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-   -   Tires cannot be patched more than twice (http://message.snopes.com/showthread.php?t=29651)

snopes 01 May 2008 05:51 AM

Tires cannot be patched more than twice
 
Comment: While having a tire repaired at a Goodyear store they told me the
"bad news" was that there were 3 holes in the tread. The "good news" was
that they had a replacement tire in stock. They said that the government
(USA) would not allow them to fix more than 2 holes. After I told them to
put the tire back on and I would find somebody who would patch the tire.
In the end they patched it.

A work associate told me that the two hole limit regulation was true.
However, this person is known to repeat or email whatever she hears
without checking the facts.

I was unable to turn up anything in my searches at the NHTSA. gov website
or anywhere else on the web.

UEL 01 May 2008 05:57 AM

In Manitoba, it was (in the early '90s) that no two patches could be within a specfic distance to each other. I'm thinking 10 cms, but I could be wrong. Other than that, we could patch all we wanted.

robbiev 01 May 2008 07:24 AM

I have been told more than once that the tires on my car (run flats) cannot be patched at all, however, I have contacted the Goodyear Company and Firestone Company directly multiple times and have been told that they CAN be and that any shop that says otherwise is either misinformed or simply trying to sell me a $400 tire.

I have received other bad information at car repair shops in the past, so I tend to be sceptical of their advice.

Troberg 01 May 2008 10:54 AM

My tire shop happily patch them, and say that the patch fuse together with the rubber in the tire, making it a seamless fit and as good as the original tire.

A patch is slightly misleading, though, as it's not a typical "slap on patch". They drill the hole nice and round, then insert a rubber rod which fits snuggly and fuse with the tire (and no, that sentence is not code for something naughty).

If the tire is too bad to fix (or if you have done bad welding on the rim...), you can always use an inner tube.

Mycroft 01 May 2008 10:59 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robbiev (Post 597466)
I have been told more than once that the tires on my car (run flats) cannot be patched at all


I think that they would be too damaged to patch if you used them long when they were deflated

Seburiel 01 May 2008 12:58 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Troberg (Post 597524)
(and no, that sentence is not code for something naughty).

YOMANK, Troberg - and I think it wouldn't have been quite as funny save for the word 'naughty' at the end - it was the perfect topper!:lol:

tribrats 01 May 2008 02:52 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Troberg (Post 597524)
My tire shop happily patch them, and say that the patch fuse together with the rubber in the tire, making it a seamless fit and as good as the original tire.

A patch is slightly misleading, though, as it's not a typical "slap on patch". They drill the hole nice and round, then insert a rubber rod which fits snuggly and fuse with the tire (and no, that sentence is not code for something naughty).

If the tire is too bad to fix (or if you have done bad welding on the rim...), you can always use an inner tube.

That is a plug. They are done from the outside. The tire doesn't even have to be taken off the vehicle.

A patch goes on the inside of the tire. The inside is roughed up, a cement glue is put on, allowed to dry to tacky, a patch with an adhesive is put on, and the edges sealed with more cement (at least that's how it was done when I worked in a garage back in the early '90's).

The only time we couldn't repair tires is if the puncture was too big or too close to the sidewall. I've seen tires come in that already had half dozen patches and still put them on. Perfectly safe and legal, at least at the time. (again, early '90's)

robbiev 02 May 2008 11:18 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Mycroft (Post 597530)
I think that they would be too damaged to patch if you used them long when they were deflated

Apparently not. I had a tire that was flat for several days (over the weekend and no one could get the tire). Come Monday, I went and had it patched and never had any more problem out of it.

Troberg 02 May 2008 02:05 PM

Quote:

That is a plug. They are done from the outside. The tire doesn't even have to be taken off the vehicle.
Nope, they did it from the inside. If nothing else, whatever caused the flat needs to be taken out.

tribrats 02 May 2008 02:13 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Troberg (Post 598915)
Nope, they did it from the inside. If nothing else, whatever caused the flat needs to be taken out.

Yeah, we'd break the tire down if we couldn't see the nail or whatever from the outside when doing plugs. The ones we used were done from the outside but that was way back in the early '90's. I'm not surprised if there are different methods or materials now.

Arriah 02 May 2008 03:30 PM

I've heard this 'law' too. I never really thought about it before but it does sound very like a tire shop inspired idea.

[semi related story] The first time I ever needed a tire patched, they had to take the tire off because I had somehow managed to get a nail like this in my tire head first.
http://images.lowes.com/general/n/na...ublehead_n.jpg

All the guys from the back came out front to ask how I'd managed that (no idea) and to see who was brave enough to drive that car with those brakes. The manager said he'd do a free inspection on the brakes for me but he was afraid that if he touched them they'd fall apart and then I couldn't drive home. I sooo do not miss being 18. [/semi related story]

Rowsdower! 12 May 2008 04:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by robbiev (Post 598831)
Apparently not. I had a tire that was flat for several days (over the weekend and no one could get the tire). Come Monday, I went and had it patched and never had any more problem out of it.

Were you driving on the flat? That's the operative difference between wrecking the tire and not wrecking the tire. My father's girlfriend has cut handsome grooves into her tires at least twice by driving on flats. Each time she ended up needing a new tire. The rims can grind and cut up the interior pretty badly.

Also, just to interject a thought I had when I first read the OP... I thought I remembered once reading that 2-fixes rule on the instructions of the fix-a-flat aerosol can. I may be delusional though and I don't have a can handy to check on it. Anybody out there have a can and some free time to read it?

I know for sure that the plugs say that you can't use them on sidewalls. I also know for sure that I have ignored this rule many times and so far without incident.

Dark Angel Cryo 12 May 2008 09:22 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rowsdower! (Post 609655)

Also, just to interject a thought I had when I first read the OP... I thought I remembered once reading that 2-fixes rule on the instructions of the fix-a-flat aerosol can. I may be delusional though and I don't have a can handy to check on it. Anybody out there have a can and some free time to read it?

I think i remember seeing somthing on one of the news channels about cars that were in really poor condition that had been sold over ebay and other online places. I remember that one of the problems they listed was that the tire had had fix-a-flat used on it too much and a lot of the treading was gone, thus making it unsafe. I think that that is where this comes from, that one can only patch it so much before the damage to the treads becomes such that it is unsafe to drive on them. Just my theory though.

-Dark Angel Cryo
prefers his tires not to be flat

Roadsterboy 13 May 2008 02:30 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by Rowsdower! (Post 609655)
Were you driving on the flat? That's the operative difference between wrecking the tire and not wrecking the tire. My father's girlfriend has cut handsome grooves into her tires at least twice by driving on flats.

I believe that robbiev has run-flat tires on his car. For run-flats, I've heard it both ways, that if the tire simply deflates you can get it repaired, but driving on the run-flat tire once its flat will wreck it and you have to get a new one.

On the other hand, run-flats have stiffened sidewalls, so this might be the same thing.

-RB

Troberg 13 May 2008 07:27 AM

Quote:

I believe that robbiev has run-flat tires on his car. For run-flats, I've heard it both ways, that if the tire simply deflates you can get it repaired, but driving on the run-flat tire once its flat will wreck it and you have to get a new one.

On the other hand, run-flats have stiffened sidewalls, so this might be the same thing.
There is also a lot of luck involved. I've wrecked a good quality tire in the 100 m it took me to realise that it had sprung a serious leak and get the car to stop, but I know people who have driven 3 km on flat tires (and it was not run-flats) to a repair shop and it was still fixable, although the rim was destroyed.

In my case, the layers of the side of the tire had separated from each other as the tire collapsed, probably because they where pinched between the rim and the asphalt.

Doohickie 21 May 2008 02:30 PM

I had a tire that was patched in three places at one time. It was losing air and when I took it into the shop for repair, they found two nails and some kind of metal clip had punctured the tire.

ray2047 23 May 2008 03:04 AM

I run on $15 used tires heaven knows how many times they have been patched or plugged and get more as I use them. I have never had my tire shop say no to any patch though they do point out side wall patches are iffy at best. Once had a flat on the wrong side of town where the rich people live and used Fixiflat to get to a service station. They claimed a tire could not be fixed if you had used Fixiflat. BS of course to sell me a tire. My regular tire shop had no qualms about fixing it.

As to driving on a flat tire that can actually be the safest thing to do if you are in heavy traffic. Sure you will probably ruin the tire if you go any distance but isn't your life worth more then a tire. I have actually seen people changing tires in heavy traffic when there was a parking lot less then a hundred feet away. Stupid.

tribrats 23 May 2008 03:36 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by ray2047 (Post 623212)
They claimed a tire could not be fixed if you had used Fixiflat. BS of course to sell me a tire. My regular tire shop had no qualms about fixing it.

Not complete BS. The fumes are (were? I don't know if they changed the formula) flammable. Plus it's harder to clean the inside to patch it. The gunk doesn't just scrape off and it's too soft to sand off. You can't apply the patch to it so you have no choice but to clean it.

Because of the way they are prepped for the patch, there's an extremely high chance of sparks. After my first FaF tire flaring up in my face (have to practically be inside the tire to see what you are doing), I was one of the mechanics that refused to patch tires that had used it. Some of the others in the shop didn't care but burning my arm once was plenty enough for me.

After a while our shop flat out refused to repair them after another guy did get hurt really bad from a flareup.

Plugs don't spark so I can see no problem with doing them but our shop only did internal patches (which at the time were much, much safer than plugs and I'm still hesitant to use them).

FaF also makes it harder to balance the tire.


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