Tyre Punctures: Repair or Replace?
While the technology that exists in our cars today is far advanced from that of 50 years ago, there is one age-old problem that continues to strike us all from time-to-time: the flat tyre.
Despite the research and development that has gone into creating robust tyre materials over the years, nothing can prevent the dreaded puncture, requiring instant attention at the side of the road.
Some incidents could be rectified with the help of a puncture repair kit. However, at other times, only a full replacement will do – particularly if your tyre is already running the legal tread depth of 1.6mm across the central ¾ band pretty close.
So which cases can be solved with a quick puncture repair, and which require you or your breakdown assistance to get the spare tyre out?
Puncture Repair Kit
While it is not always a guaranteed method of repairing a flat tyre, a puncture repair kit can sometimes be enough to get you home or to the nearest garage without having to change a tyre.
The majority of repair kits use a sealant that is injected into the tyre valve, before the tyre is re-inflated via a foot pump or compressed air canister. However, it’s important that these sealants are applied as soon as possible to a punctured tyre, as driving for extended periods on a flat can cause structural damage to both the tyre and wheel.
Any puncture that occurs outside of the central third of the tyre tread (on the side wall, for example) cannot be repaired by a sealant kit, and will necessitate a tyre change.
Time for the Spare Tyre
Many repair plugs and sealants can be effective for long periods of time, but without being able to remove the tyre and check for internal damage, puncture repairs should only be considered as a temporary measure. Changing the tyre completely is the best way to ensure that you are not endangering safety by driving on a damaged tyre.
Breakdown services will be able to change to your spare wheel by the roadside, and this should be enough to get you to a garage for a full replacement to a new tyre.
While it is not a legal requirement that your car carries a spare tyre at all times, if one is fitted to your vehicle after a puncture, it must still comply with laws governing tread depth and pressure – regardless as to whether it is a temporary measure or not. For this reason, don’t always expect any new car you buy to have a spare wheel as standard – some may come with just an emergency puncture repair sealant.
Keelers Service Centre are the leading providers of branded and budget tyres in the South East. Our team are on hand to replace all worn or damaged tyres, promising to beat any price quoted by competitors. We even provide a free puncture repair kit with all wheel balance services. Get in touch with Keelers Service Centre today to find out more.← What is Covered in an MOT Test? Premium vs. Budget Tyres →