Regardless of how good you are at driving or how careful you are, chances remain that you’ll get a nail in your tire at some point.
It’s not always easy to notice a nail in your Tesla’s tire. Sometimes, a nail in your tire may produce a flat immediately. At times, it can cause a slow leak and you may notice this after some time.
Sometimes you may notice the nail, but you don’t know what to do to address the problem. Many questions may arise within yourself, whether to drive off and do nothing, or remove the nail immediately, and how to deal with the air leaking in your tire.
Having a nail in your tire means something is wrong. And if you don’t take action to get the tire repaired in time, it could blow out or damage completely. This article explains steps you need to take in order to address a nail puncture in your tire.
Does Tesla Warranty Cover Nails in Tires?
Tesla does not offer warranty cover to tires in case of a puncture. Just like all other warrants, Tesla normally covers defective design or workmanship issues. A puncture is a wear and tear issue that’s your responsibility to address.
Generally, Tesla vehicles do come with decent coverage and warranty, but don’t include tire or wheel protection. This is not news to the automotive world as other car firms also don’t offer such coverage. Every day, you’ll notice that almost every single vehicle has some kind of tire and wheel damage. It’s unavoidable and occurs to everyone sooner or later.
Tire and wheel damages are common among cars. However, damages to your tires and wheels can easily happen when driving on a flat tire (when your tires are not properly inflated), driving over curbs, driving on road salt in winter especially if you live in a colder climate, parking too close to the curb, and not avoiding potholes.
Normally car warranties don’t cover parts that are regarded as normal wear and tear. This is because these parts are not wearing down because of factory defects, but just from normal usage.
Your warranty also won’t cover damage from external causes, such as vandalism, severe weather, theft, or collisions. For these types of fixes, you need to ensure that you’ve got the right car insurance to take care of repairs in case something goes wrong.
Can a Flat Tesla Tire be patched?
Most Tesla users often ask whether a flat tire should be patched or not. In most cases, punctured tires can be patched so long the tires are still in condition.
The tires can be patched if the damage is minor and located on the tread. However, significant damages or punctures on the tire’s sidewall often require a replacement.
In early times, patching Tesla-type tube tires proved not possible as small punctures often turned into large repairs. However, with the emergence of Tesla tubeless tires has helped improve innovation. Nowadays, Tesla tire technicians can complete patches for tubeless tires with minimal damage. However, if your tire has severe damage, it’ll require replacement.
Tubeless tires are better in case of a nail puncture. If a tubeless tire gets puncture, air will escape through the hole, but it might take days before you notice a deflation. However, for a punctured tube-type tire, you will notice the tire deflate within minutes.
To patch Tesla tires, professional tire technicians start by removing the nail. They then carefully cut away the foam layer to create a room for the repair. Then, they can patch the puncture in your tire and refill it to the proper tire pressure.
If A Nail Gets Into Tesla Tire, Should You Take It Out?
If a nail gets into your Tesla tire, don’t take it out. Taking it will cause a tire puncture. Sometimes, you drive over a sharp foreign object like a nail which can cause a flat tire instantly. However, at times, the nail can move inside the tire in such a way that air doesn’t escape even as you continue driving.
You can drive with a nail in your tire so long as the tire isn’t flat. It’s fine to continue driving for a short distance. But you need to resolve the problem sooner rather than later.
Whether to continue driving with a nail on your tire depends on the seriousness of the puncture and how much air is leaking out. If air is leaking slowly, you may be able to continue driving for a few kilometers as you are looking for a nearby tire center to get the problem resolved.
However, if you notice that the puncture is severe, you’ll likely need to replace your tire immediately before you continue driving further.
Even if the tire isn’t losing air, continuing driving can cause damage to the tire’s sidewall. It may eventually cause the puncture to become more severe. It’s not advisable to drive on a flat tire.
Should You Contact Tesla If There’s A Nail in the Tire?
If you have a nail in your tire, you should consider a roadside assistance plan. Tesla’s emergency roadside assistance provides many services that can help you address the problem. You can contact Tesla roadside assistance to have emergency jumpstarts, tire changes, and vehicle towing up to 10 miles (and more) at your fingertips.
Apart from the above solution, unless you’re in the middle of nowhere, there will be a gas station, tire shop, autozone, convenience store, or an auto parts store that sells tire plug kits.
Buy a tire plug kit to temporarily plug the hole in your tire in an emergency. But beware that plugging your tire only serves as a temporary intervetion and has some risk. The only way to safely repair your tire is to contact a professional tire service technician to remove the tire from the wheel and repair the tire from the inside.
Take your vehicle straight to professionals to get your tire permanently fixed. Consider where you can get a nearby Tesla service center. If there is no Tesla service center nearby try to stop at the nearest available tire center immediately. Contact available tire service technicians to help fix the problem.
How to repair Tesla tire with nails in
Now that you’ve taken your car to a nearby tire center and contacted a professional tire service technician to address a permanent solution. They will take your tire off the wheel and inspect it.
The technicians will assess the size of the hole in your tire to see if it can be repaired. They will pull out the nail with needle nose pliers so it’s easier to measure the hole. If the hole is more than 1⁄4 inch (0.64 cm) across, you won’t be able to repair the tire. So you’ll need to have your tire get replaced. Punctures or damages on the tire sidewall are normally unrepairable. Also, if a tire has multiple repairs or punctures close to each other, it’s advisable for you to replace the tire.
The technicians will give you their opinion. Of course, having your tire replaced will be more expensive than repairing it. So it’s a good idea to find out if there’s any way your tire can be fixed before continuing with the journey.
In case of replacement, ensure you choose a new tire that’s the same size and model as the rest. If you choose a different tire, this will cause the tires operate and wear out differently, and cause damage to your car. Ensure the technicians follow the recommendations in your owner’s manual. Ask the tire service technicians for help choosing the right tire.
After a repair, make sure that the car’s alignment is checked and the tire is balanced. This ensures optimal performance and even wear. Also after a repair, regularly check on the tire’s pressure for a few days to make sure that there’s no slow leak.
My Final Thoughts
Having a punctured tire due to a nail is something that you can’t avoid. If you are caught in such a situation, it is okay to drive a short distance looking for a nearby tire center.
You have to get your tire repaired or replaced immediately. It’s not safe to drive with a nail in a tire as this can quickly turn into tire leak, blowout, or severe accident. That’s why you should always carry a spare tire.
With the steps discussed above, you can certainly fix a nail puncture problem in your car tire. So if you suspect a nail has wedged in your tire, contact Tesla support center or a professional tire service technician to offer a permanent solution.