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Old 06-08-2017, 03:35 PM   #1
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Flat tires on the tow vehicle.

OK so maybe I'm just venting here but I seem to be too cheap to pay others to do skilled work for me if I think I can do it myself and save a few bucks. So, I bought the Reece rail mounting kit which "easily" bolts to the frame of my 2010 F 150 and a set of Sumo Springs. The Anderson Ultimate Rail Mounted Hitch is still to be ordered although I expect to get it sometime next week. I can do this.

First I had to remove the spare tire; after 7 years and 107K miles without a flat, and another 30 years on all my other cars, I realized I wasn't familiar with how to get the jack out of the storage area under the back seat and how to lower the spare wheel. It was a comfortable sunny day in my garage so I figured it all out. OMG that spare tire is big and heavy. Kudos for Ford but after 7 years it is still fully charged with air. Now I can comfortable crawl under and sit in there while removing and adding bolts for the installation. (Helmet advised.)

This brings up my question. My 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid has the battery system where the spare tire should be so Hyundai provided an inflation kit with Slime or some type of tire sealant in case of a flat, no spare tire. A very nice small and lightweight bag in the trunk.

Does something like this exist for big heavy duty tires? Seems like removing the spare would save weight behind the axle and I'm not sure I would be able to change a flat or blown tire on that beast anyway. Granted, the first time I take a trip without a spare Murphy's Law will kick in but I am interested in ways to avoid having to reinstall the spare tire. Let the flames begin.
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Old 06-08-2017, 03:59 PM   #2
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Originally Posted by SFDavis50 View Post
My 2016 Hyundai Sonata Hybrid has the battery system where the spare tire should be so Hyundai provided an inflation kit with Slime or some type of tire sealant in case of a flat, no spare tire. A very nice small and lightweight bag in the trunk.

Does something like this exist for big heavy duty tires?
I don't think there's any fundamental difference due to tire size, other than simply scale. Some "inflators" are a pressurized can which both inflates and seals; other kits (such as one in a BMW Mini) include a 12V DC compressor plus sealant. Carry a suitable 12V DC powered compressor (high enough pressure for the tire and robust enough to run for a while and not melt down), and a can of sealant. Apparently there different types of sealant, some of which are more desirable to leave in the tire than others.

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Seems like removing the spare would save weight behind the axle and I'm not sure I would be able to change a flat or blown tire on that beast anyway. Granted, the first time I take a trip without a spare Murphy's Law will kick in but I am interested in ways to avoid having to reinstall the spare tire. Let the flames begin.
Large motorhomes typically come with no spare (or wrench, or jack), because it is not practical for the owner to do the change on the roadside anyway. Same for heavy transport trucks. They're not stuck at the roadside very often, and tire stores have service rigs which come out to do the work.

The other solution is run-flat tires, but they're not common (if available at all) in light truck sizes. They're undesirable the 99.99% of the time that the tire isn't flat anyway, because they are more expensive, heavier, ride more harshly, don't handle as well, and don't wear as well.

Both inflation kits and run-flats only handle routine punctures. If you have sidewall damage, you need another tire. Other than while on trips through unusually remote areas, I don't think carrying a spare to handle this sort of event is worthwhile any more (although it was in an earlier era of tires and roads). Auto manufacturers apparently agree, as they have been eliminating spares due to a lack of space (particularly in sports cars with big tires, but also due to competition with stuff such as that battery or the AWD system in a Toyota Sienna), or just to save weight (some cars come with a normal spare tire well, containing nothing but the inflation kit).

I have not used the spare in my last four cars or the trailer, used it only once in another car, and only once in 13 years on the van.
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:27 PM   #3
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That stuff is great and so is an inflator- but neither will work if you have a blow-out.
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:39 PM   #4
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Flat tires on the tow vehicle.

Road side assistance, better than a spare if you don't want to change tires yourself

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Old 06-08-2017, 04:44 PM   #5
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Road side assistance, better than a spare if you don't want to change tires yourself

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I just can't imagine waiting around for someone to change a tire when it is an easy 15 minute task.
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:47 PM   #6
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No spare in my Mustang 5.0, if flat, it gets towed. But that said, when one orders a towing package, they normally provide a suitable spare. Thus performance and hybrids have either kits or nothing, tow vehicles should have full size spares.
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:48 PM   #7
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I just can't imagine waiting around for someone to change a tire when it is an easy 15 minute task.
I can. Changed a tire on the company car and then I had to go in the house and change my clothes. Luckily I was at home. I've also had to change a tire on a Cherokee Chief in the rain and four inches of mud.
However, also got a flat 45 minutes from cell coverage...
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Old 06-08-2017, 04:51 PM   #8
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Flat tires on the tow vehicle.

Quote:
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I just can't imagine waiting around for someone to change a tire when it is an easy 15 minute task.


I totally agree Jim, just saying for those who don't want to or can't, besides gives me a chance to pull out the old torque wench .


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Old 06-08-2017, 05:21 PM   #9
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I just can't imagine waiting around for someone to change a tire when it is an easy 15 minute task.
It's like a lost art today, like driving a stick shift.......
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:29 PM   #10
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In today's world, no one gets out the tool kit or the tire iron. You get out the cell phone. But also today's tires stay up with a projection in them. I have had my share of tires repaired but has been a long time since I had to do one on the road. It might have been 1968. Loren
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Old 06-08-2017, 08:49 PM   #11
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:06 PM   #12
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That stuff is great and so is an inflator- but neither will work if you have a blow-out.
Right - that's an extreme case of the sidewall damage that I mentioned. Other than the junk that is routinely used on trailers, I believe that blowouts of tires which are properly inflated and not overloaded are rare.

I've never had a blowout (even on a trailer), but that's just one driver's experience, of about a million kilometres.
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Old 06-08-2017, 09:20 PM   #13
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Just because you can, doesn't mean you should. Same thing applies to changing a tire. I don't want to do it! But, may find myself with no cell service... no AAA. So, I can and would under certain circumstances. Knowing how and deciding when.. is the key

I also carry an aluminum racing jack....
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:39 PM   #14
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I just can't imagine waiting around for someone to change a tire when it is an easy 15 minute task.
Agreed! My son was already helping change the tires at 4! I didn't let him use the impact gun but he got to wear the ear muffs.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:44 PM   #15
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Agreed! My son was already helping change the tires at 4! I didn't let him use the impact gun but he got to wear the ear muffs.
Great training.
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Old 06-08-2017, 10:58 PM   #16
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Right - that's an extreme case of the sidewall damage that I mentioned. Other than the junk that is routinely used on trailers, I believe that blowouts of tires which are properly inflated and not overloaded are rare.

I've never had a blowout (even on a trailer), but that's just one driver's experience, of about a million kilometres.
Had one blow out on the f250 coming home from working ,on freeway . Seems picked up a screw right in the middle of tread on Michelin E tires . Blew the whole side walls out . Tire was slowly leaking while we were working , Luckily had spare . Heavy tires , called AAA and they changed tire for us . The one and only blow out I ever had in all years driving . Glad had spare to get home . You never know . When I was younger used to drive around with almost bald tires , not anymore . Pat
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Old 06-09-2017, 05:11 AM   #17
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Last tire I changed was when I was abut 14 out horse shopping with my mom in her big silver Lincoln she was amazed that I could do it. Don't think I could do it now I can never find all the parts for the jack etc seems like they hide them all over the car
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Old 06-09-2017, 06:50 AM   #18
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Does anyone carry a tire plug kit? Used a few over the years for nails or screws. No good for sidewall damage, but that is less likely. If you carry this and a small compressor you can be back on the road without changing to a spare. Works especially good on larger trucks where there is space in the wheelwell to see the object and ream the hole. Harder on a car because you need to position the tire so the object is facing front or back using the space between the road and body to work.

Slime Reamer plugger tool 20204 - Read Reviews on Slime #20204
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Old 06-09-2017, 08:39 AM   #19
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Don't think I could do it now I can never find all the parts for the jack etc seems like they hide them all over the car
Every time I get a new vehicle I have to learn where all the pieces are kept. Finally in my F-150 they have them all in the same place, except the spare of course.
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Old 06-09-2017, 12:00 PM   #20
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It is a good idea to review where the jack, tools, and spare are; you never know when they're needed. Had to change the tent trailer tire that had blown on I-15 in southern Utah where there was no cell service. Happened to have my 18V cordless drill and large sockets along (that I use to run the stabilizers up & down), so it took much less than 15 minutes. I had previously thrown a few 2x6 wood blocks in with the car jack, so I was able to jack up the trailer high enough to change the tire.
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