A Nail in my Tire

aldehydealdehyde Member Posts: 26
edited April 2014 in Jeep
I found a nail in my right front tire after commuting to work this morning, but the tire (Kelly, on a 97 Jeep Grand Cherokee) is still inflated. Can I just pull this sucker out, or will the tire promptly deflate if I do? Can I drive this to a repair shop or will I be at risk to have a blowout and roll over? Appreciate any advice... thanks



  • adc100adc100 Member Posts: 1,521
    I would check the pressure before going and then drive at a reduced rate of speed to the repair place. Don't pull the sucker out. Also have them fix it by putting a patch on the inside of the tire. Don't let them "plug" it.
  • dpwestlakedpwestlake Member Posts: 207
    put the spare on then take the tire for repair. If you drive it the nail could move around and damage the belts causing tread separation.

    If it is through the tread they could patch it from the inside. The plugs aren't a real good idea with radials. If it is through the sidewall it's time for a new tire.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,491
    Last couple of times I've needed a tire fixed, I'd take it in, and ask them to patch it, and they'd say they don't patch them anymore, that they plug them.

    NTB plugged a tire on my Intrepid when I got a flat in my grandmother's yard (nail). That sucker went flat in about 5 minutes. I think it was about $10.00. Replaced those tires at 30K, because they were worn out.

    I picked up another nail while vacationing in Houston last January. I took it to a local shop that plugged it.

    Is there a reason they don't do patches any more? About 4 years ago, I bought a beater Newport from the junkyard, and one of its tires went flat. I took it to get it fixed, and the shop said it had 3 or 4 patches already, and that one of them had come loose. I had it fixed, but the next time it lost air I just gave up and bought new tires (I was close to bankruptcy back then, so I'd often take drastic measures to save money) So is a patch still better than a plug, though? Most of the repair places I've dealt with left me the impression that it wasn't.
  • dpwestlakedpwestlake Member Posts: 207
    With a plug they have to run a small round rasp like file through the hole to clean it before putting the plug in. IMHO that will disturb the belts and possibly lead to a failure. The plug is much EASIER than dismounting the tire to patch it. But is it better? I doubt it.
  • isellhondasisellhondas Issaquah WashingtonMember Posts: 20,350
    It's MUCH easier to plug a tire than it is to repair it properly.

    I won't let them plug my tires.


    Drive your Jeep to a competant tire repair shop.

    It won't blow out and your Jeep won't roll over.

    I would probably avoid the freeway though.
  • aldehydealdehyde Member Posts: 26
    I really appreciate the quick responses and the advice! It's due to be turned in on the end of a lease in just a few weeks, and I don't mind paying for a patch, but it would be quite undesirable to have to need major repairs or buy a new tire this close to the end of the lease.

  • brorjacebrorjace Member Posts: 588
    I've used a few plugs in the past 10 years with no problems. You people think using them is a serious risk?

    I recently got a large screw in my front tire and its head was so big, I could HEAR it ticking as soon as I got it. Looking at my tire in a parking lot, I couldn't find it the first day but I did find it on the second (a total of about 100 miles). I unscrewed it to remove it and my tire immediately went flat. While plugging the tire, I noticed a second foreign object, the remains of an old nail in the tire only a couple inches from the new screw. I rasped both holes and plugged them. Both have been holding air since.

    The tires are nearly to their wear bars and this summer will be their last season so I'm not too worried about their longevity.

    Also, has anyone else used the Slime or Monkey Grip sealants (non-aerosol) that you squeeze into your valve which is supposed to seal minor punctures? I used to be a big believer in this stuff (it DOES work!) but it also throws your tire out of balance so I won't be using it unless I'm SURE my tire is losing air.

    --- Bror Jace
  • adc100adc100 Member Posts: 1,521
    on his motorcycle (both wheels) as a preventative. Also they used to advertise as helping to balance the tire!!!! Anyway for some reason he went to get the tire removed and the tire man cursed him out up and down. Apparently it made a big mess in the tire/wheel.

    Anyway, with regards to the patch/plug. I think its just general knowledge that patching is better and when you think about it-it makes sense. I carry a plug kit around just for emergencies though. Needless to say you can't plug the sidewall-need to patch. So that says something there.

  • xfilesxfiles Member Posts: 132
    I've heard that a patch is better, but then others say it comes lose. Then another repair place argues a plug is better because without it your inviting salty water and corrosion into the belts. I've seen another tire store do both, first he puts in a plug, then after that he grinds off the excess plug protruding from the inside of the tire and puts a patch over that.

    You can argue a plug damages the belts, but doesn't corrosion do the same thing if you allow water (especially salty water inside)into the exposed belts? Perhaps we should look at it from another perspective. If either was unsafe, the tire manufacturers or the gov't would step in and perhaps make it illegal. . The best tire is one with no holes, why worry how it's patched....I only care if it doesn't leak. Once a tire has a hole, it is uncertain how much damage has been really done. It becomes a game of how long you can prolong it's life.
  • andre1969andre1969 Member Posts: 24,491
    I'd thought that once the sidewall got punctured, the tire was shot, because the sidewall flexes enough that neither a plug nor a patch would hold very long.

    As for the truth, I guess that, just like how many licks it really takes to get to the chewy center of a Tootsie pop, the world may never know!
  • oldharryoldharry Member Posts: 413
    the rim to repair it. A pinhole on an almost worn out tire I'll just patch, but a tire with good high tread always gets the plug and patch treatment. Several companies make a combination repair with a plug molded to the patch that you pull trough from the inside. The hole is reamed a little to keep from damaging the plug as it goes through, and the inner liner must be properly prepared or the patch will come off. A plug from the outside may only seal at tread level, and be dammaged by the steel cords further in. I have pieces of old tires showing separations in the plys from this in the shop. One of my samples has a plug near the edge of the tread, and the nail stuck in the bead bundle. The head of the nail has torn up the inside of the sidewall quite a bit. I drive at or above speed limits a lot, and it's worth a couple more dollars and a bit more time to know that the tire isn't damaged inside.

  • 210delray210delray Member Posts: 4,721
    Your method is the one that I've seen used on one of my cars - both a plug and patch. Certainly seems like the way to go.

    I'm not aware of any tire manufacturer that says a plug alone is ok in their warranty information.
  • blerner1blerner1 Member Posts: 12
    Article in this months Popular Mechanics..
    The combo plug and patch is the way to go. I have used all methods and fortunately have nevery had a problem to date.
  • lugwrenchlugwrench Member Posts: 213
    Had a nail in a Bridgestone tire that was plugged and it lasted over 40K miles. No problems with a plugged tire.
  • mmurphy267mmurphy267 Member Posts: 1
    I've got a tire with a nail hole in the sidewall. The dealer says that it can't be patched and proposes to put a tube inside it, since there is about 60 % of the tread left. The tire is on a SUV. Any of you ever had experience with putting a tube in a tubeless radial tire?
  • dpwestlakedpwestlake Member Posts: 207
    That was always a last resort, if a tubeless tire wouldn't hold air or the rim was porous (a problem with some older alloys) put in a tube. Should be no problem.
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    ugh, I shudder at the thought. for one, you won't get the tire fully seated at the rim, since the tube won't pinch it there, and..... no, that's quite enough. you think the gravestone tires are a sight, those often stayed on the rim after the rollovers. loss of control is going to be a lot worse with the tire off the rim. modern tires are a lot more flexible than the stiff old bias-plies they used that trick with, and the speed limits are higher, and nobody obeys them anyway. if you do, please put a big orange sign on the roof of your car, so I know to go in the other direction.
  • spokanespokane Member Posts: 514
    Swschrad, you make a good point that an innertube may not seat the bead securely on modern radial tires with flexible sidewalls .. but your information is the first I've seen on this point. Can you provide more information or cite any reports on this subject? Thanks.
  • dpwestlakedpwestlake Member Posts: 207
    There are tubes made for radial tires. I had wire wheels on my TR3, you can't use wire wheels without tubes due to the way spokes fit in the rim. The tube goes in the tire, a boot goes over the inside of the rim to protect the tube from the spokes.

    Radial tubes are not a hazzard.
  • 210delray210delray Member Posts: 4,721
    The warranty information from both Michelin and Sears says to never repair a tubeless tire by adding an inner tube.

    Maybe for old Triumphs you had no choice but to use tubes, but I certainly wouldn't do it on a modern vehicle.
  • swschradswschrad Member Posts: 2,171
    I got my information from the old 1976 Skylark shop book by GM about tubes not sealing the rim. I should think any complete manufacturer's shop data will say the same thing. the safety rim on today's wheels was designed to hold the tire, darn near no matter what happens, once the tire is properly lubricated and seated on a tire mounting machine.
  • oldharryoldharry Member Posts: 413
    If the bead is properly lubricated the tire will seat correctly. If putting a tube in a tubeless tire, I advise sprinkling a little Tire Talc in the tire and roll the tire on the floor to spread it around before putting in the tube. Tubeless tires are not properly lubricated to prevent the tube from sticking and stretching unevenly. Also be sure to COMPLETELY deflate the tube after seating the bead, then reinflate to proper pressure. Otherwise the tube may have wrinkles that will soon leak. A tube increases the heat generated as the tire rolls, so the speed rating is no longer valid. Another point, if you get a puncture, a tubed tire goes flat very quickly, not over days the way a tubeless one does with a nail.

This discussion has been closed.