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Thread: Is it ok to plug the side wall of a tire?

  1. #1
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    Default Is it ok to plug the side wall of a tire?

    The other day my Vet came by and while driving down to the pasture ran over something that punctured the side wall of the tire. It punched through near the tread only a couple of inches from the ground up on the side wall. I think it was a limb or old rotted stump he rolled over and rolled over caught on the sidewall. He did not have a spare with him and only had to drive a little ways and on back roads to get to the office and onward home. So, I plugged it with a basic tire plug to get him home.

    I know tires are steel belted for reinforcement and have layers and/or ply's. The tread part usually has at least a few more layers than the side wall.

    So did I do a no-no and plug a sidewall that is weaker than the tread and significantly increased likely hood of a blow out?

    I told him I did not know if it was ok to do it and be careful not to drive on interstate in case it blew out.

    It was a Dodge 2500 5.9 Cummins with D rated tires mastercraft brand tires and he always has about 2500 lbs in the bed of his truck (Vet supplies) in a big heavy duty organizer/toolbox thingy.
    97 Chev K2500 6.5, 5spd, ext cab, shortbed, ~225K miles, remote FSD(DTech), remote oil filters, boost, EGT, fuel pressure gages, Heath TM, 3" DP 4" Exhaust, Prodigy, B&W Turnover ball, 2" Rear wheel spacers, Sirius, Super Steer Idler, Roadmaster Active Suspension, rear Timbrens.

  2. #2
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    NO. Depending where the hole is you might be able to have it hot patched from the inside. But even that isn't recomended, your looking at a blow-out waiting to happen. I personally wouldn't do it.
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    Member Advocate Pepperidge's Avatar
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    I wouldn't...too risky IMO
    Pepperidge
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    Only temporary. I've done it a couple of times on offroad tires (implement tires) and it's held fine but I wouldn't trust a truck tire with a side plug.
    Mike
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    Nope
    Most places wont do that anyway
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  6. #6
    Real Trucks Don't have Spark Plugs! Dad's 05 LLY's Avatar
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    Call him back and tell him he needs to get a new tire on there ASAP. Any puncture in the sidewall = new tire. It's for everyone's safety.
    Ed
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  7. #7

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    Quote Originally Posted by btfarm View Post
    Only temporary. I've done it a couple of times on offroad tires (implement tires) and it's held fine but I wouldn't trust a truck tire with a side plug.
    I agree with this if your in the woods, stuck, but only as an emergency! Other than that, NO DEFINITELY NOT! Don't mess with the side walls at highway speeds. It can be deadly.
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  8. #8
    Just Another Diesel Guy Turbine Doc's Avatar
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    Once you get away from center patch I've yet to find a tire store that will plug or patch, citing liability/safety concerns, your Vet needs to go tire shopping ASAP, and really needs to be running his spare until it gets replaced. Make the plugged tire his spare until then.
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    Is the center patch one of those patch/plugs things you install from the inside? A glued on patch internal and a plug that seals the hole in the tire so water and air won't corrode the steel belting? Some call it a boot patch I think. That's what the local Sears store used for a tread hole on my truck a year or so ago.

    We had the choice of trying a big SUV/Truck aresol can of "fix a flat" or some green tire slime. But since it was 1-2 inches just off the tread I thought the centrifugal forces would keep the liquidy stuff from finding the hole and clotting / sealing it. He said he was going to go tire shopping and change to his spare when he got home (luckily he did not have a whole lot of tread left). I said ok we'll plug it and the tires guys will appreciate not having that mess on the inside of rim too.

    It was 7pm on Friday night and one of those well we can try it. Call me if it blows and I'll come get you to go get the spare.

    Thanks for the confirmation. I explained my concerns of the side wall being weaker and not trusting it. And I did not think any store would fix a side wall anymore. But, they may have patched one internally years ago. He did not think they would patch a side wall anymore either. He runs over thorns a good bit I think.
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  10. #10
    Member Advocate Pepperidge's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by schiker View Post
    Is the center patch one of those patch/plugs things you install from the inside?
    NO...Tim meant the "center patch of the tire" once you get to where the inside of the tire becomes rounded, curving up to become the side wall they will not patch outside that area...see below.

    tread.jpg
    Pepperidge
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  11. #11
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    Ok, thanks got it now. Probably would do it again but with same circumstances. And won't do it for a youngster, woman, or someone getting on interstate or with heavy load on tire and/or farther to drive.
    97 Chev K2500 6.5, 5spd, ext cab, shortbed, ~225K miles, remote FSD(DTech), remote oil filters, boost, EGT, fuel pressure gages, Heath TM, 3" DP 4" Exhaust, Prodigy, B&W Turnover ball, 2" Rear wheel spacers, Sirius, Super Steer Idler, Roadmaster Active Suspension, rear Timbrens.

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