (or has already been blown off) and proceed to eliminate the problem. Most often, the hole in the rubber is not visible. Therefore, to begin with, we hang out the damaged wheel by raising the car on a jack, and inflate it with a pump or compressor to 3-4 atmospheres. If even after that it is not possible to detect damage by the whistle of escaping air, we methodically and consistently wet the entire surface of the wheel and look for bubbles at the puncture site.

Having found a puncture, we take the “drill” from the set and pierce the damaged area with it several times. So we clean the surface of the hole before gluing. Next, we smear the “drill” with glue from the set and again immerse it in the hole. We repeat this operation and, leaving the “drill” sticking out in the hole smeared with glue, we take out the flagellum and insert it halfway into the eye of another tool - the “overgrown needle” (sometimes called the “awl”), also available in the repair kit. We coat the flagellum with glue and, quickly pulling the “drill” out of the hole, insert our “needle” there so that the ends of the flagellum remain above the surface of the wheel tread. Next, we pull out the “needle-awl” and wait a few minutes until the glue grabs. After that, we pump up the wheel and carefully cut off the protruding tails of the flagellum with a knife. Everyone, you can move on.

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    How to fix a tire puncture? Ways to eliminate tire punctures for a car


    Despite the objective importance of the spare tire, not all drivers always have it with them. Some do not carry a spare tire out of hope or belief that their tires are invulnerable. Others deliberately take this step, as they stocked up with a special tool in advance, which, if necessary, can eliminate a tire puncture along the way. What else can be used and how to do it right? Let's figure it out.

    Contents :

    1. Tire puncture repair
    2. Popular products that can effectively repair tire punctures

    Tire puncture repair

    Conventionally, all methods for express tire repair can be divided into two categories:

    • long-term repair, which involves the full operation of the retread;
    • a short-term solution that allows you to drive to the nearest tire shop.

    Consider ways to restore a damaged tire on the road. The first three methods are temporary. The latter, with the right approach, allows you to completely restore the tire.

    1. Preventive measures (i.e. preventive). A special sealing compound is pumped into all four undamaged tires. While driving, it is inside the wheel in liquid form. If the tire suddenly loses its tightness, then this composition, leaving together with the air, clogs the slot in a few seconds. This method is relevant if you have a long trip under time constraints.
    2. Foam repair is an easy and popular way to repair tire punctures. First, the damaged area is localized, if necessary, a foreign object is removed. Sealants are supplied in containers with a nozzle that is screwed onto the tire valve. The contents of the balloon are completely blown into the tire. As a rule, this procedure takes 1-2 minutes. By the time the canister "expirs", the damaged area has time to seal. In addition, small diameter wheels (up to R14) are almost completely inflated due to the contents of the cylinder. Immediately after use, it is recommended to drive 300-500 m so that the sealant is evenly distributed over the entire surface of the tire and does not cause imbalance.

    1. Short-term repair with a self-tapping screw. The old grandfather method is applicable if the puncture has a small diameter, and there is no foreign object left in the tire body. A simple screw or self-tapping screw (preferably larger in diameter than the size of the puncture) is taken and screwed into a hole on the surface of the tire. The self-tapping screw can be borrowed from the fender liner or plastic interior elements. This method will not eliminate the air leak, but will allow the car owner (perhaps with several swaps) to get to the nearest tire service.
    2. Using a special tire repair kit. Today, the so-called first-aid kits for tires are especially popular. They include the following components:
      • awl with abrasive edges;
      • special eyelet awl with split tip;
      • crude rubber;
      • raw rubber activator.

    After removing the foreign object, the hole is processed with an awl with abrasive edges: this tool must be inserted into the puncture and cleaned and developed with intensive reciprocating movements several times. Then the raw rubber tow is removed from the package and inserted into the eye of the second awl so that both ends are the same length. The hole in the tire and the raw rubber is treated with an activator. Next, the awl is inserted into the puncture in such a way that small ends of the tourniquet, about a centimeter long, remain outside. After 5 minutes, the excess remaining on the surface is cut off. This method can also successfully eliminate small side cuts.

    There is a technique that allows using wire and several bundles of raw rubber to get rid of even extensive side damage to tires. However, it is quite difficult to implement and not every driver will be able to implement it.

    Popular products that can effectively repair tire punctures

    Consider a few well-known tools that are most widely used to repair punctures:

    1. Hi-Gear Gold Tire Doctor Emergency Sealant. Supplied in a convenient bottle with a hose and a tip for connecting to a tire valve. It works in the same way as most sealants: the container is thoroughly shaken, after that a hose is attached, and the contents from the container are completely pumped into the tire. The maximum diameter of the repaired hole is 4.5 mm. This is almost always enough to repair punctures caused by nails and screws.

    1. Hi-Gear Tire Doctor. Belongs to the category of preventive means. Sold in various containers. The volume is selected depending on the diameter of the wheel. The composition is poured into an undamaged flat tire, after which the wheel is inflated to working pressure and is operated without any reservations. Hi-Gear Tire Doctor is able to successfully close 8-10 punctures up to 6 mm in diameter.
    2. Done Deal Tubeless Tire Repair Kit. Includes a standard set of two awls, several strips of raw rubber and an activator. The effectiveness of this tool has been repeatedly confirmed in practice.

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