Big rim leak

Kestas

Staff member
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The Motor City
I dismounted and remounted a tire using my Harbor Freight tire changer. This was on my winter car so I could deal with the 20 years corrosion at the bead seat. Sandblasting and painting took care of the corrosion. But after mounting the tire and reseating the beads, I found one area on the rim with a massive air leak. Close examination shows the rim is smooth at that area, but the tire has two thin ribs (arrows) that are damaged as shown in the picture. The rest of the tire bead looks smooth.

I find it hard to believe these thin ribs are so critical to holding air. An internet search doesn't show this as a design feature on tires.

I think my only recourse is to use tire sealant, or buy a new tire.

Sable tire (4).JPG
 
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17,101
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NH
Photo makes it look like more than just a bit of damage in the area? Still, I agree, I would have thought the rest of the bead surface did most of the work.

Can you break the bead on just this side, wipe down (I don't see any soapy water, that is what I use as a lube), and find some bead sealer? I get that it's a beater car and you might not deal with again, but I'm not sure if I would use tire sealer, seems like that just makes a small mess into a larger one, on the entire inside of the wheel. Assuming it even works, I thought tire sealer didn't work for bead leaks (I've heard of people using it for that, but not sure it's recommended for that use).
 

Kestas

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The Motor City
The tire was mounted twice to make sure it wasn't foreign debris. Same leak each time. As it sits now, just the one bead area is broken, not all the way around. I'll put bead sealer just in this area.
 
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Somewhere in the US
First, the sealing takes place between the flat of the rim and the flat of the tire, not on the flange. It is an interference fit. So if you have a leak, that is where it is not sealing.

Those 2 ridges are to allow the air to escape between the tire and the mold during the manufacturing process. Sealing does not take place there.

Don't forget, that in the process of cleaning up the sealing area, it is possible to remove so much metal that it now has a slight flat(ish) area, and while it appears round, it is less round than the bead - hence the leak.
 

Kestas

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I'll have to find some way to inspect the radial surface. I think I was too rough on it.

I poked around the rough area on the axial surface to make sure it wasn't cut.
 
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Location
iowa
A Harbor freight tire changer would make it pretty easy to destroy a tire from my experience. It's easy to rip, or cut a tire on a good tire machine, even if you know what you are doing. And sometimes even if you know how to dismount/mount a tire it can happen.
 
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