Can a Tire with a Nail be Repaired?  | Scott's Fort Collins Auto

Can a Tire with a Nail be Repaired? 

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If you drove near a construction site or your neighbor just had their roof repaired, you might experience a nail in one of your tires. In many cases, a nail in the tire can be quickly repaired, however, there are certain times it might cost you a whole new tire. This is what you need to know. 

Nails and Tires

When you take your car out on the road, you risk your tires getting hit by a foreign object, like a nail. When your tire becomes punctured by a nail, the tire will begin to lose inflation pressure. Over time, if not repaired, you can experience extensive damage to the tread that can’t be repaired and a new tire will be needed.

Repairing a tire with a nail all depends on the location of where the nail punctured the tire. Most tires today are made up of soft, flexible sidewall and rigid steel belts that line below the tread. RepairPail explains if the nail is in the area covered by the steel belts, it can be repaired in most cases. However, if the nail is located on the outer edge of the tread or near the sidewall, the tire will most likely need to be replaced. 

Can I Drive with a Nail in my Tire?

If you have just noticed the nail indoor tire and don’t notice a big leak in air, it’s most likely fine to drive a short distance to your local repair shop to get it repaired. However, before you drive, it’s important to check the tire pressure. If needed, refill the air to a safe level before you drive. Do not try to remove the nail yourself. 

If you have rapid air loss and the tire won’t hold air at all, then you will need to put your spare tire on before you drive. If you don’t have access to a spare, contact Scott’s Auto for your options. 

How to Drive Safely with a Spare Tire

If you have to apply your spare tire, it’s important that you know how to drive safely. Spare tires aren’t as sturdy as a regular tire, so precautions need to be taken. Napa’s Know How Blog offers these safety tips for driving with a spare on your vehicle:

  • Restrict your speed. Most tire manufacturers recommend not driving faster than 50 miles per hour on a spare. If you have to get on the highway, be sure you stay in the right lane to allow other cars to pass you as needed. Depending on the laws in your states, you might be allowed to drive with the hazard lights on to warn other drivers that you are driving an impaired vehicle. 
  • Limit your distance. Along with not driving as fast as you typically would, you need to limit how far you drive. When you have a spare on your car, you shouldn’t drive more than 70 miles, or the distance stated in your car’s owner’s manual. 
  • Know the affected systems. When you put a donut spare on your car, the wheel-speed sensor might detect the difference and light up your dash with brake and ABS warning lights. This is caused by the spare rotating faster than regular tires, and the sensors will detect a problem. 
  • Handle with care. With the ABS system compromised, you’ll need to be sure to drive extra safely, not driving with cruise control and taking curves with extreme caution. 

Rely on Scott’s for Your Tire Needs

Scott’s Auto is your one-stop-shop for tires and any auto repair needs. Our vast knowledge gives us the upper hand when it comes to outfitting your vehicle with new tires, diagnosing, servicing, and repairing your vehicle with state-of-the-art alignment and diagnostic equipment, and more! With three convenient locations, we’re here for you:

Fort Collins: (970)-682-4204

Loveland: (970)-541-4404

Montrose: (970)-615-5150 


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