How To Identify & Fix Nail In Tire

So many things in the automotive world are uncertain and happen when you least expect them. A good example is a nail in tire. Regardless of your level of driving experience or how cautious you are, your car tires will likely pick nails at some point.

Identifying when you have a nail in tire tread is quite challenging. This is because you can have a nail in tire but not leaking air. So, you can only identify you have a nail in your car tires by looking at them or not identifying them at all.

Most times, nails in car tires do not cause low tire pressure immediately. Instead, they allow the air pressure to escape slowly. Other times, you’ll have flat tires instantly. Here, we’ll look at how to track and fix a nail in tire sidewall and discuss other related issues.

nail in tire repair near me

Nail in tire explained.

Sometimes, we wonder how nails get stuck in our tires. Is it that these nails are positioned for us to climb them? As tires run over nails and screws lying on the road, they position themselves in such a way that they will get stuck in other tires. Other times, tires from other cars can throw nails on your tire. As you run over the nail, it gets stuck into your tires.

There are other ways this can happen. But this is the most prevalent cause. Symptoms of driving with a nail in tire vary from one tire to another. The tire can go flat immediately; the tires can go flat overnight or slowly leak air pressure.

nail in tire repair

How to fix a nail in tires?

Since we don’t know when nails get stuck in our tires and cannot prevent them from getting in there, we should, at least, know how to fix nails in tires.

If you’re asking, I have a nail in tire; what to do? The simple answer is to remove the nail from the tire and patch the hole. Removing nails from tires is quite simple. Meanwhile, you should get a patch kit and a plug if you want to do this. You can get these items online or at local auto stores. You’ll use them to remove the nail and fix the gouged spot.

To start the nail in tire repair process, grab a pair of pliers and pull out the stuck nail. If the nail is too deep and stubborn to come out, get a screwdriver, a knife, or another sharp object and dig a hole round the edge of the nail. This will make it easier to grab the nail with pliers and pull it out.

Read the instruction note on the patch kit and follow the directives religiously before removing the nail. After the fix, spray soapy water on that spot and see if there are any bubbles on it. Bubbles show the tire is still leaking. Pat yourself on the back if there are no bubbles on the tire. After fixing the tire, inflate your tires to the recommended PSI before hitting the road.

However, if you’re not a DIYer, search for “nail in tire repair near me” to have an experienced service technician do the job. It’ll be unfair if I leave you here without a visual guide. Watch this Youtube video for a visual presentation on how to fix nails in a tire for free.

What makes a nail in a tire unrepairable?

Only follow the instructions above on how to fix nails in car tires when the tires are repairable. If you do not have a patchable nail in tire, the only option will be to replace the tire. So that brings us to the question, what makes a nail in a tire unrepairable?

Puncture repairs, whether nails or screws, are limited to the center of the tire. Any nails, screws, punctures, or damages on tire sidewalls or shoulders are not repairable. Therefore, if you have a nail on the tire sidewall, the only way to fix it is to replace it.

nail in tire how long will it last

Frequently Asked Questions – FAQs

Q: Is it OK to drive with a nail in a tire?

If you’re asking, can you drive with a nail in tire? The answer is yes. It is okay to drive with a nail in the tire if it is not on the sidewall and the tire still retains air pressure. Most times, nails get stuck in tires without the drivers even knowing.

However, it’s important to fix the nail as soon as you notice it. In any case, if the nail is big and the tires lose air pressure, then it’s important to have a mechanic fix it. So if you were asking where to get nails removed from tire, you now know the answer.

Q: What should I do if I have a nail in my tire?

Having screws or nails in your car tires does not mean you have flat tires. It, however, means there’s something wrong with the tire. It could damage the tires if you do not identify and fix them on time.

To prevent damaging or ruining your tires, you need to check your tire pressure and ensure it is not losing much air. If it’s losing much pressure, replace the tire with your spare one. The next thing is to fix the tire. You can do this by yourself by following the above instructions or have a professional fix it. Lastly, if the nail in a tire is not repairable, replace the affected tire.

Q: Can a nail in a tire be repaired?

Yes, you can repair a nail in the tire if the nail gets stuck in the center of the tire tread. You can fix it using a plug-and-patch repair kit without removing the tire from the wheel. If you have a service technician fix it, he’ll remove the tire and fix it thoroughly.

Q: How long will a tire last with a nail in it?

If you’re asking, I have a nail in tire; how long will it last? The answer depends on a few factors. If the nail is small and gets stuck in the center tread, you can drive a few days to weeks before you’ll have a flat tire. But if the nail is big and stuck on the sidewall, you can safely drive a few hours to a day before the tire goes flat.

Q: Will my tire pop If I drive with a nail in it?

As reiterated above, driving with a nail in your tire is safe if the nail is small and the tire is holding air pressure. If the nail is big and gets stuck on the sidewall, it increases the chances of a tire blowout. Therefore, fix nails in tires as soon as possible to prevent any uncertainty.

Q: How much does it cost to fix a nail in a tire?

The cost of fixing nails, screws, or any punctures in car tires depends on the size of the tire and the person fixing it. On average, nail-in tire repair costs between $10 to $15. Meanwhile, if you decide to fix the tire yourself using the above instructions, you’ll only spend $6 for the tire repair patch kit. And you won’t spend a dime if you already have the tire patch kit.

Q: Do I need a new tire if I have a nail in it?

You can repair nails in tires if the puncture is less than ¼ of an inch in diameter or if it happens on the center tire tread. But repairing the tire is unsafe if the puncture happens on the sidewall or it’s greater than ¼ of an inch in diameter. The best option would be to replace the punctured tire.

Q: Do tires have a warranty on nails?

Many tire manufacturers give 36,000 miles warranty on their tires. However, this warranty only covers manufacturing defects. They do not cover normal tire tread wear and tire and road hazards like nails or screws in tires. Even if your tire wears before the 36,000 miles coverage, you’ll have to prove that you maintain proper wheel balancing, alignment, and rotation.

Final Words

Most times, other car tires flick the nails to your tire and damage them. Other times your front tire may flick a nail to the rear tire. Regardless of the cause or symptoms of a nail in tire, ensure you rectify the issue once you notice it. Follow the instructions above to fix nails in car tires. But if you’re not a DIYer, have a service technician remove the nail and patch the tire.

Osuagwu Solomon

Osuagwu Solomon is a certified mechanic with over a decade of experience in the mechanic garage, and he has over five years of experience in the writing industry. He started writing automotive articles to share his garage experience with car enthusiasts and armature mechanics. If he is not in the garage fixing challenging mechanical problems, he is writing automotive repair guides, buyer’s guides, and car and tools comparisons.

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