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

Discussion in 'Steering, Suspension and Wheels' started by schiker, Jan 26, 2011.

  1. schiker

    schiker Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    Pendleton, SC
    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.
  2. 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.
  3. Pepperidge

    Pepperidge Member Advocate Staff Member Lead Moderator

    Feb 10, 2008
    Slidell, La
    I wouldn't...too risky IMO
  4. btfarm

    btfarm 300,000 Worth Staff Member Moderator

    May 12, 2008
    Sandwich, Illinois
    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.
  5. toytruckman

    toytruckman New Member

    May 8, 2009
    Metairie LA
    Most places wont do that anyway
  6. Ed HD

    Ed HD Formerly: Dad's 05 LLY

    Jul 6, 2008
    Chuck Town, Iowa
    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.
  7. RI Chevy Silveradoman

    RI Chevy Silveradoman At your service Staff Member Moderator

    May 3, 2008
    Rhode Island
    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.
  8. Turbine Doc

    Turbine Doc Just Another Diesel Guy

    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.
  9. schiker

    schiker Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    Pendleton, SC
    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.
  10. Pepperidge

    Pepperidge Member Advocate Staff Member Lead Moderator

    Feb 10, 2008
    Slidell, La
    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.

  11. schiker

    schiker Well-Known Member

    Nov 9, 2008
    Pendleton, SC
    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.

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