Got a flat? Get super glue!

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Sunday last week at around 6:00 in the evening, I was supposed to go the grocery and buy some stuff for dinner. Now, in my part of the woods here in Laguna, the grocery is located along the old national highway, which is about two kilometers from my place. Although you need to cross the South Super Highway, it’s still a nice drive. I always make sure that I get everything I need when I go out. So on my way to the grocery, while I was about to enter the car, I noticed that my rear right tire was flat. I said to myself, no problem… I’ll just pull out my old Vespa compressor, inflate the tire and I would be on my way (with a slight detour to the vulcanizing shop). So I was able to inflate the tire and afterward, I put the compressor to the side and went into the house to wash my hands. However, when I got back to the car, the tire was flat again. I said to myself okay, this going to take awhile. I inflated the tire again and I positioned the car so that I could safely jack up the car so I could change the tire. While removing the lug nuts, I was able to remove three nuts; the other two were stuck. And I found out that the tire wrench that I was using didn’t have a good bite on the remaining lug nuts. So I got my cross wrench, and it had a better fit. But the pipe I was using to get better leverage couldn’t be used with the cross wrench because the diameter of the pipe was too small. Gee, this was getting to be a very interesting night. To add gravy to the situation, it started to rain.

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So I decided to wait for the rain to pass. While doing so, I started thinking of what to do next; where I could find a pipe big enough to use… I could try putting my weight on the cross wrench to try and loosen the lug nut but I didn’t want to run the risk of ruining the lug nut. Walking out to get a guy from a shop to help out was not an option. Then I thought, all I needed was to get the car to a shop. The tire just needed to hold long enough for the trip. I needed something to seal the hole. But first, I needed to find the puncture. So I inflated the tire again, lucky for me when I repositioned the car the puncture revealed itself. While inflating the tire I could here the air coming out of the hole; it was caused by a nail. Now what to seal it with… I knew I had 3-Bond sealant in my toolbox but wasn’t thin enough to flow into the hole. Then I thought of super glue.

I know it would be able to flow into the hole, but would it bond with rubber? Not all kinds of super glue would bond to rubber. So, I waited for the area to dry up… I jacked up the car to make sure the tire surface wouldn’t be stressed. After an hour I applied the super glue to the hole. After making sure it was full of super glue I let it dry overnight. The next day I inflated the tire just to see if the super glue would hold…it did. Now to see if it can hold under weight of the car… So I lowered the car. Surprisingly it did hold. I poured some water on the area to see if there was any air escaping. There was none. Okay, I thought that this would have to do.

I was able to make it to the vulcanizing shop. Upon checking the tire, we found out there were two holes. The one that I used super glue was starting to leak. The guy who was fixing my tire was smiling when I told what I did. He said that there were times he two had to resort to using super glue to fix a tire.

Now, I am not saying that super glue should be used to fix a flat tire… no way. For one thing, I should have paid more attention to my tires when I noticed that I would have to add air every once in awhile as compared the other tires. Plus checking the condition of my lug nuts. Because of the neglect, it gave a headache later on. On the lighter side, I will now put a tube of super glue in the car just in case I may need it. Along with my tools, nylon tie wraps and a roll of 3M duct tape. Just in case.

If you have any questions regarding your car please feel free get in touch with me at drdavemech@gmail.com. Hope to hear from you soon.

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