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Why Can’t You Repair Tires with a Punctured Sidewall?

Shards of metal, screws and nails are common suspects when it comes to punctured sidewalls. Unfortunately, even though any one of several objects or events can cause your tire’s sidewall to puncture, there’s only one solution: replace the tire.

At Kal Tire, we’ve seen our share of drivers pull in with tires punctured on the sidewall—the side of your tire that faces the road and contains all of the tire’s most important use information. In addition to objects on the road such as nails, sidewalls can get punctured by hitting a curb, small accidents, and bent rims.

Drivers are always hopeful we’ll be able to repair a sidewall puncture. Unfortunately, sidewall punctures on passenger or light truck tires can’t be repaired. Here’s why.

Why Tires with Punctured Sidewalls Can’t be Repaired

The patch won’t hold

Tires have cords that run all around the tread of the tire, the part the makes contact with the road. But on the sidewall, those cords aren’t there. So, there’s just no way for a plug to fill that hole. The patch won’t hold, and it’s going to continue to leak.

Sidewall puncture repairs compromise the integrity of your tire

Even if a patch were placed over a sidewall puncture, the fact is, your tire is no longer able to perform at is best, and that means it isn’t safe.

Even at slow speeds, your tire is now susceptible to a blowout and the risk of serious injuries for everyone in your vehicle and the vehicles around you.

When you have a sidewall puncture on your hands, the best thing to do is replace the tire.

If you’re not sure if you have signs of sidewall damage, be sure to stop in at a Kal Tire location near you so one of our tire experts can help.

If you drive a truck and you do a lot of off-roading or driving in areas where your tires are susceptible to sidewall punctures, you might want to consider one of our all-terrain tires, which feature 3-plywall sidewall construction for added puncture resistance.

The Nitto Trail Grappler, for example, offers the off-road performance and puncture resistance off an all-terrain tire as well as the on-road comfort and quiet of standard passenger tires. See one of our team members for more advice about which tire is best for your needs.

Now that you’re looking at your sidewall, are you curious about what all those numbers mean? Check out our post How to Understand the Numbers on Your Tire.

Please note that Kal Tire can fix a punctured sidewall through our retread process, but only for commercial or Off The Road (OTR) tires, which have a different design than passenger or light truck tires. With more layers of ply and a more durable construction, it’s both safe and cost-effective to retread commercial tires; again, the process is not used for passenger tires.

Photo Credit: Julie Fagan – Peanut Butter Fingers