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Can you Repair Run Flat Tyres?

Due to the way they’re constructed, run flat tyres can’t be repaired. Initially, you may consider that a huge disadvantage, but they have huge advantages over traditional tyres, so check out the below and weigh up the positives and negatives.

Run flat tyres - what are they?

They do exactly what you might imagine they do based on the name - they still run when they’re flat. Thanks to their safety advantages, most new cars now come with run flats fitted as standard.

Once punctured, you’re free to drive using them for a period of time, until you’re able to have the tyre replaced. They have a reinforced sidewall that is stronger than the sidewall on older tyres, which means they can hold the weight of the vehicle, passengers, and load in the event of a puncture.

If your vehicle uses run flats, then there’s no need for you to carry a spare. So, if you experience a flat tyre, you don’t need to pull over in a potentially dangerous location to change it. You can simply continue on with your journey, and then arrange to have the tyre replaced as soon as possible.

Does my car use run flat tyres?

If your vehicle has a Tyre Pressure Monitoring System (TPMS) then it’s highly likely that it uses run flats.

As the name suggests, a TPMS tracks the pressure in your tyres, and will alert you if there are any problems. If the system alerts you, it’s important not to ignore this as there could be a chance that one (or more) of your tyres has experienced a puncture.

How long do run flat tyres last?

They will wear the same as traditional tyres, and must still have a tread depth of more than 1.6mm in order to remain road legal. Driving on any tyres with a tread depth below the legal minimum may result in a fine of up to £2,500 per tyre, as well as points on your license.

Even if not alerted by the TPMS, you should check your tyres every two weeks to make sure they’re still road legal.

How to tell if my run flat tyres are damaged?

Your TPMS will alert you via the central console if there’s been a change in tyre pressure. Once that happens, it’s recommended that you stop in a safe location as soon as possible to check your tyres for severe damage.

If the tyre has experienced a puncture, then it won’t appear to be damaged or deflated at all. This means you can still drive on the tyre for a certain distance at a limited speed - check your vehicle’s handbook for more information on any limitations they may have.

Safely driving on a punctured run flat tyre

Your manufacturer will include information in your vehicle’s handbook on recommended speeds and distances. This is usually between 30-50mph and a distance of up to 200 miles.

When alerted by your TPMS try not to panic. Driving on a punctured run flat tyre shouldn’t feel any different, but you will notice a difference if the damage is more significant. Find a safe place to pull over to inspect your tyres.

Is it possible to repair a run flat tyre?

Unfortunately, due to the way in which a run flat tyre is reinforced to be useable when punctured, it’s not possible to repair them following a puncture or any other sort of damage.

Once a damaged run flat tyre is driven on, the structure that supports the weight of the car is compromised. This cannot be fixed, unlike a traditional tyre.

This may seem like a negative, but when you consider you don’t need to buy or carry a spare, and don’t need to change a tyre at the side of the road or call for roadside assistance, the positives stand out.

Also, having a TPMS alert you when there’s a drop in pressure does allow for that extra peace of mind.

What should I do if my run flat tyre is damaged?

For those asking whether you can repair run flats, the answer is a solid no. It’s highly recommended that you do not attempt to fix it, and that you have the tyre replaced as soon as possible.

Speak to a tyre expert, such as the team at your local Just Tyres, who will be able to advise you on the condition and safety of your tyres.

The cost of replacing run flat tyres

They may be more expensive than traditional tyres, however they can save you money in the long run, by removing the need to buy and carry a spare, or having to rely on calling for roadside assistance in the event of a puncture.

Buying new tyres

If your vehicle uses run flat tyres and is in need of a replacement, you can buy your tyres online using our quick and easy tool. We supply tyres for most makes and models, with a wide range in stock from major brands to suit all budgets.

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