TIRES THAT HELP MAINTAIN VEHICLE MOBILITY…
EVEN AFTER BEING PUNCTURED
YES! Run Flat Tires CAN BE REPAIRED! Many manufacturers equip their vehicles with run-flat tires. If your vehicle has run-flat tires and you need the tire repaired the professionals from Apex Automotive can handle the tire repair for you. Apex Automotive has all the necessary equipment to repair or replace your run-flat tires fast. Our state of the art tire installation machines make this process a breeze. Keep reading below to find out more about run-flat tires.
Since the early development of the automobile, tires have played an important role in determining a vehicle’s overall comfort and safety. However, there are few consumer products placed in harms way more often than our tires, which encounter extremes in temperature, exposure to the elements, and attacks by debris on the road during their life. And while the tire manufacturers’ continuous research and development efforts have improved tire durability and longevity, only recently have they developed tires that can temporarily maintain vehicle mobility using standard Original Equipment and aftermarket wheels. These run-flat tires provide the driver more flexibility when deciding where to have tire repairs made.
Tires don’t typically carry the weight of our vehicles, the air inside them does. There are three basic elements which determine the load capacity of a tire: the size of the air chamber formed between the tire and wheel, the strength provided by the tire’s construction to hold air pressure, and the amount of air pressure actually in the tire.
Most flat tires (and tire “blowouts”) are the result of slow leaks that go unnoticed and allow the tire’s air pressure to escape over time. Therefore, monitoring tire air pressure in real-time gets us half way there. If we had tires that could maintain temporary vehicle mobility even after air loss, we’d be just about invincible.
Today there are three technologies used as Original Equipment on vehicles to help maintain vehicle mobility when a tire is punctured. They are self-sealing tires, self-supporting tires and tires supported by an auxiliary system.
Self-sealing tires are designed to fix most tread-area punctures instantly and permanently. These tires feature standard tire construction with the exception of an extra lining inside the tire under the tread area that’s coated with a puncture sealant that can permanently seal most punctures from nails, bolts or screws up to 3/16 of an inch in diameter. These tires first provide a seal around the object when the tire is punctured and then fill in the hole in the tread when the object is removed. Because these tires are designed to seal the tire immediately upon being punctured, most drivers will never even know that they just had a puncture. Also because these tires feature standard tire constructions, the traditional loss-of-air symptoms that accompany a flat tire remain to warn the driver if the tire is damaged beyond repair. Therefore, self-sealing tires do not require a low air pressure warning system. Continental makes a Self-Sealing tire.
Examples: Bridgestone RFT (Run-Flat Tire), Continental Tire (Self-Supporting Technology) and ROF (Run-On-Flat), Firestone RFT (Run-Flat Tire), Goodyear EMT (Extended Mobility Technology) and ROF (Run-On-Flat), Kumho XRP, Michelin ZP (Zero Pressure), Pirelli RFT (Run-Flat Technology) and Yokohama Run-Flat and ZPS (Zero Pressure System).
The International Organization for Standardization (ISO), a worldwide federation of national standards bodies, has adopted a run-flat system symbol for extended mobility systems featuring self-supporting run-flat tires.
AUXILIARY SUPPORTED RUN-FLAT SYSTEMS
Auxiliary supported systems combine unique wheels and tires used for Original Equipment vehicle applications. In these systems, the flat tire’s tread rests on a support ring attached to the wheel when the tire loses pressure. The advantage to this type of system is that it will place most of the mechanical task of providing run-flat capability on the wheel (which typically doesn’t wear out or need to be replaced), and minimizes the responsibility of the tire (which does periodically wear out and requires replacement). Additionally, auxiliary support systems promise better ride quality because their sidewall’s stiffness can be equivalent to today’s standard tires. The disadvantage to auxiliary supported systems is that their unique wheels will not accept standard tires and that their lower volume will make this type of system more expensive.
This tire system is not widely accepted by vehicle manufacturers and consumers. The PAX tire by Michelin was a highly rejected implementation by the manufacturer.