A Car Tire Being Patched By A Mechanic

Tire Patching Made Easy: The Ultimate Guide to Fixing Flat Tires Like a Pro

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This post includes affiliate links, which means that if you make a purchase after clicking on my links, I will receive a commission for the sale. There is a wide variety of potential dangers on the road. No matter how cautious you are, there will always be small and sharp debris that will slip through and cause damage, particularly to your tires. This is true regardless of how well you observe safety precautions. And this is where something called a tire patch enters the equation.

Tire With A Screw Or Nail In It
AppleZoomZoom / Shutterstock.com

Let’s face it, a tire will eventually get a puncture at some point in its existence, and when it does, it will need to be repaired. And people who own cars are well aware that getting flat tires is an inevitable and unavoidable part of the process of having a vehicle. However, not all people who own cars are aware of the appropriate ways to cope with them. But don’t worry! This article will serve as your comprehensive guide to inspecting tires in the correct manner as well as applying patches.

What is a punctured tire?

A flat tire is typically the result of a punctured tire, which occurs when a foreign object, typically one that is sharp, pierces through the rubber of the tire and allows air to escape, ultimately leading to the tire becoming deflated.

A Tire Puncture Being Patched
(boyphare / Shutterstock.com)

Depending on the location of the perforation, this can be a relatively minor issue or a significant one. And if it is not attended to in the appropriate manner, it could cause damage to the entire tire, which would require replacement in addition to creating a number of hazards while traveling.

Identifying a puncture

You might not immediately realize that one of your tires has been punctured when it happens. Therefore, the following are some surefire methods to determine whether or not your tires have been punctured:

  • When you are behind the wheel and you experience discomfort and excessive vibration.
  • When all of a sudden the vehicle begins to veer to the left and right.
  • When you hear squeals or screeches that aren’t normal emanating from your tires. There are a number of variables that can cause this, but a puncture is one of the more common causes.

Can you patch a tire with a nail in it?

In all honesty, this is dependent on the region that was perforated. Even if the object goes all the way through the middle of the tread region, the hole can still be patched. However, if the hole is deeper than one quarter of an inch or six millimeters, you will need to replace the tire.

In many situations, bent nails are in a position where they are able to easily puncture through anything that comes into close proximity with them. And one of their most common targets is the tire industry.

On the other hand, there are a few sharp objects that are quite minuscule and should be avoided at all costs. These are the following:

  • Screw and bolts
  • Broken glass shards
  • Industrial staples
  • Sharp rocks
  • Metal sheets and steel components

A skilled motorist should always be ready for any potential danger on the road, such as a flat tire. And having the ability to recognize one is always necessary before attempting to repair a tire.

Why is proper tire repair important?

Car tires can have their lifespans extended by performing routine tire maintenance and repairs. As a result, you, the vehicle owner, will enjoy a number of benefits as a direct consequence of this development.

Here’s a few of them:

  1. It saves money and reduces cost. Repairs on your vehicle can be kept to a minimum and other issues can be circumvented if you maintain and replace your tires regularly.
  2. It helps reduce waste. Tires do not disintegrate. As a result, you will contribute to the reduction of refuse tire disposal if you are able to avoid the need to purchase new tires due to their premature replacement.
  3. It helps keep you safe on the road. It’s possible for a car’s functionality and safety to suffer, depending on the condition of the tires.
A Mechanic Removing A Tire From The Rim Of The Wheel
(Lucky Business / Shutterstock.com)

It is possible for improper repairs to result in circumstances that put people’s safety at risk while they are traveling on the road. In addition to this, it can result in a continuous loss of air pressure, which ultimately results to the premature replacement of the tires.

How to patch a tire

There are a few distinct approaches to repairing a tire that has been fractured. The following are the most prevalent varieties:

1. Patch

It is highly recommended that a professional performs this repair.

When patching, it is imperative to conduct a thorough examination to locate the puncture. After cautiously removing the tire from the wheel, the next step is to take off the rim.

After that, the specialist will buff the surface of the puncture in order to prepare it for the patch to adhere to it. After that, the patch will be glued over the puncture, and after it has been smoothed out, a patch sealer will be used to complete the job.

How long does it take to patch a tire?

It takes approximately 20 to 30 minutes to properly repair a tire. This is because the tire needs to be removed from the vehicle in order to undergo a thorough inspection.

It is impossible for the specialist to perform an accurate inspection of the tire’s interior unless the wheel is removed from the vehicle first. Keep in mind that tire patches can only be applied if the hole is located in the tread region of the tire.

2. Plug

A tire plug is a quick yet temporary repair technique in which a piece of string coated with unvulcanized rubber is pushed into the punctured region of your tire so that air cannot escape. This prevents the air from escaping through the puncture.

A tire plug, in contrast to a tire repair, is something that can be done on your own. Having your own tire repair kit will come in useful because it is a quick method of repair that will assist you in getting off the road. The following are some choices that can readily be purchased online:

To begin, you will need to use the tools to extract the object from your tire that caused the puncture. Second, you will need to use the large tool for puncturing to slightly enlarge the opening, and then you will need to thread the string onto the tool that resembles a needle. In the final step, you will insert the plug through the hole, and then draw back on the tool. This will cause the plug to remain in place, effectively sealing the hole.

How long does it take to plug a tire?

Putting in a tire plug requires no more than 15 minutes at the most, and typically no more than a few minutes. This is because, unlike a tire repair, it does not require the tire to be removed from its mounting.

How long does a plugged tire last?

This strategy can only be used for a maximum of 25,000 kilometers. It does not provide the same level of reliability as a tire repair. However, if you need to travel away to find better repair, this is a good alternative to consider.

3. Patch and plug combination

A tire patch-plug is a type of repair that combines the techniques of patching and plugging into a single solution. To do this, a small, round plug is placed in the middle of a plug-shaped patch made of rubber.

This is the best choice out of the three possibilities because it repairs punctures in a manner that is superior, more secure, and more permanent. Because of this, the vast majority of repair experts favor this approach.

To install the tire patch-plug, the perforation needs to be widened by drilling through it first. This allows the small round plug that comes with the patch to pass through.

After that, the mechanic will buff the puncture away from the inside of the tire, and then he or she will glue the patch into position. Following that, the specialist will remove the plug that was located on the exterior of the tire. When the plug has been pushed completely through, the technician will then cut the length of the plug so that it matches the length of the tread on the tire.

How long does it take to patch-plug a tire?

The procedure of installing a tire patch-plug takes a lot of time. To complete the entire procedure could take up to thirty minutes of your time at the very least. This is due to the fact that it incorporates aspects of both the patching and plugging repair procedures.

How long does a patch-plugged tire last?

If done properly by a technician, a patch-plug repair has the potential to last the entire lifespan of the tire without causing any problems. In addition to this, the reason why technicians favor this technique over other methods of repair is because of this factor.

Should your tire be patched, plugged or replaced?

In light of the fact that you are now familiar with the most prevalent methods for repairing punctures, the next step that you should take is to determine which of these methods is the most appropriate for your tires.

When determining whether your tire requires a patch, a plug, or if it should be replaced altogether, the most essential questions to ask are listed below.

Where is the puncture located? How big is it?

You are in fortunate if the hole in your tire is located in the middle of the tread and is no larger than one quarter of an inch (six millimeters) in diameter. You still have the option of having your tires stopped or patched.

A Nail Puncture In The Middle Of The Tire'S Tread Area
(gcpics / Shutterstock.com)

You will need to replace the tire if the cut or puncture is larger than a quarter of an inch and is situated in or extends through the shoulder or sidewall area. If you repair anything of that size on the tire, the rubber’s durability will be reduced.

How close to the sidewall can a tire be patched?

It is no longer possible to correct a puncture that is closer than half an inch to the steel belts that run along the shoulder or sidewall of the tire.

Dangerous Nail Puncture On The Sidewall Of A Tire
(Pixelbender36 / Shutterstock.com)

While you are driving, the sidewall of your tire is subjected to a different kind of pressure and moves back and forth quite frequently. If you try to patch or plug a puncture that is located too close to the sidewall of the tire, it will result in an unexpected blowout that could be hazardous. Because of this, you need to get a new tire put on your vehicle.

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If you want to avoid spending a fortune on brand-new tires but don’t want to sacrifice performance, blemished tires are a great option.

Can you patch a run flat tire?

It is possible, under certain conditions, to patch flat tire that has gone completely flat. There is wide range of information that needs to be considered, such as the character of the puncture and the extent of the damage.

Patching is an option if the hole caused by the perforation is not too large. Nevertheless, if the reinforced sidewall, for instance, experienced significant amount of damage, then it is recommended that the tire be replaced.
Zoomed In Photo Of A Run Flat Tire
(Smile Fight / Shutterstock.com)

Keep in mind that the only way to tell whether or not the tire requires a patch or a replacement is to perform a thorough inspection of the tire. In the end, when the circumstance occurs, it is best to use your judgment based on the recommendation or repair policy provided by the manufacturer of your tires. If you are still unsure, you can inquire for assistance by contacting the customer service department of the tire manufacturer you use.

Can a tire be patched twice?

No. Even though a tire repair can be expected to last anywhere from seven to ten years if it is done correctly, most experts advise against doing it more than once. The same is true for repairing punctures that overlay one another. The reason for this is due to the fact that doing so can have an effect on the speed number of the tire, or even worse, cause blowouts.

How much does it cost to patch a tire?

The cost to repair a tire can vary widely depending on where you purchase the patching material. In most cases, you will be required to pay anywhere from ten to twenty dollars for the repair and rebalance. If you find the hole in the tire sooner rather than later, you will have lower repair costs. If you’re very fortunate, you might even come across tire repair businesses that provide this service at no cost to their customers. Alternatively, if you obtained the patch from the manufacturer of your tire, there is a good possibility that the repair will be provided at no cost to you.

There are some shops, particularly those that specialize in patch-plug repairs, that can charge as much as $40 for the service. But keep in mind that the patch-plug repair is the most secure method to fix a puncture, even though it is also the most time-consuming.

You can save your tire and escape potential dangers on the road with the help of a quality tire patch, all without breaking the bank. Do you agree that this is a much more appealing option than purchasing brand new tires?

Where can I get my tires patched?

Going to the closest tire repair shop is the best option if you want to get the puncture repaired quickly.

Continue reading below if, on the other hand, you are interested in learning whether or not a tire manufacturer or vendor provides services for patching tires.

Does Autozone Patch tires?

They certainly do not. On the other hand, they will be able to provide you with a repair package, rubber cement, and tire patches so that you can make a temporary repair to your tire.

Autozone Logo

Does Walmart patch tires?

Yes. Tires can be patched at any of Walmart’s stores or distribution centers that have an Auto Care Center. On the other hand, if you do not make an appointment with them in preparation, they will not be able to attend to the problems you are having with your vehicle right away.

Walmart Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Walmart?

For $15 per tire, Walmart Auto Care Center will complete the task. Fortunately, they may be able to repair your tire for free if you purchased your tires from them because they offer after-sale services.

Does NTB patch tires?

Tire repairs are available at the National Tire & Battery (NTB) Auto Center. Their website lists tire inspection, fixes that have received industry approval, tire remounting, and balancing among their tire patching services.

National Tire And Battery Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at NTB?

At NTB, a tire repair will set you back $19.99 per tire. On their website, you can choose the NTB Auto Center that is closest to you by using a shop selector. You can then obtain a precise price estimate based on your address.

Does Sam’s Club patch tires?

Yes, but only if you are a lively participant. Along with a tire patch, you can take advantage of their emergency roadside help, which includes fuel delivery, towing, and jump starts.

Sam'S Club Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Sam’s Club?

If you are a current Sam’s Club member, a patch is complimentary. The fact that it covers lifetime tire repairs is the best aspect of this.

On the other hand, you should purchase their $20 Premium Tire Installation Package if you want to take advantage of their other services, such as their emergency roadside help.

Costco Wholesale Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Costco?

If you had your tires fitted at Costco, a patch is free. However, they can still patch your tires for $10.99 each even if they were not fitted by Costco.

Does AAA/Triple A patch tires?

Regrettably, no. Tire repairs are not done by the American Automobile Association (AAA or Triple A).

American Automobile Association Logo

To get you off the side of the road, they do provide roadside help services. If you already have a spare tire, they can mount it, re-air it, and tow your vehicle to the closest authorized service facility or wherever you decide to get your tire fixed.

It is important to keep in mind that the degree of your membership will determine how much help you receive.

Does Grease Monkey patch tires?

Tires can be repaired by Grease Monkey. Their website claims that they can repair tires in about 15 minutes, and the entire procedure is carried out in accordance with industry standards.

Grease Monkey Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Grease Monkey?

On their website, the price of a tire patch is not made clear, but you can schedule a repair in advance and ask for an estimate for their services.

Does Valvoline patch tires?

Sadly, Valvoline does not offer tire repairs. They do, however, provide other auto repair services like tire rotation and battery replacement in addition to oil change services.

Valvoline Logo

Does Pepboys patch tires?

Pepboys does tire repairs. In addition, they provide tire balancing, a thorough examination of the tire before repairing it, and even courtesy vehicle inspections.

Pepboys Logo With 3 Men

How much is it to patch a tire at Pepboys?

Pepboys charges $19.99 for each tire to be patched. You can set up an appointment for your repair on their website if you wish to reserve in advance.

Does Firestone patch tires?

Absolutely! Firestone fixes tire damage. In the US, they have more than 1,700 auto repair locations where they provide mounting and balancing in addition to tire patching.

Firestone Logo Text Only

How much is it to patch a tire at Firestone?

On their website, Firestone does not specify the precise price of a tire repair. You can, however, make a meeting with them online and learn more. The year, make, and model of your vehicle will determine this.

Does Jiffy Lube patch tires?

Yes. Jiffy Lube repairs tire damage. In actuality, they use patch-plug, which is the best repair technique. Additionally, Jiffy Lube’s entire replacement procedure complies with industry standards.

Jiffy Lube Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Jiffy Lube?

The price of a tire repair at Jiffy Lube ranges from $10 to $20. They balance tires as part of the lengthy procedure because they employ the patch-plug technique.

Does Mavis patch tires?

Mavis Discount Tire does repair tires, that much is true. For the majority of vehicles with rims under 18 inches, Mavis’ repair procedure involves tire rebalancing.

Mavis Discount Tire Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at Mavis?

At Mavis, a normal tire patch costs $23. On their website, they do provide a $10 off coupon for their tire repair services through the remainder of 2022.

Does America’s Tire patch tires?

Yes. Tire repair services are available from America’s Tire. They adhere to stringent industry standards that promote your safety while driving.

America'S Tire Logo

How much is it to patch a tire at America’s Tire?

Any tire work, including tire rotation and puncture repairs, is free if you bought your tires from America’s Tire.

Can you drive on a patched tire?

Certainly, if a patch has been correctly applied in accordance with professional standards. Reiterating a few of the aforementioned factors, proper tire repair is crucial. It maintains everyone in the car, including you, secure on the highway.

Can you drive long-distance with a patched tire?

A properly mended tire is safe to use. If an expert handled the task for you, you could quickly get back on the road.

In light of this, you will be able to drive the repaired tire far lengths in the same manner as before it was punctured.

Woman Driving Safely On A Highway
(Peter Fazekas / Pexels.com)

How fast can you drive on a patched tire?

Up to about 80 to 90 mph, a car with correctly patched tires should be secure. Anything more relies on the quality of the patch and your tire.

Driving a fixed tire at the suggested speed limit is safer, though.


One of a vehicle’s most crucial parts are the tires. We count on them to securely transport us to all of our destinations. So it is imperative to take care of them and maintain them in good condition.

Being equipped to manage a puncture while driving not only keeps you safe, but it also extends the life of your tires, allowing them to travel thousands of miles safely and reliably.


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