Tire Patch Kits

Discussion in 'Gen 3 Prius Main Forum' started by Kurt Weiske, Jan 1, 2019.

  1. Kurt Weiske

    Kurt Weiske Active Member

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    I bought a patch kit for my 2014 PiP a while back, as well as the SLIME kit with a compressor. I wanted to replace the factory kit with a TPMS-friendly solution.

    This morning, I started my car and saw the TPMS light on. Did a visual inspection and saw the right front was low. Turned the steering wheel all the way to the right and could see a nail in the middle of the thread. Without taking the tire off, I pulled out the nail with a pair of needlenose pliers, bored out the hole, installed a patch, cut the excess off and re-inflated the tire in about 15 minutes.

    This was probably the best case for fixing a flat tire, but getting a patch kit is a great investment.

    I was a little concerned about deflating the tire while the car was sitting on it, but I figured doing so for a short time wouldn't hurt.
     
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  2. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    Was this a patch kit, or a plug kit;).

    Plug kits are handy and I carry one in our Prius as well. I’m the commuter and if I run into an issue, I have that and a compressor at the ready:).

    A great tool for a car to have in it(y).
     
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  3. Kurt Weiske

    Kurt Weiske Active Member

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    Are there two kinds? This was the kind with strips of rubber and an awl with a hole in the tip - you coat the rubber with rubber cement, push it through the hole and pull the tool out. It doubles up the rubber and makes a plug. Guess it's a plug kit now that I type this.
     
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  4. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    A patch is something you apply to the inside of the tire for a repair;).

    So it’s a plug kit. But excellent reason to have and use one(y).
     
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  5. gliderman

    gliderman Active Member

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    If you have a spare you should use it. Plugging a tire will make it fail prematurely because you compromise the belts holding the tire together. So use your spare and get the tire patched.

    No it wont happen every time, but why chance destroying a good tire.
     
  6. Raytheeagle

    Raytheeagle Senior Member

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    The PIP didn’t come with a spare;).
     
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  7. JC91006

    JC91006 Senior Member

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    A tire plug should only plug up a hole that's already there, can't compromise anything more. It doesn't make a new hole
     
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  8. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I always plug my own tires and never had one fail. You should never plug near the sidewall.
     
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  9. fuzzy1

    fuzzy1 Senior Member

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    Or to the outside of an innertube, which is why most of us bicyclers carry a patch kit.
     
  10. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    I did one plug repair on a stock tire, and another on a snow tire. Each at least 5 years back, with no further problems.
     
  11. 3PriusMike

    3PriusMike Prius owner since 2000, Tesla M3 2018

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    I watched a guy at a service station plug a tire for me many years ago. Seemed so simple and he charged me about $5. I've plugged a tire myself 3 times since and all have lasted the life of the tire. They were all near the middle of the treads. The plugs are so good that you can't see them after driving a few miles.

    One caution...the really cheap plug kits can break. Small nail holes need to be enlarged in order to get the doubled plug in with the awl-like needle.

    Mike
     
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  12. Pluggo

    Pluggo Senior Member

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    I've used two different kinds of plugs, the black rubber ones are a bit thicker and harder to work with than the more common sticky brown, strips that are slightly fuzzy. Either way, once you puncture the little tube of glue, don't expect it to be still be any good next time you reach for it. It's essentially the same rubber glue you can find at any office supply store, if you want to keep some on hand. It does a nice job of lubricating the plug for an easier insertion, but strictly speaking, the glue is not necessary for a permanent repair with the brown strips.
     
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  13. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    I like my blackjack kit in that regard: it has regular and thinner plugs, the tools are heavy duty, and an extra needle is included.

    Another thought regarding plug repair:

    Both my punctures were quite close to the tread edge. With the first I brought the wheel into the dealership and asked if they could do a proper outside/inside patch repair. They refused, saying it was too close to the edge. They're probably right: the large diameter patch on the inside would have trouble sealing, running into the curve at the corner.

    But a plug repair is more compact. I finally replaced that set of tires this fall (when they were off the car, snow tires in use), but that was 5~6 years use out of a tire that "couldn't" be fixed.

    There was still plenty of tread on that set, but they were starting to crack a fair bit, nearly 10 years since manufacture date.
     
    #13 Mendel Leisk, Jan 2, 2019
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2019
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  14. fmerkel

    fmerkel Member

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    Done 2 plug repairs. 1st ever was on a vacation and 30 miles from a decent sized town. There was a car repair shop but it was Sunday and no one working. The attached convenience store guy sold be the plug kit and opened the bay door for me to have access to the compressed air. It was kinda scary but it worked and is still going 2 years later.
    For my new cars without spares I intend to never use that SLIME stuff unless I intend to discard the tire. They have plug kits and a compressor.
     
  15. Mendel Leisk

    Mendel Leisk Senior Member

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    A full sized bicycle pump can pressure up a flat automobile tire too. It's a bit of a workout, maybe 5~10 minutes. They're cheap and uncomplicated.
     
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  16. ASRDogman

    ASRDogman Senior Member

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    Patching the TREAD on the edge IS doable, but, they won't do it because of the liability.
    I have patched 3 or 4 of my tired on the tread portion, NOT the side wall. Even though that is
    doable with a GOOD patch, it's too risky.
    I haven't seen any in a few decades, but we use to have some with a sticky plug attached to a patch.
    We'd ream out the hole in the tire, push out tool through, after cleaning up the area inside the tire to patch,
    apply the glue and let it dry, then pull the plug through. We'd seat the patch then cut off the excess plug.
    The patch with melt into the tire because of the glue, it would become part of the tire.
     
  17. kc5dlo

    kc5dlo Active Member

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    I keep a flat Lock and Lock container with a tire repair kit with me all the time. Started using plugs back in 1977 when I had a Blazer with off road tires. Those tires seem to always be picking up nails and screws. I am not afraid of using plugs and will continue to use them. With the PIP there is not much of a choice. There are now Fix-a-Flat type options that are friendly to TPMS sensors, make sure it is labeled on the can.
     
  18. padroo

    padroo Senior Member

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    I remember back before radial tires when plugging a tire was considered OK. Then along came the radial tire and someone said that the plug would not hold up because the steel belts in radial tires would compromise their integrity and all of a sudden a patch on the inside was considered the correct way to make the repair. Everything is about liability anymore.
     
  19. rebenson

    rebenson Member

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    Never had a plug fail on me, or a tire fail because of a plug, Though I have had issues when I cant get the nail out... Have a local gas station that introduced me to fixing the tires with a plug several decades ago... After seeing how easy it was, bought a kit and did them myself. Had gotten several kits over years.

    On my Prius, free repair and rotation included with the new tires I bought (was part of special with a rebate).

    My wife's car has had plenty of plugs installed the last two years.
     
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