Edmunds.com article on the endangered spare tire

Discussion in 'Fred's House of Pancakes' started by Mendel Leisk, Dec 11, 2015.

  1. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    46,021
    32,859
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
  2. 2k1Toaster

    2k1Toaster Brand New Prius Batteries

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2010
    5,987
    3,790
    0
    Location:
    Rocky Mountains
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Yup. Why bother lugging a spare around for 99.999% of the time when when the event happens, you don't use it?! If you are traveling through places with no services for hundreds of miles like the Outback, then you'd be stupid not to have a full spare. And extra gas. And all the other things that come with going out of civilization. But for everyone else driving down paved roads, the spare is useless.

    And how many people know how to change a flat tire these days?
     
  3. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    95,321
    43,209
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    what good is roadside assistance if they don't have a spare to put on your car?
     
  4. Stevewoods

    Stevewoods Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2014
    601
    813
    0
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    II
    On our families cars, we have at least one flat tire every, oh, 18 months. If we had no spare, that means a big hassle. All my kids and my wife know how to change a tire. Have the "gorilla tire wrench" in all the cars.

    Taught my Boy Scout troop how to change tires. It is not a lost skill.

    upload_2015-12-11_10-58-16.jpeg
     
    bisco likes this.
  5. 2k1Toaster

    2k1Toaster Brand New Prius Batteries

    Joined:
    Feb 14, 2010
    5,987
    3,790
    0
    Location:
    Rocky Mountains
    Vehicle:
    2006 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    In 11 or so years of driving hundreds of thousands of miles including about 20 cross country (Ontario, Canada to Colorado, USA) roadtrips I've only had 1 flat tire. I was in town, hit a giant pothole, tire popped. Drove it about 1/4mi down the road with hazards flashing at a speed that didn't move the digital odometer and had a new tire put on. In and out within the hour $200 poorer.

    Roadside assistance will tow you. If I get a spare in the middle of nowhere I plan the AAA car will take it to a tire shop and get repaired, and my Uber will arrive roughly the same time to complete my journey or take me back to my house to grab a different vehicle.

    (FYI, I do know how to change a tire, I just don't see the value in it)
     
  6. Stevewoods

    Stevewoods Senior Member

    Joined:
    Jun 10, 2014
    601
    813
    0
    Location:
    Seattle, WA
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    Model:
    II
    Or, what about most of the people in the U.S. (I assume, don't know) who don't have roadside assistance. Never having had it, I assume (once again, don't know) that it is somewhat like calling a tow truck, which if you are lucky, may be there in 30 minutes, but in my experience, it is usually an hour or more. Swapping a flat for a spare takes about 15 minutes (unless your Prius wheel is "welded on" LOL).
     
  7. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    95,321
    43,209
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    i don't disagree on how many flats people get, or how many people can change their own tyre. i just think it's nice if i were to get a flat, if i, a good samaritan or roadside assistance could change it and get me on my way, rather than being towed somewhere and who knows what time of day or night.

    there are enough scary stories here about toyota's free 'roadside assistance' to keep a spare in the car.:cool:
     
  8. frodoz737

    frodoz737 Top Wrench

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2010
    4,294
    2,320
    33
    Location:
    Texas
    Vehicle:
    2015 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Spare wheel assemblies are used to get you back on your way "quickly" when/if you get a flat. Removing spares from vehicle line ups is done by manufactures only to save production cost, space and because we let them. "Maybe" it saves less than 1 mpg on vehicles like a Prius, but of course you can leave your kids, pet, partner, groceries, ect...behind and maybe save more.

    There are two basic groups out there when it comes to having/using spares. 1) Those that can't, won't or don't for what ever reason. 2) Those that just change their flat and move on with their day. Flats NEVER happen at an opportune time or in an ideal place...and sub-contracted tow trucks will get there when they get there.

    The way we see it, get dirty and be on you way in minutes...or...poke glass, stay clean and put you day on hold. Let's be honest here folks, for able body persons I think getting dirty and lack of hands on experience are the real reasons most won't change their flats...or insist on one.

    To each their own.
     
    #8 frodoz737, Dec 11, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2015
  9. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    46,021
    32,859
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Even if you're not thrilled about changing tires yourself, having the spare available is going to make the options available to the road side assistance guy a lot easier and efficient.

    First car I owned had a full-size spare, but that was the last. The switch to temp spare had me grumbling a bit, but not too much: it is a stop-gap measure, guess I'm ok with it.

    But the trend to sealant-and-pump dismays me. If you read through the link, there's some contention that you can salvage a tire that's had sealant applied, but it has to be done fast, and it's a labour intensive mess to deal with (expensive).

    This latest "shift" makes having a flat increasingly expensive and inconveniencing.
     
    #9 Mendel Leisk, Dec 11, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2015
    Robert Holt likes this.
  10. frodoz737

    frodoz737 Top Wrench

    Joined:
    Aug 26, 2010
    4,294
    2,320
    33
    Location:
    Texas
    Vehicle:
    2015 Prius
    Model:
    Four
    Yes...even for "Those that can't, won't or don't for what ever reason", having an on-board spare and tooling saves time and money.
     
  11. tochatihu

    tochatihu Senior Member

    Joined:
    Apr 10, 2004
    8,287
    3,208
    0
    Location:
    Kunming Yunnan China
    Vehicle:
    2001 Prius
    Driving Prius on 4 'donuts' (somewhat overpressurized) was one of those fuel economy trials that never happened. Ah memories...
     
    Robert Holt likes this.
  12. Robert Holt

    Robert Holt Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2013
    1,312
    876
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    I found that our 2012 hatchback's spare tire well, would in fact accommodate a full, standard-sized spare tire on an OEM alloy rim with a slight mod to the rearmost section of that plastic tub. The increased weight was 10-11 pounds as the steel rimmed "doughnut" was surprisingly heavy and the OEM rim surprisingly light. So if you have a Gen III and the standard tires, having a full-sized spare is an easy mod and well worth it IMHO to avoid the difficulties with either the doughnut or the sealant approach.
     
    Mendel Leisk likes this.
  13. Robert Holt

    Robert Holt Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2013
    1,312
    876
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Hate to see a man give up a dream, so if you decide to do this , I would contribute our (slightly used) doughnut spare.
    But lord how awful it would probably handle in the curves!
     
  14. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    46,021
    32,859
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    I tried dropping one full size tire in there, forget if it was a 15" snow tire or on of the OEM 17". I found it was JUST chafing on the well walls, and fugedabout the tool kit tray. Also it caused the deck to ride high, by maybe an inch. It's been a while, so IIRC applies.

    It IS tantalizingly close: Toyota's engineers could have made it fit with very small increase. Still, I'm not averse to temp spare. I know your position tho, understandable on long, off-in-the-boonies road trips.
     
    Robert Holt likes this.
  15. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    95,321
    43,209
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    don't forget to loosen your lug nuts after your last rotation folks!;)
     
  16. Stevevee

    Stevevee Active Member

    Joined:
    Aug 21, 2013
    799
    207
    0
    Location:
    Vermont
    Vehicle:
    2013 Prius v wagon
    Model:
    Three
    I have to laugh whenever I hear the lack of a spare related to fuel conservation and weight. I believe the average emergency spare and tools weighs maybe 30 pounds? If the driver and/or passenger is overweight, why don't they recommend dieting for better mileage? LOL

    It's about saving $$$ for the car maker, adding room, and also accommodating more structural area for safety concerns. I've read where about 85% of vehicles returned for salvage have unused spares/tools. So yes, most people never have to use the spare.

    In terms of roadside assistance, it surely depends on where you are when you have a flat, whether you are physically able to change it, and/or how long you want to wait for your car to be towed or wait for a new tire. I can't begin to tell you what it's like having a flat when it's minus ten degrees and snowing. And if you make the call for roadside assistance, it could be an hour or more, not to mention if you don't have a spare, they need to tow you away. So now you have to buy a new tire and/or wheel. Hopefully you saved the car maker some dollars.

    Like car insurance, you hope you never need it, but it's there regardless. Personally I don't feel that any of the arguments against having at least a donut are valid. The weight issue is a non-starter. If it was valid, they'd have to start getting EPA estimates for drivers and gear;)
     
    Robert Holt and frodoz737 like this.
  17. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Sand Pounder

    Joined:
    Oct 17, 2010
    46,021
    32,859
    80
    Location:
    Greater Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada
    Vehicle:
    2010 Prius
    Model:
    Touring
    Some of those unused spare tires might actually have seen light use, and still look pristine.

    Talking weight, I'm constantly toting a 20 lb jump pack around, in the under the hatch floor tray. With various other bits-and-bobs, there's likely close to 40 lb's of superfluous weight in the car.

    If you're looking at a 2016 Prius, and want a spare, do tread carefully: about half of the levels have nixed it.
     
  18. Robert Holt

    Robert Holt Senior Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2013
    1,312
    876
    0
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius
    Model:
    Three
    Since the doughnut spare for our Prius now resides in the garage, I just grabbed it and measured its weight--> 3 measurements gave results of 27 pounds +/- a couple tenths of a pound. Don't have Jack and lug wrench handy, but together at least 5 pounds, so your 30 pound guess for tire, Jack, and wrench is probably a slight underestimate.
    When I installed the full sized spare on the OEM rim , I remember being surprised it was 10 pounds or so increased weight, and I felt that was WELL worth not having to drive on that narrow, high pressure spare through the ruts and rubble that passes for a highway in the northern Yukon Territory again, hoping to god it didn't blow out because I didn't have another spare.
    It's like running out of fuel whilst flying an airplane--> if you've done it even once, you never, ever want to do it again and take all reasonable measures to avoid it.
     
    frodoz737 likes this.
  19. bisco

    bisco cookie crumbler

    Joined:
    May 11, 2005
    95,321
    43,209
    0
    Location:
    boston
    Vehicle:
    2012 Prius Plug-in
    Model:
    Plug-in Base
    when a carmaker is looking to reduce weight, many things are considered. any one of them can be added back without much change to fuel economy. but they look at the aggregate. how else would they achieve their goal? the cost savings is just a bonus.;)
     
    #19 bisco, Dec 12, 2015
    Last edited: Dec 13, 2015
  20. randyb359

    randyb359 Member

    Joined:
    Feb 28, 2008
    430
    38
    0
    Location:
    Pittsburgh
    Vehicle:
    2008 Prius
    I get about one flat every 4-5 years. I have never had a blow out. My last two cars had TPMS and when the tire pressure monitor comes on I use a compressor to fill it back up and get on my way. Five minutes and I am on my way without getting dirty.
     
Loading...