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Old 02-27-2015, 08:38 PM   #15
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I don't know, those were before my time. i never saw one used.


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Old 02-28-2015, 06:17 AM   #16
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Just an FYI:

Not repairing a radial tire in the shoulder area (commonly delineated as the outermost rib) has been around for quite some time - I'm guessing about 30 years. However, it has been re-emphasized because of the Ford/Firestone thing a few years back.

Why exclude that area? Because that is where the belt edges area and the belt edges are the most highly stressed area in a tire. (a side note for those interested: The typical belt leaving belt type separation - commonly called tread separation - starts at the belt edge.)

And it has been known for a long time that it isn't just the repairs that fail in repaired tires. Sometimes the tire fails somewhere else as a result of running the tire low in pressure. Inspection of a tire before it is repaired can eliminate some of potential failures.

Why a plug/patch combination? The plug doesn't reinforce the damaged area. A plug is also more prone to leakage. A patch by itself does bridge and reinforce the damaged area, and does a great job of sealing, but doesn't prevent outside contaminants from entering the tire's structure (especially water and the steel belts!)

Bottomline: There is a risk in running a repaired tire. The risk is greater if the repair isn't done correctly. The risk is greater depending on how long and how severely under inflated the repaired tire was before it was repaired. The risk is greater than for a tire that didn't need a repair. The problem here is the the frequency of a repaired tire failing is low, but the consequences can be quite severe.
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Old 02-28-2015, 07:48 AM   #17
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I cant say I have ever seen any tread separation that was the result of a flat repair.

Most always it is a result of being run low on air pressure, an impact, (new or old) or manufacturer defect.

The Explorer/Firestone thing is interesting. Take a vehicle manufacturer who produces a top selling yet ill handling SUV, that wants to spend as little as possible on tires with a vendor they have done business with for a hundred years....

Here is my take on the "politics" of the situation.

Tires were blowing out on these vehicles at a rate fairly consistent with that of other vehicles, but the Explorer being unstable in ways that many of it drivers were unfamiliar started having serious crashes as a result.

Ford had more and better lawyers than Firestone, they had a greater ability to "guide" public opinion on this matter, and they had the moxy to see that the governments investigation primarily fell on Firestone which was sacrificed in the process.

The tires probably were marginally substandard for what they were used for on the explorer, but Ford chose these tires. Ford walked away relatively unscathed, Firestone was destroyed, and the government wrote new standards to fix things that were not the cause of the failures, (because that is what government does).

Flat repairs didn't cause the explorer thing, an ill handling vehicle did.


I think that the safety risk of running a properly patched/plugged tire is much, much, much, lower than getting food poisoning from a restaurant.



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Old 02-28-2015, 08:43 AM   #18
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J. Morgan is mostly correct. Firestone wasn't blameless, but Ford got away with one over that issue. Why NHTSA didn't go after them is beyond me....after all....they were exposed for shedding relevant documents. Thus the TREAD act was born. Now database files are transmitted to NHTSA monthly and examined and stored there as well as at the auto manufacturers.
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Old 02-28-2015, 08:50 AM   #19
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I don't know, those were before my time. i never saw one used.


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In the 70's I used to hang out at the gas station and watch them clamp those patches to the inside of tires and light them with a match.
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Old 02-28-2015, 08:58 AM   #20
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J. Morgan is mostly correct. Firestone wasn't blameless, but Ford got away with one over that issue. Why NHTSA didn't go after them is beyond me....after all....they were exposed for shedding relevant documents. Thus the TREAD act was born. Now database files are transmitted to NHTSA monthly and examined and stored there as well as at the auto manufacturers.
The same reason they didn't have to fix the auto trans shifter that slipped out of park if you didn't engaged it into park firmly. Many times it felt it was all the way into park and would slip out. Our 64 galaxie was that way and I know other years was the same way.
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Old 02-28-2015, 09:21 AM   #21
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The real problem in the Explorer/Firestone thing was the fact that Ford had such a miserable riding vehicle that they specified the tires be run at 24psi to attempt to cover up the horrible ride of the Explorer.

Anyone with any knowledge/experience with tires run at low air pressures at highway speeds knows the tires will get overheated and come apart. Simple physics of tires. Why do you think we run 65psi or higher in our trailer tires?

Granted the Firestones were not the greatest tires in the world, but the real problem was running them at 24psi., the Ford specified air pressure.
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Old 02-28-2015, 09:55 AM   #22
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Repaired tire

I had one of those Explorers, it rode like an oxcart and the handling was quirky. It had some kind of weird intermittent understeer mixed with intermittent oversteer at highway speeds. If one of these things were to blow a tire, and the driver didn't stay cool and focused, bad things could happen.

As things are, the tires got the blame, and it is so engrained in people of our generation that it seems like any discussion about the chance of tires blowing out the Firestone/Explorer thing is drawn out as an example.

Before the Explorer thing Firestone took a hit on their 721 tires,,,, some will remember their commercials, "seven around two, wrapped by one", explaining their use os a unique stranded wire to make the belts.

It is my understanding that the belts were better, but the stiffness of their wire caused failures because the stiff wire caused extra heat via friction when the tires were run low.

They had just beginning to come out of the 721 thing when Explorer hit them with the KO punch.

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Old 02-28-2015, 10:07 AM   #23
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I had one of those Explorers, it rode like an oxcart and the handling was quirky. It had some kind of weird intermittent understeer mixed with intermittent oversteer at highway speeds. If one of these things were to blow a tire, and the driver didn't stay cool and focused, bad things could happen.

As things are, the tires got the blame, and it is so engrained in people of our generation that it seems like any discussion about the chance of tires blowing out the Firestone/Explorer thing is drawn out as an example.


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Yes, I agree. I didn't have one so can't testify to how they drove and handled, but have a friend who has one still, and rode in it several times, and it did ride like an oxcart. His was among the tire recall, and he got new tires out of the deal. He has since moved the vehicle to Alaska, and it stays there as his summer vehicle for use up there only.
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Old 02-28-2015, 07:05 PM   #24
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There are a few different issues with repaired tires.

Given that a majority of the driving public can drive on a low, leaking or flat tire have have no idea of the tire's condition the problem is that there is almost no way to know how many miles under what load & speed conditions and at what inflation the tire was driven there is no way to even make a guess on the amount of structural damage that has been done to the tire.

The proliferation of "string" plug repairs at what passes for an auto parts store or department in Walmart we see a goo number of people and even many so called service stations will offer the low cost option of doing a "plug" repair which means there is no possibility of the tire tach to even do a cursory examination for internal damage never mind the hidden structural damage that is all but impossible to see. Remember it is in most circumstances the new hire guy with the least experience and least training that is given the job of doing a repair. It is also important to remember that the "glue" used to attach the plug repair is not much different than the rubber cement used to glue a couple of pieces of paper together. There is no chemical bonding taking place or heat driven vulcanization accomplished.

To many people if you pay for a service you probably consider it a "professional" job which as can be seen in the two pictures I previously posted is clearly not the case.

The patch is to seal the air chamber and the plug is intended to prevent water and moisture from direct entrance into the steel belt package. A patch only repair will not prevent the steel belts from rusting so just as Plug only is not an acceptable repair neither is a patch only repair.

Now as to the location of acceptable patch/plug repairs. The shoulder portion of tires sees the greatest motion which places the greateds strain on the bond between the patch and the tire. It has been found that many times this extra motion can lead to a detachment of the patch from the butyl innerliner material which can lead to further air loss.

Now is it possible to repair a tire at the outer edges of the steel belt package? Yes, but the closer you are to the belt edge the more likely is the failure of the patch so would you as a tire company be willing to guarantee each and every repair made if it is in an asre of high stress?
Don't forget there are ambulance chasers more than willing to sue a multi-million dollar corporation. Many times in the hope of a settlement as many times it is less expensive for the company to settle than to try and defend yourself for even if you are found not guilty it probably cost you more than what an early settlement would cost.
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Old 02-28-2015, 07:39 PM   #25
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I don't disagree with any of that except where I am to throw a $600 tire away because it has a nail in it 1/2" too close to the edge of the tire.

Especially when I am convinced in my mind that if were to leave it at the shop it would be patched and sold as used.


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Old 02-28-2015, 09:18 PM   #26
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I don't disagree with any of that except where I am to throw a $600 tire away because it has a nail in it 1/2" too close to the edge of the tire.
Especially when I am convinced in my mind that if were to leave it at the shop it would be patched and sold as used.
Things must be a lot different down south. Every tire that's changed out on a clients car up here stays inside the shop and is taken off site by a licensed tire recycler. If I found out someone here was taking tires and reselling them, let alone repairing and selling them, they'd be written up if not terminated.
At the new car dealership level tires are generally warranted by the manufacturer and not the car company. Any repairs are covered by our 12/12 warranty. With $900+ wheel and tire assemblies we're not going to take that hit for a failed cheap repair.
Tireman. You should have posted a pic of a tire that looks perfect on the outside with a handful of ground up rubber rolling around on the inside after being run nearly flat for a while. The monkeys at Wall-Mart, Pep-Boys, Jiffy-Lube, et-al would never have caught this jamming a string inside the nail hole, over-inflating the tire and sending the guy down the road waiting for an accident to happen.
I'm interested if the OP knows how the tire was repaired, or if this discussion has scared him off.
I've been in the biz for 42 years and I've seen a lot of things that were done by “professionals” that don't come close to be what could be considered contemporary professional standards.


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Old 02-28-2015, 11:21 PM   #27
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Agree. A hole 'close' to tread shoulder should not be patched. I've had tire shops flat refuse to do this.

I also only run Michelin tires on my passenger vehicles since a pair of properly inflated properly sized Firestone tires blew out on me, fortunately at low speed on a GMC van I had. Not willing to risk my family's life on crap tires again.


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Old 03-01-2015, 09:18 AM   #28
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In the 70's I used to hang out at the gas station and watch them clamp those patches to the inside of tires and light them with a match.

I think this was done just to get the solvents in the glue to "dry" or flash-off faster so they could hurry up and finish the "repair". This is NOT part of any proper repair practice instruction I have ever seen.
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