The tire is a circular shaped piece of rubber that covers the wheel and enables the vehicle to drive, and enhances the performance of the vehicle. The tire also provides traction and absorbs shock while you are driving down the road. The most common materials that tires are made of include: natural rubber, synthetic rubber, fabric, and wire. Over time, tires pick up rocks, nails, screws, and other things that can potentially cause problems and holes. If you have a nail in your tire, it is time to have a professional look at your vehicle. It may be safe to drive a short distance, but not much more than that.
Here's what you should know if you encounter a nail in your tire:
The first thing to do if you notice a nail in your tire is do not touch it. If the nail is deep enough, it can plug the hole so air does not leak from the tire. As soon as you notice the nail, contact a tire store so you can get your tire repaired. If you do not get your tire repaired soon, the tire could blowout causing an even bigger problem. A blowout causes a dangerous situation as you can potentially lose control of your vehicle.
If for some reason you are unable to get to the tire store, know that the longer you drive with a nail in your tire, the worse it can get. Driving a short distance to the tire store is okay, but commuting to work is not.
If the hole is small enough, the store may be able to repair the hole instead of having to replace the entire tire. Plugging tires is a much simpler fix than replacing the entire tire. Yet, if you drove on your tire too long, the nail could have caused more damaged over time, making it impossible for the store to plug the tire. Instead, they may have to change out the entire tire, which is more extensive.
As soon as you notice a nail in your tire, contact a tire store to have your tire inspected. Driving with a hole in your tire is potentially dangerous and could cause a blowout. Furthermore, driving too long with the nail can ruin the tire so you will have to replace the entire tire, instead of having a small piece plugged.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as Is it Safe to Drive With a Nail in My Tire? and was authored by Valerie Johnston.